Death and elements of horror feature prominently in gothic stories. They often contain decayed settings, human psychology, and strong evocations of nature.
They are scary but usually not as graphic as horror stories, although there is definite overlap between the two. Some of the other mainstays of gothicism include young maidens, clergy and other religious figures, castles, monasteries, night-time journeys, insanity, and violence. See also Edgar Allan Poe.
No Poe, Hawthorne or Pushkin. Hermann is an engineer in the Russian army. Tomsky tells him a story about his grandmother, a countess, who won a large sum playing cards because she knows a three card secret.
The countess is still alive, so Hermann schemes to learn the secret from her. An unidentified narrator, a child, tells their story through diary entries. The child is chained up in the basement, and has to keep out of sight or be beaten. As the narrator is walking back to his cabin, he sees a priest hurrying to the village. Schalken is in love with Rose. His proposal is rejected by her guardian who has matched her with a rich and mysterious older man.
When he arrives they are shocked by him, but the marriage has already been agreed to.
Top 100 Short Story Ideas
Read here. Ethan arrives at a lime kiln that he used to use. The townspeople are told that Ethan has returned. Lydia Anderson, a woman in her eighties, tells the story of Luella Miller, a woman who had an unusual knack for getting people to care for her. The people who helped Luella seemed to lose their power and deteriorate.
While Fettes is drinking with some friends, Dr. Wolfe McFarlane arrives; Fettes angrily confronts him. The narrator uncovers the story: Fettes and McFarlane went to medical school together. They used to receive and pay for cadavers for dissection. One delivery makes Fettes suspicious of his associate. The narrator recounts the story of an unusual wedding between a man and woman in their sixties.
Rather than being introduced by uplifting music, the wedding was introduced with a funeral knell instead. A doctor claims to have water from the legendary Fountain of Youth.
He invites four elderly acquaintances over for an experiment. He offers them a drink of the special water. A newly-married couple live happily, but with some distance between them, for about six months. The wife, Alicia, gets thin and sick. The illness hangs on, so doctors are called and Alicia is bedridden.Egomaniacs run the government, war threatens on every front, police target select populations, the environment is under threat, you are being watched, and technology runs amok.
Sound like current news? Time for some dystopian short stories to show the way. Fiction has already prepared many of us for a dystopia, even if we never actually imagined it would happen. In these stories heroes and heroines fight oppression and imagine new worlds, but they also succumb to tyranny and die. Well, these are dystopias. What dystopians should do is inspire us to change.
To revolt. Here are 25 must-read dystopian short stories and anthologies—from classic authors to new finds—that should inspire anyone to rebellion.
Did you know E. Forster wrote this story inbefore WWI, yet he imagines a global war, technology taking over lives, videoconferencing, and an early version of cell phones. And also a good story. Butler is a must-read in SFF, and this collection of five stories, along with some of her essays, is a great starting point, or to pick up where you left off. These stories are both disturbing and lyrical. She imagined a world where women worked while men stayed home and cooked.
Vonnegut needs no introduction. This short story is kinda like what The Rainbow Fish would look like in a dystopian future. I even performed it as a monologue in high school.
Have you watched Blade Runner? Total Recall? Minority Report? Dick stories. The title alone demonstrates the lyricism of this short story. Le Guin often depicted dystopias, or problematic utopias, in her fiction. The master of short stories tackles a dystopian prison system. This also appears in Tenth of Decembera wonderful collection. If you really want a dystopian fix, this anthology is dedicated to dystopian stories, and contains several of the stories on this list.
A unique AI perspective on a dystopian world. An epic short story about Alonso—a brother, a friend, an uncle—in a crime-ridden city where the young die from gunshot wounds.Do you want to write but just need a great story idea?
Well, good news. Want to know more? Learn more about how to write a great short story here. Here are the best story ideas:. Thrillers come in all shapes and forms, dipping freely into other genres. In other words, expect the unexpected!
Click for thriller short story ideas. Brave and clever, Tomoe follows clues until she learns who ordered the murder: Emperor Antoku himself. But why would the emperor of Japan want to kill a lowly soldier?
Click for the mystery short story ideas. Have fun! A sudden rash of break-ins brings her to his store over and over and over again, until it becomes obvious that he might be tripping the alarm on purpose—just to see her. Write the moment she realizes she has to do something about this crazy illicit courtship. Click for the romance short story ideas. Click for the fantasy short story ideas. Stories, more than any other artistic expression, have the power to make people care.
But if you want to get published sooner, writing short stories can be a much faster road to publication. They learned the art of fiction by writing short stories. Have a great short story idea? Share it in the comments! Choose one of these ideas and write a short story in one sitting aim for 1, words or less! And if you share, please be sure to comment on a few stories by other writers. Building an Author Website.
Use these story ideas to get writing now. Top 10 Story Ideas Tell the story of a scar. A group of children discover a dead body. A shy, young woman unexpectedly bumps into her soulmate. A long journey is interrupted by a disaster. Ready to write your short story? No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. Robert Frost. Joe Bunting. Joe Bunting is an author and the leader of The Write Practice community.
Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer The Bike by Alan Sillitoe 1. Billy the Kid by Michael Morpurgo 1. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell 1.
The Black Book of Secrets by F. Higgins Blitzed by Robert Swindells Bog Child by Siobhan Dowd 2. Boy by Roald Dahl The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas 5.As to where to find great stories, The New Yorker stories are generally best, but require a subscription if you read too many in a month. I also like Narrative Magazinewhich will ask you for an email, but their stories are free too.
Tor of course has some great free stuff, and you can find most of the classics through Gutenberg. The stories on this list that are not from any of these publications, I found through simple Google searches. Both stories satisfied a reading itch I needed scratched. The world is a library that contains all the books that have ever been written, but most of them are indecipherable.
Many people venture to the library to find the meaning of life. This used to be my favorite short story, and I might only think that because I read it when I was a freshman in high school and I remember being shocked by the ending. A man known as the Traveller is visiting a foreign penal colony where he is shown a special machine used to execute prisoners. It takes twelve hours of torture before the prisoner dies.
I told you it was chilling! Kai Ashante Wilson has quite a talent. This ties present day police brutality towards African Americans to post-emancipation America and a family of freed slaves that are living with the Devil that followed them from Africa. Cities, once they are old enough, must be born.
New York City is ready to be born, and must be led into the world by a reluctant midwife. I was shocked by how good and complex his writing was. I had no idea that the movie The Arrival was based on one of his short stories. A story about the people of Earth deciding to throw away the Moon. Green means up your shirt; blue means down his pants. Purple means in your mouth. Black means all the way. The first four sentences of this short story sent chills down my spine.
7 Short Mystery Stories
A superbly told story of the extremes of girlhood and adolescence; the pressures girls face as they get older. Love at first sight, if you believe love is predestined rather than a choice. Fated love, to me, no matter how hard my heart becomes, still seems ridiculously romantic. This story was written in before the publication of The Vegetarian. Han Kang can do no wrong in my eyes. I love Sarah Gailey. A hot and bothered story about a house falling in love with the girl who lives in the attic.
I loved everything about this story. Also, the writing style reminded me of Samantha Hunt. This story was almost too gritty for me. His short story collection has a blurb from Joyce Carol Oates. Want more short stories?
Adam and Eve
Check out our post on the best short story collections! Check Your Shelf Newsletter. We're keeping track of our favorite books of the year. Shop the list here!Author: Created by AmyJaney Created: Dec 2, Updated: Dec 29, A fully resourced scheme, covering 34 lessons which can be reduced if needed, as covered below on a range of engaging short stories.
This allows KS3 students to enjoy reading without getting bogged down in a single text, while covering key skills for both GCSE Language and Literature further down the line. It is most suited to Year 8 or 9, but could also be tailored for use with Year 7 or even as an introductory unit to GCSE skills in Year Five short stories have six lessons each, following the same pattern and developing skills further each time: 1: Reading, understanding and enaging with the story.
Lang AO4 6: Reflecting on evaluation and creative writing. The only parts you might wish to edit are the references to red and purple pen for reflection and extending work, if your school has a different policy. Lessons can also be easily edited to suit your students; the scheme can be shortened if necessary by removing one or two of the stories - it could cover a few weeks, a half-term or even a full term.
My students, particularly boys, have responded really well to this unit and enjoyed the stories, which were selected in consultation with both students and English teachers. Read more. Report a problem. View more. How can I re-use this? Worry free guarantee. Author: Created by AmyJaney88 Preview. Share Email Post. All stories, worksheets, assessments and PowerPoints.
Mark schemes and conversions to estimated GCSE grades. Coverage of key assessment objectives for Language and Literature, based on AQA spec but transferable across boards. Work on building tier 2 and tier 3 vocabulary. Extensions for students who finish tasks before others. Embedded challenge tasks for higher ability students. Opportunities to scaffold and support. Model answers. Quiz at the end of each story to check learning, which can be peer assessed. Embedded AfL opportunities to check knowledge.A short story needs to be compelling to read and to be this it needs to be given an effective structure.
Like all texts, stories also have their own basic 'recipe' called 'genre conventions'. This part of your story must work to engage your reader, beginning to absorb them into your 'story-world'. You should aim to hook the reader into the story with the 'plot hook'. Whether you choose to start the story by giving the end away just like Shakespeare did in his play Romeo and Juliet ; or you start in the middle of lots of action; or even with very little action at all, you will definitely need to start in a way that hooks your reader — and do so pretty quickly.
Can you find the 'plot hook'? It was my birthday, too.
I was ten. They knew just how much I loved animals and the chimps there were always my favourites. What could possibly go wrong? The 'plot hook' in this example is 'What could possibly go wrong? Establish the time and place, as well as the general situation.
This can also be used to help develop a suitable mood or atmosphere. It can sometimes help to use a familiar place that your reader can relate to in some way. At this stage, you need to 'set up' the story and begin to introduce the main character s. Use your narrator to tell of an incident or event that the reader feels will spark a chain of events.
This helps make the reader feel that the story has really started. From this point, life cannot be quite the same for your main character that is your protagonist. There is a problem that has to be faced and overcome.
The fiction trigger can be an event that really starts the story. It will develop from the 'plot hook'.Adam and Eve (Genesis 2-3)
If the story is about a day out at the zoo, then maybe an animal has escaped. If is about a robbery, it might be the event that makes a character consider carrying out a robbery; and if it is about an accident, it will be the event that causes it to happen. This section builds the tension — keeps the reader absorbed and guessing where it all will lead. This is where you will move the story forward and will use lots of techniques to keep the reader guessing, 'What will happen next?!
The problem reaches a head, with suspense creating lots of tension for the reader— showing the reader the possible result of what has come before. This is not the end of your story — not quite. It will be the key event but your protagonist will, somehow, overcome it and all will be well.