Short Story Reading: Give Me Truth or Give Me Silence, by Melissa R Mendelson

Performed by Laura Kyswaty

 Get to know the writer:

What is your short story about?

Give Me Truth or Give Me Silence is a Dystopian short story, where individuals are forced to speak the truth, but like with any other society, there are those that still lie. But it might be the last lie that they will ever speak.

What genres would you say this story is in?


How would you describe this story in two words?

Honesty Hurts

What movie have you seen the most in your life?

Since I was eight-years-old, I’ve seen a lot of movies and a lot of television shows, but one of my favorite movies is Suicide Kings, which is an intensely written Drama, where the truth is a cool hand played right up to the last bluff.

What is your favorite song? (Or, what song have you listened to the most times in your life?)

Again, I’ve been listening to music since I was eight, and I have many favorites. And I love U2, and I especially love their song, The Troubles.

Do you have an all-time favorite novel?

My Cousin Estelle, who passed this year and may she rest in peace, used to give me books when I was a kid, and I would read right through them, looking for more. But one of my favorite books that she gave me is Charlotte’s Web, and I still have it somewhere in a bin downstairs in the basement.

What motivated you to write this story?

I am part of this community called, HitRecord, and they do Weekly Writing Challenges. One of the challenges was to create a Utopia or Dystopia, so I created, Give Me Truth or Give Me Silence.

If you could have dinner with one person (dead or alive), who would that be?

Stephen King. He will always be my favorite author, and a few have told me that some of my writing reminds them of his work.

Apart from writing, what else are you passionate about?

One of my hobbies is to write Parody Lyrics, and I don’t do it often. But when I do, I like to base the lyrics around my favorite television shows such as Supernatural and Killjoys.

What influenced you to enter your story to get performed?

I have been coming to WildSound for a long time now, and with their reviews on my writing, I have been able to make my stories more than what they started out as. And I love the opportunities that they provide such as these readings to give my stories a platform, where they can not only be read but heard.

Any advice or tips you’d like to pass on to other writers?

Look for inspiration. Sometimes, I like driving around town, passing through neighborhoods, and I have created some of my favorite short stories based off those drives like Faded Shades of Rainbow and Cellar Dawn.


Producer: Matthew Toffolo

Director: Kierston Drier
Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne
Editor: John Johnson

Camera Operator: Mary Cox



By writingfest

Monthly Festival showcasing the best of new novels from around the world. Novel transcripts get performed by professional actors. OR, we also turn novels into movies and seen by 1000s online and at various film festivals.

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