SLOWLY UNWRAPPED A Very Short Christmas Story VICTORIA VANE Copyright © 2014 by Victoria Vane Published by Vane Publishing LLC Cover design © 2014 by Romance Cover Creations Decatur Georgia, Christmas Day Nikki yanked the handle of the shopping buggy. It stuck. She cursed and gave it another jerk but it remained jammed. “Use your foot,” Shelby instructed. “Like this.” With one solid kick, Shelby wedged the buggy free. “I still don’t understand why you’re going through all this stress and aggravation, Nik. The man just gave you a ring. Are you really sure you want to risk cooking for him?” Nikki grimaced. “Thanks a lot, Shel.” “I’m just sayin’ he has to know by now that you’re no domestic goddess.” “But I still want to do this for him,” Nikki insisted. “He’s come all this way from Montana. The least we can do is show him some Southern holiday cheer.” “But didn’t you tell me his mother’s a Texan?” Shelby remarked. “She is,” Nikki replied. “But Texas isn’t Georgia, Shel. I’d argue that Texas is even part of the south. They eat tamales on Christmas. We don’t do that.” “Yeah, well they don’t exactly sell turkey and dressing ... Read More »
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One of the things rarely addressed in romantic fiction but of obsessive interest for me, is who pays for dinner on that first date? The protocol of paying is a tricky subject for single people – gay or straight – and when I broached the subject recently with friends, I was surprised by the reactions I got. Most women expect a man to pay. Some women told me they never pay. They will reciprocate down the line with either a home-cooked meal perhaps, or movie tickets. Other women said they are willing to spring for a meal a couple of months into a relationship and have designed entire evenings around Groupon or Gilt coupons for discounted gourmet meals. They’ve told me some are such bargains and so unusual (such as multi-course tasting meals served in the dark!) that it’s led to hilarious, romantic memories. And who wouldn’t love that? But what about when men date men? Who pays? Since I write Male/Male fiction, I was intrigued that it is a virtual minefield of “protocol.” The general rule of thumb is that whoever does the inviting should pay. That being said, I’ve heard some disturbing stories about just how far some ... Read More »
Full Time Working Mom by Jambrea Jo Jones People always ask me how I do it. I have a full time day job and a ten year old, plus I write. It isn’t easy. Balance is hard to come by and sometimes I can’t give my full attention to writing, but somehow I do manage to get it all done. I work from 8:30am to 5:00pm. After that I go pick up my son and we talk about his day on the way home. Well, what he’ll tell me about it. We get dinner and I bug him about his homework. It really doesn’t leave me a bunch of time. Weekends are filled with Friday Pokémon League and Saturday Bowling League. My son would stay at home and play his video games all day if I let him so I’m happy he has a couple things that let him socialize with kids who have similar interests. As you can see, it can be a pretty busy schedule. On Wednesday my son goes to his dad’s. This gives me a day to write. Sometimes. I am also an avid reader and TV watcher. Right now I just found out about a new ... Read More »
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Like a richly woven bridal sari, The Chrysalis unfolds with vivid colorfulness, intricate details, and unexpected delight, along with plenty of wrinkles and creases. As Sarai traverses the fine line between honoring her Indian heritage and being true to her own Western mindset, her story unveils the kaleidoscope of human emotion from ecstasy to heartbreak to triumph, along with every nuance in between. The Chrysalis will quickly weave a cocoon around readers, taking them on a magical carpet ride from the US to the tropical villages of Kerala, India to the romantic canals of Venice and back. But what begins with a story of a young Indian girl facing the pressures of an arranged marriage quickly crescendos into a complex and layered story about family, love, friendship, and ultimately, about life itself—a realization that Life is truly a journey… and that it is often the dead-ends and unexpected detours we experience in Life that lead us to our ultimate destination… and to our most powerful, life-transforming Truths. Sneak Peek Bindu Adai is inspirational, romance and young-adult novel writer. She is the author of a novel, The Chrysalis, and a memoir, 38 Candles. Like many first generation Indians, Bindu started college ... Read More »
Your short story could be eligible for the Red Carpet Short Story 2015 Awards Submit your short stories to BTS. If accepted for publication in any issue of 2015, it will be eligible for the Short Story Awards for 2015. I’m looking for quality stories 1,000 to 4,000 words, PG 13 and below. Any genre, except no erotic. Stories not published before are preferred, but will accept those published 3 or more years previously (must have rights to it). Let your voice shine and give readers a look at your talent! Competition and acceptance will be more stringent then previous years since the stories are now eligible for a beautiful award. Don’t be afraid to submit your story. BTS has had some wonderful stories published the past few years. There will also be 2nd and 3rd place winners plus honorable mentions. If your story is not what BTS is seeking for award level stories, it may still be accepted for our new Free Friday Reads promo. http://btsemag.com/bts-has-a-new-exciting-promotional-opportunity-for-you/. Previously published stories are fine for submitting to the Free Friday Reads. If published, story rights revert back to you after publication. But the story will stay in the issue. Write me if you have ... Read More »