Crafting the Very Short Story: An Anthology of 100 Masterpieces

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9780130867629: Crafting the Very Short Story: An Anthology of 100 Masterpieces

This anthology is an international collection of stories and essays by critically-acclaimed authors, chosen for their intellectual and emotional appeal. Each story or essay is one to six pages in length, making these authors' short works easily accessible to a wide reading public. It provides an exciting taste of global literature, with classic, modern, and avant garde short stories. Over 100 authors are presented, including Alice Walker, Yasunari Kawabata, Helen Vivien Viramontes, Anton Chekhov, Edgar Allan Poe, Ernest Hemingway, Charles Dickens, and Joyce Carol Oates, to name only a few. For those readers interested in an excellent collection of short stories by the world's most renowned writers.

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From the Back Cover:

This outstanding anthology is comprised of acclaimed authors from diverse cultures and both genders. Organized alphabetically and stylistically, CRAFTING'S wealth of classic, modern, and avant-garde fiction features numerous genres and serves as an excellent introduction to the authors' longer works. The text includes writing instruction, exercises, a glossary of literary terms, scholarly commentary, and 14 personal essays by the writers on form, key stylistic elements, and stories included in the collection. The rich variety of narratives and the overall reader-friendly structure make this compendium an essential tool for teaching fiction and crafting the very short story.

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Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

This first edition of Crafting the Very Short Story comprises five parts. The first section is composed of 100 stories and 26 critical essays. The stories are organized alphabetically by author. The narratives represent diverse types of fiction ranging from antiquity to the present, such as Luke's parable, Galeano's fable, Calvino's folktale, Wilde's prose poem, Mann's sketch, Theroux's humor, Maupassant's satire, Moore's realism, S. L. Wisenberg's naturalism, Garcia Mdrquez's magical realism, Frame's fantasy, Le Guin's allegory, Bukowski's dramatic monologue, Woolf's experimental prose, Lispector's stream of consciousness, and Poe's gothic horror. Among the internationally acclaimed authors are Pulitzer Prize winner Eudora Welty, James Joyce, and Nobel laureate Naguib Mafouz, as well as three of the finest writers of this relatively new genre: Yasunari Kawabata, H. H. Munro, and Amy Hemple. Many of the stories will serve as engaging introductions to the authors' longer works. For example, there are pieces by Alice Walker, Marcel Proust, Vladimir Nabokov, Fyodor Dostoevsky and Herman Melville. The rich diversity of excellent literature is designed to provide a global array of choices that peak your students' imagination and desire to write creatively.

The first-person and commentary essays by distinguished writers and scholars appear immediately after their corresponding stories. In many cases, these essays explicate the writers' motivation and stylistic choices, enabling students to better understand how stylistic elements—such as character, dialogue, and mood—work seamlessly with the governing pattern of the whole to engage the reader and achieve the writer's predetermined goal. You may want to direct students' attention to how the writers dispense with impedimenta to craft lean subtle prose, how they pare the narrative down to its most salient details, thereby achieving economy and grace.

The second section is a stylistic table of contents listing each story by one of the three stylistic devices that dominate this often quickly paced form: voice, point of view, and setting. The section that follows is a Top Ten, if you will, of guidelines for crafting a very short story. More suggestive than prescriptive, it is meant to stimulate thought about stylistic choices as students embark on the creative process. The fourth section comprises 20 exercises that will challenge students' ability to craft succinct narratives that balance emotional pitch and intellectual power.

The above-mentioned literary terms, as well as others, can be found in the glossary, the text's last section.

I must thank certain individuals whose sage counsel has been invaluable throughout the development of Crafting, from its embryonic form to its final proofing: Halina Makowska, whose tact, incisiveness, and translation services were without peer; the exemplary design and edit staff at Prentice Hall, Pearson Education, from Thomas DeMarco and Carrie L. Brandon to Katie Huha and Maureen Benicasa; educators and writers Siobhan Benet, Edwidge Danticat, Barbara McFarlane, Luz Tellez, Kay-Ann Boswell, Beth Coleman, Lisa Jones, Meg O'Rourke, Helen Schulman, Philip Lopate, Mary Gordon, Hemie Kim, Heather Malloy, Ras Baraka, Kevin Powell, and Richard Goldstein; and the following reviewers: Marvin Diognes, University of Arizona; Loren C. Gruber, Missouri Valley College; Frederico Moramarco, San Diego State University; Scott Odom, Loyola Marymount University; and Christopher Trogan, John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

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