When I was a teen, I consumed short stories like peanut M&Ms. I could always squeeze in one more. I read them in the car, in my room, while the family was watching TV, as my brothers set off bombs . . . Nothing could distract me. I could visit twenty places in an hour. And when I was reading Ray Bradbury, those places might not even be on the earth. Good stuff!
But novellas . . . I will confess to a prejudice toward novellas. I’ve read a handful over the years and have enjoyed some very much. But I always had the feeling that novellas were uncomfortably in-between. Neither a tight, little short story that could be inhaled in one sitting, nor a nuanced, multi-layered novel.
My publisher asked me to write one. Who? Me? The idea is to write a story that will introduce my debut novel. Entice readers with a sense of the place, a handful of the characters, and some of the themes that are more fully fleshed out in Miracle in a Dry Season.
Hmmm. I can do that. So it looks like there will be a novella releasing in late June or early July ahead of the August release of my novel. Most likely an e-book for free download. Kind of like those ladies at the grocery store handing out dip to tempt you to buy the whole tub.
What I want to know, is how YOU feel about novellas. Do you love to grab one for a quick read? Or do you get frustrated wishing for a more in-depth story and character development? What do you love about them and what makes you nuts?