This Week’s Reader: Curtis Smith


Curtis Smith’s stories and essays have appeared in over seventy-five literary journals and have been cited by The Best American Short Stories, The Best American Mystery Stories, and The Best American Spiritual Writing. His story collections include In the Jukebox Light, The Species Crown, and Bad Monkey. He’s published the novels An Unadorned Life, Sound and Noise, and Truth or Something Like It. In 2010, Sunnyoutside Press released Witness, his first essay collection. His latest book is the just-released story collection Beasts and Men. In 2015, Aqueous Books will put out his next novel.

Curtis will read stories submitted to SmokeLong April 8-14, and will send the author of the story he chooses a copy of his latest book of short stories, Beasts and Men, published by Press 53.

Deal Breakers:

A deal breaker in a submission? To be honest, I’m not sure. I have some preferences, but I hope I read with an open mind–I can be won over by any bit of good writing.

You can also visit Curtis’s Website.

Praise for Beasts and Men

“In stories both simple and profound, quiet, yet courageous, and always breathtaking, Curtis Smith’s Beasts and Men showcases the power, the assured voice, and the essential compassion of a writer at the top of his game. A collection of uncommon range and depth. I recommend it wholeheartedly.”
—Kathy Fish, author of Together We Can Bury It and Wild Life
“Curtis Smith writes with a precisionist’s eye and captures many of the unfathomable mysteries of contemporary American life. He reinvigorates the short-short form, conjuring narratives that turn on the sound of children’s voices, the static tableau of a museum diorama, the plume of a dive. His longer stories discern private life in a voice at once measured, balanced, and alive. I expect to keep reading every new piece this author writes.”
—Kirby Gann, author of Ghosting
“What you feel first is the simplicity—of sentences, of tone, of description—but then before you know it, complexity has crept in on every level, and by the end of each of these stories you are left marveling at the layers of life history and humanity Curtis Smith has evoked. Beasts and Men, compressed, poetic, poignant, and compassionate, contains some of the best very short fiction I have read in a very long time.”
—Robin Black, author of If I loved you, I would tell you this
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