Short stories anyone? That Stubborn Seed of Hope

In the busyness of life, it’s sometimes hard to find the time to dedicate to a whole novel. With schoolwork, sport and other activities, time to read has fallen aside. And if you find reading hard, keeping track of a storyline can be difficult. Why not try a short story or two?

Always on the lookout for short stories to add to the library collection? This collection, ‘That Stubborn Seed of Hope’, will “take you on a nail-biting journey through your worst nightmares” – or so the blurb tells you. Indeed, it is a great collection, which you can dip in and out of, choose which ones you want to read, and then spend some time pondering how you are feeling afterwards…

  • What does it feel like to think you are a 17-year-old mistakenly trapped in an 80-year old’s body?
  • What if you lived in a world where physical contact was prohibited due to a virus (would you risk a kiss?)?
  • How do you cope with a brother’s vegetative existence after a major accident, for which you have some aspect of guilt?

These are a few of the issues which author, Brian Falkner, tackles in his collection of 10 short stories:

…stories of fear, heartbreak and tragedy, but also… stories of endurance, of coping and overcoming.

Brian Falkner also encourages the writer. At the end of this book, he includes a section outlining what inspired/directed each story. Thoughts for aspiring writers, if you wish to look beyond the stories. There is also advice for young writers on his website.

What other short story collections have you enjoyed? Any you would recommend?

Will well-written short stories help to engage time-poor readers?

Hatched – Tim Winton collects…

Hatched V1Tim Winton is passionate about writing. As a celebrated author who decided he wanted to be a writer at the age of ten, he is an inspiration for many writers. From a practical point of view, he has also encouraged young writers over the last 20 years having established an award for students in Western Australia.

Hatched is a collection of the award winners, celebrating 20 years of the Tim Winton Award.

In association with the Subiaco Library in his home state of Western Australia, and other sponsors, Tim has been actively encouraging students with the same passion for storytelling which he felt as a child:

‘It’s a great pleasure to see young people exercising their storytelling instincts. During the twenty years in which the award has been given in my name I’ve had the privilege of witnessing this stubborn, lovely impulse as it lives on in a new generation. Whether they’re writing feverish fantasy or gritty realism these young writers are coming to terms with their language and their lives, using stories to shape or unpack what they know and what they fear and what they hope for.’ Quote from:

Hatched includes a great range of stories, from students in middle primary through to upper secondary school, from 5 to 18 year olds. Tales cover many different things, told from the point of view of articulate young Australians. Weird and fanciful, down-to-earth reality, and out of this world concoctions of fertile young minds. Many tales are a reflection of the emotions and experiences of our youth, while others bear witness to their creative abilities.

Luckily, archives of past winning entries in 5 different age groups can also be viewed here.

What an amazing privilege for these young writers! And if their writing skills have continued to develop, what great hope there is for the future of storytelling in its various forms in Australia. Inspiring stuff!