November 10th, 2013
Long ago, when I was first entertaining notions of sharing my stories with a wide audience, I came across a passage in Ben Bova’s Notes to a Science Fiction Writer. It describes a photograph that he saw in a book titled The Faces of Man. Bova writes:
[The photograph] shows an African village, where most of the people have gathered around an old, withered man who is evidently the village story-teller. He is at a high point in the evening’s story; his arms are raised over his head, his mouth is agape, his eyes wide. And the whole village is staring at him, equally agape and wide-eyed, breathless to find out . . . .
[Read more and watch a video performance from The World Fantasy Reading Café at The 21st-Century Scop.]
November 8th, 2013
Call me the warrior scop. Maybe I didn’t battle monsters at this year’s World Fantasy Convention in Brighton, but I did spend some time beating back gale-force winds that rivaled those of England’s Great Storm of 1987. And I did get a chance to wield an artisan-made sword from a dealers-room display. So maybe I was a warrior. Sort of? Humor me.
The scop part might be easier to defend.
I spent my first evening in Brighton at the University of Brighton’s Center for Teaching and Learning, where I read excerpts from Visions and spoke about the process of writing for publication. Arranged by Drs. Gina Wisker and Vedrana Velickovic, the event attracted some enthusiastic students and writers, many of whom submitted questions that I promised to address in an upcoming blog. More on that soon.
After the University reading, I headed south to World Fantasy where I spent most of my time in the Reading Café, a spoken-word venue . . . .
[Read more at The 21st-Century Scop.]
October 27th, 2013
Continuing the tradition of the traveling bard, the 21st Century Scop will be hitting the road this week, heading off to England to give readings at the University of Brighton on Wednesday, October 30 (5:30 PM), and then at the World Fantasy Convention’s Reading Café on Saturday, November 2 (12:30 PM). If you’re . . . [More at The 21st-Century Scop.]
October 26th, 2013
In an earlier post, I shared my thoughts on “Bedtime Story” by Jeffrey Whitmore – a short-short story that weighs in at a flyweight 55 words. Since then, I have given flash fiction presentations at PAISTA and in my advanced writing class at Sewickley Academy – both of which have given me the opportunity to field a variety of questions about short-short fiction.
One question that often comes up at such presentations is: How short is too short?
The question, of course, depends on one’s definition of flash fiction. For those willing to stretch the definition of story, here are five ultra-short works that might qualify as the shortest tales of all time . . . . [Read more at The 21st Century Scop.]