Flash Fiction: Very Short Stories Test | Final 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. Who does something to upset one of the sisters?

2. What is the name of the girlfriend in "The Burlington Northern, Southbound?"

3. What is the name of the main female character in "Offerings?"

4. in "Snapshot, Harvey Cedars: 1948," a girl looks at a picture of her parents. What was the father's dream profession?

5. Where was the snapshot taken?

Short Essay Questions

1. Discuss what might happen after the owner finds the dead rabbit in "Here's Another Ending."

2. What does Henry Dobbins use as a way of protecting himself while at war? What happens that might change the talisman?

3. What is the most interesting thing about the people at "108 John Street?"

4. In "Here's Another Ending," discuss the actions of the owners of the dog and how they try to trick a neighbor.

5. Girl: Discuss some of the items that the girl must learn to do in the home.

6. In "The Cage," a man is trapped with no way to get free under his own power. Explain what happens that what it might mean.

7. What holiday tragedy happens to Franky Gorky in "The Nicest Kid in the Universe?"

8. What causes the woman to be upset in "Water?" What does the woman do?

9. Girl: The mother gives the daughter several references about becoming what?

10. Vines: Discuss the man's main issue in "Vines" and what he says to his wife. How does the wife respond?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In "Grace Period," a man spots a bright light on the horizon. The man can feel the earth rumble as the light gets brighter. No one answers the phone. Discuss what you think is happening. Do you think the bright light is a UFO? Do you think the man is frightened or hallucinating? Compare the story to others that begin the same way and end up with alien abduction. Also watch and review television shows that portray alien abductions.

Essay Topic 2

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 3

"Corners" is a story about three sisters, Mildred, Marie, and Jessie. Marie dies. Examine the process each sister must go through to come to terms with Marie's death. Who is the eldest sister? How does each handle Marie's death? Explain how Jessie's behavior is colored by jealousy as much as grief. Also examine how Mildred tries to cheer Jessie. Discuss sibling rivalry.

(see the answer keys)

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