Etgar Keret, "One Gram Short" (trans. Nathan Englander)


It’s December 10. Etgar Keret, author of Suddenly, a Knock on the Door, knows a guy who knows a guy.

How would you describe your story?

ETGAR KERET: A story about a young hipster living in a bubble and how his quest for love makes that bubble burst.

When did you write it, and how did the writing process compare to your other work?

EK: I wrote it after witnessing a very lame and heartbreaking attempt by a young hipster to have some small talk with a waitress he seemed to have a crush on in my neighbourhood café.

What kind of research went into this story?

EK: Smoking a joint counts as a research?

What, to you, makes the short story a special form? What can it do that other kinds of writing can't?

EK: The short story is, for me, the most intuitive form of narrative expression.

When you meet a friend in the street, you don’t tell him a novel or recite to him a poem. You tell him a story.

Where should people go to learn more about you and your work?

EK: My website would be a good place to start.

What's the best gift you've ever been given?

EK: When I was five I got a beautiful piggy bank. I refused to put coins in him but we became real good friends.

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What did you think of today's story? Use the hashtag #ssac2018 on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to check in with your fellow advent calendarians.

Michael Hingston