We’re Celebrating Short Story Month with 31 Days of Stories!

Not to be outdone by poetry or NaNoWriMo, May is Short Story Month!

Have you ever had the feeling of reading a first line and knowing, immediately, that this is going to be a perfect short story? You read on, your heart racing as the story meets, and then exceeds your expectations. Then the anxiety sets in as the ending approaches: there are only two pages left, how can this author pull it off? The energy builds as the whitespace approaches, and then you exhale, finally, at that perfect last sentence.

The first time I had that experience was probably reading Flannery O’Connor’s “Good Country People” in high school, or maybe it was a few years before that, with D.H. Lawrence’s “The Rocking Horse Winner,” or Ursula K. Le Guin’s “The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas,” or a decade before that, hearing Oscar Wilde’s “The Happy Prince” read to me at bedtime. However or whenever it started, I’ve been chasing the feeling ever since.

Electric Literature wants to help you chase that feeling, and so we’re celebrating Short Story Month in two ways:

We’re accepting submissions for our weekly fiction magazine, Recommended Reading.

Recommended Reading publishes fiction ranging in length from 2,000 to 10,000 words, and pays each contributor $300. For more information about how to submit, please visit our submittable page.

We’re posting a short story a day.

Every morning at 9am, we’re posting some of our favorite stories from the Recommended Reading archives on our Facebook page.

Here are the stories we’ve posted so far:

This Door You Might Not Open” by Susan Scarf Merrell, recommended by Fifth Wednesday

We Are The Olfanauts” by Deji Bryce Olukotun, recommended by OR Books

White Dialogues” by Bennett Sims, original fiction recommended by Electric Literature

The Lady of the House of Love” by Angela Carter, recommended by Kelly Link

This is a great time to catch up on some of the stories you missed.

Beginning June 1, in conjunction with our move to Medium, the 200+ stories in the Recommended Reading archives will be available by subscription only, for the affordable rate of $5/month. Electric Literature is a nonprofit that depends on reader support, and this subscription model is designed to allow us to continue to pay all of our writers, and still offer each new issue of Recommended Reading for free before moving it behind the paywall.

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