Mark Twain, one of America’s greatest literary treasures, once said, “I apologize for such a long letter – I didn’t have time to write a short one.”
It takes great skill to tell a story in a way that captures all of the important details while cutting out the fluff. When we discuss our anthology series with authors, many are taken aback by our maximum allowed word count—2,000 precious words. And yet, we’ve found this call to ration words, to describe only the most important details, and to make every sentence a value-add has resulted in many masterful stories.
We’ve described 25 Servings of SOOP as a “literary wine tasting of up-and-coming talent.” This wine tasting has the sweet rosé of “Frank and Lily” by Sian Fullerton balanced by more intense flavors such as “The Storm in His Eyes” by Charmaine Kimbini and “The Unpainted Portrait” by M.D. Jerome. Heartwarming stories are juxtaposed with stories of absolute horror.
While all of the stories we’ve chosen to include are quite enjoyable on the surface, many have special notes on which we hope you’ll pick up. Many of our authors did an admirable job of subtly addressing social issues. Many stories feature diverse characters and highlight the challenges faced by people who are, perhaps, a little different from us. We, of course, hope you will be entertained by this book, but it’s our deepest wish that you will take away from at least one story the desire to understand, respect, love, and empathize with others better.