Queen of the contemporary short story Lorrie Moore once said, "a short story is a photograph; a novel is a film." The short story, like a photograph, lets you look at something familiar and have a newly satisfying experience of it. It lets you pause at, say, a poorly-framed, overexposed image of a banal object like an armchair and appreciate that it's frayed, and a pleasing mustard color. That it belongs to someone who thought to document it. That beyond the chair lies a whole world.