Monday, 17 January 2011

We wish to inform you

A story from the collection accepted! What lovely news as we wind down the mountain valley after a dodgy day of skiing (helicopters, snow like wet sand, broken legs a-go-go).

It will appear in Tears on the Fence, a green movement/feminist established journal of poetry and fiction.

I am so pleased. Plus the story speaks of injury, acceptance of injury, and how a woman's world softly shifts in a vivid summer mountain setting. I wrote it last year in the autumn - and whoever knows where these compulsions spring from - and remember enjoying discovering the characters as they moved on the page. I knew where I wanted to take them, but it is always a mix of knowledge and acceptance what happens in between.

That is why I love short stories. Departure is so swift, so decisive, then comes the meddling of the mind, the evolving of the characters themselves, and then the crackling at the end, the cusp, the moving away. I love writing the story behind the greater story and was delighted to read this comment once, spoken by an interviewer to Robert Drewe, whose stories I loved as a young woman:

'These stories remind me of Hemingway’s adage about the iceberg – that a strong writer only need reveal one eighth of what he knows about that story, and the reader will sense the submerged whole. Many of these stories seem to contain a novel within them, a wider story that is only hinted at. Is that accurate – do you know a good deal more about these characters and their situations than you reveal?'

Why of course.

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