The 2012 Short Story Challenge (Not Just For, er, Short People)

This year I have decided to enjoy more short stories. They are an art form that just doesn’t get the same appreciation that the novel does. So this year, I’m resolved to read at least 40 short stories. I am actually hoping to read 52 (one a week), but 40 is already quite a bit!

To help myself out, I set up The Short Story Challenge. To complete the challenge, you only need to read 12 short stories (which is my minimum). The stories can be featured anywhere: anthologies, magazines, newspapers or even online.

I’m going to be trying out stories from all sorts of sites/publications/books, and I will make sure to list the source of the tale as I monitor my progress. So here’s what I’ve read so far:

  1. How Many Miles to Babylon? by Megan Arkenberg (Lightspeed Magazine, Issue 20 – read it for free
  2. Mazer in Prison by Orson Scott Card (read in the Federations Anthology edited by John Joseph Adams)
  3. Gene Wars by Paul McAuley (Lightspeed Magazine, Issue 20)
  4. Always true to thee, in my fashion by Nancy Kress (Lightspeed Magazine, Issue 20)
  5. Warship by George R.R. Martin and George Guthridge (read in the Federations Anthology edited by John Joseph Adams)
  6. Different Day by K. Tempest Bradford (read in the Federations Anthology edited by John Joseph Adams)
  7. ★ A Study in Emerald by Neil Gaiman (available for free at Neil’s website
  8. Reaper by Rachel Vincent (E-novella)
  9. The Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe
  10. Kitten-Tiger & the Monk by Carolyn Crane

Sign up! The 2012 Short Story Challenge

Want to read something outside your comfort zone?
Want to try lots of new authors without reading a mountain of books?
Want to read some of the very best literature ever written?

Yes? I thought so! Then sign up for the…

This year, I’ve decided to dedicate more time to a wonderful way of telling tales: the short story. To do this, I thought “oh, I should sign up to a challenge” but alas, the only short story challenge I’ve found counts stories by anthologies (click here to sign-up for that challenge). So, I’ve decided to run one myself!

What is a short story?
Short stories are works of fiction, often written in prose. They tend to be more pointed, focused, and contained than novels.

Why do short stories matter?
The short story is one of the most exciting and important literary forms, and that it can, and should, reach the widest possible readership.

Where can I find short stories?
Anywhere and everywhere. Anthologies, magazines, newspapers, and even on-line.

Still interested? Then take a look at the must-read details:

  • The 2012 Short Story Challenge runs January 1st, 2012 to December 31st, 2012.
  • You can sign up at any time.
  • You do NOT need a blog to sign up – just somewhere online to monitor your progress (personal blog, goodreads, facebook, twitter, etc.) But please post something that shows you are participating in the challenge – it doesn’t have to be a full post, a link/tweet/sidebar listing is enough!
  • You need to read at least 12 short stories. Ain’t that easy? Easy peasy. That’s one short story a month. Of course, you can choose to read more than 12. Why would you want to? Well, because short stories are brilliant.

Still interested? Then sign up below!

ETA: Sign ups now closed – thank you to everyone who participated!