Editor’s note(s): Because we’ve grown so much in the past year, we asked you, our readers, to let us know what your early favorite stories were, so we could share them with everyone during the months of November and December. We’re so pleased to share our fifth Reader Favorite Wednesday story: Yoon Ha Lee’s “Nonstandard Candles” — now free to read — from March 2022. ~ Fran & Julian, December 7, 2022. (We include our original editors’ note with each story as well, below.)
That sound you just heard was me letting out a deeply satisfied "Ahh!" at the conclusion on this fantastic story. 💙
What a lovely story. The lines "The map is its own reward. It has to be.” really struck me as powerful. Though the connection is rather tenuous, they bring to mind my own work in basic sciences research. I often hear the saying "the map is not the territory" in the context of the models we make in scientific research. Working in basic sciences, I am frequently asked essentially why I bother to research what I do, when there are so many other things more relevant to people's lives. And yet I still find the work I do to be meaningful, in the pursuit of knowledge itself. This story reminds me of that, and the meaning behind work that is done even if others don't understand the significance. Thank you for sharing this story!