The second topic resonated with me in particular, and I decided to chat a bit about the format of comics/graphic novels.
If anything was derived from the many discussions yesterday, it's that reading/storytelling can come in many different forms. Which is perhaps why it's apt that today's topic encourages everyone to think beyond the full-length novel and explore...
|+ Fiction = <3|
Science fiction in particular can lend itself very well to the short story format. One might think the opposite is true, given that science fiction can tend to be particular about...well, the science, and technical detail to worldcrafting. But some of the most enjoyable spec fic short stories that come to mind are those that focus less on building a world than on building a scenario that hints at an immense world beyond. With short stories in general, there's a lot less "storytelling baggage" that can often plague full-length novels And with speculative fiction short stories, there's the added benefit of being able to pitch the tentpole of reality wherever desired! (Is the baseline reality that we live on Mars and speaking telepathically? Well, all rightie then, perfect!)
If looking for a place to start in checking out short stories--especially in speculative fiction--I'd recommend reading some of the public domain works of Philip K. Dick. His stories "The Hanging Stranger" and "The Crystal Crypt" are exciting and supremely chilling, while "The Skull" and "The Defenders" weave in really impactful messages with unexpected resonance.
I'd also recommend checking out speculative fiction magazines like Strange Horizons and Asimov's Science Fiction (or one that I'm fond of for personal reasons, Penumbra eMag) provide a diverse set of stories on a recurring basis, and from both new and established talent.
How about you? Do you often read novellas or short stories? Are they easier/more difficult to access, to enjoy? What are some of your favorite short stories?