On Fiction

Starting today you’ll see a new tab at the top of my site labeled “Fiction,” which will take you to a new section where I will be posting my own short fiction. It will be separate from the main site and anything I post there won’t go into my main feed. It’s simply an extra part of VintageZen and a place to put some of my writing that wouldn’t fit with my regular posts.

Right now I only have one story posted, but I will update every so often with new stories and/or excerpts of longer works. There won’t be a regular schedule, but if you follow the site on Twitter, I’ll send out a link whenever a new story is posted.

If you are wondering what type of fiction I write, some of my main literary inspirations are Ernest Hemingway, Kurt Vonnegut, and Paul Auster, amongst many others. I’m not sure what that amalgam translates into, but I usually like to center my short fiction around an interesting idea or mystery. So there will be some science-fiction, some fiction that contains fantastical elements, and some purely realistic fiction too. I’m not a slave to any single genre.

So why am I doing this?

First, my main writing passion has always been fiction. I’ve been doing it since I was a kid and it’s always the answer I will give if you ask me my dream job. While I love writing non-fiction pieces on VintageZen, I feel like I’m not exercising my creativity as much as when I write fiction. However, with fiction, I’ve been disappointed that I have no place to share it. I’ve tried in the past submitting to literary journals and it hasn’t worked out. Even if one of my stories were to be published in some obscure literary journal, how many people would actually read it? I think I might be able to get more actual readers posting on my site.

Second, this is a bit of an experiment, as it is quite rare for bloggers to post fiction on their sites, even though I know many bloggers write fiction on the side. I wrote a number of months ago about this reluctance to blog fiction, and have been turning it over in my mind since then. I still think there is a distinction in people’s minds between fiction, which is seen as more permanent and valuable, as opposed to non-fiction, which is more “for the moment” and disposable. There’s some truth to this view, although if writers value their fiction so much that they are afraid to post it on their blogs, everyone suffers. The chances they can hold back their fiction and eventually have it published somewhere are so small, why not share it? Otherwise is sits in the proverbial drawer.

Lastly, I think many writers think no one will actually be interested in their fiction. I agree that non-fiction is immensely more popular on the internet than fiction and appeals to a much greater audience. Also, the people that do read fiction are usually very particular about what type of fiction they enjoy. However, who cares? That’s the philosophy I’m going with now. I’ll let the public decide if they like my stories or not. If I only get a handful of readers, a least that’s more than none.