Short Stories and plays

The guideline, from the experts, for the number of words in short fiction varies greatly. The rough guideline that I use is as follows: Flash fiction (or a short short story) is less than 1000 words; short stories are between 1000 and 10,000 words; and novellas are between 10,000 and 70,000 words. The selection offered below is my attempt at all three types of short fiction.

Short Stories

Plays

Essays

In my essays I strive to be clear and I try to be convincing. I usually address a philosophical problem or trend or goal. These problems, etc., are often characterized by conflicts between different approaches to a subject. Often I offer suggestions toward a solution. My essays are, for the most part, formal and serious. I intend them to be persuasive and/or informative. I hope that my overall tone expresses goodwill. We human beings have the same needs and, therefore, potentially, we have important and fruitful shared values.

Book Reviews

Let me single out my review, Tragic Heroes Including Antigone. My thesis in this piece is that the tragic flaw, often identified with tragic heroes, is not always a personal failing. It can, on the contrary, be a willingness, at great personal cost, to stand up against the established (but illegitimate) order in society. In short, the tragic flaw is sometimes noble.

Poetry

As I mentioned on the Home page, this is mainly a group of my articles which were published in The Charlestown Times. However, there is here one poem that I wrote, namely, Listen Up. Select the button below. I wrote this poem early in 1996 to draw attention to a new service which was offered, at Charlestown Retirement Community, beginning in January 1996. This attractive service continues successfully at Charlestown today. Read the poem to find out what this important service is.


Conversations

As you know, any successful life will require appropriate dialogue with other people. And a successful life will also be a good life. Any good life will require appropriate conversation and interaction with others. Some experimental rules: Interlocutors should have equal opportunities to speak. There should be no force of any kind. Each interlocutor should listen and understand and be able to explain the other’s position. Each interlocutor should attempt to strengthen and defend, to some extent, the other’s position and only then, if necessary, subject it to criticism from his/her own point of view.

Miscellaneous

It seems fitting to end this page with a small collection of diverse pieces. One piece that I like a lot concerns a fascinating Charlestown resident that I met at Charlestown in 1995. I refer to Dorothea Jones who, in the 1940s and 1950s, was a writer for the National Geographic Magazine. In the May 1951 issue of the magazine Dorothea published I Walked Some Irish Miles. In my piece, To Ireland and Beyond, select the button below, I write about Dorothea’s trip to Ireland and about some other exciting adventures she had with her husband Ed.