2012 Postcard Story Competition Winner


The Writers' Union of Canada is pleased to announce that Sharron Bertchilde has won the 13th annual Postcard Story Competition, for the best story under 250 words, with her piece “Indra’s Net.” The author will receive a $750 cash prize, and the story will be published in Write: The Magazine of The Writers' Union of Canada. In addition to the winning entry, Honourable Mention goes to Marcia Maradyn for her untitled piece.

The Union initiated its inaugural Postcard Story Competition in 1999 to discover, encourage, and promote writers of fiction and nonfiction in this form. This year, 18 Union members donated their time and expertise to read 788 outstanding submissions and distill them into a long list of 95 stories. These stories went on to a second round of 15 readers who selected the finalists to pass on to the 2012 Jury: Clayton Bailey, John Lent, and Nerys Parry.

WINNER:  “Indra’s Net” by Sharron Bertchilde

The Jury said of “Indra's Net:” the author has captured a rare, fleeting moment where mortality hangs in the balance. On the surface nothing unusual happens: a child, working with his father, raises his arm and sees two butterflies. Only we know, as the readers, that a mere fraction of an inch lay between the child's sleeve and a rotating blade that could have changed everything in an instant.  The prose is clean, the story uncluttered and simple, and that's where its power lies; with an economy of words and images, the author reminds us of our own fragility, that life and death is sometimes separated only by chance. We are left wondering how many moments our own lives or those of the ones we love have hung so precariously in the balance while we remained unaware.  A vivid, unsettling and well-executed story.”

Sharron Bertchilde lives in Nanaimo, B.C., but was born and bred a “prairie dog.” After retiring from Vancouver Island University, she threw herself into writing. She is particularly intrigued by odd juxtapositions. 

HONOURABLE MENTION: Untitled, Marcia Maradyn, Kingston, ON


Family Portrait, Michelle Barker, Penticton, BC
Coats, Caitlin Crawshaw, Edmonton, AB
Where the House Used to Be, Lisa Goldberg, Toronto, ON
Runner, Jacqueline Harrison, Burlington, ON
The Traveller’s Chair, Nikki Reklitis, Ottawa, ON
Gifts of Silence, Julie C. Robinson, Edmonton, AB
Myopia, Owen Schaefer, Tokyo, Japan
Amaryllis, Traci Skuce, Cumberland, ON
Cider, Chris Tarry, Brooklyn, NY


Clayton Bailey, John Lent, and Nerys Parry


Thelma Barer-Stein, William Bell, Ann Birch, Richard de Meulles, Sharon Doyle Driedger, Erin Dunham, Rachel Eugster, Kim Fahner, Margaret Hastings-James, Catherine Jenkins, Diana Kolpak, Monica Kulling, B.M. Lloyd, Anne Logan, Mark R.C. Lovell, Anna Jean Mallinson, Maria Coletta McLean, Judith Meyrick, Terry Murray, Rosemary Nixon, Patricia Pierce, Patria Rivera, Holley Rubinsky, Deborah Seed, Jim Smith, Royston Tester, Ann Towell, Monika Ullmann, Paul Vasey, Sylvia Warsh, Lorraine O'Donnell Williams, Judith Williams, Cathleen With.

The Writers' Union of Canada is our country's national organization representing professional authors of books.  Founded in 1973, the Union is dedicated to fostering writing in Canada, and promoting the rights, freedoms, and economic well-being of all writers.  For more information, please visit www.writersunion.ca.

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For additional information:
Nancy MacLeod, Coordinator, Readings and Competitions
The Writers’ Union of Canada
416.703.8982 Ext. 226