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Existential Storytelling

I bought a new book, because apparently not one of the dozens of unread books in my home was quite perfect enough for my next read.

(I may have a problem.  But I contend there are worse vices than the love of words around me at all times.)

I bought a collection of short stories.

I’m joining a writer’s workshop this summer for grad school, and the focus will be fictional short stories.

(So the purchase was really an educational decision, too.)

(I read somewhere that an addiction is only further merited when the addicted one is offering excuses.  But I digress.)

My mind started to wander as I drove home, knowing this treasury sat in the passenger’s seat, neatly tucked in her brown bag.  I nearly secured her with a seatbelt.

Isn’t everything really a short story?
The story of this day.
The story of this week.
A poem, a sentence,
the theory of the six-word memoir – all short stories.
Even a novel: isn’t it the weaving together of several short stories?
And if I can write one good short story,
then maybe I can write another,
until they become a beautiful collection,
the story of a woman, a family, a life.

What isn’t a short story?

And then I got all existential on myself.

I started wondering if I’m actually living a short story,
if you are too,
if all of life is actually the weaving together
of a million short stories
into one best-selling novel.

Tricia Lott Williford

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  1. One short story at a time. One moment at a time. One word… at a time. The sentences unfold the life.

  2. Of course our lives are a series of short stories, never looked at it that way but it is so true. Our stories are what we make them and where we choose to take them. Thank you for sharing your words and stories as they inspire me to think about things i normally wouldn’t. What a joy it is for me reading your story, look forward to it every day!!

  3. Of course our life is a series of short stories, well put… never really thought about it that way, I like it, and it’s our story so we make it all we can. Highs and lows it’s all what we make it, and where we choose to take it. Keep writing Tricia, you inspire me to really think about things I normally wouldn’t, so thank you for all of your words, and your stories.

  4. Oh, do I love that storyboard! Quite a fabulous Author too 🙂

  5. Spot on!

  6. Wow, yes, Tricia. I may not always like the story that’s being written for me, as in when it’s at a particularly difficult part and I’d like to skip a few pages or chapters to get to something better, but I’m sure glad I know and can trust the Author and that the best part of the story is yet to come. (I know there’s something to be considered, too, for my own role in writing my story. Kind of like a Choose Your Own Adventure book, where some choices are better than others and affect the outcome.)

  7. Have you read Donald Miller’s A Million Miles in a Thousand Years? Essentially its the idea that we are living stories. (It’s a good one if you haven’t read it…)

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