In one of my Editor’s Notes from last year, I declared my mistrust of coming-of-age stories. However, I think my tastes must be changing. I am thoroughly enjoying the new anthology You Must Be This Tall to Ride, a collection of coming-of-age stories edited by B. J. Hollars.
Perhaps it is partly what Hollars describes in his introduction: “Nostalgia is a habit we can’t quite kick, and for some, these stories offer the reader a second chance at youth, a second crack at those monsters, an opportunity to wash our faces properly before the pimple appears on prom night.”
For me, this is clearly not a run-of-the-mill anthology. First of all, it includes ASF favorites (and former contributors) Michael Czyzniejewski, Jack Pendarvis, Benjamin Percy, and Laura van den Berg. Secondly, each story is accompanied by both an essay on the story and a writing exercise, making it exciting for writers and teachers as well as for readers.
And in a new twist, Hollars has combined the book with a new website that will publish other coming of age stories. You can find submission guidelines here.