Once in a great while, something comes along that reaffirms that good writing is not on the endangered species list (such as some of our penguins). Once in a while, that good writer emerges from the fold and by the telling of a fictional tale, a great truth is revealed. Such is the case with John Yunker.
John contacted me a few days ago, and humbly offered his story for me to read. I had planned to scan it, as these days, a literary penguin has much to do, but I found myself immersed in the plot and the technique. I could not stop reading; goodness, but I haven't seen writing like this in a very long time. You all, my readers, will be just as pleased as I was and still am.
The short story, as you may have guessed, concerns our character as a response to a need that necessitates sacrifice. Do we do our part? Is it enough? Shouldn't we do more? What stops us? Fear of change or fear of our inner selves? Can we assume the burden of protection for smaller lives? So many questions---all raised within one short story. If this penguin was still teaching, all of her chicks would be reading this story; indeed, the story won the Phoebe 2008 Fiction Prize and that's quite an honor.
So, without further ado, I present you with three links: the first link is to the .pdf of the story, which you can download and read at your leisure, the second link is to John's blog, and the last link is to Dr. Boersma's site. Once you read the story, you'll understand the validity of including the last one.
1. The Tourist Trail by John Yonker HERE
2. John's blog is HERE
3. Dr. Boersma's Site, for Penguin Research at Punta Tombo, is HERE
Let's hope that a publisher realizes what a find John is, as this short story has all the makings of a great novel for our time. And lastly, John--keep us updated on what's happening with you. I'm sure your new and ever growing fanbase will be very appreciative. :)