On ghostpigs

29 June 2010

Instead of a proper post today, some advice on opening paragraphs from Catherynne M Valente, who recently became the fiction and poetry editor of Apex Magazine:

Dudes, a short story is not that long. You do not have 50 pages to hook a reader (you don’t, really, in a novel either, but that’s another post), you cannot lazily dick around for a page and a half before being all CHECK IT OUT GHOSTPIGS. Because no one ever made it to the GHOSTPIGS, who were buried under: “Robert walked down the street. The sky was cloudy. All the houses were brown. He thought about work.”



4 Responses to “On ghostpigs”

  1. AlexJ Says:

    She didn’t mince words, did she?

  2. B. Miller Says:



    And, heartily agree. Thanks for posting Alex!

  3. Old Kitty Says:


    I LOVE this woman!!!! It’s like she’s giving those who have crossed her a verbal kick up the derriere for not getting the concept of the short story!


    I am so not worthy!

    Take care

  4. Wow, harsh.

    I’m spicing this up:

    “Robert sashayed down the street. The rumbling sky threatened to interfere with his business. All the houses were dark, but he didn’t know if it was from the late hour or because they were shunning him. He thought about his next John.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: