Robert Kennedy Saved from Drowning, a short story by Donald Barthelme.
A 10-minute film based on Flannery O’Connor’s story “Good Country People”, shot in the 1960s. [via maud newton]
A short story written by the 6-year-old brother of one of my co-workers:
One day I woke up. I was haf chipmunk and bus. Then! I stareted to driv bep bep. Then I stareted to run wee. Thes is fun driving and runing. Then I crasht in to a treey. Ach
The third sentence is one of the best bits of writing I’ve seen in a while.
Flash Fiction Forward collects a bunch of stories that only take a couple of page turns to finish. One thing I thought was odd is how none of the stories take on a particular genre, and how many of them seem to have a contemporary setting. Why not a tight little detective story, or a scene from a Civil War battle field, or a nice little 13th century abbey? I’m all for penetrating meditations on modern relationships and culture and stuff, but it’s a shame to see such talent spent in a narrow range.
In any case, many of these stories are quite good, and the low cost of reading means you should take a glance. Some of the stories I particularly liked are:
“Before the Bath” by Ismail Kadare
“The Great Open Mouth Anti-Sadness” by Ron Carlson
“Rose” by John Biguenet
“The Old Truth in Costa Rica” by Lon Otto
“I Never Looked” by Donald Hall
“Fab 4” by Jenny Hall
“Words” by John A. McCaffrey
“21” by Jim Crace
“The Orange” by Benjamin Rosenbaum
“Geometry Can Fail Us” by Barbara Jacksha
“Bill” by Dan Kaplan
“00:02:36:58” by Bayard Godsave
“Traveling Alone” by Rob Carney
“The Death of the Short Story” by J. David Stevens
One final note: it’s incredibly disappointing how many of these stories are not (easily) available online.
I love the cover of Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures: Stories. That’s what made me pick it up, and that’s what I’ll remember best about this book. As for the contents, I pushed beyond the first couple of awkward and disappointing pages, enjoyed myself off and on past the half-way point, and then just didn’t want to read it anymore. The stories were kind of interesting, the writing wasn’t.