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Bewildering Stories

Challenge 525

Always in the Limelight

  1. In John Stocks’ “Cry a Little,” how might the reference to Arthur Miller and Marilyn Monroe be read: as sarcastic, ironic, humorous, sad — or in some other way?

  2. In B. Z. Niditch’s “Taking Flight,” the poem makes a pun on the name of the Soviet space station, Mir. Does the poem explain or at least allude to the meaning of “mir”?

  3. In Michael D. Brooks’ “Pie in the Sky”:

    1. Does the story seem to parody any particular theme in science fiction?
    2. Does the story overstep Bewildering Stories’ guideline against plots in which the narrator dies?
  4. In Paul Sohar’s “Miss La Tsekk’s Immaculate Conception”:

    1. How does the title apply to the story?
    2. The story appears to satirize a number of things. What might they be? Does it provide a key to the satire?
  5. In Tendai R. Mwanaka’s “Wordless Truth”:

    1. What does the poem seem to say about the relationship between thought and word? Between word and experience?
    2. Does the poem seem to contain any contradictions?
    3. Does “truth” depend entirely on words? Aren’t other art forms, e.g. painting, sculpture, etc. “wordless truths”? And doesn’t truth transcend art?
  6. In Martin Kerharo’s The Dohani War, chapter 19, “Revolution”:

    1. What is the function of Jane’s instantly becoming a celebrity? Is it a humorous digression or does it advance the plot? In what ways has Jane always been treated as a celebrity?

    2. Carolyn Greenshire says she’ll be killed for revealing the Federation’s conspiracy to conduct intelligence-gathering by force and violence. In view of the way whistleblowers are usually treated in most societies today, is she making , or ?

    3. Dexter and “Ralph” fail to uncover any trace of piracy in the sectors where the original raids on the Dohani space stations took place. Even and especially without Carolyn Greenshire’s evidence, why might the absence of any records of piracy constitute a monumental mistake on the part of the Federation conspirators?

Responses welcome!

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