Keeping Short Stories Alive: Five Chapters On The Menu

It was a literary day on the media- Morning Media Menu podcast today, as hosts Jason Boog of GalleyCat and AgencySpy‘s Matt Van Hoven welcomed David Daley, the founder of short story Web site

Daley, a former features editor at Details who has also done work for McSweeney’s and The Journal News, founded Five Chapters in 2006 to serialize unpublished short stories. The site features each story in five parts over the course of one week, from Monday through Friday.

“I’m looking for standalone short stories because you want people to feel like they’ve read something complete over the course of the week,” Daley said, explaining his selections for Five Chapters. “And sometimes when you’re excerpting from a novel it doesn’t have that feeling of completeness.”

In talking about the growth of blogs and online publications, Daley said the Internet has democratized the format, “allowing someone like me to run a literary journal,” but it has also taken the money out of the picture. Many of the places that used to publish short fiction no longer do, Daley said, leaving writers few options for making money.

Also discussed: recent media layoffs like those to come soon at Forbes magazine, and how they are affecting the industry.

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