- They have balance
- They're plot driven
- The word choice is brilliant
- They're well edited
- They're unique
- They're fun
So the short stories I'm recommending below (and hopefully the ones recommended by the other links I'm including) have most if not all of these things!
- The short stories of Chuck Palahniuk are AMAZING. If you read my blog, you know he's my favorite author. If you need a place to start with his stories, and you are BRAVE, then check out his story GUTS. You can find it within one of his essays on Litreactor. Or you can find it in his book HAUNTED. HAUNTED includes tons of short stories, even though it's a novel as well. If you haven't read it I urge you to check it out.
- I have another collection of short stories that I've only read a few of, but it's on my list to finish, because the ones I have read are great. Check out THE BEST AMERICAN SHORT STORIES 2007. If you need convincing Stephen King is the editor.
- Another collection, similar to Chuck Palahniuk's, strung together to make a longer, somewhat connected longer story, is WINESBURG, OHIO by Sherwood Anderson. It's great.
Short Story recommendations by others: