Stone Mattress Short Story by Margaret Atwood Analysis

1949 March, cover by Arthur Lidov ship

“Stone Mattress” is a masterful short story written by Margaret Atwood, published in The New Yorker in 2011. You’ll also find this story in the Nine Wicked Tales collection. Some years later, in 2018, author A.M. Homes discussed this story with Deborah Treisman via the New Yorker Fiction podcast, noting that this is (unfortunately) a……

Coming Soon Short Story by Steven Millhauser Analysis

“Coming Soon” is a short story by American novelist and short story writer Steven Millhauser, first published at The New Yorker in 2013. (About 3,900 words.) Chang-rae Lee discussed this story with Deborah Treisman at the New Yorker Fiction podcast. The following are my thoughts after reading the story and listening to their discussion. “You……

The Years of My Birth by Louise Erdrich Short Story Analysis

“The Years Of My Birth” (2011) is a short story by Louise Erdrich. Tommy Orange joined Deborah Treisman to read and discuss “The Years of My Birth,” by Louise Erdrich, which appeared in a 2011 issue of the New Yorker magazine. The author has said that her novels come from her short stories. “The Years Of……

Taking Mr Ravenswood by William Trevor Short Story Analysis

Anders Zorn (Swedish painter) 1860-1920 Impressions of London, 1890

“Taking Mr Ravenswood” is a short story by Irish-English author William Trevor, included in Last Stories (2018) and previously unpublished. The author had already died by the time this story was released to the rest of us. This is an excellent example of the ambiguity lyrical short stories are known for. To get a sense……

I Am Not A Fox by Wolf and Groenink Analysis

I Am Not A Fox is a picture book written by Karina Wolf and illustrated by Chuck Groenink. If you’ve ever read “The Ugly Duckling” and thought, “hmm, that message has problems”, then this one might be for you. SETTING OF I AM NOT A FOX PERIOD — contemporaryDURATION — a few days, including at……

Rupert Can Dance by Jules Feiffer Picture Book Analysis

Rupert Can Dance is a 2014 picture book written and illustrated by Jules Feiffer, who loosely makes use of a T.S. Eliot cat archetype in his depiction of alovably combatative relationship between a secretive mystery cat and a girl. SETTING OF RUPERT CAN DANCE PERIOD — a contemporary story (published 2014), though might take place……

Bluey Australian TV Show Storytelling

Bluey Family

Remember that time an episode of British cartoon Peppa Pig was taken off air in Australia? It was the episode which taught kids that spiders aren’t scary. Not a lesson Aussie kids need to learn. Well, fast forward a few years and Australian kids now have their own cartoon series reminiscent of Peppa Pig. Bluey……

Up At A Villa by Helen Simpson Short Story Analysis

FER96235 Ulysses and the Sirens, 1909 (oil on canvas) by Draper, Herbert James (1864-1920); 176.9x213.4 cm; Ferens Art Gallery, Hull Museums, UK; English, out of copyright

“Up At A Villa” is a short story by Helen Simpson, opening her 2011 collection In-flight Entertainment. This is a lyrical short story full of symbolism. Cover copy tells us to expect work a la Alice Munro. Of all the stories here, the images in “Up At A Villa” are most reminiscent of Munro —……

In-flight Entertainment by Helen Simpson Analysis

“In-flight Entertainment” is a short story by Helen Simpson, published in her 2010 collection of the same name. Thanks in large part to Greta Thunberg (not pronounced how I thought it was pronounced), 2019 seems to have been a turning point in general attitudes towards climate change. The phrase started off as ‘global warming’ (too……