Review: More Sawn-Off Tales by David Gaffney


Photo (CC BY 2.0): Structo

More Sawn-Off Tales is a collection of short stories, each exactly 150 words long. It’s a striking idea, and forms the follow-up to David Gaffney’s 2006 collection Sawn-Off Tales. The fact that a follow-up has been published at all should give you a clue to the quality of his writing.

In another life the Cumbrian author might have written his Sawn-Off Tales in verse, and their format is a fascinating aspect. Very short stories are hard to write well, and this is a master class, every piece a satisfying and (mostly) coherent whole. The stories manage to work structurally while at the same time being funny, or sad or disturbing—often all at once.

You might not believe yourself to be particularly interested in flash fiction (or microfiction or whatever it’s being called these days). You will be after this.

More Sawn-Off Tales was published in June by Salt Publishing.


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