Short stories, says one Guardian blogger, don’t belong in short story collections. They’re best when found on there own, shivering in the cold hinterlands of a magazine.
Blame my gnat-like attention span if you like, but I don’t believe that short stories belong in collections. Bundling them together in volumes is convenient for publishers because they can treat them more or less like novels, but it doesn’t do much for the fictions themselves, especially if there’s only one author involved. It’s too easy to see common themes and distinctions get lost in the crowd. A short story works best published in a magazine or newspaper, where it can stand alone in contrast to the writing around it; putting them in collections is a waste.
I don’t know about this. I don’t usually read collections of short stories from cover to cover anyway. I cherry pick and abandon and return several times over several months. It’s true that it’s only the very occasional collection that ropes me in to read straight through, but I don’t know that they’re meant to be read that way anyway.