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The thesis contains four pieces of original fiction, each different in style and tone hut linked by thematic concerns of the author. "Keepers" is the story of a man who journeys to the north woods of Wisconsin to reacquaint himself with his estranged father and divulge to him some devastating news. Over the course of a long evening, deep-seated resentments are bared that the father and son can no longer avoid dealing with. "Other Women" is a chapter from a novel in progress. Its main character is Harry Macaboy, an unhappy man struggling with his own transvestism. In the excerpt herein, Harry begins a disturbing relationship with a young woman who not only tolerates his cross-dressing, but encourages it. "Tough Talk" is the story of Samantha Lockhart, a plucky woman whose marriage is falling apart around her. Set against a background of international politics, Samantha must meet with her estranged husband in the hopes of reconciling apparently irreconcilable differences. The final entry, "The Sweetheart Deal," is an ironic, serio-comical play on the genre of hard-boiled fiction. Its anti-hero, Allie Catalano, becomes involved in drug smuggling as a way to escape his vindictive ex-wife. It's also a love story between Allie and his car.