Shirley Jackson

Writing the Short Story

on February 16, 2012

“The victim is Ashley Young,” the responding officer, Sampson, told me as I approached. It was officially Tuesday morning: 12:02 a.m. I recognized Sampson from the station, but hadn’t worked a case with him. “We found her purse over there.” He gestured toward the Dumpster near where the alley and walkway intersected. He handed me her California driver’s license. Ashley was twenty-four, five feet five inches tall, one hundred ten pounds, blonde hair and blue eyes. Pretty and blonde, just the way Greg Keller—aka “the River City Rapist”—liked his prey. I stuffed my hands back into the pockets of my… Read More


Ghostly Vengeance

on April 22, 2010

Stephen King has said that the short story is a lost art. King is the master of the short story; in fact, my favorite King movies originally came from his short stories. (THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION was originally “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption; there was also ‘1408’ and ‘The Langoliers’, both of which translated well to film, and others.) But as the magazine market has collapsed and fewer anthologies are published, the short story has become rare. My mom says she doesn’t like short stories and novellas because she doesn’t feel like there is a completely story; other people enjoy… Read More