Flash Fiction Contest Winners

As part of this year’s One Read program, we invited you to take inspiration from “Nomadland,” and tell a tale of transition. The story could be about anything and anyone, but it should evoke the notion of transition, change or a journey, be it literal or personal.

All of the writers shared their stories in less than 250 words. Thank you to everyone who entered and shared your stories of transition.

Our two winners are Audrey Mueller and Stacie Strong. Honorable mentions go to Allen Fennewald and Kate Robbins.

We are excited to share the winning stories with you! Read More

KFRU’s David Lile Interviews One Read Author Jessica Bruder

KFRU’s David Lile interviewed this year’s One Read author Jessica Bruder about her book “Nomadland: Surviving American in the Twenty-first Century.” Listen below to hear Bruder talk about her book, including her hopes for “Nomadland” leading to readers who look for the stories of people who live the nomadic lifestyle, the feelings she felt when it was time to walk away from her immersive life on the road, as well as information about the upcoming film adaptation of “Nomadland.” She also talks about her new writing projects.


Transition: Flash Fiction Writing Contest

This contest is now closed. Winners will be announced on October 16. 


There have always been itinerants, drifters, hobos, restless souls.”
~Jessica Bruder, “Nomadland”

asphalt road winding through green expanseIn this year’s One Read selection, author Jessica Bruder explores the experiences of folks living on the road in order to follow seasonal work. These nomads live in a constant state of transition, moving from one place to another, from one job to the next. Taking inspiration from “Nomadland,” we invite you to tell a tale of transition in 250 words or less. Your story can be about anything and anyone, but make sure it evokes the notion of transition, change or a journey, be it literal or personal. 

Starting September 3, entries may be submitted using this form, mailed or dropped off at any library or bookmobile. (See full rules below for details.) Winning entries and honorable mentions will be published on this site and in the Columbia Missourian, and winners will receive a $25 book store gift card.

Participants must be age 16 or older and residents of Boone or Callaway Counties. Read on for complete contest rules. Read More

Travelers: One Read Art Exhibit Call for Submissions

A One Read Art Exhibit
Orr Street Studios (106 Orr Street, Columbia)

black and white photo of weather vane“Bleary-eyed, they find places to pull off the road and rest. In Walmart parking lots. On quiet suburban streets. At truck stops, amid the lullaby of idling engines. Then in the early morning hours—before anyone notices—they’re back on the highway. Driving on, they’re secure in this knowledge: The last free place in America is a parking spot.”
~ Jessica Bruder, “Nomadland”

Inspired by the examination of this century’s new migrant workers in the 2019 One Read book “Nomadland,” we invite Mid-Missouri artists ages 16 and older to contribute works reflecting any expression of travel or travelers, be it in nature, on the highway or in the imagination. Art for this exhibit should evoke passage, relocation or journeying.

Cash prizes will be awarded for three winners, sponsored by Columbia’s Office of Cultural Affairs. The third place winner will receive $50, the second place winner $75 and the first place winner $125. First place will also receive a one-year membership to the Columbia Art League.

Art will be displayed September 1-28 at Orr Studios with a reception, awards and program on Friday, September 6 at 6 p.m.

Submission Details Read More

2019 One Read Winner: About “Nomadland” by Jessica Bruder

About the Book

Nomadland paperback coverNomadland: Surviving America in the Twenty-First Century” is a compelling work of immersive journalism. 

Author Jessica Bruder describes the lives of nomadic workers who travel from one temporary job to another to make ends meet. Working long hours at beet harvests and walking miles in Amazon warehouses, these mostly older Americans live in their RVs, cars or vans and represent an increasing population of migrant workers living just this side of homelessness. Bruder provides both a critique of our current economy and a celebration of human resourcefulness and resilience.
Read More