It was not one of those ideas that come like a lightning bolt, or even a lightbulb. It was tossed off, maybe even a joke at first. But there was something magical in it, too, because the notion of holding a fiction contest kept hanging around the Razor offices. So we did it.
And then, by some greater magic, entries started coming in. We were at first surprised that anybody entered our little lit mag’s contest, then we were amazed as more arrived in the queue, and then we were humbled at the great stuff there for us to read.
Razor is proud to publish our fourth issue, the inaugural Fall Fiction collection, presenting the winners of the Fiction Open contest. And while each work featured here is fiction, every story is rooted in the human experience, even when they take place on another planet or detail the loss of a beloved neighborhood tree. They are a collection of stories about loss, heartbreak, chronic mental illness; of dealing with disaster, human arrogance, or the little bumps along the way that are sometimes more difficult and painful to talk about than the obvious life tragedies.
We also love the stories of the hard work and inspiration in the creative process behind each piece, which we present in our Before the Razor series. Like the contest itself, each story here came from one of those ideas that expands and grows in ways we can never foresee.
Read them. Enjoy, and be inspired. Keep creating.