What short story is this?
March 2, 2015 2:44 PM   Subscribe

Many moons ago I read a short story about several children who lived in a world that was almost perpetually dark, with the exception of something like 15 minutes of sunlight every 30 years. These children were horsing around outside, and two of them locked a third in a shed. While this child was in the shed, the sun came out, depriving him/her of the only opportunity they'd have in their life to see the light. Does this ring a bell for anyone?
posted by Imogenetic to Writing & Language (16 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Ray Bradbury, All Summer in a Day
posted by mochapickle at 2:45 PM on March 2, 2015 [14 favorites]

posted by handful of rain at 2:45 PM on March 2, 2015 [2 favorites]

All Summer In a Day.
posted by googly at 2:46 PM on March 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Handful of Rain - Seriously?? My mind is boggled by this. Although it is somewhat comforting to me that I'm not the only one that hasn't managed to get Google to produce effective results when asking it. Thanks everyone for resolving this!
posted by Imogenetic at 2:51 PM on March 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Added this thread to the wiki.
posted by DevilsAdvocate at 3:14 PM on March 2, 2015 [4 favorites]

OMG! Now I don't have to ask that question about House of Stairs.

I think for a certain age group, both the Ray Bradbury story (and to a much lesser extent, House of Stairs) represent primary science fiction literacy. The dystopian nature of the Bradbury story and its focus on children really seems to have made an impact on all who experienced it.
posted by amanda at 3:16 PM on March 2, 2015 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: For what it's worth, I appreciate that no one has frowned upon what has proven to be a silly question. I kind of can't believe that of all the questions in the world, this is the one most asked here.
posted by Imogenetic at 3:29 PM on March 2, 2015 [9 favorites]

I hadn't heard of this, and what it made me think of was Asimov's "Nightfall" which tells exactly the opposite story.
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 4:03 PM on March 2, 2015 [3 favorites]

The only reason I've never asked this question on metafilter is, one of my earliest metafilter experiences was seeing someone ask it and waiting impatiently for the answer to pop up. Clearly, read at the right age, this story does something to your brain.
posted by kythuen at 4:14 PM on March 2, 2015 [5 favorites]

Huh. I was going to say it sounds like a Ray Bradbury story!
posted by apricot at 4:21 PM on March 2, 2015

I think it might be in part because it is in one of the Junior Great Books anthologies, where it reached a receptive audience of young social outcasts and know-it-alls who imprinted on it for obvious reasons but couldn't identify it later because it was just part of a collection.

(I had my own Identify-All-Summer-in-a-Day quest, which I fortunately was able to resolve on my own.)
posted by ernielundquist at 4:45 PM on March 2, 2015

Looks like another one of us who was programmed by this story has been activated . . .
posted by ainsley at 4:51 PM on March 2, 2015 [4 favorites]

Before you ask, the other story you are thinking of is There Will Come Soft Rains, meta.
posted by jeather at 5:06 PM on March 2, 2015 [4 favorites]

ernielundquist: "I think it might be in part because it is in one of the Junior Great Books anthologies,"

It was in one of my grade-school reading textbooks (with the short stories and essays and poems, and the "comprehension questions" and everything?), maybe around 3rd grade, and it's a simple enough story for kids to get it, but with the right kind of menace and danger (bullying, outcast, missing out) for it to stick in their minds.

Ditto Shirley Jackson's "The Lottery" for slightly older kids.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:21 PM on March 2, 2015 [3 favorites]

This question goes up to 11!
posted by JanetLand at 7:01 AM on March 3, 2015

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