15th International Conference on the Short Story in English

Thanks to a Canada Council for the Arts Grant I am a participant at the 15th International Conference on the Short Story in English, taking place from June 27-30, 2018 at the University of Lisbon in Portugal. The theme is: “Beyond History: The Radiance of the Short Story.

In an age when private lives appear to be ruled by the force of historical events, we are contradictorily challenged by creative achievements that, even if originating in History, develop a self-sustainable energy, a radiance, so to say, that supersedes material circumstances and/or envisages alternatives for them.

The 15th International Conference on the Short Story in English brings writers of many nationalities to Lisbon, a city where the cultures of the world meet and stories of history unravel around every corner. In this scenario, fiction writers in English, or authors who have been translated into English, together with scholars of the short story, will join in reading sessions, roundtable discussions and panels, as well as in the more traditional paper presentation sessions.

In celebration of the 30th anniversary of the foundation of the Society for the Study of the Short Story, the Conference looks forward to the opportunity of highlighting the variety of ways in which the Short Story becomes a specific form, blurs the boundaries with other literary forms, goes beyond the written medium and borrows from other artistic processes/languages, shaping itself anew in an endless process. Indeed, proving to be an extremely resilient medium, the Short Story has been changing throughout the times and aesthetic tendencies, without losing the kernel that makes it a distinctive mode of the human expressive genius.

On Thursday, June 28th, I’ll be on a panel discussing Flash Fiction in Method and Meaning with Nuala O’Connor and Tracey Slaughter, and on Friday, June 29th I’m reading one of my short stories as well as participating in the round-table discussion on Politics and Short Fiction, with Garry Craig Powell, Rebekah Clarkson, David James, and Robin McLean:

An age-old question for many writers and artists has been to what extent should politics intrude on art: should we write above politics or face it head on? Can fiction affect or even transform the political climate? Should it even try? Then again, is it even possible to avoid a political stance of some kind?

You can download the program of events from the website – there are a number of exciting authors reading their work, and a packed program of panels. See you there!

13th International Conference on the Short Story in English

I can’t believe that it’s less than a month before the 13th International Conference on the Short Story in English in Vienna, Austria. Very exciting!

The theme is “Unbraiding the Short Story”.

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This conference will bring writers of fiction in English (Irish, British, American, Canadian, Australian, Caribbean, South-African, Indian, Sri Lankan, Indonesian, etc.) and writers who have had (or will have for this event) their work translated into English together with scholars of the short story, and all will join in reading sessions, roundtable discussions and panels, including ones devoted to translation.

The 13th International Conference on the Short Story in English will also host a number of sessions, both in the more traditional format (with presentation of papers) and in other formats involving performance, dance, art, films, etc., having in mind that the form of the short story is not necessarily confined to the limits of the written page but may open up to manifold fields of expression.

You can download the program of events from the website.

On Wednesday July 16,  I’ll be reading one of my short stories, and on Thursday July 17th I’m on an extended length panel with Robert Olen Butler, Farhat Iftekharrudin and Billie Travalini. The subject of the panel is Liminality in the Threshold Story, moderated by Alice Clark from the University of Nantes.

There are a number of talks and workshops, and the guest author line-up includes Clark Blaise, Bharati Mukherjee, Tania Hershman, Vanessa Gebbie, Nuala Ní Chonchúir amongst many others, so I hope to see you there!