Every Night Like New Years by Justina Elias
2020 CBC Short Story Prize longlist
Justina Elias has made the 2020 CBC Short Story Prize longlist for Every Night Like New Years.
The shortlist will be announced on April 15. The winner will be announced on April 22.
Justina Elias has published in Room Magazine, The Puritan, Sportliterate and elsewhere. She was longlisted for the 2018 CBC Short Story Prize and selected as a finalist for Glimmer Train's 2018 Fiction Open and Narrative Magazine's spring 2017 story contest. She holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Guelph and currently works at Munro's Books in Victoria.
Entry in five-ish words
Different kinds of blurred vision.
The story's source of inspiration
"Alcoholism has touched my life in many ways, particularly in a caregiving capacity. Along with the vivid physical effects of liver damage, I was interested in how addiction can collapse and alter time, both for addicts and those close to them. On a stylistic front, the playful, fragmented short stories of Ali Smith were a huge influence."
Look, my father says, we're twins, and the nurse laughs once, loudly, then blushes.
Sorry, she says. You two are just too much.
Right down to the boobs. He pokes his left one through his Corn and Apple Festival t-shirt and she pokes him in turn — arm, not boob — then sails out past the curtain.
You're skinnier everywhere else though, I say. I look at his purple-splotched arms. From a certain angle, if you squint past the splotches and bloat, if you pay attention only to the bones and the yellow-grey skin, you could mistake him for one of the starving girls we've seen in other hospitals. He's even hairless from the head down. A symptom, like the boobs.
The winner of the 2020 CBC Short Story Prize will receive $6,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts, have their work published on CBC Books and attend a two-week writing residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. Four finalists will each receive $1,000 from the Canada Council for the Arts and have their work published on CBC Books.