The New Yorker Story of the Year for 2012: “Breatharians” by Callan Wink

blue-ribbonsThe votes are in and it wasn’t even close! The award for The New Yorker Story of the Year for 2012 goes to “Breatharians” by Callan Wink.

The story was a little controversial because of its depiction of some very realistic animal cruelty, but there’s no question that it was memorable. For our discussion here, see: Breatharians by Callan Wink. To read the story in the magazine, go here. (The story is behind a paywall.)

To see a complete list of the finalists, go here.

Congratulations to Callan Wink!

Vote for The New Yorker Short Story of the Year — 2012


The nominations for New Yorker Story of the Year are now closed. The finalists (with links to the discussions on this blog) are posted below, with the ballot included at the bottom of the page.

A few things to note about the finalists:

I left out some fictions that I really liked, such as Colum McCann’s “Transatlantic” because they were excerpts from novels and I like to keep this a short story contest.

Of the ten finalists, only three of the stories are by women. I liked the Zadie Smith fiction, but again that was an excerpt. I didn’t much care for the Alice Munro stories or the Tessa Hadley or the Alice McDermott or the Rivka Galchen or the Lorrie Moore. No one nominated these stories and I didn’t feel they belonged in the group of finalists.

The finalists:

Means of Suppressing Demonstrations by Shani Boianju

Birnam Wood by T. Coraghessan Boyle

Citizen Conn by Michael Chabon

The Cheater’s Guide to Love by Junot Diaz

The Proxy Marriage by Maile Meloy

Chapter Two by Antonya Nelson

The Semplica-Girl Diaries by George Saunders

A Brief Encounter with the Enemy by Said Sayrafiezadeh

Sweet Dreams by Peter Stamm

Breatharians by Callan Wink


Nominations Open for New Yorker Story of the Year

New Yorker Story of the Year

It’s time to select the New Yorker Story of the Year, as we do every year here on Perpetual Folly. Nominations are open! (If you need a refresher, we have discussed every story right here: New Yorker Stories of 2012.)

What are your favorites? Maybe you liked “A Brief Encounter with the Enemy” by Said Sayrafiezadeh from January. Or maybe “Citizen Conn” by Michael Chabon from February? Or “P.E.” by Victor Lodato? Or “The Proxy Marriage” by Maile Meloy? Or “Means of Suppressing Demonstrations” by Shani Boianjiu? Or maybe you liked stories by Antonya Nelson, Alice Munro, Junot Diaz, T.C. Boyle, Alice McDermott, Etgar Keret, Steven Millhauser, or someone else?

Let me know–either shoot me an email or leave a comment here.

>The New Yorker Story of the Year: The Top Ten


The nominations are closed and it is now time to begin the voting for The New Yorker Story of the Year.

Voting will occur through the poll in the right sidebar of this blog. Votes in the comments section will not be counted. Votes sent to me by email or through some other method will not be counted. Voting will close at midnight on December 31, and I will announce the winner on January 1.

Through a process that combined my own favorites (I did, after all, read all of the stories) and reader nominations, I have determined a list of the Top Ten stories of the year. Several writers this year had multiple stories nominated: Alice Munro, Robert Coover, Ben Marcus, George Saunders. So that they wouldn’t be competing against themselves, and to be as inclusive as possible, I allowed only one story per author in the Top Ten.

The Top Ten New Yorker Stories of the Year are (in chronological order):

“The Years of My Birth” by Louise Erdrich (January 10)

“Going for a Beer” by Robert Coover (March 14)

“Clever Girl” by Tessa Hadley (June 6)

“Home” by George Saunders (June 13 & 20)

“Above and Below” by Lauren Groff (June 13 & 20)

“Gravel” by Alice Munro (June 27)

“Homage to Hemingway” by Julian Barnes (July 4)

“What Have You Done?” by Ben Marcus (August 8)

“What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank” by Nathan Englander (December 12)

“Stone Mattress” by Margaret Atwood (December 19 & 26)

>New Yorker Story of the Year — Nominations are Open!


Since I began commenting each week on the fiction in the New Yorker, at year’s end I have come up with a “Story of the Year.” Once again, I will let readers vote from a list of finalists, which I will determine from my own preferences and the nominations of readers.

To see a discussion of last year’s winner (Claire Keegan’s “Foster”), go HERE.

All you have to do to nominate is to leave a comment here on Perpetual Folly with the name of your choice. I will then compile a list of the top stories and create a poll. All very simple.

Forgot about the stories? No problem. Review them all by browsing through the posts from the whole year: New Yorker 2011.