Editor's Note

In 1926, President Calvin and First Lady Grace Coolidge
received a raccoon as a gift, intended to be cooked and eaten
for Thanksgiving dinner. Instead, they kept it as a pet.
The White House Historical Association

Welcome to our first short story contest!

This was an experiment for us. We haven’t held a contest before and really weren’t able to predict, or even hazard a wild guess at, how much interest a contest would receive.

To our pleasant surprise, quite a bit! For a tiny contest that we tried mostly for the sake of seeing what would happen, we received all kinds of interesting, entertaining, and skillfully-written stories.

But a contest is a contest, and as such, it can have only one winner. The prize goes James Roderick Burns, for his fantasy tale about everyone’s favorite trash panda, AKA the raccoon. This is exactly the type of short fiction we had in mind: a quick, fun read of a clever premise executed in fluid prose:

Now Is the Time for Every Good Man to Come to the Aid of the Party

We’d also like to thank:

Nicholas Barr β€’ Jay Bechtol β€’ Paul Bowman β€’ James Callan β€’ Chelsea Catherine β€’ Robert Conklin β€’ Tom Di Roma β€’ Sean Ferrier-Watson β€’ Adrianna Gordey β€’ Kris Green β€’ Christina Han β€’ Kimberly Horg β€’ William Hubbartt β€’ Charles Jones β€’ R. W. Meek β€’ Bruce Meyer β€’ J. Alan Nelson β€’ Avery O’Connor β€’ Robert Pope β€’ Sarah Reichert β€’ Aaron Salzman β€’ Laura Schmidt β€’ Tristan Thoo β€’ Sanner Timmons

Our contributors' support of independent publishing makes all of the difference.

All the best and happy reading,

Matthew Bullen
Founder and Head Editor