Neil Shea


photos and short stories at

Short / True

Over the past several months most of my writing has been done on Instagram. This might seem counter-intuitive at first. The platform was never really designed for narratives, and the space allowed to words is small: a cellphone’s width, the face of a playing card, less. That’s the beauty of it. Pairing words with images in such a space demands more and offers a refreshing way to mix seeing with believing, image and idea. There is no nutgraf, no data slips in. Poetry, experimentation, and brevity are more the goals, and all this has helped me remember just how hard it is to write well. It’s creative compression, rooted in many old forms of storytelling. And lately it’s my favorite way to write.