In April 2015, B.K. Stevens debuted the blog series “The First Two Pages,” hosting craft essays by short story writers and novelists analyzing the openings of their own work. The series continued until just after her death in August 2017, and the full archive of those essays can be found at Bonnie’s website. In November 2017, the blog series relocated to my website, and the archive of this second stage of the series can be found here.
This year’s anthology from the Guppy Chapter of Sisters in Crime was released in early June, and I’m glad to catch up with the some of the contributors now with three First Two Pages essays, a series beginning today! Edited by Linda M. Rodriguez, The Fish That Got Away features twenty stories in all, from a nice range of contributors, both first-time short story writers and veteran talents too: Marcia Adair, Mary Adler, Susan Alice Bickford, Sarah A. Bresniker, MB Dabney, E.B. Davis, P. A. De Voe, Mary Dutta, Gene Garrison, Lori Roberts Herbst, Victoria Kazarian, Melinda Loomis, Cheryl Marceau, Michele Bazan Reed, Cynthia Sabelhaus, C. M. Surrisi, Mark Thielman, Kari Wainwright, Joseph S. Walker, and C. M. West.
Victoria Kazarian kicks of this essay series with a post on her story “Good Neighbors.” As you’ll see from her essay below, she draws on both her background in Silicon Valley and her work as a high school English and creative writing teacher to reflect on the story’s genesis and its structure. You can read more about Victoria at her website, plus sample her other short stories and learn about her first novel, Swift Horses Racing, released in April of this year.
And stay tuned for upcoming essays from Sarah A. Bresniker and Lori Roberts Herbst!
Please use the arrows and controls at the bottom of the embedded PDF to navigate through the essay. You can also download the essay to read off-line.Kazarian-First-Two-Pages
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I likeMs. Kazarian’s reference to having a soft spot for stray guitars. It raises an image of someone like the rhetorical Cat Lady, with acoustics, electrics and even a 12-string sniffing around the kitchen or trying to jump up on the bed.