The Short Story, Voice, and History: A Conversation with Richard Smyth

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Richard Smyth is a novelist and journalist in West Yorkshire, England. This week, we featured his short story, “Crying Just Like Anybody,” as an editor’s pick. Here, he chats with The Fiction Desk editor Rob Redman, who first published “Crying Just Like Anybody” in a short story anthology of the same name. They talk about short fiction as performance, voice and authenticity, and the intersection of storytelling and history.


Rob: I like the way you use the first person in your story, “Crying Just Like Anybody.” As with your novel, Wild Ink , and some of your other short stories, the first-person narrative comes across as a kind of performance. It’s a trait you share with some of the other Fiction Desk writers, like James Benmore . Can you talk more about this? I know you’re involved with live reading events, like Liars’ League  in London, and I wonder if this has affected your style.

Image credit: Catherine Bale Image…

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