The wonderful newish Catapult (and if you don’t know them, you should, they’re doing amazing things*) has reprinted my short short, “Watermelon” as part of a series showcasing stories and essays from the archives of great magazines, in this case the late, great Quick Fiction. Author Marie-Helene Bertino (Safe as Houses, Two A.M. at the Cat’s Pajamas) had this to say of my tiny story:
Weighing 132 words, Kathy Fish’s “Watermelon” is the shortest story in our series. I’d quote Shakespeare—but though it be but little it is fierce—if I subscribed to the sentiment that smaller things are lacking. The final image is simple, enigmatic, and perfect. I’ve thought of it regularly in the years since I first read it. On why the story carries a particularly profound effect: I too have brothers.
In her introduction to the series, Bertino says:
In 2001, Quick Fiction began to publish slim volumes of short short stories—hundreds of trapdoors—each 500 words or fewer. What airy nothing could anyone locate and name in so few keystrokes? The whole world, it turns out. It’s been years since Quick Fiction stopped publishing, yet I’m still assaulted by the memory of unexpectedly lovely phrases, gut-punch juxtapositions, pivots on the line. I search my copies, fattened by dog-ears, for answers again and again. The five pieces I chose for this series are ones that “bother” me the most.
You can read “Watermelon” here.
* “Catapult is an innovative publishing venture created by the founders of Electric Literature and Black Balloon Publishing. The company includes a print and ebook publishing program of the highest literary caliber, a robust series of top-quality writing classes, a daily website of narrative nonfiction and fiction, and a community platform where emerging writers can share their work.
Catapult nurtures emerging writers by helping them better their craft, and supports more established writers by evenly sharing revenues from the classes they teach, and by paying to publish their work online. Catapult strives to be a successful business model for the future of independent publishing.”