Similarities Between The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty And The Interlopers

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“Short fiction seems more targeted - hand grenades of ideas, if you will. When they work, they hit, they explode, and you never forget them,” (Bacigalupi). Two stories, “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” by James Thurber and “The Interlopers” by Saki, provide compelling information on the ways that authors use style. While theme is not necessarily a concrete concept, it can be argued that these two stories share a similar theme: “things are not always as they seem.” This theme is important because it appears readily in reality, not only in fiction stories. Though their stories have the same theme, Thurber and Saki communicated it completely differently with style and plot. It’s fascinating that multiple stories with different authors, plots, …show more content…
The differences between what is true versus what we believe to be true, or perceive, are important to both stories. In “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” the reader will most likely believe that they are reading a short story about war. However, after the first paragraph, it becomes evident that the first scene was a product of the main character’s imagination. In Saki’s “The Interlopers”, the difference in what the reader believes to be true and reality isn’t apparent until the last sentences. Both James Thurber and Saki write realistically, making the shifts in perspective more dramatic. Because of this, the reader may not realize that what they’re reading isn’t the …show more content…
While both stories are about perspective, “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty” is about what the main character imagines versus what is true, and “The Interlopers” is about the expectations and perception, both of the characters and the reader, versus what is true. James Thurber and Saki also have different writing styles. Thurber uses many illustrative words to describe settings and character. Even reading one sentence gives the reader a strong sense of imagery. “He wore his full-dress uniform, with the heavily braided white cap pulled down rakishly over one cold gray eye,” (Thurber 1). Saki uses more descriptive actions. He also describes the feud between the two characters in depth, creating a strong backstory that explains the situation that the short story begins with. Because of this, both authors make you feel like you are really there, but in different ways. Thurber’s focus on imagery builds the story, as well as making the imagined scenes seem more realistic. Saki’s story creates an atmosphere by describing the feelings of the main character. This makes the characters more human, creating more realism. Both stories, especially “The Interlopers”, are near perfect examples of the way that short stories wonderfully and realistically portray emotion and human

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