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Home > Author > Guy Hogan
Guy Hogan

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Member Since: Dec, 2006

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  Guy Hogan

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Here are stories about Pittsburgh, voted twice as America's most livable city.

Background Information

Every writer needs material. Every writer has material. Remember, there are no boring stories, only boring writers. Maybe I was luckier than many who wanted to write short stories. Let's see. I grew up in the Hill District when steel was still king in Pittsburgh and TV broadcasted professional boxing every Friday night. There were several Isaly's ice cream palors in the city and a vendor came around our neighborhood at night selling hot tamales. The three rivers and the bridges were here, but not Point State Park. There was the army, and Vietnam and then college with a campus of braless young women in very short skirts and dresses. You could score dope across the table in the snack bar. On the juke box in the snack bar was The Doors and many of the professors had hair as wild or as long as your own hair. Around the nation other young people were occupying buildings and marching in the streets. Everyone with a cause seemed to be marching in the streets and there were a lot of good causes. There were so many good causes that cites across the nation were set on fire and the National Guard was often called out. These are some of the things I write about...I admire the work of Hemingway and Raymond Carver because I think the world can be a very hostile place for men and women who are trying to find love which no doubt makes me a romantic. There are several pieces on writing in the articles section of my den that I hope will be helpful to other writers. Although the articles deal with flash fiction the tips are useful for a short story of any length. And the book, Compressionism: The Pittsburgh Stories, is the best textbook an aspiring writer can own. Compressionism is a term I came up with. It means image-driven fiction. Compressionism is the fullest developement so far of the old advice for writers: show don't tell. I hope you like what you read here. Writing well is no mystery. Getting published is no mystery. It's 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration. Or as one failed writer was reported to have said, "I would have been a great writer but the chairs in the library were too hard." In flash fiction the words you leave out are more important than the words you put in but the words you put in must imply the words you leave out. The shorter a story is the deeper it should be. That is the beauty of flash fiction. The beauty of image-driven fiction is that the writer paints a picture with words and the picture tells the story. What's so great about a picture telling the story? It allows the reader to "live" in the story. One picture is worth a thousand words. So, sit back and enjoy the articles and stories. A lot of people don't know that Pittsburgh is a hotbed of small press activity. It's the birthplace of Compressionism. For me, Pittsburgh is my Paris. Be sure to read "La Dolce Vita" which the Bloomfield Business Association will be using to promote the Italian heritage of the Bloomfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh and to promote the annual Italy Days Festival...What should be the length of the compressionist short story? For the purist, somewhere around 1,000 words. Of course, this is only a suggestion. But an image driven story will always be able to say more, to imply more, than a noncompressionist story of similar wordage. We are not talking poetry here. We are talking about a prose that reaches beyond poetry, a prose that with luck reaches a third and forth and even a fifth dimension...What should be the ultimate goal of Compressionism? To produce work that revitalizes the language; to have the works of compressionist writers read by the many and studied in our halls of higher learning; to ultimately have the very short story take its rightful place along side the poem, short story and novel as one of the great artistic forms of literature.

Birth Place
Pittsburgh, PA USA

I'm a Vietnam War veteran. With the help of a K. LeRoy Irvis Fellowship I was able to complete an MFA in fiction at the University of Pittsburgh in 2006 where as a teaching assistant I taught composition, fiction writing and short story writing to undergraduates. I've been fortunate enough to have work published in The Front, Flash-Flooding, The Pittsburgh Quarterly, Flash Forward, Ellipsis, Chick Flicks Ezine, Word Riot, Brilliant, Poetic Diversity,the Steel City Review, Word Catalyst Magazine and forthcoming in other publications. I also enjoy helping aspiring writers get published by doing editing and critiquing by email. So far I've helped four other writers get published.

Additional Information

Compressionism: The Pittsburgh Stories is set against the backdrop of the Vietnam War, the night life of the students of the University of Pittsburgh and the neighborhoods of Pittsburgh. It is the story of men and women struggling to find love in a world that is always at war. It is the world we all live in.

Favorite Links

Compressionism: The Pittsburgh Stories (eBook for $6.00)
Stories filled with the joy and pain of living.

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