Short Stories or Novels?

Hope your holiday season is going well. I have a few more presents to purchase, and then I can kick back and relax until Christmas! 

Just kidding! Sort of. Even though the presents are (mostly) wrapped, dinner plans are made and Christmas music is playing as I type, I’m not relaxing. I’m writing!

My latest project is “The Cabin”, a short story I am polishing up right now. The story is told from the perspective of Jack, a character from my novel-in-progress. While Jack is not the main character, this story helped me, and I hope you, understand Jack’s motivations. Not sure if it will make it into the novel itself, but it was a fun way to explore Jack’s thoughts. I’ll be sharing “The Cabin” with you in the next couple of weeks. 

I’ve also been reading a lot of short stories, including works by George Saunders and John Cheever. My favorites pieces, though, have been Alice Munro’s “Chance,” “Soon,” and “Silence.” Pedro Almodovar made these into the film “Julieta.” The three pieces stand alone, but together, they show the bigger picture of a woman’s journey from daughter to lover to mother. If you haven’t had a chance to read Munro, you won’t be disappointed. 

As a reader, I’m always on the lookout for a quick but interesting tale to entertain me. I kept “The Cabin” as short and succinct as possible. It took my computer 6 minutes and 18 seconds to read the latest draft to me. That’s about the right amount of time for me to switch out a load of laundry and start the dishwasher. 

I’d love to hear your thoughts on story length. Do you prefer the quick hit of a short story or do you want to immerse yourself in a full-length novel? Send your comments to

Photo by Nicole Honeywill on Unsplash