Meet the Hal Prize Winners: Dan Powers

It’s here, hot off the press – Vol. 2 of the 8142 Review, just in time for the holidays.

The Peninsula Pulse’s literary magazine contains the 37 best pieces of work out of the 686 submissions received for the 2022 Hal Prize in fiction, nonfiction, poetry and photography. 

The artists are of all ages and from all over the United States, but a few of the names will be familiar – like Sturgeon Bay resident Dan Powers, who achieved first place in the fiction category. The talented writer is also active in the local literary scene as a founding member of the Door County Published Authors Collective.

We’ve included an excerpt of his winning story below. 

“Two, Three… Which is Me?”


The muffled thud when her math book hit the carpeted floor next to the bed felt like a period to the day. She turned off her reading lamp, then slid beneath the white sheet and comforter tugging them up to her chin as she worked her frizzy ponytail across the fluffed pillow until she found the perfect position. To prepare herself, she closed her eyes to help adjust them to the lack of light while she pulled in a slow full deep breath. The darkness funneled in and filled her, freeing her mind to seek the comfort of Lang’s voice. She knew he’d be there. After her parents first told her, she discovered he had always been there – down inside where the air she breathed could reach and touch him – even though she had no actual memory of the brief time they had shared. 

When ready, slowly, through pursed lips, she began to release the collected air, letting it carry her cloistered silent conversation and thoughts into the open darkness of the room while she counted to ten.

Want to read more? Have a lover of literature in your life? Visit to purchase the first and second volumes of 8142 Review. By purchasing the books, you can help support the literature arts in the community, the continuation of the Hal Prize and 8142 Review.