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Hello, Sandy, Arlene, Bobbi, Tanya, Vicky, Marcia, Nick, Georgette, Joanna, and Robert!

This blog is yours. It is an open forum for you to voice your thoughts, ideas, questions, and anything else that may be kickin’ around in your respective noggins. You can even post your work. We can’t meet every day (a constant source of disappointment for David and I), so we figure keeping up a literary discourse via blog is the next best thing.

Since you’re all still logging in, we’ll get things started: anyone have any ideas on why Robert Stone chose to title his story “Helping”?

Ready, set, blog!

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9 Comments

  1. Our class is tomorrow. I just got into this blog. The question you asked jolted me to the fact that I hated this short story . I had read it the net day you gave it to us!I truly can not even remember anything about it! I guess I better re-read it?
    I find difficulty in reading things that, to me, are so far out I have to reach into my brain to understand it!

  2. Fair enough. Let’s have an impassioned conversation tomorrow about why you hated it!

  3. I will re-read it and tell you more tomorrow.
    I think, as we age, we just want to be real about feelings. At least, that’s my own opinion.

  4. Hi there…I read the story and did enjoy it. It was so sad though. Powerful writing that did ignite emotions. I have never read this author before, thanks. Now, as to the title, I am horrible with titles and not sure about why the author picked “Helping”. I suppose it could have been chosen because the series of events that took place helped Elliot come to realizations he needed in order to move on in his life. But it could have been meant for Grace. Having her go through events to help her finally move on, OR how the events helped both the characters move on. Although, it could also mean a “Helping” of alcohol, pain,regret, self loathing etc. I don’t know. 🙂

    • Hmm. I had never thought of the title in terms of claiming a portion, ie. a helping of alcohol, etc. I’ll have to think about that.

      Do you think the repetition of the word “undermining” throughout the story has something to do with the title? or with anything for that matter?

  5. I don’t know. I would have to re read it with that conscious thought about the undermining in mind. Except, sometimes in order for people to change they have to be undermined, get angry enough and the change is then forced. Especially, if the person is in denial. It is an interesting thought.

  6. It’s Marcia. I was so amazed that the topic of choosing to raise or not raise children still evokes so much lively conversation. That’s really, really good.
    (I have to laugh when I think I was told, back in 1976, that the topic was “old”!)
    All the suggestions were truly stimulating and very helpful. We are a microcosm of what’s out there. If we have strong suggestions, others would. That’s important to take in.
    Justine, is there a place to get a list of all the editing you and David took the time to give? Or, can you give us a handout?
    For those who have struggled with infertility, it is addressed in another chapter with heartfelt compassion and , what I hope, can be eye-opening new possibilities.

    • I’m glad you found the workshop helpful, Marcia. That’s great to hear.

      What kind of list are you looking for?

  7. I have re-read the piece that Eric gave us. At first, I felt “stupid” because I could not read it and understand it. However, I just re-read it and can not wait to share my feelings.
    In my opinion…this young man, is a gift to our class on many levels.
    I hope that he will feel the same about us.


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