Issue #162: Another Nice Mess

I first read Stephen O’Connor in 2009, when The New Yorker published his mesmerizing short story, “Ziggurat,” (later read by Tim Curry on Selected Shorts). Stephen O’Connor is a master at skirting the line between dreams and reality. He establishes his narrative authority and then rides the strength of that language to the most strange and beautiful vistas. It’s a pleasure to welcome him into the pages of One Story with our new issue, “Another Nice Mess.” Set in an old manor house during the Great War, “Another Nice Mess” chronicles one man’s curious task of assigning soldiers their deaths, while next door, the actor Stan Laurel is filming a movie. Eventually, these two worlds collide, and the deaths the narrator has only seen on paper are played out before him, becoming all too real. Be sure to read Stephen O’Connor’s Q&A with us, to find out how the current U.S. conflicts influenced “Another Nice Mess” and how Stan Laurel made it into the story. I grew up watching Laurel & Hardy movies, and looking back, they still have some of the best physical comedy moments I’ve ever seen in film. If you’ve never seen Laurel & Hardy before, check out the clip below, and enjoy!


One thought on “Issue #162: Another Nice Mess

  1. What a strangely compelling story I didn’t expect to read—but once started, I read and was struck by it. A surprise attack! An ambush! Splendid.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *