So I remember reading this short story once. It was about the pope and he had some kind of an infected toe. And it made him ornery and unforgiving. And then at some point the toe bursts, he feels better, it bloodies his slipper (which he doesn't change) and then he just starts forgiving everyone and everything. Does this ring any bells for anyone?
It starts with the main character's death where he meets God. God presents him with some kind of question or riddle to solve. The guy eventually gets the right answer. In the end it turns out that God deceived the man into getting the correct answer so he could be free of his immortality.
Wikipedia claims that "Pageant Wagon" by Orson Scott Card has only ever been in the short story collection The Folk of the Fringe (1989). This is wrong, as I've read it, and I've never read an OSR short story collection. I can even remember exactly when and where I read it, but not the name of the short story collection. So, what other short story collection has it been in? Possibly under another name? [more inside]
Help me identify a science-fiction short story I read years ago. It's about the inventor of a remote-viewing device that also lets you view the past. [more inside]
Looking for a pre-1985 story about a man turning into a tree. [more inside]
Specific story-writing method published by a '20s/'30s crime writer? [more inside]
Is it possible to find an expert in creative writing in the Boston area or online to help me improve my short story? Several knowledgeable readers pointed out specific flaws in it that I have no idea how to fix. [more inside]
I vaguely remember reading a SciFi short story about racing cars backwards around a track that was a metaphor for transistors. Does such a story actually exist, or is it all in my head?
It´s a story about a man who gets a message in his dreams coming from a civilization that´s living in a pore in the skin of his hand. He is told that every time he scratches his hand this will cause a catastrophe in their little universe, which has already happened several times before. Finally he agrees not to scratch his hand for a while.
I'm looking for a few short stories to read aloud to ESL students between 13 and 16 years old, each divisible into a few 15- to 20-minute chunks, and each engaging. [more inside]
I heard this short story on audio on a family car trip ~15 years ago, give or take a few years. I'm pretty sure it was a horror story. I don't know if it was targeted towards kids, but I was elementary aged when I heard it. Two kids, a carnival, and a evil being in the clouds. [more inside]
I remember reading a short story about a futuristic treatment which causes long-life (1000 years?). In the story, a young couple gets the treatment, and we follow their lives up through old age. The only particular I remember has the couple bored with nothing else to learn or experience, and they sit, playing million piece all-white jigsaw puzzles to pass the time. [more inside]
I'm in search of two half-remembered short stories, both probably from European authors in the early-to-mid-twentieth century. One involves a parade and a recurring motif of linden trees. The other was a tale of a young aristocratic man who is seduced by a con woman while on holiday. [more inside]
Does anyone know of any very short stories (1,500 words or fewer), preferably in the science fiction or fantasy genre, that are told through the eyes of an unreliable narrator? [more inside]
I've been looking for this particular short sci-fi story for several years and I am finally giving up on going solo. Help me find it, hive mind. [more inside]
If anyone recognises this story, please can you tell me the author? I think the story is about five years old. An ordinary man with low self-esteem is dumped by his beautiful intelligent accomplished girlfriend. She gives him a dog as a pity present, with a snide subtext that the dog is better than he is. Gradually through caring for the dog, a magnificent Alsation, and taking pride in it, the man recovers his self-esteem and becomes sought-after. It's a story that feels as if it has a lot of undercurrents and as if it's not as simple as it looks: in some way the dog stands in for the guy, or represents the guy or becomes a totem for him. Or something.
Please help me identify a short story I read in high school. It's about a man who claims that he can make people disappear to the extent that no-one will remember that they ever existed. He is asked to prove the claim... *possible spoilers inside* [more inside]
Help me fill in this vague recollection of a story I read? I read it probably as recently as last year. I don't remember if it's a short story or an incident in a novel. [more inside]
Someone recently emailed me trying to track down a short story he remembered reading as a kid (in Johannesburg, 1970). He thought it might be by Roald Dahl. I told him that I'm 99.9% sure it's not by Dahl, just on the basis that I've read everything he ever published. The story sounds interesting though (something about a doll's house and playing God), and I'd like to try to help him track it down if I can. Does it ring a bell for anybody? Plot description follows. [more inside]
I'm looking for books, stories, films, documentaries, articles about the birth of dystopic societies. Examples could be a prequel to the Hunger Games (how did this fictional world come to be?), an article about people's lives in a nation where democracy was overthrown, stories about how Jews and non-Jews reacted to the early days of Hitler's rise, explorations of the slow realization that an ostensibly democratic nation is now really run by a strongman or single powerful party. [more inside]
I am looking for the title of a nineteenth centry short story that goes: a man and a woman (acquainted but unconnected) inadvertently get lost or delayed together on an excursion and have to stay out overnight (sleeping separately). When they return, everyone is scandalised and propriety forces them to marry, which both resent, and blame each other for. But they fall passionately in love as soon as they are married. I thought this was by Guy de Maupassant, but I have searched all his stories and cannot find it.
Can you help me remember the name of this Jewish-American author? [more inside]
Chinese short story set in Gansu or western China, involving a farmer venturing into the sand dune desert?
Chinese short story set in Gansu or western China, involving a farmer venturing into the sand dune desert? [more inside]
Can you help me identify a 25+ year-old short story that describes someone unable to cross a city street? [more inside]
Half remembered short story: Girl and Guy meet at rail station waiting room. Feel a relationship spark. They walk into nearest Town and dance at a bar. Halfway through the story the couple realise that they (and everyone else in the railway waiting room) are ghosts. *Might* have been a originally posted to the metafilter? [more inside]
What's the story where the guy talks to a bunch of dead people and then finds out he's dead? [more inside]
What print fiction magazines accept longer short stories? [more inside]
I'm trying to recall a Star Trek short story published 25-30 years ago. I have no author or title. It was in an anthology. [more inside]
Where should I try and publish a literary translation? [more inside]
What does the Joe Hill story "My Father's Mask" mean? [more inside]
Looking for a short story I read 2 or 3 years ago about a robot who worked in a church, and started reading scripture, and was eventually killed by the townspeople because of it. [more inside]
I need help finding the title of a sci fi story I read once. [more inside]
I'm looking for linked short story collections. [more inside]
Help me find two pieces of literature I read about thirty years ago, one a short story, the other a poem. [more inside]
Help one of my colleagues identify a short story (we think) for a patron! [more inside]
Looking for a dystopian short story that made the rounds around half a year ago about intellectual property. It was (I believe) a father and daughter who go through emails and have to make micropayments for copyright infringement, trademark infringement, etc. Any thoughts? I may have seen it on MeFi or Boing Boing, and my google-fu is failing me.
What's this Sci-Fi short story? A scientist working on gender selection technology is contacted by future potential outcomes of his work (a male-dominated world and a woman-dominated world) that end up corresponding to the woman he marries.
Help me name this SF short story. [more inside]
Recommend good short stories for starting moral or ethical debates! [more inside]
Seeking a 1950s sf short story, probably by a notable author, that presaged a panopticon-esque surveillance society. My google-fu pride is injured that I can't find a trace of it. [more inside]
I can't remember the name of a short story about a man who was made up almost entirely of artificial body parts. [more inside]
I am looking for the title and author of a short story about an alien abduction. The abduction itself was a major plot twist-- the story was about a farmer, but very abruptly, the farmer is abducted.
Story-about-orbs filter: in my eighth grade English class, I read a sci-fi story about an extraterrestrial orb that was collecting specimens from Earth. I'd love to find out its author and name (and, optimally, a copy of the story itself on the web.) [more inside]
Please help me ID a short story I read many years ago. A handicapped woman, living with her sister and her sister's family, sees a man in church whom she feels quite sure is the devil. In order to get away from him, she struggles to regain the physical independence she had given up. (She had gone into a wheelchair because walking was possible, but too painful.) She does manage to become self-sufficient enough to move out on her own--and the rest I'm not sure of. I asked this question two years ago--I'm trying again. It's still driving me crazy.
Today's FPP reminded me of a short story about post-singularity life in the theater. [more inside]
Name that sci-fi short story I read as a child. [more inside]
Please help me find this depressing sci-fi short story. [more inside]
What's the best venue to submit a politically tinged left-leaning science-fiction short story? [more inside]
I'm trying to track down a short story. [more inside]
ShortStoryFilter: In one of my undergrad Spanish Lit. classes, I remember reading a short story about a man who had supported the feminist struggle with his wife and had greatly benefited from women's 'liberation'. His wife gets a high paying job and he eventually either loses or quits his job and (happily) never works again. After he loses his job his life becomes carefree, he has time for friends again now that their wives are 'liberated,' while his wife comes home from work exhausted everyday. Does this ring a bell to anyone?