Pub. Date:
Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Flash Fiction: 72 Very Short Stories / Edition 1

Flash Fiction: 72 Very Short Stories / Edition 1

by James Thomas
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"These stories are not merely flashes in the pan; there's pay dirt here!" —DeWitt Henry, editor of Ploughshares

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780393308839
Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
Publication date: 07/17/1992
Pages: 224
Sales rank: 250,016
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.70(d)

About the Author

Tom Hazuka has co-edited Flash Fiction and You Have Time for This, and other anthologies. He teaches fiction writing at Central Connecticut State University.

James and Denise Thomas live in Ohio, where he teaches at Wright State University.

James Thomas has received a Stegner Fellowship, a Michener Fellowship, and two NEA grants. He lives in Xenia, Ohio.

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Flash Fiction: 72 Very Short Stories 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 9 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Flash Fiction is a blast! There are 72 wonderfully brief pieces here. This anthology allows for many writers to publish things that just won't appear anywhere else. Something that could be just a throwaway idea can be scribbled out in a few short sentences, paragraphs, or pages.
ericnguyen09 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Flash fiction has become, in recent years, a craze among writers. Partly because of the internet era and the dwindling attention spans of readers, flash fiction, as James Thomas writes in the introduction, is a product of the times. For example, there are hundreds of literary magazines dedicated to the genre, including SmokeLong Quarterly, QuickFiciton, and the Vestal Review. There are also more (some more credible than others) on the internet. Flash fiction is a phenomenon of the current era. But is it lasting fiction? Flash fiction, among more serious writers and beginning writers alike, has always been seen as easy publication. Admittedly, beginning writers seek to publish flash fiction due to it's seemingly relative ease and the fact that some publishers eagerly accept it due to the amount of space it takes (very little).But as James Thomas shows in this 1992 anthology, flash fiction can be a respectable genre that is not only daring, but stories in the same way longer stories are, with affect and the ability to leave an imprint on the reader's mind. Overall, the anthology shows that flash stories--these stories with less than 1000 words--can be full stories, all the same, and maybe perhaps more.The anthology includes many stories that are considered by now modern classics by authors who have made footprints in the literary sands. Among them are Francine Prose, Raymond Carver, and Maragret Atwood, just to name a few outstanding pieces. These stories in particular show writers of short prose taking chances with shorter forms, with the results not unlike their masterpieces. FOr example, Raymond Carver's "The Father" shows the king of minimalism at his most minimalist, in a story about adultry and distrust--all of which implied--in a matter of three pages (only one of which is full).Also of note here are the writers who are not so well known. These are really the treasure pieces of the book. Among them are Carol Edelstein, Richard Shelton, Jo Sapp, as well as foregin authors such as Pavo Pavlicic and Luisa Valenzuela. These are especially prizes since some of these works are no longer in print.The collection as a whole is something to be cherished, for it is one of the few in its genre. Yet for one of the few, it does a splendid job: gathered here are short, short stories, but full stories nonetheless that capture perfectly the power of language to linger in the head. The only complaint is that this collection is too old, yet can we say: classic? Jame Thomas's anthology, is indeed a classic in the genre, and needs to be read as soon as possible for anyone thinking of writing flash fiction, especially those seeing it as an easy way to get published. The collection shows that flash fiction can be just as complex and spellbinding.The publishing scene needs more books like this.
Cariola on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
As one might expect, a collection of stories by 72 different authors is rather a mixed bag, but Flash Fiction will surely have something for everyone. And because the stories are so short (none longer than four pages), it was a great way to get introduced to some styles and writers that I otherwise might never have read. A few familiar, regularly anthologized stories are included, like Jamaica Kincaid's "Girl" and Julia Alvarez's "Snow." But I also enjoyed "Mandy Shupe," Kristin Andrychuk's tale of a Mennonite girl gone bad, Pamela Painter's quirky "I Get Smart," about a woman who gets three "new" cats by renaming the ones she already has, and Mary Morris's melancholy "The Haircut," in which a wife finds evidence that her husband is cheating again. Overall, an interesting collection, and I found some authors whose longer works of fiction I will be seeking out.
Magadri on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Overall, this is a very good collection of short stories. As with most short story collections though, there were a few short stories that were nearly impossible to finish. Luckily, the editors did a pretty good job selecting stories for this collection, so those bad stories are few and far between. The stories are the perfect length to take this book with you on the go.
Steve55 on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Our lives are busy, yet to survive in this rapidly changing and unpredictable world, more than ever we need to tap into our creativity.It was the German playwright Goethe who succinctly captured the route towards creativity when he said,`One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable words.¿This book is a way to glimpse a little of the unusual and unexpected. In just over 200 pages it presents over 70 very short stories by different authors. The styles and subjects very greatly, yet each fits into no more than a couple of pages and each has the potential to spark a new thought, or create a new step on your journey.Who could reasonably ask for more.
misirlou on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The problem with genres like Flash Fiction, Short Shorts, Prose Poetry, and whatever else is out there that someone wants to come up with an arbitray definition for is that it's incredibly difficult to accurately decide what's in a genre that no one can really define. This collection bases their criteria for Flash Fiction on the word length of the piece. In doing so, they've included a number of poets and there's some discord between the pieces. To the credit of the editors, they've picked a number of great pieces that really fit the flash fiction criteria. The pieces that don't are either staples (like Carolyn Forche's prose poem about dinner with Castro) or that are interesting enough that genre definitions don't matter (Russell Edson, for example). The ordering is wacky at time but the overall collection makes up for it. For people hesitant to approach new genres like this, the editors have included a lot of recognizable names. All in all, it's a good anthology-- accessable, cheap, and it represents a wide variety of styles.
whitewavedarling on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I went into this book not sure what to expect, but there was a surprise with every few pages. For any reader who enjoys quick stories or really unique original work, this would be a good pick. Some of the stories are real gems (my favorites being "The Stones" by Richard Shelton, "Grace Period" by Will Baker, "The Paring Knife" by Michael Oppenheimer, "Space" by Mark Strand which is really beautiful, and "Offerings" by Marlene Buono, another beautiful short short story). There are others which don't show so much voice or strength, but by the nature of the collection they're quick. I'd recommend reading the collection and letting works speak to you individually, starring the ones to come back to as they come. Overall, the writing here is engaging and the stories fascinating. Something to enjoy if you're curious...
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
It's daunting to review a book with 75 authors. I would like to give some general remarks. The shortest story has 185 words ('Water' by Fred Leebron). I gave this book 4 stars instead of 5 because very short stories are not really my cup of tea. I need time to get a grip on the story and the characters and this is difficult for me with a very short story. There are also a few stories included by foreign writers like Roland Topor, Heinrich Boll and Julio Cortazar. It's a little bit surprising that Sam Shepard is not included. Though he's mainly a playwright, he has some outstanding very short stories. This collection comes in handy when you like to read something in bed before you go to sleep.