I'm sure this question has been asked many times before in the blogoshere, but here goes. How long do you like your short stories? In the guidelines over at BEAT to a PULP, we say no more than 4000 words, though we have stretched that a few times. As a writer, I prefer the 5000-6000 range for plot and character development. On the other hand, as a reader, if I pick up an anthology of shorts, I will read the 1500-3000 yarns first and gradually get around to the others.