When to give up on a story

SelfAwarePatterns

ClarkesWorldCover Cover of the latest issue of Clarkesworld, a sf short story magazine I highly recommend.

I’ve been reading a lot of science fiction short stories lately.  Many have been excellent.  But some have not been my cup of tea.  I’ve run into a fair amount of melancholic ambiance pieces where nothing much happens.  But the stories I tend to enjoy have action, dialog, or at least a steady stream of concrete information.

As I’ve been going through the stories, I’m noticing an increasing willingness on my part to abandon a story before the end.  This is part of an overall trend I’ve noticed over the years where, compared to when I was younger, I’m much more willing to abandon a novel or even non-fiction book if it’s not working for me.

Recently, John Scalzi, discussing his reading for Hugo award voting, urged anyone who would be voting to actually read all of the nominated stories…

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