|Cover design by Claude Nougat|
My new collection of short stories is out: Death on Facebook. Find out who's dead on Facebook! And find out what makes for good story telling in our Digital Age...
I've made it easy for you to check it out: Death on Facebook, Short Stories for the Digital Age will be FREE on Amazon Kindle from 7 to 9 March, starting Pacific Time (so keep that in mind if you live in Europe!).
Click the link to download the book: Death on Facebook, Short Stories for the Digital Age
TODAY, March 8, is Women's Day: 2 more days left for free downloads - till 9 MARCH! And the first story in the collection, "Death on Facebook", is dedicated to all the women around the world who face culture clashes (in this story, she is from India). Just got some fantastic reviews: "a classic short story writer"..."If Kindle can re-kindle and heat the fire of the short story, then this is the collection that may do it"..."In this wonderful collection, the reader is dropped into the action across cultures, generations..." If you like it, please remember to click the "like" button and spread the word, share the love. I am so grateful to you, my readers!
This short story collection is my writer's MANIFESTO!
Or put another way: my stories follow specific rules that I believe make for a good short story adapted to our digital age.
A manifesto? I know that's a big word, but it expresses what (in my view) short stories should do for you, the reader, in our day and age. More on that in the page I've just dedicated to Death on Facebook under the Blog's title, look it up or click here if you're interested.
Here I'd like to tell you about the quandary a writer is in whenever s/he tries to sell short stories. We're told there's no market for them. You can go to the magazines, but half of them are shutting down and most don't pay or pay abysmally (like $10!). Publishers won't touch short stories with a ten foot pole unless you're already a New York Times best-selling author and/or you've been published by the New Yorker...
What to do?
Fortunately e-readers, and especially Amazon with its Kindle Single program, have changed that. You don't need a 500 page novel to get published and reach out to your readers. A short story collection, too small to make a printed book can be sold digitally (mine is some 22,000 words - about 45 printed pages).
Moreover I'm convinced there's a place for short stories in everyone's lives, especially in our globalized, digital world. We multi-task like mad and often don't have time for a long, relaxed read. We're waiting at the doctor's or bored commuting on our daily train and a short story, read in ten minutes, can be a welcome relief from the tediousness of the moment. Flip open your Kindle and relax. A short story has the power to take your mind off, make you dream, make you smile...
If that's the case and I'm right about when one tends to read a short story, then certain rules should be observed to ensure the reader has a good experience:
1. A fast, snappy opening, a maximum of ten words to grab your reader's attention.
2. A well-paced plot and no back story - or a bare minimum, enough so that the reader has a clear image of who the protagonists are and what they're doing. The suspense has to be maintained at a high level.
3. A surprise ending, good and short, no elaboration. It has to leave you, the reader, thinking about the story (and of course, wanting to read more).
That's why I've sub-titled my book "short stories for the Digital Age". They're not unfocused, atmospheric pieces like poems. Some short stories are like that, mine are not. And that's deliberate: I wanted to write them following the above-mentioned rules. Don't misunderstand me, I love atmospheric short stories but the moments to enjoy that kind of literature are getting fewer and fewer in our frenzied lives. When you stand in line at the post office, you're not in the mood for poetry...
So the way to go is short and punchy. These are hard rules to live up to. If you're a writer, you might want to check and see if I've done them justice.
If you're a reader, forget the rules and read the stories and let me know if you enjoyed them! I don't ask for reviews (I'd love them of course!) but I know your time is limited: if you can, just click the "like" and "tags" buttons on the Amazon site, I'll know that I've met your expectations. Nothing would make me happier. Or drop me a line. I'd love to connect with you!
To download the book: Death on Facebook, Short Stories for the Digital Age
Free from Wednesday 7 March to Friday 9 March included.
For more information about the author, visit Claude Nougat's Author Pages on:
For more information about Death on Facebook, click here.