Short Stories

Background of this Fiction Type

While some of the best short stories can be dated back to the times of Ancient Greece much like flash fiction can, they were historically not given much merit or even regarded as a literature type before the 19th century. Expanding from this it was around the mid 20th century that short stories were given critical attention and regarded as an established type of literature (Britannica, 2020). Distinctly, they range anywhere from 1,000 words up towards 7,000 words before they evolve into other literature types such as novellas and novelettes (SFWA Awards, 2020). What is unique about them is their focus on a particular theme with few characters that evolve to a natural conclusion, in essence, a small compact novel. In contrast, shorter fiction tends to focus on a snippet of a story or person's life to convey a theme through a microcosm.

The oldest records for written literature that follows similar patterns to that of the modern day short story trace back to the 2nd millennium BCE with cuniform inscribed clay from the Babylonians and Canaanites. These first stories were written in a verse method but follow a very similar structure to that of our modern stories today. Other old records of written literature come from Egypt with stories written on Papyrus at around the same time as the Babylonian and Canaanite stories, with stories from Ancient India and Ancient Greece emerging around 1,000 BCE to 100 BCE; stories like Panchatantra by the Indians and The Shipwrecked Sailor by the Egyptians. 

This Directory

Here on Lore this page acts as a directory of all our best short stories. For us this means stories that fall into the 1000 - 3000 word category. The list has been organised into four main sub-titles; horror, fantasy, science fiction and thrillers/mysteries. It is worth noting that most of thrillers or mysteries fall into one of the other three categories but will otherwise be listed in their own category if they do not conform to the others. With all this said we hope you enjoy the content and we want to make sure you can get access to every free short story we publish, so be sure to follow us on our social media.

Be sure to check out the authors and show them some love. Every free short story that you read was penned by a wonderful writer looking to get their story heard so be sure to let them know how much you like it. It would mean the world to them!

Currently we are porting all our older stories from our old site!

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