All In a Name: Best Short Story Titles

When I was teaching 6th grade, we used to have a weekly Top 10 List. The list could be anything: Top 10 Movies, Top 10 Hairdos From the 60’s, Top 10 Tricks to Play on Your Sister.

One week I put together a list of the Top 10 Titles From Ray Bradbury Short Stories. We’d read a few of Bradbury’s stories (The Emissary is always a hit with the 11 year old crowd), but the titles alone were enough to stir the kids’ imaginations.

For my money, Bradbury is the king of short story titles (sort of the way Elmore Leonard is the king of opening lines), but the following list is a mix of some of his best and the best of other writers.

Hope you enjoy.

While you’re here, feel free to leave a comment and tell me a few of your own.

  1. Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed (Ray Bradbury)
  2. My Last Attempt to Explain to You What Happened to the Lion Tamer (Brendan Matthews)
  3. The Strange Ride of Morrowbie Jukes (Rudyard Kipling)
  4. Umney’s Last Case (Stephen King)
  5. Mimsy Were the Borogroves (Henry Kuttner)
  6. The Trail of Your Blood in the Snow (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
  7. The Town Where No One Got Off (Ray Bradbury)
  8. Smoke Ghost (Fritz Leiber)
  9. The God of Dark Laughter (Michael Chabon)
  10. Night! Youth! Paris! And the Moon! (John Collier)
  11. The Lone Ranger and Tonto Fistfight in Heaven (Sherman Alexie)
  12. Lest Levitation Come Upon Us (Suzette Haden Elgin)
  13. The King of Nodland and His Dwarf (Fitz-James O’Brien)
  14. Z.Z.’s Sleep-Away Camp for Disordered Dreamers (Karen Russell)
  15. The Tears of Squonk and What Happened Thereafter (Glen David Gold)

dark they were and golden eyed

Artwork by Rachel Idzerda (inspired by the story “Dark They Were, and Golden-Eyed)

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