(Unofficially) Peter S. Beagle
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Short Stories

Peter Beagle's short stories are some of the most entertaining I have ever read. More fascinating yet is his ability to not only hit each story with new ideas, worlds, and textures, but to do so from a completely new style and point of view each and every time. It's a little disconcerting at first, especially to someone (like me) who gets used to an author's style and can recognize a pretty strong "voice" in their writing - in Beagle's works, you have to look for the touches of humor and wit, the stray splash of Yiddish to even make you think about the author and not get completely caught up in the story. I personally find it quite refreshing.

My heartiest thanks to loyal Beagle fan Roger Silverstein for sending along some copies of stories I was unable to find elsewhere.



FANTASY SHORT STORIES



Choushi-Wai's Story

Published:
Giant Bones



Come, Lady Death

Synopsis: Tired of seeing the same faces at the same parties, an aging widow decides to invite Death to what will be her grandest Masquerade Ball yet. But will Death leave quietly once the last dance is done?

Notes: Come, Lady Death was recreated as an opera - "Midnight Angel" - in the early 1990's. Beagle himself produced the libretto, and San Francisco composer David Carlson provided the music. The World Premiere was in 1993, co-commissioned and co-produced by the Glimmerglass Opera of Cooperstown, NY, with the Opera Theatre of St. Louis and the Sacramento Opera.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
• The Fantasy Hall of Fame, ed. Robert Silverberg, HarperPrism, 1998
• Phantasmagoria: Tales of Fantasy and the Supernatural, ed. Jane Mobley, 1977



Fable of the Moths

Synopsis: "A brief but witty fable with a touch of Beaglean whimsy in its concluding 'Moral.'" -Zahorski (I haven't been able to find this one yet.)

Published:
• Composition Skills 3: The English Book, 1980



Giant Bones

Published:
Giant Bones



Julie's Unicorn

Synopsis: Joe Farrell picks a relatively sane girlfriend this time. On-again, off-again lover Julie Tanikawa is followed around by a miniature unicorn that thinks it's one of her cats. Joe can handle this. Also co-stars Joe's VW van, Madame Schumann-Heink.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances



Lal and Soukyan

Synopsis: The only story in Giant Bones to feature characters from The Innkeeper's Song. Lal and Soukyan meet many years after their adventures together back at the Inn.

Published:
Giant Bones



The Last Song of Sirat Byar

Published:
Giant Bones
The Year's Best Fantasy and Horror: Eleventh Annual Collection, edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling
• Space Opera, edited by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Anne Scarborough, 1996



Lila the Werewolf (also "Farrell and Lila the Werewolf")

Synopsis: Joe Farrell finds out that there's a little more to his new live-in girlfriend than he was aware. However, he finds this out during the full moon in New York City.

Notes: Originally published as a stand-alone novella entitled "Lila the Werewolf"

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
• Masterpieces of Fantasy and Wonder, ed.
• Dark Imaginings: A Collection of Gothic Fantasy, ed. Robert H. Boyer and Kenneth J. Zahorski, 1978
• The Oxford Book of Fantasy Stories, ed. Tom Shippey, Oxford University Press, 1994 (Reprint)



The Magician of Karakosk

Synopsis: The greatest magician is forced to take on an apprentice, the evil queen of the realm. But what happens when the student tries to surpass the teacher?

Published:
Giant Bones
• David Copperfield's Beyond Imagination, ed. David Copperfield and Janet Berliner, HarperPrism 1996



The Naga

Synopsis: I read Pliny when I was in High School. I sure don't remember any love stories about mythical creatures in far-off kingdoms. I would have paid more attention...

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
• After the King, edited by Martin H. Greenberg, Tor, 1992



Professor Gottesman and the Indian Rhinoceros

Synopsis: If it looks like a rhinoceros, walks like a rhinoceros, and (heaven knows!) smells like a rhinoceros, but claims it's a unicorn, what's a logical professor of philosophy to do but debate with the creature its very existence?

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
Peter S. Beagle's Immortal Unicorn
• Modern Classics of Fantasy, edited by Gardener Dozois, St. Matin's Press, 1997



The Tragical Historie of the Jiril's Players

Published:
Giant Bones



NON-FANTASY SHORT STORIES, ARTICLES and ESSAYS



Cockfight

Synopsis: A close-up view of this barbaric "sport".

Published:
• Saturday Evening Post, August 24, 1968



D.H. Lawrence in Taos

Synopsis: The famed author spent some of his precious last months at his home in Taos. Peter Beagle investigates for one of his many articles, yet the real story is not Lawrence, but those who remember him and how Lawrence's memory has changed this northern New Mexico village forever.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
• Holiday Magazine, September 1967



Goodbye to the Bronx

Synopsis: A sweet and at times touching piece written as Beagle was about to leave the Bronx for California. Not the best worded or crafted article, but a good sentiment. Every time I tried to put it down, I found myself strangely compelled to start reading again...

Published:
• Holiday Magazine, December 1964



John Barth: Long Reach, Near Miss

Synopsis: According to one Beagle fan, "I have always found Barth rather dull, and so was this review."

Published:
• Holiday Magazine, September 1966



Learning a Trade

Synopsis: A brief introduction to the "Essays" section of Rhino, and Beagle's impressions of the stories contained therein.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances



My Daughter's Name Is Sarah

Synopsis: Possibly my favorite non-fantasy Peter Beagle short story. The title gives you some idea of the subject, but hardly a glimpse of the magic. One of the few short stories that's ever brought me to tears.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances



My Last Heroes

Synopsis: What a young boy learned from two public figures: Warren Spahn, a baseball pitcher, and Georges Brassens, the musician and inspiration for Beagle's musical career.

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances
• Holiday Magazine, August 1965



On Being the Man of the House

Synopsis: A sad article in retrospect, Man of the House reflects upon the awesome and frightening responsibilities of being, well, you guessed it. When Beagle married his first wife Enid, he also married her kids and pets. A nice follow-up article to I See By My Outfit.

Published:
• Saturday Evening Post, December 31, 1966



The Poor People's Campaign

Synopsis: A not-so-well-known rally in the late 1960's, which was supposed to bring the nation's brutal poverty to the attention of the unseeing masses. Instead, through several twists and turns, The Poor People's Campaign has been relegated to the dusty archives of latter-day history. One young reporter by the name of Peter Beagle was there.

Notes: Article about the Poor People's Campaign - http://www.daveyd.com/mlkdaypolitic.html

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances



Telephone Call

Synopsis: Another true life tale, which reminds us of the strange, stupid stuff that happened when we were in college...

Published:
The Rhinoceros Who Quoted Nietzsche...and other odd acquaintances



Thirty Day Stretch

Synopsis: "The inmates of a detention cell find temporary release from their boredom when a female paserby begins taking regular afternoon promenades outside their window." -Zahorski (I haven't been able to find this one yet.)

Published:
• Manuscripts: Writing at the University of Pittsburgh, May 1957



The Wayward Reader

Synopsis: Beagle thinks porn should be available, although it is not to his own taste.

Published:
• Holiday Magazine, June 1965




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