Questions tagged [short-stories]

For about a fictional work too small to be called a novel - usually less than 10-20 thousand words and no chapters. Only use when identifying a work (use in conjunction with [story-identification] here) or when there is a tag ambiguity. If you are looking for a particular anthology of short stories, use the [anthology-book] tag.

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Looking for YA Horror Anthology Title(s) with one story where a mosquito infestation turns fatal and another where water attacks people

I'm looking for a horror anthology book that is aimed at young adults or older. Not really sure when it was published but I would say before or around the early 2010s. Among the stories was one with ...
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Slaves working in mines one able make a politician/ruler see condidtions through his eyes

I read a story about a slave working in a mine that was somehow able to either with help/technology or esp to get a ruling member/politician to see and experience his life as a slave/miner. I can't ...
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Short story where a man wakes up in mist and is attacked by a “cyborg”

Read a short story in Warren's Creepy or Eerie in the mid 1970's. Can't remember name, artist, writer or issue. Synopsis: A ragged man wakes up in mist, not knowing where he is or how he got there. ...
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Short Story like “Resurrection Days”

Looking for a pulp short-story with the following plot elements: man dies; wakes in dystopia governed by women; makes bacon using a mental-machine. The theme is similar to Wilson Tucker's '80's novel,...
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Short story about a survivor in a very hot climate future NY

Interview magazine ran a short story about a person who went searching for cans of food on a ship mired in dried up New York's harbor, walking in the hot sun to the ship looking for a container of ...
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1970s short story (fiction) about an uncontrollable box with a button. From a fiction Anthology I read in elementary school

Another sketchy recollection I'd like help with. The short story in question, which I read in the 1970s, concerned a box that was somehow getting out of control and could only be managed if someone ...
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Writer's fingers begin to meld with a typewriter/computer

I think it's a golden age story or short novel, but a man is using a typewriter or computer, some sort of writing machine, and his fingers begin to fuse to the machine. He can pull his fingers away, ...
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Looking for a short story, aliens (or demons) are effectively dumb animals that reproduce by implanting eggs in human mouths

It's part of a collection of stories, I think. A woman answers her door and sticks her tongue out at the alien, which causes it to smile. For some reason, the aliens aren't deadly unless a victim's ...
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111 views

Short story about a man and a boy waking up and being the only people in the world

Read this s years ago in a sci-fi anthology. A man and boy are the only people left in the world. I think they travel around on a train. And it may be by Ray Bradbury but I’ve never been able to ...
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98 views

Short story with male & female main characters. They leave separately and he prepares the colony for her arrival with a colony ship

There are two total characters. A man and a woman. The man is on a separate ship, and had left 500-1,000 years before to head to a certain planet. He arrives in orbit and sends a myriad of seeds to ...
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264 views

Short story where time travelers are surprised to see black people

In one of Gardner Dozois anthologies in the last few years had a short story about an alternate time line where the travelers were surprised to see black people as their reality had none. Can anyone ...
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190 views

Looking for a horror short story book with a story about a girls' sleepover

The sleepover happens in a basement. It's pitch black throughout the night and one girl transforms into a monster. The other girls know this because they hear everything and hide. The monster girl ...
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162 views

Looking for Book or Short Story: A girl tries to contact aliens in a bathroom

It's been years since I read this story, I don't remember where I read it but it was about a girl who was trying to contact aliens. I remember she dyed her hair blonde because she thought it would ...
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446 views

Book With “Strangest Jigsaw Puzzle Ever” Cover

I'm looking for a book of short horror stories. It would have been a young adult book from the 80s (it was in my hands around '85). The cover was a rendition of the "Strangest Jigsaw Puzzle Ever" ...
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225 views

Short story about Ghouls

I would like to find this short story again. It originally printed in an anthology about ghouls. The title was something like, "Softly softly they might hear"? The story was about a man who ...
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77 views

Green monster or something with gum or glue in the name

I remember getting told a story as a kid about a green monster that jumps from house to house and kills people. I can't remember his name and I think it had glue or gum in the name.
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Science Fiction short story about cybernetic humans and their cybernetic dogs

Trying to find a science fiction short story about a cybernetic human and his cybernetic dog. They were immortal and could speak to each other. It was in an anthology, so I can't remember the author ...
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343 views

Sci-fi short story: Humans have achieved immortality through regeneration, looking for suicide pills

Looking for a Sci-Fi short story that could be part of a collection. The plot is about how humans achieve a sort of immortality through regeneration, but the bad side effect is overpopulation. Humans ...
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77 views

Musician (Guitarist?) finds “muse” at party, but muse is “drained” of energy by musician

... Spoiler alert ... A male musician, possibly a guitarist, in his 20's meets a girl at a party and she is his "muse". However, in this world muses are "drained" of energy by the musician. His ...
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Short story first contact - Earth can ask anyone a question and nobody can answer

It's a short story about making first contact. I can remember than the Earth is able to ask a question, but nobody can answer it. In the end some army attacks the place they are going to send the ...
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224 views

Short fiction where America is a third world country at war with Canada

Isaac Asimov's Mother's Day, Isaac Asimov's Moons, Isaac Asimov's Fathers Day, Isaac Asimov's Christmas, Isaac Asimov's Utopias, Isaac Asimov's Earth, Isaac Asimov's War and so forth are all short ...
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Story from 9th grade literature class about mission to planet where explorers are killed by poisonous spiders

The story is narrated by a girl who is the lone survivor and can telepathically hear the thoughts of the spiders.
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Teleporation and shrinkage

In what short story did teleportation have the side effect of making you smaller each time? I am interested in the potential side effects of this mode of travel.
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Short story about a human scientist that gets caught up in the ebb and flow of an alien environment

This was part of a collection of shorts stories from the late 70s early 80s. The aliens were jelly-like creatures filled with gasses. The human scientist tries to save a certain group of aliens but ...
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231 views

Horror short story anthology from either late 70s-80s with a ghoul/changeling

There was a horror short story collection I read as a child in the mid 80s. The story I remember was about a ghoul. This was a love story of sorts between a human girl and a changeling/ghoul boy. They ...
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142 views

story identification: the Anarchist Party won the elections

I've read this story a long time ago; this is what I remember: The Anarchist Party won the elections, and we listen to its announces as it is now dismantling the State. 43 (or was it 41?)-tones Jazz ...
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125 views

Woman leaves virtual reality society and is hunted

Sorry for the lack of details of this post, but I read a short science fiction story about 1-2 months ago and can't for the life of me remember what it is and really want to revisit it. The plot as I ...
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Collection of scary children 's stories- Ember escapes a fire

I remember a hardback collection of children 's scary stories that I had in the 1980's. The stories may have had European roots. One story I remember in particular was about an ember that escaped a ...
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170 views

Printed or digital story featuring nuke alien trapped in crashing ISS

I remember participating in a newsgroup thread in late 90s. The thread was created by a sci-fi writer (or, a lunatic who claimed he was a writer). In the end, he said he was going to publish these ...
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147 views

aliens teach humans a board game, report of title match

The short-story is an account of a title-match between two humans at a board-game that aliens taught humans. The account is by a child. Captain someone went space-exploring and encountered aliens. ...
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177 views

Help me track down a short story about a pursuit across time-rates?

This was in an anthology from way back in the 60s or 70s when I was just getting into SF - I've no idea who the author was. One man pursues another as he slips across different time rates - the only ...
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554 views

Horror short story with an upbeat ending

This short story might have been about teenagers or adults, and was written in the 1980's or 1990's. It could have been in a Charles de Lint anthology, as the genre was fantasy horror. I don't think ...
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159 views

Name of alternate timeline short story

In the story the man helps with someone's estate and receives a custom clock. He discovers the clock maker lives in the woods outside town and visits him. After leaving the place at night he gets lost ...
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413 views

Science fiction short story, where spectators in an arena are called down to the field and killed

I am looking for a short story that takes place in some form of arena, what happens is that there are players on the field of the arena who call down audience members and then kill them on the field ...
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389 views

Story about prisoners on a spaceship forced to perform repetitive tasks

In this short story, the main character is locked in a small plain room. Creatures of different "shapes" enter the room each "day" and monitor him as he is forced to watch a bubble in a tube and ...
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183 views

A couple on a yacht needs medical help but can only get it via radio from an astronaut

This is a story I've heard about but never been able to find. I've been looking for it for a long time, but the search terms I put in (astronaut, yacht, couple, medical help etc) tend to bring me ...
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509 views

Anthology of short stories; one about killer whales in space, another about a bodyguard on a desolate colony

I am looking for a book that I borrowed from the library from the mid to late 90s. It featured a number of science fiction short stories from different authors. The only story I am able to remember ...
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129 views

Short story where the rich live in towers and the poor live on the ground in the gloom

The plot: Cities have grown very tall and the rich live in the sky in the towers and the poor live on the ground where there is no sun. The families that have the skill and nerve to walk outside at ...
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54 views

Aliens helping contact spirits of the dead?

I am looking for a short story that involves a plane crash. However, aliens intervene; while they can’t save the crash victims, they have technology that lets them say goodbye to their loved ones.
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125 views

Story of a warring planet that sends out a colony ship

About 20 years ago, I had a dream which I thought would make a good short story. I really like it, but I am only a very casual sci-fi fan, so I assume somebody has used this plot device before. I told ...
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Are there hints to the identity of Ivovandas locus?

In the Scott Lynch story "A year and a day in Old Theradane" (link) , wizard Ivovandas asks a thief Amarelle Parathis to help her destroy locus of power of her rival Jarrow. Once that is destroyed, ...
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Where does this rhyme about Quatermass come from?

I found this rhyme about Quatermass II. I'm trying to find out who wrote it and whether there's an expanded version somewhere. Does the rhyme have a real-world origin? There was a man from outer ...
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“monster” turns out to be boys mutated family dog

Read in 1977 in an elementary school library, a book of maybe 3 short stories. One with the mutated family dog and one with spider-like creatures destroyed by a crystal. Story had "Boys Life" like ...
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161 views

Seeking SF short story with “slow” in title

I'm looking for a SF short story with the word slow in the title. It might have been in one of Gardner Dozois's anthologies ages ago. I believe it was about someone being chased on a spaceship and ...
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371 views

Short story where an immortal woman is going to get euthanized

All I remember is the following details from a magazine I read in high school: Most likely a short story. Mother and son are nigh immortals through life extensions technology. They are talking ...
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113 views

Sci-Fi Short Story Identifcation. Time Travel, Takes Place on Titan?

I am looking to find a short story wherein a group of people leave their ship to respond to a distress signal on Titan (maybe?) They head into some kind of ice caverns on a mountain. The crew come to ...
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266 views

Scary book series from the 1990's, short stories and came in hardcover?

I'm looking for a book series I owned a few books of in my childhood, they were compilation novels and I recall they had about three stories or so in each one. One of the stories I remember vividly ...
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151 views

Looking for vampire-themed short story in 1960's sci-fi anthology

Library book, remembered as Orbit series, but it could have been Dangerous Visions or New Dimensions or even Year's Best SF. This was mid-60's, 1965-69, and the book was fairly new, possibly ...
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207 views

Short story about the crew of a spaceship keeping prisoners as breeders

Not sure when it was published or the author's name. The only parts I remember are two prisoners trying to escape because they don't want to be breeders/sex slaves and that there are no names, just ...
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148 views

Looking for a short story about a ring and a giant

I have been trying to find this short story for ages. I forget most of the detail but it is set in space and in the end the protagonist has the realisation that the star he sees (or the planet he is ...