I’ve been downloading a lot of digital books that are being offered cost free as promotions lately. It’s a great way to read new material and it’s easy on my meager budget, especially since the libraries have closed (sounds dystopian, doesn’t it?).
Somewhere on Facebook (probably), I found a link to the Eerie River Publishing anthology Forgotten Ones: Drabbles of Myth and Legend. Although I’ve written a drabble or two in my time, and have had them published in various anthologies, I’ve never read a drabble anthology cover to cover.
I guess the concept never really appealed to me (ducks as objects by drabble authors are thrown at my head).
And that was how I started reading “Forgotten Ones”. I quickly picked up on each author’s source material in mythology and theology, but they just didn’t seem to float my boat. At heart, I’m a short story to novella writer. I thrive on character development, painting a scene with broad strokes, and then highlighting it with subtle pens and pencils. A 100-word drabble just doesn’t allow for that.
Then I remembered my dim past when I used to read poetry. This was a long, long time ago, and I’ve lost the touch for appreciating a poem.
However, when I encountered an actual 100-word poem in the anthology, as opposed to a narrative, all that changed. I shifted my perspective, and considered that even haiku, which I wrote in High School (when dinosaurs roamed the Earth), could relate meaning and evoke thought and emotion with just a tiny handful of words.
So I continued reading, and yes, enjoying these drabbles. There are a lot of them representing a large group of writers.
Actually, the drabble content comprises a little more than 80% of the ebook, which I found disappointing, just as I was “getting into” reading drabbles. However, each author was allowed a paragraph or two at the end of the book to describe themselves and post links.
What I found (finally) enjoyable, was the ability to stick just a toe into so many, many different mythological expressions, picking out the various gems. There were too many to narrow down to favorites.
What I would have changed if I had been the publisher, is that for each bio at the end of the book, I would have linked back to the story or stories that author had (metaphorically) penned, so I could make connections. A link from a story to the bio would also have been helpful. That way, should I decide on a few favorites, I could further explore those favored writers and their other works.
Another advantage is that, even with a page count of 271 (if it were a hardcopy book), drabbles can be incredibly fast reads. So if you want something to engage with, but you don’t have a huge amount of time (or are interrupted frequently), it’s the perfect medium.
Keep that in mind when you’re looking for something to read.
Oh, and I absolutely love fiction based on mythology and theology, so this collection was right up my proverbial alley.