This is the end of the second year of the Size Riot contests. For two years, over eight contests, writers well-known and obscure have stepped up to meet the challenges of each topic (Cruel, Gentle, Unaware, Butts, &c.). They have pushed themselves into unfamiliar or even uncomfortable areas; they have tested their mettle to care about creating stories in topics that do not speak to them. Dozens of writers have done amazing things, creating worlds out of nothingness, flexed their literary muscles for peers, fans, and anyone paying attention.
The theme of the eighth contest was nominated by writers who’d participated in at least half of the prior contests, because who better to come up with an idea than a veteran writer? They suggested a range of interesting topics, and then the readership weighed in on which they’d most like to see. Big Couples was an interesting choice for a couple reasons: it’s largely unaddressed, and people hold polarizing opinions about it. Some writers bowed out, unable to find a connection; others seem to have written the story they wanted to anyway and tacked an extra person in there. That’s fine, you know, whatever it takes. Still others found ways to reinterpret and play with the theme, spin it into something compatible or develop an intriguing, rewarding tale from this basic idea.
What are we looking at this year? “12 Miles of Women” describes the wanton lovemaking of two recently enlarged women, from the perspective of a citizen of the city they bed down in. A girlfriend tries to be sympathetic to her boyfriend’s kink in “A Game of Give and Take.” The otherworldly caretaker of a home in “A Keeper’s Bond” embarks on new territory with the house’s residents. Two demons find liberty to be themselves on Halloween in “Mortals and Chill.” And a moment of shared consciousness as two authors put their individual spins on sizist adventure as well as dining out in “No Picnic” and “Picnic with a View.”
Already, readers are commenting quietly on the stories that struck them, memorable moments and distinguishing characters. This Size Riot contest is different in that it also features tags and trigger warnings, so readers with certain sensitivities and experiences aren’t unpleasantly surprised by content, while reserving the surprises for readers who are up for anything. Build the backchannel by commenting on what you’re reading with #WritersOct18 on Twitter. Read all the stories and rate them in various categories, and please make a point of writing some reviews: the writers are giving you so much of their labor and creativity for free. Surely you can choke out a “good job” or talk about your favorite part.