R.I.P. – Peril of the Short Story


This year is the eleventh “R.I.P. Challenge” (Readers Imbibing Peril) at Stainless Steel Droppings. So… time to create another short story reading list for myself! I’m a little late getting started, but this will be my fourth year participating. Last year for the annual R.I.P. challenge I read 13 short stories, employing the “Deal Me In” approaching of assigning them to playing cards and determining the order I read them randomly via “the luck of the draw.”  This year, I’ll again be doing the “Peril of the Short Story” version of the challenge, and I’m feeling more ambitious so am reading 24 stories, assigning them to the cards in a euchre deck.  I have until 10/31 to complete the reading, so it’s very do-able.  The cards I’m using are from a new deck in my collection, the Bicycle “Celtic Myth” edition.  Pretty cool, huh? 🙂


♥9♥Ballroom Blitz” by Vernoica Schandes (from “Some of the Best From Tor.com” anthology) read 10/17

♥10♥Black Hole Sun” by Alethea Kontis & Kelli Owen (from “Dark Futures: Tales of Dystopian SF”) read 10/15

♥Q♥Blood and Fire” by Desmond Riddick (from “The End Was Not the End” anthology) read 10/8

♥K♥Blood of the Hunting Moon” by S.M. Harding (from the “Decades of Dirt” anthology) read 10/8

♥A♥How Nuth Would Have Practiced His Art Upon the Gonles” by Lond Dunstan (from “The Weird” anthology) read 10/15

♥J♥Blood Allies” by Josh Green (from “Dirtyville Rhapsodies”) read 10/15


♦9♦I Am Become Death” by Franklin Thatcher (from “Strange New Worlds II”) read 10/8

♦10♦In the Greenwood” by Mari Ness (from “Some of the Best of Tor.com”) read 10/28

♦Q♦Mastodon” by Erin Fortinberry (from “Midwestern Gothic” magazine) read 10/29

♦K♦Nightmare” by Shirley Jackson (from the “Just An Ordinary Day” collection) read 9/20

♦A♦One Eye, Two Eyes and Three Eyes” by Unknown (from “Grimm’s Fairy Tales) read 10/17

♦J♦Schroedinger’s Gun” by Ray Wood (from “Some of the Best of Tor.com”) read 9/16


♣9♣ “Scradni Vashka” by Saki (from “The Weird” anthology) read 10/15

♣10♣ “Stewwelpeter” by Glenn Hirshberg (from the collection “The Two Sams”)mread 10/16

♣Q♣ “The Boy Who Left Home to Find Out About the Shivers” by Unknown (from “Grimm’s Fairy Tales) – read 9/23

♣K♣ “The Halls of War” by DeeDee Davies (from “The End was Not the End” anthology) read 10/15

♣A♣ “The Jellyfish” by Clint Smith (from the “Indiana Science Fiction 2012” anthology) read 9/23

♣J♣ “The Spider” by Hans Heinz Ewers (from “The Weird” anthology) read 10/28


♠9♠ “The Too Clever Fox” by Leigh Bardugo (from “Some of the Best of Tor.com”) read 10/29

♠10♠ “The Very Hot Sun in Bermuda” by Shirley Jackson (from “Just An Ordinary Day”) read 10/17

♠Q♠ “Tin Cans” by Ekaterina Sedia (from the “Haunted Legends” anthology) read 10/8

♠K♠ “Torching the Dusties” by Margaret Atwood (from the collection,”Stone Mattress”) read 10/14

♠A♠ “What We Kept of Charlie” by R.M. Cooper (from “Midwestern Gothic” magazine) read 9/19

♠J♠ “Wicked Witch for Hire” by Katherine Nabity (from “Bounded in a Nutshell”) read 10/15

I admittedly didn’t put a lot of thought into picking these, simply going through my kindle & nook apps and picking some from every applicable anthology I could find.  I did pick a few because I was familiar with the authors from prior short story challenges, but the rest I picked because the title sounded intriguing.  I also included a couple of Grimm’s Fairy Tales, of which I have a recent edition.  Of course, my old standby anthology, “The Weird,” makes a few appearances as well.  The suit assignments are random. What do you think of my selections?

Related blog posts by all the R.I.P. participants are available at the review site.  As of this posting there are already 43 for this popular challenge. So, what about you? Are YOU participating in the R.I.P. challenge this year?  Is this your first time, or, if not, how many times have you participated?


  1. September 15, 2016 at 10:56 am

    What the heck? *I’m* not supposed to be on such a list! Surely, you haven’t run out of other reading material yet?!

    Otherwise, good list. 🙂 Lots of authors I haven’t heard of, but also one of my favorites, Glen Hirshberg’s “Stewwelpeter.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Jay said,

      September 15, 2016 at 1:06 pm

      🙂 I made a note of it when you mentioned it on your blog.

      I’ve read a couple stories from Hirshberg’s book already so am looking forward to this one as well.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. @lynnsbooks said,

    September 15, 2016 at 5:15 pm

    Lovely cards and great idea.
    Lynn 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Paula Cappa said,

    September 15, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Hey, Jay, this is a great list. Some new authors here I’ don’t know. You’ve motivated me!


    • Jay said,

      September 16, 2016 at 1:40 pm

      I’m looking forward with more anticipation to some (e.g. Saki, Shirley Jackson) than others, but it should still be a fun mini-project. 🙂


  4. JaneGS said,

    September 21, 2016 at 11:46 am

    Short stories are an excellent way to do R.I.P.–there are so many good spooky ones out there. I think the genre really lends itself to the horror/spooky theme. I am participating, with 4 novels lined up, and one already finished! Happy reading.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. October 2, 2016 at 10:48 pm

    I don’t know these stories, but I love those cards. What a fun thing to collect, too.


    • Jay said,

      October 3, 2016 at 9:29 am

      I’ve collected almost a shoebox full of ‘specialty’ decks of cards in the past couple years. It’s amazing how many of them are out there and whenever I’m on amazon.com I can’t help but order a few decks (and they’re relatively inexpensive compared to other things one might collect). Usually, I’ll order two decks, in case I ever want to play with one, I can retain one in its ‘mint’ condition, so to speak. 🙂


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