unreliable narrators Archive

The Best Short Story I Read in a Lit Mag This Week: “My Beard” by Eric Braun

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There’s a difference between what the narrator views as the story and what the reader views as the story. By playing with that distance, writers can illuminate the deeper desires of their characters, revealed by what they choose to focus on in the telling, and what they don’t. In
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The Best Short Story I Read in a Lit Mag This Week: “The Know-It-All” by Jeff Spitzer

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Some narrators announce their unreliability in the opening sentences of a short story (see Matt Sumell’s “All Lateral”), and in this way their skewed vision of the world serves as a stylistic lead, drawing readers in. In “The Know-It-All,” from the latest New Ohio Review, Jeff Spitzer creates a
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The Best Short Story I Read in a Lit Mag This Week: “The Ritualist” by Anne-Marie Kinney

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A few weeks back I wrote a column about “Optimism” by Angie Kim. In her story, the main character suffers a recent traumatic event, and in her grief, produces a ritual around it. Anne-Marie Kinney’s wonderful story “The Ritualist” (Alaska Quarterly Review, Fall/Winter 2014) explores the nature of rituals
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