Category Archives: Short Stories

Ursula K Le Guin, ‘Semley’s Necklace’ and The Dispossessed

Last month I published a blog post about Ursula Le Guin’s relationship with her mother, Theodora Kroeber, which took as one of its central metaphors the notion of a necklace: an object that is simultaneously single and multiple, fixed in … Continue reading

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Bedbound

One morning, Mr McGhee rolled over in bed and refused to get up. ‘Are you all right, love?’ asked his wife. She shook him a couple of times, then went to phone his work. ‘Tommy’s ill, I’m afraid,’ she said. … Continue reading

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Autumn Lights

At nightfall when the cottage lights went on the street should have been plunged in an abysmal darkness; but where Mr Printon (being an educated man) knew the stars must be, although he had never seen a star, there was … Continue reading

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Little Ships

These days when she dreamed it was as if she were talking face to face with friends long dead, and when she woke she opened her eyes onto sepia tints inside a narrow frame, a dim imitation of her colourful … Continue reading

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The Outer Circle

Eighteen years after leaving Old Earth I’ve made planetfall, and my ship has fallen silent. Can you understand what that means to me? For the first time in eighteen years the cabin has ceased to throb to the pulse of … Continue reading

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Café Culture

No, please – sit down. This place gets so crowded at this time of day, and I always feel a little embarrassed to be tucked away here in the corner with my small black coffee when everyone else is doing … Continue reading

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Vortex

Bob went up close to the screen, scowling as if this would change the weatherwoman’s mind and improve the forecast. The blue-green pixelated blot representing the Vortex remained clearly visible over the North Atlantic, edging its way coastwards as the … Continue reading

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The Goblin Basements

The first time he visited the Goblin Basements he was very nearly unprepared. It was Christmas Eve, and the toys had been rioting all day, refusing to obey the simplest orders and breaking each other at the slightest excuse. He … Continue reading

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The Reader

Captain Abend had asked to arrest his old friend Professor Bildnis himself, out of some confused desire to conduct the matter with the respect that had always characterized their dealings with one another. But now, as he stood at the … Continue reading

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A Beautiful Shade of Blue

‘Yes! Yes, love! Well done!’ someone was shrieking. ‘Rage, that’s what we’re looking for! Let me feel your anger!’ Yana dreamt she was in her studio painting a picture while a team of visiting sponsors watched over her shoulder. She … Continue reading

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