Short Story: “The Rottweiler”

Pop Fiction

Should the new short story be entertaining?

ONCE, not much over 100 years ago, the short story was the most popular art form. The American public consumed stories voraciously– work by Jack London, Frank Stockton, Richard Connell, O. Henry, Stephen Crane– even from more refined types like Edith Wharton and Henry James.

What was the hallmark of the short story?

They were entertaining.

Build a better story, we believe, and the public will beat a path toward your door. We’ve already seen steps– baby steps anyway– in that direction in the prestigious-and-usually-snobby pages of The New Yorker. which recently for the first time in decades published a story that some people actually wanted to read.

And so, we give you a tale of suspense and mystery– “The Rottweiler” by Alex Bernstein, one of the best new practitioners of the short story art going. You’ll find in the work a touch of humor, and perhaps a rottweiler or two. Jump into the adventure. . . .

“On the plus side – if we kill you – we don’t have to put up with all this fuss and noise all the time. On the negative side…mm…Woolsy, what was the negative side, again?”

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(Painting by Claude T. Stanfield-Moore.)

 

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Experiments in Pop II

Pop Lit Fiction

The American scene today is saturated in politics. FBI CIA NSA antifa alt-right movements parties investigations spies recordings informants everyplace.

Though it sometimes resembles a comedy routine, this is fertile ground for the writer. An endless series of fictional possibilities present themselves. We’re back in Edgar Wallace days, where all plot scenarios become believable. Maybe likely.

Samuel J. Stevens explores one of those scenarios in a short, dryly humorous piece aptly titled, “The Vast Conspiracy.” Another in our explorations of the artistic fusion of “pop” and “literary.”

Happy reading!

They did not look like the thugs he’d seen in old Bureau files. They looked indistinguishable from the trendy hipster kids that populated the Village and Williamsburg, the only difference being they wore suits.