Ray Bradbury. Everyone knows his name, whether you know his work or not. He’s written short stories, books, plays, operas, essays, poems, teleplays, and even screenplays. Unfortunately, Bradbury passed away in June of 2012. However, his genius is far from lost because along with his written words, his work has also influenced countless authors and his belief in creativity and out-of-the-box thinking will live on through them. William Morrow published an anthology of short stories written by some of these inspired authors titled, Shadow Show.
“Headlife” is the first story, which was written by Margaret Atwood. It’s a tale that proves that karma never dies. A wealthy in the future has taken his own scientific work and decided to make himself immortal by transferring his head, and mind, to a younger body. However, when he wakes up, he realizes that it may not have been the best idea to treat the people around him so badly.
In the second story, “Heavy” by Jay Bonansinga, a man is set up by his colleagues for a cruel prank, sending an old actor down on his luck to “wack him”. However, after the prank is over, the man recognizes the actor and decides to help him with his problems. The man is not known for his charity, but for some reason he’s drawn to his pretend killer, and this connection changes both of their lives.
“The Girl in the Funeral Parlor” by Sam Weller takes on a heartbreaking and haunting tone. A boy delivers flowers and is forced to regularly deliver to the local funeral parlor. While there, he sees the open wake of a beautiful girl around his age. He knows nothing about her, but he’s drawn to her in a magnetic way. He can’t stop thinking about her. Eventually, his obsession forces him to learn about her life, wondering if people really only have one true love. If so, what happens when they don’t get the chance to meet?
A story that will resonate with many people is “Light” by Mort Castle. In his story, Castle chronicles the life of Marilyn Monroe in highlighted years. He tells her personal story and allows the reader to understand the Marilyn Monroe didn’t really exist. She was a character that Norma Jean played to make her dreams come true.
These stories, and more, are funny, thought provoking, sad, mysterious, supernatural, and most of all, psychological. These stories force you to see beyond the life you’ve built for yourself, which was the goal of Ray Bradbury all along. This tribute is worthy of the celebrated author, and he will be sorely missed.
You can find Shadow Show at any of Tulsa’s local book stores: Barnes & Noble and Gardners.
Follow: Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Tulsa Horror Movie Examiner ~ Tulsa Indie Film Examiner
Click the Subscribe button at the top of the page to have the articles from this column sent straight to your inbox!