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This month I am participating in the A to Z blog challenge. http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

The challenge involves 26 posts in April, all somehow connected to the alphabet. My theme for the month is short stories. The Story Factory needs market research, of course, so I will be reading a short story for each letter of the alphabet and trying to learn some new techniques for my story writing. My lacks seem to be characterization and emotional experience, so I am mainly looking for stories to teach me those things. Feel free to make suggestions in the comments if you know of an amazing story. Another component of the challenge is the blog road trip, where we visit each other’s blogs, leave comments, etc. While I would like to visit a couple of blogs every day, it is more realistic to do Road Trips on Sundays. (Of course, my ongoing, 52 bad story challenge is still on, as well as the 2021 creative hours in 2021.

Heavy-set ~ Ray Bradbury

I have to say, stories that begin with H are hard to find. This is the second H story I read today, The first one was called Happy Endings, about a widow at massage parlors, and I wasn’t feeling it today. So I turned to Papa Ray. And this story is pretty creepy too. Heavy-set is the nickname of a thirty-year-old man that lives with his mother. He spends his time lifting weights, hitting a punching bag, and playing basketball alone. His so-called friends are 18-year-olds, and after they get older, they move on, and Heavy-set finds new 18-year-old friends. We get the story from the mother’s point of view, and I am not sure what she wants for her son. She seems to want him to go and have a life and encourages him to go out, but she also misses him when he does leave the house. And then at the end, when he ends up in her bed, she pretends to sleep. So the cringe factor is off the charts. I feel like I may be missing something here. Maybe he has some mental challenge that I missed. I will most likely reread it. Surely this isn’t all.