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In Night at the Fiestas, main protagonist Frances struggles with who she is and what she wishes to become.  As the story begins, she is a sixteen year old overprotected and modest young women who yearns for more. She is not satisfied by her surroundings, herself, or her family. One could say she is a […]

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“Opportunity” by Belle Boggs

No, Lila remembered. He had not. Instead he gathered their things awkwardly in his arms, as if he were going to run off with them, leaving her standing alone and embarrassed. She had grown panicked then, standing in the checkout line. She had been afraid of being deserted. That part she did not share with […]

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Belle Boggs’ “Jonas”

As someone who is not extremely familiar with the transition process, much less how they affect a family, I found this short story very intriguing and insightful, despite it being fiction. The confusion our main character, Melinda, goes through only adds to this experience. Melinda wondered if Jonas would have ever made this decision without […]

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Belle Boggs’ “Homecoming”

Belle Boggs writes about how one’s unfortunate family history can influence the decisions one makes in life. In Boggs’ story “Homecoming,” Marcus, the main character, comes from a family where both of his parents are in jail. Tiff, Marcus’s aunt whom he lives with when both of his parents are sent to jail, ends up […]

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Belle Boggs “Jonas”

This short story was very interesting to me because I haven’t come upon many short stories about the transgender transition process and how it affects a family. It is not something that is relatable to most people. Boggs does a great job of keeping the reader engaged and interested in a story that most people can’t […]

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“Election Day” Belle Boggs

Belle Boggs story “Election Day” is a short story that continues the story “Imperial Chrysanthemum”. It is about a woman named Cutie and her caretaker Lauretta. Cutie is going to vote in the election. There is a depressing theme to the story. Cutie is thinking about her old age and how repetitive the years of […]

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Cora Tyler Young, better known as “Cutie”, is struggling. She has been struggling and stubborn for a long time. At eighty four,  simple tasks take immense amounts of effort and she needs help. As stubborn as she is, help doesn’t come easy. Especially not from her closest relatives– her son and his wife– who seem […]

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“Opportunity” Belle Boggs

I enjoyed reading Belle Boggs short story, “Opportunity”. The story of a young school principle is very relatable. Many of the settings mentioned in the story, places like Richmond, Kings Dominion, and the Hampton Roads Tunnel are recognizable even though I have only lived in Virginia for a short period of time. The story pays […]

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Fiction Exercise 3

Write a story in which the first sentence of the story begins with one of the phrases below and the last sentence begins with another of the phrases: In the middle school library, … In the dim light of the garage,… Inside the bakery,… In the hospital waiting room,… In the distance along the river […]

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Belle Boggs “Opportunity”

Belle Boggs short story “Opportunity,” is about a woman who lives in Virginia and is figuring her way out in life. like the title suggest it shows how there are many opportunities that are available to the main character and she has to pick which opportunities are best for her. At the beginning of the […]

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When I am feeling nice I think about me and Cutie doing something with the money, going to South Carolina to the beach for the winter maybe, or taking a trip to Italy, away from all these fools. On my meaner days I go to the drawer at Tamara’s. I like the cold, briny taste […]

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Belle Boggs’ “Imperial Chrysanthemum” is a wonderful and thought provoking short story, all of its characters unique and their own. Boggs’ use of dialogue and internal thought give our narrarator, Loretta, a distinct voice and personality. This includes her conflict with Cutie, who always seem to be looking down on her caretaker. Loretta, Cutie said, […]

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Once again, Belle Boggs gives us a great example of what a solid short story looks like. What I loved most about this was the ending. Or, really, how she didn’t end it. We’ve discussed, in class, how we need to not give the reader exactly what they’re reading. Don’t tell them exactly what’s going […]

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This story has a clear voice from the beginning. Not only that, but each character that you come into contact with has their own specific voice. Boggs does such a great job at giving very direct details, such as Cutie’s two rooms are the kitchen and the sunroom, where she has her daybed and her […]

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In Imperial Chrysanthemum, the main protagonist, Loretta, struggles with ideas of self and justice. Throughout the story, Lorreta works for Cutie Young– running errands, checking vitals, keeping her company– as a mean to an end. The end being a boat called the Mattaponi Queen. While working for Cutie, Loretta struggles with ideas of justice and how […]

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Good News At A Bad Time Response

It always shocks me how dynamic the characters Boggs creates are, specially for such short stories. To create such a strong image of who a character is and their importance to the role of the story in such a limited number of pages is truly an art form that I aspire to obtain someday. You […]

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I enjoyed reading this story due to the way I could clearly visualize the characters and picture how they live their lives. Boggs does a wonderful job of making each character have a distinct personality, and gives each of them a clear voice. She also describes the actions of the characters in great detail; “She […]

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‘Good News for a Hard Time’

This short story is very relevant to what we talked about with our fiction stories that we wrote for class. The majority of us wrote the ending in a way that informed the reader of what they were supposed to learn from it. In this story by Belle Boggs, she shows us how to end […]

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I really liked this short story because of how it ended. As I began to read, I tried to put a picture in my head of how I believed this story would end, or how I thought it should end. The ending would be either nice and heartwarming with Ronnie telling Jeremey about the baby and them […]

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I think what I like best about this story is the lack of imagery as the story progresses. Yes, the first paragraph is mostly made up of description, but it becomes less and less until it’s nonexistent unless it’s being said in dialogue. So often, I know I find myself feeling like I have to […]

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