Why The Short Story? Lawrence Sargent Hall Reads “The Ledge”

I’ve been surveying my friends (Facebook and otherwise) to find out what short stories they have found important, influential, inspiring, or just plain entertaining. The list is long and varied and still grows even as I write this; I’m excited to have a whole slew of new stories to read. Soon, I will compile the stats for us all to see what the favorites are, and what our fellow writers, readers, and friends are reading these days.

An early front runner is “The Ledge” by Lawrence Sargent Hall. Want to see how to use point-of-view? Few better examples than this story. Suspense? Here it is. Pathos? Uh-huh. In 2009, on the fiftieth anniversary of this story’s publication (the story was born the same year as I was!), Bowdoin College celebrated this work by one of their own. Here then is the link to the webpage that commemorates that celebration, complete with a lovely audio file of Mr. Hall himself reading from the story. So cool.

http://www.bowdoin.edu/magazine/features/2009/the-ledge.shtml

And the conversation keeps on going. I am thrilled to tell you that Gerard Woodward (Caravan Thieves, Nourishment, and others) will join in on the discussion soon. Dennis McFadden, author of the very new Hart’s Grove, has some really interesting things to say about writing and raising funds for the IRA. So come back again. And feel free to add your own two cents.

2 Replies to “Why The Short Story? Lawrence Sargent Hall Reads “The Ledge””

  1. The Ledge is one of my favorite stories. I use it every semester with my Fiction 1 students, particularly when we’re talking about point of view. The discussion never fails to cover not just point of view, but also everything else you mention. I assigned it for next week, in fact! Heading over to listen to him read it. Maybe I’ll incorporate his reading into the class next week. Then we can talk further about reading one’s own work aloud, as well. Thanks Patty!

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