Publication Date

Spring 2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts (MFA)


English and Comparative Literature


Nicholas Taylor


Ego, Isolation, Satire, Technology

Subject Areas

Creative writing


In my collection titled Isolated Incidents: A Short Story Collection, I explore the themes of isolation and loneliness while using dark humor and a satirical voice as an undercurrent to move the narratives. Isolation and loneliness intrigue me, because they are triggered and motivated by contradictory emotions inside of us. Fear, love, hate, and even nonchalant attitude and happiness can all mix to make us feel isolated even when we are not alone. People can be isolated when surrounded by others at a dinner table, or in a crowed bar, or even a small office filled with co-workers. Loneliness is universally experienced by humans, but we all have different reactions when the isolation becomes too much of a burden. My collection explores the different extremes people take to avoid the pain of loneliness through a dark humored, satirical voice. I believe that comedy, especially satire, combats and reflects the beautifully chaotic world we live in, particularly in this digital age where we seem to be more connected than ever; yet, we isolate ourselves further by eliminating face-to-face connections. This collection reflects how we lash out at one another to stop the pain and anger when we feel alone, and the ways in which the internet has exacerbated these feelings and actions.