I think I first discovered Claire Keegan’s writing when I attended the Small Wonder Short Story Festival at Charleston East Sussex. She writes the kind of stories I aspire to write. In today’s choice entitled Antarctica, from her 1999 collection of the same name, she shows how to manage suspense brilliantly. The reader will find themself almost screaming at the protagonist (the unnamed married woman), not to do what she is about to do but she does it anyway, and we can hardly breathe, waiting to find out if what seems to be the inevitable ending will materialise.
As well as being on the edge of the seat stuff, this story examines the idea of ‘aloneness’ in its different guises. And then there’s the ending – a small piece of perfect prose but I’ll say no more as I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you.
If you haven’t already discovered Claire Keegan, what are you waiting for?
You can read more about Claire Keegan here where she talks about her long short story Foster and the craft of short story writing.
The anticipated connections between writers and stories that I expected to find in writing this blog are beginning to appear. William Trevor led me to Chekov and The Kiss. Claire Keegan in an article for the Guardian has connected back to that same stories. Let it continue…..