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. Which of the following is not one of the sisters mentioned in "Corners?"

2. in "Girl," the author writes a very long list of dos and don'ts for a young lady. Which of the following is not included in the section on sweeping?

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

4. The man sends the girl to which type of establishment?

5. The girl receives so many ____ that she begins to collect them.

Short Essay Questions

1. In "Corners," what are the sisters doing at the beginning of the story? What upsets Jessie so much that she runs outside?

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

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

4. Discuss Jane's attitude in "Jane." What does Jane do instead of follow her parents' orders?

5. What is the thing that seems to bother the woman most in "The Haircut?"

6. What happens when Louise finds Teddy on the floor in "Teddy's Canary?"

7. Discuss the interruptions faced by the man in "The Continuity of Parks."

8. Discuss the findings of the parents in "The Sewers of Salt Lake."

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

10. Discuss the interview with "The Last Parakeet."

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

In "Ponderosa," Jimmy is unhappy. Jimmy has been cheating on his wife although he denies it to his wife and father, who is a minister. The father tries to talk to Jimmy, but to no avail. Through an accident, Jimmy has half of his jaw shot off. The father sees it as divine intervention. Discuss Jimmy's predicament. Why does Jimmy continue to see his mistress if he is unhappy? What kind of upbringing did Jimmy have as the son of a minister? Does the father really believe that Jimmy's "accident" was divine intervention? Does Jimmy believe it? How does the accident affect Jimmy's life? Discuss the story from both sides. Also discuss what might have happened if Jimmy had not been shot.

Essay Topic 2

"Ice Storm" is a telling story about boys that resist the urge to kill blinded pheasants during a particularly nasty winter storm. What happens to the animals during the storm? Why are the pheasants blinded? What about the boys makes them want to capture, harm or kill the birds? What causes the boys to rethink their motives and protect the birds from freezing to death? Examine a person's nature to protect versus kill.

Essay Topic 3

A man desires to read his novel in "The Continuity of Parks." What about the novel has the man so intent on reading it? How does a person become so involved in a fantasy world that he becomes oblivious to everything around him? Is it a form of entertainment or escapism? Compare and contrast entertainment and escapism. Give examples of each as well as examples where both may apply.

(see the answer keys)

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