Writing large

If we do our job right, the stories in this paper will reflect what is occurring this month, this week, and even this day. Rarely do we have a chance to take the very long view and consider the important aspects of life that change very little over years.

Short stories can do that. They don’t necessarily reflect the here and now in this community. Their message can be set in a timeless present, somewhere else. The good short stories chart individual experiences and the changes that occur in people, and so can tell us a bundle about human nature.

If done right, the characters on the page come to life in ways that make you want to connect to them. You feel their experience is real. Identification occurs. And so it is with the two short stories printed in our paper.

Apparently, readers of this paper also connected to the challenge of short story writing. A surprising number of you, over 600, felt compelled to write. I also hope that a number of you will come out to a reading by the winning writers at the Borders on Fair Oaks Blvd. on September 6 at 7:30 p.m.

There is obviously a strong writing community in the Sacramento area and we hope this contest will help nurture it in a small way.