Archive for January 15th, 2012

I’ve always been a fan of the short story.  I grew up reading the classic short stories of  Guy DeMaupassant, O. Henry and Edgar Allan Poe, all beautifully crafted and plotted.   There are short stories by other authore that are lodged deeply in the fabric of my memory, which helped shape how I view the  world.  The will to live of the man struggling against nature in Jack London’s To Start a Fire or the way that love and art changed the lonely characters in Who Am I This Time? from Kurt Vonnegut are two varied examples.

A short story is very much like a painting to me.  They are often complete views of an event or a moment but there is still a lot of room for the reader to fill in the spaces with their own imagination, to allow their own emotional understandings to become part of the tale.  They can be taken in quickly yet often, as I have noted above, the memory lingers on.  Again, like the glance of a painting that stays with you in a haunting way.

I was pleased to come across such a piece of short fiction recently from writer David Terrenoire, a friend I met several years ago through my work.  It’s called After the War and is the story of two lonely souls who momentarily find one another in the area of the steel mills around Pittsburgh of 1948.  I would call the story a poetic tragedy. The writing is spare and direct, giving the piece the feeling of the fable that it is. 

Just a damn fine piece of writing that will stay with you for days after.  And maybe longer.

After the War is available  from Amazon for e-readers.


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