Dynamic Woman — Changing Times
365 Short Stories (Daily Dose)—Week Forty-two
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” The Awakening, ” The Awakening and Selected Short Stories, by Kate Chopin
On this site readers can sign up to have books and stories emailed to them in short installments. I did not realize that The Awakening is actually a novel, and that it would be sent to me in 65 installments! The good news is that you can read as much or as little as you choose; just click to receive additional installments and keep going.
Chopin unfolds Edna’s dissatisfaction with masterful skill. When her husband thoughtlessly wakes her from a deep sleep after a night of gaming,
…she slipped her feet into a pair of satin mules at the foot of the bed and went out on the porch, where she sat down in the wicker chair and began to rock gently to and fro. There was no sound abroad except the hooting of an old owl in the top of a water-oak, and the everlasting voice of the sea, that was not uplighted at that soft hour. It broke like a mournful lullaby upon the night.
We see, hear and feel Edna’s early hour wakefulness as she breaks into sobs, not knowing why. Hers is an unexamined grief.
- “Pink Pearls of Wisdom & Ticket to Ride” by Sara Etgen-Baker Page & Spine, a weekly literary magazine showcasing emerging writers
This attractive site pays its writers. A few story elements that trip up novices leaped out at me in Etgen-Baker’s writing; a string of adjectives—luxurious, majestic, exquisite—for starters. What is it that makes the crystal chandelier exquisite? The etched frosted globes nestled in heavy gold collars? Help us see it.
- “The Cricket War,” by Bob Thurber, East of the Web
Haven’t see this site before. Comprehensive picks of classics and contemporary, different genres, age and star ratings. Download their app and get a story delivered each day.
The story for this day is a too-close-to home account of fighting the bug wars and losing. Everything. The story-telling rhythm sets the pace for the humorous tone. Thurber gets going and does not digress until the crickets win.
- “Love or Money,” by Louse Aronson, Narrative
Narrative has an app you can load that brings up flash fiction in readable format for your iOS device. I think the best flash fiction is a clever story or a clever telling. In Love or Money, the end is predictable. Yes, she married him for money. But the details are delightful.
She tried to warm the cool, ashen fingers that just a few years earlier had plucked her from a herd of postadolescent information technologists, rescuing her from the tedious, resource-poor life of her much younger age bracket.
- “The Lusitania,” by Robert Olen Butler, Narrative
“Tell me a story to keep me awake,” hubs said at the 11th hour of our 14 hour drive to Arizona. Fortunately I had the Narrative App on my iPhone, so I read him this one. It had just enough excitement to keep him awake—the ship is sinking for Heaven’s sake, and a war correspondent has to rescue a beautiful screen star…Hubs thinks he may want to read the book.
- “A Business Trip Home,” by Anna Mass, Balancing Acts, Contemporary Stories by Russian Women
I’m sneaking in a paperback read. Surprising how contemporary this fifteen year-old story set in Russia remains. It could have been set anywhere. The angst the professional mother feels about sloughing child rearing off on her aging parents is truthfully told. The metaphor of walking a bridge back and forth across a river, from the job she loves to the home she appreciates in memory is apt.
© Sydney Avey