Last year, we twice invited several prominent authors to write some short stories for us. Very short stories. Very very short stories. Short enough to fit into a single Tweet. You can see the efforts by some of the authors short-listed for the Crossword Book Awards here, and another selection here.
We enjoyed those so much that we decided to bring out another collection. So we wrote to several of the authors from this year’s Crossword Book Awards short list to take a bash at it. After all, if you’re going to put up a challenge like this, who better than the cream of India’s writing talent to throw it at, right?
So here you go, their 140-character fiction, each one followed by a short introduction to the writer, in their own words.
(Lest we forget, all language is breath) He would listen, each night, until the one before they would part, in the silence, to her stories.
Janice Pariat lives between Brighton and many places in India. Boats on Land was awarded the Sahitya Academy Young Writer Award 2013.
Love affairs = bus journeys. Childhood defeats = water shortages. Grief = whiskey. I was trying to net life, only got difficult pleasures.
What you say to yourself you say to no one. You fill a gaping hole with a photo with lipstick mark. There is no home, only homelessness.
Rahul Pandita is the author of Our Moon Has Blood Clots, a memoir of a lost home in Kashmir.
‘I couldn’t write till I was drunk and in Dozakh, Manto bhai.’
‘I couldn’t get drunk till I went to Dozakh to write, Mirza sahib.’
Arunava Sinha translates whatever he can, whenever he can
Stop singing! Shouted Moin. Plug your ears, said the monster, chucking two banana peels at him. That’s how Moin’s mother broke her arm.
Anushka Ravishankar writes under duress.
He struggled to build an empire, his son expanded it, the grandson frittered it all away.
Rashmi Bansal is author of Stay Hungry Stay Foolish & Poor Little Rich Slum
“Actions speak louder than words,” she whispered into his ears. She then walked over to the sink to wash the knife that she had used.
This one’s a bit over the specified length.
The cat chased shadows but the girl made him stop. Too dangerous. Alien shots fired. She grabbed the cat. He clawed. She ran. Her shadow len
gthened to a new, loping gait.
2200 AD. Everything has run out: food, fuel, even words. 140 characters left. Writer of last whodunit falls short of three words: who did it
Think you can do better? Tweet your stories at @ForbesLifeIn, and if we like them enough, we’ll retweet them.
By the way, the Crossword Book Award results are being announced today. So go ahead and wish your favourites luck. I shall probably tweet the results from the venue later today, from my personal Twitter ID, @zigzackly