There’s no feeling quite like the feeling you get when your teacher slaps a short story down in front of you in the middle of October. It’s an ominous feeling. A feeling of dread. I don’t know what it is about teachers, but they love short stories that are equal parts weird and haunting, and they love to make you read them in October.
However, short stories can, of course, be read year-round. So whether you were forced to read the following in October or January or April, there’s no doubt that they clawed their way into your subconscious and shaped the person you are today, and that you still sometimes think about them when you’re driving on an empty highway or taking a shower or trying to fall asleep.