Heidi Pitlor has been the series editor of The Best American Short Stories since 2007.  The Best American Short Stories is the longest-running and best-selling series of short fiction in the country. Each year, Pitlor works with a different guest editor to select the best twenty short stories that were published in print and online magazines.


The qualifications for selection are (1) original publication in nationally distributed American or Canadian periodicals; (2) publication in English by writers who are from, live in, or have made the United States their home; (3) original publication as short stories (excerpts of novels are not considered).


Editors who wish their short fiction to be considered for next year's edition should send their publications to Heidi Pitlor, c/o The Best American Short Stories, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 125 High St., Boston, MA, 02110. Stories published by online journals and magazines should be sent to thebestamericanshortstories@gmail.com. Stories must be received by December 31st of the year that they were published to be considered for The Best American Short Stories. Unfortunately, we are unable to reply to individual submissions from authors, but will consider work that meets the above criteria.

"As soon as you complete a description of what a good story must be, a new example flutters through an open window, lands on your sleeve, and proves your description wrong."-Anthony Doerr

"The stories in this volume are bold, some are transgressive, and all are relevant to this moment in time."-Heidi Pitlor

For the centennial celebration of the annual, 100 Years of The Best American Short Stories, Lorrie Moore selects forty stories from the more than two thousand that were published in previous editions. Heidi Pitlor recounts behind-the-scenes anecdotes and examines, decade by decade, the trends captured over a hundred years. Together, the stories and commentary offer an extraordinary tour through a century of literature.

100 Years of The Best American Short Stories was named a best “gift book” by The New York Times, Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, and ArtVoice.


“Venturing into 100 Years of the Best American Short Stories is like entering a hallway lined with doors, and behind each is a tightly coiled tale just waiting to punch you in the gut. Short stories are dangerous that way. They startle. They shock. They illuminate. Which is why we keep going back for more.”O., The Oprah Magazine

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