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August 2002
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Now what was that story?

In the rec.arts.sf.written newsgroup people quite often ask for help in identifying stories. They don't remember the author or the title or even the plot, but they do remember some striking detail. Certain stories come up over and over in these requests, so much so that one can guess with fair certainty what the story was even before you hear the description. [3]

What was that short story? It might have been:

  • Isaac Asimov
    • The feeling of power
    • The Last Question
  • Jerome Bixby
    • It's a Good Life
  • Ray Bradbury
    • The Sound of Thunder
    • All Summer in a Day
    • There Will Come Soft Rains
  • Frederic Brown
    • Question
  • Algis Budrys
    • Be Merry
  • Sir Arthur C Clarke
    • The Nine Billion Names of God
  • Robert Heinlein
    • He Built A Crooked House
    • All You Zombies [1]
    • By His Bootstraps [1]
  • Damon Knight
    • To Serve Man
  • Cyril Kornbluth
    • The Marching Morons [2]
    • The Little Black Bag [2]
  • Bob Shaw
    • Light of Other Days
  • Clifford Simak
    • Desertion
  • Cordwainer Smith
    • Mother Hittun's Littul Kittons

[1] These two stories often get confused with each other.
[2] Hard as it is to believe, so do these two.
[3] The idea for this article and the list of stories are taken from a thread in rasfw.


This page was last updated August 1, 2002.

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August 2002
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