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Short Thoughts on Short Fiction: November 2021

Short Thoughts on Short Fiction is a monthly column that focuses on short stories. Each month we review a small selection of short stories from anthologies, collections, and zines, both old and new. We want to acknowledge some of the great short fiction that’s out there, shine a light on emerging writers, and point readers in the direction of great fiction.

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The Head from Cursed Bunny by Bora Chung

The Head is the opening story in the collection and it reads like a mission statement filled with gonzo, feminist, surreal ideas. A woman is about to flush the toilet when a head pops out and calls her Mother. The head is made up of all the woman’s discarded solids, fluids, and waste. No matter what, the head won’t go away for the rest of her life. This is an evocative story open to many interpretations and a hell of an opening story.

Red-Eye by Tabatha Wood from Seeds

To tell you who the narrator of the story is would be to ruin the surprise that comes part way through. When the time comes, as it must for us all, you’ll want a charming and beguiling version of the character as found here to greet you. Or do you? Read it and decide for yourself.

Mujina by Lafcadio Hearn

I have only just recently discovered the work of Lafcadio Hearn and I’m really looking forward to taking a deep dive. Hearn was well known for bringing Japanese stories and folklore to the West. Mujina is such a wonderful story. My only regret is that I wish I had known about it when my children were young. It’s a short length and lends itself well to reading out loud and I readily imagine doing various voices and changing the pitch and volume of my voice for maximum effect. First step on what I’m sure will be a wonderful reading journey

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