“The Hobby” and “Fairy Tale” Essay

Write a concise essay agreeing or disagreeing with one or both of the statements below. Be sure to present a balanced account, using quotations from the text to support your ideas.

  • Like The Hobby, Fairy Tale is structured as a story within a story. But whereas in The Hobby it is the fiction’s fiction–that is, the train–that winds up containing all else, including its maker (the author), in Fairy Tale it is the author who, in the last analysis, still contains all her stories. It could be said that the fundamental difference between the two stories is one of perspective.
  • McCormack’s old man is wholly immersed in the completion of his railway plans, whereas Caresse can never finish any of the competing versions of her fairy tale because she is always too aware of herself at the typewriter.

“The Hobby” and “The Sea Devil” Essay

The Hobby and The Sea Devil focuses on the relationship between a man and his hobby. Compare the two stories under the following headings: the nature of the two hobbies; their relative importance to each of the protagonists; the pleasure derived from each hobby; the danger associated with each hobby; and the conclusions of the two stories—what, if anything, has each protagonist learned?