Lydia Davis – the world’s best short short story writer?

(c) David Ignaszewski

Earlier this year American author Lydia Davis (M) was awarded the 2013 Man Booker International Prize, an award which recognises one writer for their career achievement in fiction.

Intrigued, I borrowed The Collected Stories of Lydia Davis (M). I am totally impressed. Blown away! A writer unlike any other writer I have ever enjoyed. Short stories are not really an adequate description of the form. Many of the collected stories are but a paragraph or two. But they are amazing. They are creative, insightful and at times, a little off kilter. Very addictive. I couldn’t stop flipping the pages. To read just one more quick little story…

A couple of the entries that really stuck with me were Letter to a Funeral Parlor and Happiest Moment. In the first, a funeral director is taken to task for the use of the invented word cremains. In the second, a Chinese student is simply asked to reveal his happiest moment. His answer is somehow rather profound to me.

If you enjoy short stories at all, I strongly urge you to check out Lydia Davis.

She is the master of a literary form largely of her own invention.” – Craig Morgan Teicher, of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

Sewer Main Work Intersection of Kearney Lake Road and Highway 102

In Memoriam – Elmord Leonard, 1925 – 2013