To me, the short story differs from the novel in the way that, say, a watercolor differs from an oil, or a concerto differs from a symphony. Each form is telling a story, but the medium chosen by the artist informs (thank you, Mcluhan) the message. Obviously, an author doesn't choose to write a short story instead of a novel because it's shorter. She writes it because the shorter form suggests something different about the objectives of the narrative than does the longer form. For me, the short story generally conveys an existential situation, rather than a fully-fledged narrative plot. Of course things happen within the pages of a compelling short story, sometimes startling things, reversals of character,of fortune.
3 months ago