Monday, April 25, 2011

Fifty-Five Words comes to Healthcare

I wonder whether Steve Moss ever envisioned that his idea for the 55 word essay contest would ever take on such a life, or move into other venues of publication outside of his town of San Luis Obispo in California? In 1987, Steve invited people to submit 55 word essays to New Times, a local, independent weekly. The competition has turned into an annual event for the small paper.

Originally, the essays were collected and published by Steve, but since the onset of blogging, nanofiction has grown in popularity and abundance! Now Families, Systems, and Health has opened its doors to his new style of literature. Perhaps there might be a few submissions from our hospice and palliative medicine world?

Here is an example of one story:
Trouble on the Mountainside (from nanofiction - Andrew Looney) "Death!" Chris cried triumphantly. Flashlight beams danced together on the plastic floor as rain pattered lightly on the canvas above. "Death by Chocolate means I win!" Suddenly there were noises outside. Everyone froze. A face peers in through the flap. "Lights out was an hour ago," said the scoutmaster, "and... hey, Fluxx! Can I play?"

Families, Systems, and Health announces the continuation of its creative writing feature
to accompany the existing poetry column. Fifty-five word stories are brief pieces of
creative writing which use elements of poetry, prose, or both to encapsulate key experiences in health care. We are seeking submissions of 55-word stories to consider for
publication in the fall 2011 issue of Families, Systems, and Health. We will consider
pieces of exactly 55 words (excluding title) in poetry or prose style which give insight into
key moments of the healing arts.
Submissions for the column will be due by May 15, 2011. Please indicate “Fifty-five
word story” in the submission.
Colleen T. Fogarty, MD, MSc; FSH Fifty-Five Word Story Editor
Carol Edelstein, MSW; FSH Poetry Editor
Colleen T. Fogarty, MD, MSc; Assistant Professor, Department of Family Medicine

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