Long Shorts | Colin Will
Colin Will began writing in 1961, but then wrote nothing between 1965 and 1985. In the interim he became a scientific librarian, adding a science degree and a doctorate in information science to his library qualifications. Towards the end of his career at the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh he held a number of roles within senior management. Between 1998 and 2016 he ran Calder Wood Press, mainly publishing poetry and short stories. He has written song lyrics, and his first short play was performed in 2017. He’s also a musician, playing saxophones and clarinets. He is Editor at Postbox Press, the literary fiction imprint of Red Squirrel Press, and he also edits Postbox; Scotland’s international short story magazine. This is his twelfth book.
He has chaired the boards of the Scottish Poetry Library, the StAnza Poetry Festival, Dunbar’s CoastWord Festival and Tyne & Esk Writers. He co-founded the Dunbar Writers’ group. He was Makar to the Federation of Writers (Scotland) in 2011 and President of the Scottish Library Association in 2000.
Short stories vary considerably in their length. In Edwardian times, Strand magazine and others normally contained stories of about 6,000 words each. In today’s much smaller world of short story publishing, constraints have led to restrictions. Most competitions often call for limits to story length, commonly 2,000 words. But some stories just demand to extend beyond that limit, and many authors benefit from having more room to furnish and develop a story. This collection consists mainly of such longer short stories, along with a few shorter ones for variety. Subjects, situations and settings vary widely, although of course any writer of contemporary stories sometimes can’t avoid describing the effects of the global pandemic.
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