A short story is a literary work of fiction that is too small to be noted as a novel, usually contains less than 100 pages and no chapters.

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Humans learning strict alien ceremony where a mistake results in death

Science fiction short story, no idea when or who wrote it, basic plot is humans are on an alien planet. They must attend a ceremony (dinner?) which has a strict protocol. When the ritual is done ...
9
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1answer
605 views

A sf short story about entering the galactic civilisation

I’m looking for a short story about entering the galactic civilization.(you had to have discovered the power of the atom in order to qualify for the list) There is a guy that reports back to his boss ...
6
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2answers
194 views

Time travel short story: trying to give Ancient Greeks a head start in science

I want to identify a short story about a man who wants to create a better human race by pushing the ancient Greek intellectuals a little further. He builds a time machine goes back and tells the Greek ...
2
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285 views

Who wrote “Pate de Fois Gras”?

It appeared in Analog decades ago. Memorable line: "It's the goose! The goose who laid the golden egg!" and "That goose is a living nuclear reactor."
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90 views

NEW EDEN - end of humanity [on hold]

Last three people left on earth- father, mother and pre-adolescent son. Father sterile. Teaches son how to impregnate mother
6
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112 views

Poul Anderson short story about a mutant with mental powers in a US splinter republic in the Rockies?

From the 60s, set in a post-apocalyptic US splinter republic centered in the Rockies, main character a young mutant capable of some kind of mental parallel processing, for example solves the turbulent ...
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64 views

Short story where aliens colonize earth, a boy is made immortal and separated from family

I'm looking for a short story I read sometime in the mid-2000s. It was one of the "related readings" to one of the stories that I read when I was in middle school, and I'm almost sure that it had been ...
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2answers
322 views

Short Story - Family Moving to the Moon

I am looking for the name of a short story about a family that moves to the moon. They aren't happy there and want to go back to earth. The father uses up their return voyage money to have their piano ...
14
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1k views

What anthology am I thinking of; underwater aliens / an impassable wall / a moon with an incredibly low orbit

I am looking for the names of these three short stories that I read long back in an anthology of Scifi stories. First Story: It's about a planet mostly water that has been seeded by some intelligent ...
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91 views

Short story about a girl who was the first child born in space, or on the moon?

I remember reading this short story in a science fiction anthology when I was a child. In the climactic scene of the story, the girl (now grown up) gives an address to the UN. Afterwards, all the ...
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1answer
147 views

Short story as a letter to original colonisers of earth

I am trying to track the title of a short story which is written as a message from an alien race to the original colonisers of earth apologising for the collapse of the experiment and advising the ...
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137 views

Short story about a conversation between a comet and the Earth

This is a story I read during the 90's but the actual story might be older. I don't remember the title nor the author but remember a good deal of the plot. It started with the Earth and the ...
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79 views

Return to the Land (no matter how dangerous)

I read a story nearly 40 years ago, I thought in OMNI magazine. It was about a famous musician who chose to return to her home planet, which was so dangerous that she might die almost immediately. ...
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1answer
98 views

What is the title of this story about settlers who have to give back cells to a sentient species?

Settlers land on a supposedly unoccupied planet, and raise livestock on an early life stage of a sentient species. The early stage looks like grass. After the sentient species begins its next stage ...
6
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1answer
150 views

Short story by Sturgeon about language and love

It was a short story about a human who makes contact with an alien species so much advanced emotionally they have developed a variety of terms to describe emotional rapports very accurately.
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66 views

What is the relation between the sisters and the bugs in “The Little Sisters of Eluria”

I'm currently reading Stephen King's short story "The Little Sisters of Eluria" What is the relation between sisters and bugs? We know about the sisters but what do bugs get in return by healing ...
2
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1answer
59 views

What was the relation between mutants and sisters in short story “The Little Sisters of Eluria” by Stephen King [closed]

I'm currently reading Stephen King's short story collection, Everything's Eventual. Last night I read the short story "The Little Sisters of Eluria" in it and have few questions regarding the plot. ...
4
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125 views

Science Fiction short story about a town where people got cured by other people in the town

I'm looking for a short story about a town that had no doctors or pharmacies and sick people were taken to the town square. I believe there was a family passing through and the lady took sick. The ...
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2k views

Short story about a hole to another universe that pulls in metal

This question reminded me of a story I read in the 90s. A woman is caught shoplifting a bunch of metal items by throwing them into her purse. She has no memory, and the purse is empty. Anything metal ...
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105 views

Space Adventure / War Short Story Identification

I read a short story in an anthology a couple of years ago. I can’t remember the name of either but remember the below details: It was set on a gigantic, colony / warship The reader is slowly ...
13
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2answers
785 views

Short story identification: society partitioned off by high wall

Reading another question today reminded me of a short story I read in the early 90s (probably written in 60s or 70s though). A society is blocked off by a really high wall; the story follows a girl ...
3
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1answer
519 views

Story about a man who discovers the power of nothing [closed]

A man wonders why perforations don't work. He decides nothing is the strongest thing in the universe. He exploits his finding.
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65 views

Story about man selling his memories to a school to take care of an old woman

This is as well as I can remember: The man visits an old woman each week - it had started as volunteer work, but had turned into something which was taking over his life. He wanted to get her a nurse, ...
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176 views

Alien surface transport that walks, not rolls

A magazine connected with (Boy) Scouting, possibly "Boys Life", in the early 1950's ran a short story in which a group of interplanetary explorers on an extraterrestrial planet, which may have been ...
6
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1answer
161 views

Looking for short story describing the job interview of an operator/engineer (not Asimov's “Profession”)

I'm desperately looking for a science fiction short story I read in the 80s (or maybe 90s, my memory is not the best). I remember the main story line was about the job interview of a worker, who ...
6
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1answer
78 views

Looking for 50's 60's science fiction short story - radio waves and combustion

I can't remember the name of the story, but in it a character in a remote Alaskan outpost during a war between the US and the Chinese (or Russians, can't remember). This sentry makes a discovery that ...
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118 views

Time travel story with “push-pull” time lines

Another time travel short story, also from (probably) the 50s. This one is specifically not "Brooklyn Project". That involved multiple, independent changes of history. This one uses two alternating ...
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1answer
105 views

Short story ID: Bouncing-Ball Time Travel

A little help please. The story I'm looking for is probably late-50's to mid-60's, and may well have occurred in an SF magazine. A professor is demonstrating his new time machine to a scientific ...
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1answer
81 views

Who wrote “How Much for Just the Planet”?

Does anyone know about a short story named "How Much for Just the Planet?"
7
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1answer
169 views

Science Fiction short story I read— need to find. Current-day guy is in the future (cryogenics??)

A while back I read a science-fiction short story that I very much want to re-find. If you've read it, my plot description will hopefully ring a bell and maybe you'll recall some vital stats about it. ...
5
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1answer
95 views

Title / Author of a short story about a man reassembled by aliens

There was this short story (I think it was not a standalone novel) about a man who was abducted by aliens, dismantled and remodelled so that his body works better. He was in some sort of mental ...
9
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220 views

Short Story: Man has a Letter he can't read and nobody will translate it for him

I read a short story years ago in an anthology of mystery stories, including some stories with a supernatural element. It was about a man who received a letter written in a foreign language. The man ...
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58 views

Short Story Boy Looks Through Telescope, Sees Future Self

A boy was in his bedroom and looked out through his telescope. He sees some kind of weird cloaked figure in the bell tower of a church and it freaks him out. The story goes on to follow the boy's life ...
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734 views

Looking for a short science fiction story about a computer defeated by a paradox?

This is a short science fiction story about a computer that is put out of action by being presented with a paradox. The computer runs a space station on a distant planet and is supposedly failsafe. ...
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61 views

Short Story Girl Has Out-Of-Body Experience, Flies Around, Gets Stuck in Body of Doll

The story starts with a little girl in bed at night being told a story by her mother. The mother tells her it is possible to leave your body and fly. Somehow the girl pops out of her body and flies ...
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114 views

Story about man crashed on planet with primitive aliens

I read this short story in the 70s or early 80s, probably in a magazine or in an anthology, and I believe I read it in Dutch, but I have no idea if it was a translation or not. It involves a man ...
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54 views

Short story from the 80s - Character has to read instead of having brain programed [duplicate]

I had a collection of Science-Fiction short stories back in the 80s. There was one story set in the future where everyone went through a programming process that would "teach" them how to perform the ...
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133 views

Short story about a future utopian society where a man builds a train set

This story appeared in an anthology published no later than the mid 90's. It is about a future society without currency, where everything is provided through requisition kiosks (although the kiosks ...
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127 views

Short story - glass man assassinated?

Does anyone know the title or author of a short story that was published in Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction magazine, 1981 (not sure of month), where a man is turned into glass/mirror and is ...
4
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109 views

Short story about man taking an exam so he and his wife can have children

Can't recall the author or date, but I do recall a short story about a man going through an exam -- essay questions, recalling theorems -- and we know it's important and that his wife passed, and that ...
4
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1answer
249 views

Short story: earth-like planet; moon-computer answers profound questions

I'm looking for a short story that was published before the 70s. It described two visits to an earth-like planet. The first found a polluted, divided, combative culture. The second found a peaceful ...
6
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1answer
247 views

Natural-born woman gets revenge on gene-enhanced people

I lost track of this short story, probably from the mid-to-late 1980's or early 1990's. The main character is an old "normal" woman, a scientist, who's always had to compete with genetically-enhanced ...
4
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1answer
163 views

A Story About Bad Galactic Bureaucracy

This story was written in or before the 1960s when read in an anthology. It may have been written by famed science fiction writer Murray Leinster, or not. In this story Earth Humans have colonized ...
4
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1answer
228 views

Story about a woman who is surgically altered to a chimera

I am looking for the title of a short story where the protagonist meets a woman who has been surgically altered to manifest a figure in a painting - a sphinx. The painting might have been 'The ...
4
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0answers
70 views

Seeking title of short story that ran in Playboy (or Maxim?) about New York City's future rise and fall over the next century

Need the title of a short story that ran in Playboy (or Maxim) about four years ago (late 2010-early 2011). The subject of the story concerned a single brownstone building that lays witness to the ...
5
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0answers
128 views

Short story with a village of immortals

I'm trying to find a short story whose name I've forgotten. I'll tell you everything I know about it below: I once read a short story about a village of people who were all immortal. Instead of ...
10
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1answer
186 views

Short story: force field inventor commits suicide

I'm looking for the title of a short story, and hopefully the book which contained it, that I read in the mid- to late-nineties (unfortunately, I don't know how old the book and story themselves ...
6
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1answer
323 views

Really short story from main writer that needed to be read twice

I don't remember much of the plot but I do remember it was only 2 or 3 pages long and there's absolutely no way of understanding much of anything until you read the story again. Then everything was ...
2
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1answer
47 views

Carnival short story/novella?

Was there a short story titled "Carnival" about alien beings who use humans as surrogate mothers. This is about an alien who treats a human as a pet, but still has him (?) carry the embryo. Is this ...
5
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85 views

Short story about a government super agent investigating an alien phenomenon

I'm trying to identify a short story I read as a teenager about a kind of alien tunnel or cave that the government is investigating. They keep sending volunteers in and each one gets killed unless ...