Flash Fiction: Very Short Stories Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

James Thomas (professor)
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. The man looks at a photograph of which family member?

2. Pumpkins remind the person of which disease?

3. What animal attacks the trainer?

4. A man knocks on a woman's door, hoping to sell a lampshade. What part of the man's body is missing?

5. Jimmy's father accuses his son of ______.

Short Essay Questions

1. How do Karen and Konrad meet in "Roseville?" What event does the meeting prompt?

2. "A Public Denial" tells a somewhat humorous story about a man trying to clear his deceased grandfather's name. What killed the old man?

3. In "Vision Out of the Corner of One Eye" tells the story of two people on a train. What happens between the man and woman?

4. Explain the actions of the bears in Chile in "Brilliant Silence." Why do the bears act this way?

5. In "Love Poems," a man is inspired to write a love poem to his mistress. It is the best poem the man has ever written. Discuss the man's work and what he does with it in the end.

6. What temporarily dissuades the couple from making love in "True Love?"

7. Why does the girlfriend refuse to return her would-be husband's phone calls?

8. Why do the man and his young lover have such varying opinions on what they see in "Everything is Green?"

9. What is the accident that injures Jimmy? What happens after the accident?

10. In "The One Sitting There," a woman has difficulty cleaning out her refrigerator. What is the problem?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In "Feeding the Hungry," a man acts irrationally when he forgets to eat for one day. The man believes that he almost died from starvation. Obviously, that is not true. Study the body's metabolism and how it changes depending on the amount of food a person eats. Also examine the man's mental state to investigate any compulsions present.

Essay Topic 2

In "The Stones," the old stones have chosen to forget about or cease to talk about their adventures as young stones. Discuss in detail the behavior of the old stones versus the young stones. How have the old stones changed? What is the opinion of the young stones regarding their elders? Compare the attitudes of the old and young stones to grandparents, parents and children. What are the similarities? Does the story help to change your outlook on the opinions and advice of your elders? Explain.

Essay Topic 3

In "Girl," a girl's mother gives her daughter a very long list of things to do and not to do in order to behave like and become a "proper lady." Review each item on the list. Is it applicable to current day standards? Explain. Update the list to remove archaic ideas, update those that need to be changed to reflect modern culture, and add items that are appropriate today.

(see the answer keys)

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