I love reading full-length crime novels, but I do also really enjoy crime-centred short stories, whether in the form of author collections like Peter Robinson's enjoyable The Price of Love, collections with numerous contributors like the recent The Dark End of the Street: New Stories of Sex and Crime by Today's Top Authors edited by Jonathan Santlofer and S.J. Rozan, or one-off stories in mystery magazines or on the Internet. It's nice to be able to just dip in and quickly finish a good story.
And for those who want to be able to really quickly pick up, read, and finish a good short story, then the Flash Fiction category (Up to 1000wds) might interest you. This year's Derringer winner in that category was "And Here's To You, Mrs Edwardson" by Hamilton Waymire, published in the webzine Big Pulp, November 23, 2009, a story of a pizza boy and an older woman.
The great thing is not only does it only take a couple/few minutes to read, the entire thing is available online, so you can all dive in and sample some award-winning crime fiction, right here.
What do you think of the winning Flash Fiction story? Do you like crime and mystery short stories, as well as novels? If so, what are some of your favourite authors/stories? What makes a good crime fiction short story? Thoughts and comments welcome.