Short Short Stories

Short Short Stories


I remember the first day of my first creative writing class. My professor was a very good and very old writer, who I will not name. He started the class, like many writers-turned teachers did back then, with a monologue about about literature. He began giving a history of writing and starting with telling stories around a primitive campfire, went on and on until I was just slightly conscious. He then said, “the short story is really the only American literary art form.” I was awake at this. In all the history of the short story it took the hustle and bustle of early American life and capitalism to make it popular. All those pulp magazine editors looking for great short stories to fill their magazines with. America was in such a hurry that they could only read less than 10,000 words at a time, I guess.


Today things haven’t changed very much except that America is in even a bigger hurry. We are more rushed with less time. If the late 1800s and early 1900s popularized the short story, then the late 1900s and early 2000s have certainly popularized short short stories. It is a new art form (in some ways). It takes even less time to read than the short story. It consists of usually less than 1000 words, and it fills our hunger for a quick fix of literature. The soundbite, quick cutting world of television, I believe, has brought us to this. The short short story aka flash fiction is becoming increasingly popular.


Now literary websites, blogs and even magazine editors are drooling for those short short stories that everyone wants to read. They are easy to edit and publish. I will not go as far as saying they are easy to write. In fact I think they can be even more difficult than a short story or poetry to pen .


To be blunt, we love short short stories here at EWR: Short stories, and we are writing this little piece to celebrate the form and to mark a change on our site. We are only taking submissions of short short stories that are 500 words or less. So if you want to submit to us, go here, but only send us short short stories please.


Also, we have a mix of stories here, and to make it easier for everyone we have decided to list here only and all of our short short stories (man I used that term a lot). Either way, I hope you enjoy this list, kind of a recap.

Here is our large list of short short stories: