A few weeks ago we discussed a piece on short story craft from John Cheever ‘Why I Write Short Stories’ which alluded to short stories being a cultural affair with a place in society and a meaning for history and communication – while that meaning itself shifted and changed perhaps somewhat with the drafts left in along the lines of these side windows on the houses built as more complete systems, that is, novels.
Cheever writes of high culture scenes and mannerisms, which we agreed shows a vision of a scene – through a known vocabulary of rules and symbols. His piece written for newsweek after the acceptance of many of his stories in the new yorker shows the changing culture, [circa 1978]. And so naturally I took this view of much sophisticated writing being focused on sophisticated scenes – and suggested we read next a story I came across by H.H. Munro (aka SAKI), which uses politeness and sophistication, to be rude. Please enjoy with the Monarchs – ‘REGINALD ON HOUSE-PARTIES’