Taking Mr Ravenswood by William Trevor

Anders Zorn (Swedish painter) 1860-1920 Impressions of London, 1890

Taking Mr Ravenswood” is a short story by Irish-English author William Trevor, included in Last Stories (2018) and previously unpublished. The author had already died by the time this story was released to the rest of us. This is an excellent example of the ambiguity lyrical short stories are known for. To get a sense of what happens in the story, it is necessary to read the symbolism. In line with the ambiguous, post-Chekhovian lyrical short story tradition, William Trevor offers aesthetic but not dramatic closure. But mostly, I think, he is leaving us to construct a large part of the plot.

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Bravado by William Trevor

Bravado by William Trevor

If you think you’re too old to write about contemporary young characters, take your cue from Irish short story master William Trevor, who wrote “Bravado”, about young people and night-clubbing culture, at almost 80 years of age. Note that the story is not set when he himself was young, but in the mid noughties.

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