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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 493

What Shall We Do With Interesting Characters?

  1. In Charles C. Cole’s “The Cat Who Came in From the Rain”:

    1. What impressions do you form of the narrator’s and his mother’s personalities?
    2. At any point does the author tell the readers what to think of the characters in the anecdote?
  2. In Edward Ahern’s “The Dogfisherman,” is the story:

    1. entirely realistic?
    2. realistic with a touch of fantasy?
    3. fantasy in a realistic mode?
  3. In Russell Bradbury-Carlin’s “Tree Soup”:

    1. How does the narrator feel about the mysterious woman he sees in the forest?
    2. Does the story overstep Bewildering Stories’ guideline about plots that end with “but it was all a dream” or the equivalent?
  4. In B. Z. Niditch’s poem “October, Far Away”:

    1. What event does “October” refer to?
    2. What are the “old clichés that never seem to die with revolutions”?
  5. In C. J. Simpson’s “A Home World Like Roy,” the verb tenses alternate between past and present. Is the variation only apparently inconsistent and have a purpose, or should the verb tense be the same in all but direct quotes?

  6. In Nathan Rosen’s review article of Michael Jackson’s film Thriller:

    1. Who is the intended audience? Readers who...
      1. know who Michael Jackson is and who have seen the film?
      2. know who Michael Jackson is but have not seen the film?
      3. don’t know who Michael Jackson is but have seen the film?
      4. don’t know who Michael Jackson is and have not seen the film?
      Which would qualify as the most general audience?
    2. How might the reference to Kobena Mercer’s article be handled more economically?
  7. in Jason R. DePriest’s “Ridge World”:

    1. The narrator recounts an experience he had when he was ten years old. Should he talk like a ten-year old?
    2. Why is the alternate reality referred to as the “ridge world”?
    3. Who is the most interesting character in the story?

Responses welcome!

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