Friday 1 February 2013

Flash Fraction : A Collection of Very Short Stories by Helena Mallett

Although I do read short story collections every now and again, I often find that I'm left feeling a little let-down by them.

Although I've heard the term 'flash fiction', I'd never investigated it further until I was contacted by Helena Mallett, the author of Flash Fraction.   Her book is a collection of 75 short stories - very short stories - each one is exactly 75 words long.  I was intrigued, and wondered just how this would work - how on earth can a story be told in so few words?

I've been really surprised and very impressed by Flash Fraction.  Each story does indeed stand up on it's own, and each one is so cleverly put together, and the best thing about the stories is that most of them have a  little unexpected twist at the end.

It must be incredibly difficult to incorporate an interesting, often funny and always quirky story into such a short space, but Helena Mallett seems to do it with ease.  The collection includes stories about everything from love to aliens, each one is very different and each one makes a lasting impression.

Flash Fraction was published by Marsh Cottage Publishing in September 2012 and is available in paperback or ebook.  Helena Mallett has a website here.

I'd like to thank Helena for sending a copy of Flash Fraction to me and also for introducing me to a style of writing that I'd probably never have looked at otherwise.


  1. This does sound interesting - like you, I've never got on very well with short stories. I've recently picked up a copy of 253 by Geoff Ryman, do you know of it? It's about the 253 people on board a London tube, and each person has a chapter that's 253 words long. I will let you know how I find the shorter style.


  2. Helena's stories are very very clever - so much said in so few words.

  3. Hi Marie - it was lovely to meet you today, at last!
    Yes, I've read 253 and enjoyed it. However, it does feel more like a novel than a collection of short stories - it's very clever. Hope you enjoy it.
    A x