A short story for Halloween

‘A Better Place’ by Ottessa Moshfegh Read it here in less than an hour. Thinking about why it’s unsettling… In the first paragraph, our narrator, Urszula, says she’s not from Earth, but from ‘some other place’. This is a young girl speaking, as indicated by the childish tone, the vocabulary (‘silly people’), and her inabilityContinue reading “A short story for Halloween”

A short story for Halloween

‘Afternoon at the Bakery’ by Yoko Ogawa Read it here (click on ‘Read Excerpt’, underneath the picture of the book’s cover, to read the entire story), in about 20 minutes. Thinking about why it’s unsettling… The first two paragraphs describe a beautiful day in a peaceful place, where people go about their business, doing ordinaryContinue reading “A short story for Halloween”

A short story for Halloween

‘Birds in the Mouth’ by Samantha Schweblin (NB. the eponymous story is called ‘Mouthful of Birds’ in my copy of the book) Read it here in about 25 minutes. Thinking about why it’s unsettling… The concept of this story is disturbing. The narrator’s daughter has begun to eat live birds. She’s thirteen; a school girl;Continue reading “A short story for Halloween”

A short story for Halloween

‘A Collapse of Horses’ by Brian Evenson Read it here in under 30 minutes. Thinking about why it’s unsettling… The story opens with a shocking statement made by the first-person narrator: his family have died, in an horrific manner, while he’s been injured. His tone when revealing this is utterly detached. And he’s using directContinue reading “A short story for Halloween”

To MA or not to MA?

The MA in Creative Writing I’ve just completed my Master’s degree in Creative Writing. Why did I study an MA? I’m a secondary school English teacher. It occurred to me a few years ago that although I was teaching creative writing, I’d never studied it myself. I decided to fix that, and return to somethingContinue reading “To MA or not to MA?”