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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 466

Three to Make Ready

  1. In Dean Francis Alfar’s “Packing for the Moon”:

    1. Bewildering Stories officially frowns upon sentimentality. What is our definition of it?
    2. How does “Packing for the Moon” illustrate the opposite of sentimentality?
  2. In Sherman Smith’s “Strong Suit”:

    1. Is Brooks actually mistreated by anyone in the story?
    2. The author says that “Strong Suit” is part of a larger story. How does the story nonetheless qualify as a short story?
    3. The story was originally titled “Just This Side of Insanity.” The author has kindly agreed to “Strong Suit” as the title in Bewildering Stories. Although the original title is accurate and descriptive, give at least two reasons why the editor might have recommended “Strong Suit” as the title.
  3. In Audrey Williams’ “Papa Jah’s Banjo,” at least one slave master is depicted as a Simon Legree — but not entirely, and that is not where the story ends. Where does the story lead?

  4. In Abigail Wyatt’s “Mother Hubbard’s Lament”:

    1. How many allusions can you find to children’s rhymes or stories?
    2. Why is Mother Hubbard cited in the title rather than some other character?
    3. What does “Mother Hubbard” lament?
  5. In Barbara Stanley’s “Secret Pal,” the haunted “worry dolls” become tangible symbols of guilt. At the end of the story, who should speak first: the narrator or Gabe?

  6. How might Chuck Moss’s “The Courteous Ghost” be interpreted as satirical?

  7. Bonus question: What do the following seem to have in common:

Responses welcome!

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