Etgar Keret’s First Short Story

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At Tablet, acclaimed Israeli author Etgar Keret describes how his literary career began during his mandatory military service in one of the “most heavily guarded army bases in Israel.”

“The fact that I had typed all those made-up sentences was exciting, but also frightening. I felt as if I had to find someone to read the story right away, and even if he didn’t like or understand it, he could calm me down and tell me that writing it was perfectly all right, and not just another step on my road to insanity.

“The first potential reader didn’t arrive until 14 hours later. He was the pockmarked sergeant who was supposed to relieve me and take the next shift. In a voice trying to sound calm, I told him that I’d written a short story and wanted him to read it. He took off his sunglasses and said indifferently, ‘No way. Fuck off.’”

Find out more about Etgar’s first story at Tablet, and read the actual story here.

And read his story for Recommended Reading here.

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