Jennifer Egan's Latest Story: A 250-Word To-Do List

The short story was written in 20 minutes

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When novelist Jennifer Egan shared her Media Diet with The Atlantic Wire, she explained that "I am constantly, avidly, desperately trying to maximize the time I have, because I never seem to have enough." So perhaps it's no surprise that her latest short story is a 250-word to-do list written in 20 minutes for The Guardian. Fellow Media Dieter Maria Popova pointed us to Egan's piece today, calling it a "surprisingly successful storytelling experiment." Many others agree with Popova (one fan calls it a "brilliantly lazy summer short story"), but not everyone's so sure. "Sorry, but this Jennifer Egan short story 'To Do' does not work," another reader tweets. "What am I missing? It's a to-do list, ppl."

Mediabistro, which calls Egan's "To Do" a "dark and suspenseful tale," points out that this isn't the first time Egan has experimented with the short story form. In her novel A Visit from the Goon Squad, for example, she wrote one section  as a PowerPoint presentation. We hope you enjoy Egan's story, which begins with two simple words that we can probably all identify with: "Mow lawn." Head on over and check it out.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.