George Saunders & me on BBC Radio 3

How Short is a Short Story?

This event was recorded at BBC 3’s Free Thinking Festival last weekend. It is a highlight of my career to share a stage with one of my writing heroes – George Saunders. You can listen to it here for the next 30 days. I also got to interview George after the event so look out for that.

As part of the festival Jenn Ashworth, Kirsty Logan and myself write some (very) short stories and you can listen to them here. The stories were commissioned by New Writing North and Word Factory.

Here’s what BBC3 said:

George Saunders, Kirsty Logan, Jenn Asworth and Paul McVeigh discuss writing fiction short and long with presenter Matthew Sweet.
Acclaimed American short story writer George Saunders talks about travelling in time to explore Abraham Lincoln’s life during the American Civil War when the President’s beloved young son died. These historical events have inspired Saunder’s first novel, Lincoln in the Bardo, whilst his short fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Harper’s, McSweeeney’s and GQ.

He compares notes on the art of the short story with Paul McVeigh, Jenn Ashworth and Kirsty Logan, who’ve been commissioned by New Writing North and the Word Factory to write Flash Fiction on this year’s Free Thinking Festival theme of The Speed of Life.

Kirsty Logan is the author of books including The Gracekeepers and The Rental Heart & Other Fairytales and a range of short stories.

Jenn Ashworth’s books include Fell, The Friday Gospels, A Kind of Intimacy and Cold Light and a selection of short stories.

Paul McVeigh has won prizes including the Polari prize for his debut novel The Good Son. Born in Belfast he is co-founder of the London Short Story Festival, writes a blog and has represented the UK at events in Mexico and Turkey.

Recorded in front of an audience as part of Radio 3’s Free Thinking Festival at Sage Gateshead.
The stories commissioned for the Festival are available to listen to as an Arts and Ideas podcast available for 30 days.

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