A personal message from the author:

This volume is the first in a trilogy featuring fifty-two interconnected short stories of New Yorkers. The number of tales was chosen for two reasons. First, it reflects the weeks in a year, signifying the predictable circularity of time. Second, it symbolizes a deck of playing cards, representing unpredictable situations that involve luck—both good and bad—requiring choices to be made about the hand that’s dealt.

When contemplating what it means to be human, one of the things uniting us all is our experiences with love and loss. Not merely limited to a romantic sense, although admittedly, that is an important part of our world. Rather, we know there are many kinds of love we feel—for family members, friends, Gods, pets, idols, places…the list goes on. We also know everything that can be loved, can also be lost—to time, to chance, to change, to death. When this happens, we may experience great distress, disequilibrium in our lives, even disillusionment. And yet we move forward. We keep breathing. The losses fold into ourselves, becoming a part of who we are. We learn from them. And we keep loving.

This trilogy is an exploration of how people make sense of love and loss in their lives. It is set in New York City, a microcosm of the world with an astounding range of human diversity found throughout its five boroughs. The characters in these tales reflect that diversity, mirroring our commonalities in their strengths and frailties, desires and fears, hopes and struggles. It is my own hope that the people in these stories can serve as a prism for us all to reflect upon what makes us who we are.

— David J. Connor


Read online Just Keep Breathing by David J. Connor

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