Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Short story: 'My Side of the Matter' by Truman Capote

"My Side of the Matter" by Truman Capote

"My Side of the Matter" is a humorous short story written from the perspective of a sixteen year old husband, supposedly hapless and caught in the clutches of a pregnant wife and two eccentric aunts. The reader is positioned to sympathise with the husband’s ordeal while at the same time it’s comically unveiled that he’s certainly not blameless in the whole ‘Southern’ fiasco. 

The distinct voice in "My Side of the Matter" makes it an excellent piece for any writer who wants to examine a story in terms of point of view. It also isn’t saturated in the flowery prose that is omnipresent in Capote’s work (which can be dificult for some readers to stomach - although I like it).

While a celebrity in his own era, in contemporary times, Capote is often linked to the film Breakfast at Tiffany's which enjoys a cultish status among fans. Perhaps Audrey Hepburn has ensured that Capote remains in our literary landscape? The screen release take on his non-fiction 'novel', In Cold Blood, has also revived another text and any chance of him becoming an ephemeral figure has vanished forever - excuse the pun.

Capote was also an accomplished short story writer, something to be said in a time that saw shorter works thrive and even be handsomely paid for. In addition to "My Side of the Matter", "The Diamond Guitar" is another Capote story well worth a read.

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