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Make a difference, help stamp out ALS and get nifty products at the same time!
Check out our new holiday selections!
By The Book.
http://www.cafeshops.com/raob/177163

Read the Solstice Challenge Stories!
Voting Deadline January 9th, 2004!!


December 31st, 2003

Lost Innocence by Paully Adams [alt/classic/incomplete]
What if Xena and Gabrielle never went to Britannia? Instead, Xena and Gabrielle decide to retire to Amazonia.

Added part 8 of Lois Kay's Heart's Choice

December 30th, 2003

Welcome to the Academy, Kim Baldwin!

The Camp Reunion [über/alt/complete]
Kerry is full of nervous anticipation as she nears the place that harbors her most precious growing-up memories: the all-girls camp where she spent every summer until she graduated college. She didn't realize it back then, but it was also the place where she met the woman she believes is her soulmate. The question is, will the object of her long-held crush attend the upcoming Camp Reunion? And if she does, can the chemistry that bonded them as best friends be rekindled into something more?

December 29th, 2003

You Looked At Me by Amanda Calkins [alt/classic/complete]
A short story on love and life

December 28th, 2003

Welcome to the Academy, Coleskilla

She, My Home [short story/über/complete]
Two souls coming home.

The Chosen's Prerogative by romansilence [alt/classic/complete]
This story starts about one year and a half after Bitter Suite. Gabrielle is ruling the Amazons and Xena is married to Hercules. Hera interferes, Xena snaps, and Gabrielle has to deal with the fall-out, also involved are Ares, Artemis, and Athena.

December 27th, 2003

Added part 7 of Lois Kay's Heart's Choice

December 26th, 2003

First Solstice by Linda Crist [alt/classic/complete]
Xena and Gabrielle share their first Solstice together.

December 25th, 2003

Announcement

Just a reminder as you sit down to unwind from the day's activities later on...grab some eggnog or some hot chocolate and catch some great Solstice stories
Academy Challenge #10: Do You See What I Hear
http://www.academyofbards.org/contest/2003/holiday/
And if you still have some adventurous spirit left (batteries not included), check out the graphic challenge Holiday Pundemonium. It is stuffed full of 18...YES 18 song titles. Yes folks, the 18th song title is in there. As badly as I would like to hide behind the "there is no #6" standard claim...there actually is a #6 this time. Give it a shot.
Happy Holidays!
OZ

Stories

The New Adventures of XENA: Warrior Princess--Reversal of Fortune by Ernie Whiting [finished]
Have you ever wondered what might have happened to you if the coin toss had come up heads instead of tails? Or if you had turned right or left at that intersection instead of continuing straight ahead, or if you had missed your flight home and that nervously sweating man in the bulging overcoat had been given your seat?
What if Brie hadn't been able to find the Fates when she had gone to seek their help in saving Gina?

December 24th, 2003

A Gift From The North by Debbie Dee [über/complete]
Tracy is a young woman with two daughters. She has encountered many problems in a short period of time. She has just gone through a divorce, lost her job, is out of money and Christmas is only two days away. Has a miracle arrived in the form of a friend named Noel or do miracles even exist?

The Way of Intrigue by TZ [alt/classic/complete]
As the Greeks move closer to Amazon lands, an expatriate discovers that they might just have more than Spartans in their line of sight.  Part of The Way of Life series (story #11 in the series).

The Way of Treachery by TZ [alt/classic/complete]
A renegade betrays the Amazon Nation and Gabrielle must lead her warriors into battle against the Greeks.  Part of The Way of Life series (story #12 in the series).

Added part 5 of The Ridded by Phair

Added part 33 of Time's Fell Hand by LJ Maas

December 23rd, 2003

Clonefic Part 1 by Phantombard [alt/finished]
(44 pages, part 1 of 3, Revised Version). The TV series, Xena Warrior Princess gave rise to a number of memorable characters. First are Xena, the Warrior Princess, and her soulmate, Gabrielle, the Amazon Queen. Perhaps the most popular variations on their characters are Janice Covington and Melinda Pappas. Beyond these four archetypal figures stand Annie and Mattie and the Clones. The episode settings imply that Annie and Mattie are contemporaries of the Clones, with all four living in modern times, but the souls of Xena and Gabrielle seem to reside with Annie and Mattie. So, what of the Clones? Who are they, really? Are they merely simulacra, or the closest things to Xena and Gabrielle in the modern world? Consulting "Bring In The Clones" for their backstory leaves some gaping holes and suggests some answers. It is from those answers that this story grows. The story demands a more plausible history for the Warrior Princess and the Bard of Potidaea. Previously, all we knew about Xena and Gabrielle came from the TV series. Their adventures were dramatized by the production company from translations of scrolls found by Covington and Pappas. Only now can the truth be told, by those individuals who can lay claim to it in the first person. Meet the real soulmates. (Revised Version 11/30/2003, original contest version, 2/27/2003).

December 21st, 2003

Announcement
-from Trish Shields
My new book, Inferno, has been released by Baycrest Books and can be ordered through Amazon.com, Amazon.ca or Baycrest Books at http://www.baycrestbooks.com/releases.htm .

Added part 4 of Sinagua Skies by S. Derkins

Added part 2 of Wild by Kim Pritekel & Alexa Hoffman

December 20th, 2003

Author KG MacGregor has signed with Cavalier Press to publish her story Malicious Pursuit Malicious Pursuit at the Academy
We look forward to a Fall 2004 release.

http://www.cavalierpress.com

Stories

Added the conclusion of Turning Tides by A.K. Naten

New eBooks
Delirium Tremens - Vivian Darkbloom
Meeting (The) - Hermes
Way of the Family TZ
Way of the Regent TZ
If Only in My Dreams Zuke
Nine Minutes - Loic Cloarec Hart


December 19th, 2003

Stories

Nine Minutes by Loic Cloarec Hart [original/alt/finished]
Flying from Halifax to Toronto to visit her daughter and grandchildren for Christmas, Joan regrets leaving her long-time partner behind. However, her daughter has made it clear that she won't accept her mother's partner, and once every two years Joan takes the path of least resistance, leaving Corrie behind in Nova Scotia as she visits Toronto. But this flight will bring a dramatic change to all their lives, as a crisis drives home the fragility of life, the need to cherish those we love, and the true meaning of 'family.'

If Only in My Dreams by Zuke [alt/über/finished]
While Major Briana Richardson waits to go home for the holidays, she remembers Christmases past.

Added part 2 of Answer by GirlBard

Added part 6 of Heart's Choice by Lois Kay

Challenge Announcement

It's beginning to look alot like Christmas and 31 Bards got into the spirit (and probably the spiked eggnog by the time they got done) and wrote 31 very nifty stories that included a slew of Christmas ditties and other song titles. 

Let's face it, having to bear Christmas songs on Mall Muzak is one thing...having them play continuously in your head while you write a 25 page story while not going insane is...well...quite miraculous.

26 Bards are competing anonymously for top story (Category 1).  The vote links are at the end of each story.  Pick your one favorite and vote.

Yeah, yeah, I know it's tough.  But you can handle it.  You've had practice...this is the 10th Academy Bard Challenge. 

5 Bards are participating only in the "let's squeeze as many songs as we can while still writing a coherent story" category (also known as Category 2).  They are in the non-voting category.  These bards chose to submit stories (primarily for your reading pleasure) using characters identifiable to them. 

There are email links to all of them...please FEED THE BARDS.  Let them know you appreciate the time and effort.

Now for the first time...we have added a little bonus contest...for  EVERYONE to play.  On the page below the story links, you will find a graphic representation of 18 Christmas songs.  Our Academy Artists...J and Michelle...put their heads (and wicked senses of humor) together and came up with a graphic we call:
HOLIDAY PUN-DEMONIUM. 

Click on the email link and send us a list of  your best guesses for the 18 songs represented.  The winner will be the one with the most correct.  In the case of a tie, we will randomly pick one or two winners from all the tied entries.

As always...big THANK YOU to the participating Bards.
Without you...well...we would have a blank page. <.bg.>
And the Techie Munchkins would be running the streets and getting into mischief.  I'm glad you gave them something to do and kept them out of trouble.  I don't have any bail money left after the last incident but I digress...

Another big THANKS to those INCREDIBLE Munchkins and  Artist Elves...you guys ROCK! 

The Royal Academy of Bards wishes you and yours a Happy Holiday Season...now go enjoy the stories.

December 18th, 2003

Second Chance at Forever by xfbard [semi-Über/alt/unfinished]
Gabrielle Channon is a fiction writer who meets with Agent Xena Demakis while doing research for her latest book, the chemistry between them is immediate, however, Agent Demakis seems a bit hesitant. It is up to Gabrielle to draw the striking Xena out of her self-imposed exile and open her up to a new world of romance.
Along the way they hit a few bumps in the road, all of which may lead them to a chance at a life that is filled with happiness.
Chapter 1 of a ongoing story.

In Echoes of the Night part nine of Mavis Applewater's series Whispering Pines, the Captain disrupts Anna and Catherine's plans for the Holiday and Shawn meets an intriguing stranger.

Added part 9 of Pathfinder by Windstar & sparky

December 17th, 2003

Turning Tides by A.K. Naten [über/alt/finished but posting in parts]
Love is rarely perfect... sometimes it seems impossible. A young woman leaves her troubled past, determined to start a new life in a new city. When she becomes hopelessly entangled with a domineering, emotionally embattled individual, she doesn’t know if it’s a dream come true, or her worst nightmare.
Chapters 1-29 posted in 5 parts, total of 55 chapters when complete.

New eBooks
Earth’s Song – LH Miller
Christmas Special Delivery – Lois Kay
Our Reunion – Jenah
The Way of Love – TZ
The Way of the Wolf – TZ
The Way of the Amazon – TZ
The Way of the Bard – TZ
The Way of the Child -
The Way of the Mother – TZ
The Way of War – TZ

December 16th, 2003

Five short stories, three originals that are part of a series, one überjoke, and one conqueror that is also part of a series. All are finished and all are by Carola "Ryûchan" Eriksson

Vanilla [original/alt/complete]
The second story in what became a small series of short stories that I've come to call my "desserts", sequel to Chocolate. It's New Year and Sarah plans on spending it alone, she just has one shop left to visit.

Ice Cream [originall/alt/complete]
The third story of my "desserts", follows Vanilla. Preparations are made for a very special evening, but will she dare to go through with her plans?

Ginger [original/alt/complete]
The fourth short story of the "desserts", follows Ice Cream. A new neighbourhood can offer quite a few surprises... if you're a cat.

Fragments 2: Offering [kind of conqueror/alt/complete]
A Conqueror story with Gabrielle as Conqueror, sequel of sorts to Fragments 1: The Gift. A small moment in the lives of a Conqueror and her slave, and how moving forward sometimes requires waiting for the right time.

A Ladyhawkeüber [über/alt/complete]
A very short über-joke, sprung from the "what if we'd write a Ladyhawke/XWP über" question.

December 15th, 2003

Wild by Kim Pritekel & Alexa Hoffman [Über/alt/unfinished]
Zac Mitchell returns after six years on the rails to her life in the woods in Maine, only to discover the young girl that occupied her mind and kept her sane has grown up. Abel Cohen, a 19-year-old college student, who remembers when she played at her parents' summer cabin as a child, finds that perhaps an old childhood ghost isn't a ghost at all.

December 13th, 2003

Okay...where is it?  Only 4 more days before da deadline of da Annual Solstice Contest:
Bard Challenge #10 --Do you see what I hear?


We have about 9 stories in so far...but are waiting for da one youse is writin'.

Go to da ROOOLs page and read all about it.  Den write all about it.  Get into da holiday spirit.  I guarantees by da time youse finish da story, youse will be singing like a Christmas canary. <.eg.>

C'mon...get wit da program.
Oh, and somethin' to tink about...da Munchkins run da Academy and der cousin Carmine Elf works for da Big Guy. 

So we are gonna make youse an offer youse can't refuse...get me?

Y'know, "naughty lists" have been known to be changed...erased...obliterated.  We could be persuaded to do a little alteration for youse...but it's gonna cost.

We want a story. 

We get a story...we move youse from your annual hard earned place on da "naughty list" to da "oh-so-nice list". 

Badda Boom, Badda Bing. 

And youse gots presents comin' out of youse ears.

Deadline is December 17th...don't think about it too long.
Capisca?


OZ
http://www.academyofbards.org/contest/2003/holiday/

Christmas Special Delivery by Lois Kay [Über/alt/finished]
Sam and Jody have invited their friends and family to celebrate Christmas with them, at Murrook Farm. But do all the guests that show up have an invitation? Some of them are a little...unexpected. Others are struggling with...things, to be able to...make it at all. But they all have one thing in common: they want to be home for the Holidays, to celebrate a special Christmas together.

Added part 4 of The Ridded by Phair

Added part 9 and part 10 (conclusion) of Our Reunion by Jenah

December 12th, 2003

Added part 5 of Heart's Choice by Lois Kay

December 11th, 2003

New Ebooks
Endgame – Meghan O’Brien
Home Stretch - Mavis Applewater
Hidden Agenda - Mavis Applewater
Briars Creek  - Mavis Applewater
King’s Frolic – Mavis Applewater
Anna’s Christmas – KG MacGregor
Black by Gaslight – Nene Adams
Earth’s Song - LH Miller

December 10th, 2003

Comic Book Life by Zee [uber/alt/finished]
Remy probably holds the record for the worlds longest crush.  When she was 6 she fell in love, now as an adult her life through comics may just give her a shot at the object of her crush.  That's if she can survive television production, midgets, and wondertits... um, just read the story.

The Meeting by Hermes [finished]
This story describes the meeting of two women from totally different lifestyles who find their lives are joined and that they are fated to face lifes dangers together. One is being condemned by her family for what she is and the other is condemned by outsiders -the people she trades with- because she doesn't live her life as they think she should. As the title indicates, it is only the beginning of their new life together that is described here. I leave it to the readers to decide if there should be a continuation.

Added part 13 of Hammer and Nails by Lucid

December 9th, 2003

Anna's Christmas by KG MacGregor [complete]
In this very short holiday vignette, we revisit the characters of the Shaken series. Anna Kaklis has a whole new perspective on Christmas this year, as she takes stock of the impact five-year-old Andy has had on her life with Lily.

Added part 6 of The Retreat by Phair

December 8th, 2003

Endgame by Meghan O'Brien [alt/finished]
Delaney, a self-confessed cad and committment-phobe, meets a woman she shouldn't play. However, it's also the one woman she can't resist.

Damage by Sparky [alt/finished]
Jay Rollins is a crime tech at the Johnson County Crime Lab. She faces some of her most difficult challenges, professional and personal when she gets called in to help with a muder in her hometown of Lawrence, KS.

Added part 2 of The River's Edge by Denic

Added part 5 of The Irresistible Flame by DJWP

December 7th, 2003

Ho Ho Ho

Santa's lil' helper PHIL-OZ here...I'm gonna do my good deed of the day and remind y'all of some important stuff. I thought about doing this completely in verse. I thought about doing this completely in verse for about 5 seconds.

It lost.

You won.

Be happy.<.bg.>

Anywhozit...

Firstly, It's only 17 more shopping days until Christmas.
AARRGGHHH!!!!!!!!!
(Anyone who has ever worked retail knows I did not put enough exclamation points after that scream. <.bg.>)

I know what you are thinking... OHME...OHMY...OHWHATDOIDO?

Go ahead, ask?

PHIL, how can you help me out here?

As you already know from all those other 702 (are you keeping count Missy? <.bg.>) announcement/reminders...
the BardCon and the Academy both have Cafe Press stores with really nifty stuff in them.

Really Nifty...

Gifty Nifty.

Get my drifty?

Nifty.

Uh huh.

December brought us Lucia's "A Christmas Carol" image with DarRob Cratchit, Tiny Kerry and Chino, the snowflake chomping dog. Way too cute.
Way to find: Lucia of the Month Club or http://www.cafeshops.com/bc_projliteracy

**Check out the Christmas ornaments**

These are only available until December 31st...then Lucia will retire this image. Remember, your purchases in the LOTMC shop go toward supporting StoryPlus and the promotion of literacy.

Now at the Academy we have several mini shops:
--Dar and Kerry items (including the very popular Dixieland Yankee and ILS gopher designs)
--Merpupwear AARROO!!!!
--Academy Logo items
--PWP Research Assistant designs in the Under Where? shop (I'm sure there is someone you want to gift with those, no?)
--Plus, we have some of your favorite Book Covers on items.

Thanks to the wonderful bards who allowed us to borrow their covers: B. Cooper, Redhawk, L. Crist, K.G. MacGregor, T. Novan and T. Rickard--y'all rock!

Where to find these: Academy Marketplace or http://www.cafeshops.com/RAOB

Plus, I am happy to say we added a very special item to the Marketplace today...colorful and it makes a really terrific gift idea...forget Creation...have we got a calendar for you.

One of our resident Munchkin artists...Candy R. has created an absolutely stunning calendar. Some of the graphics may hint <.bg.> at something special going on that month, others may not...but all of the images are very, very cool. Really sharp, art deco-y beautiful images.

You will find it in the Logo Shop or go via the direct route: http://www.cafeshops.com/raob.8805614

Please remember all proceeds from the purchase of items from any of the Academy Shops will be donated to an organization supporting the fight against...ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)--Lou Gehrig's Disease.

Now, how else can I help...well, let me remind you of the various shipping methods and deadlines. If you want you items in time for Christmas, they must be ordered by the following dates:
December 7 to take advantage of PFI Super Saver rates
December 15 UPS Ground Rates
December 20 UPS 2 Day
December 22 UPS Next Day
December 8 International
December 10 Canada

BTW, you can shop in more than one store on the same order. :o)

Okay...now...OZ, Just OZ is going to take control of the message here for a minute...

The Academy Bard Challenge #10...Do you see what I hear? is presently underway. You can find all the Roools and the premise explained right here:
http://www.academyofbards.org/contest/2003/holiday/ It's kinda a musical challenge. And for the first time, we are allowing Bards to use their own characters in their submissions. Deadline is December 17th. Check it out.

Okay...back to PHIL-OZ.

So y'all, that is how PHIL-OZ, Santa's lil' helper is going to save all you slackers from last minute shopping. You can sit back, click, click and you are done. Why fight traffic, pushy people, and subject yourself to every rendition of Run Rudolph, Run ever recorded over the mall's Muzak system. <.shudder.>

Saving you from that alone should get my butt tossed back over to the "Nice" side of ol' Santa's list, no?

On second thought, I'll keep working at it. *<];o)

PHIL-OZ
www.bardcon.com
www.academyofbards.org

Another announcement:

We are pleased to announce two new authors and titles to the Cavalier Press fold.
Crystal's Heart by
Verda Foster and
B. L. Miller
The Chosen by Verda Foster >
Both titles will be released in Spring 2004. http://www.cavalierpress.com

Exist-sense by Emily Duncan [original/finished]
Ponderings of a writer

December 6th, 2003

Five new stories from Carola "Ryûchan" Eriksson

A Tale of Woe
A chilling story about the jealousy and wrath of the mechanical beast to serve as a warning to all - or maybe not.
Original, alt, complete.

Chocolate
It is the final hour before closing for Christmas when Sarah gets a desperate customer.
Original, alt, complete.

Faerie Folk
At night the faeries sing the song of life, breathing magic into the forest and love into the heart of one young Brownie.
Original, alt, complete.

A Very Merry Turtle Christmas
Crazy lesbian turtles at Christmas! A Christmas story, Dash and Kiri style.
Original, alt, complete though a sequel to the Dash & Kiri stories "Ignorance is Bliss" and "It's a Turtle Life"

Fragments 1: The Gift
A Conqueror story with Gabrielle as Conqueror. On the occassion of the Amazon Queen's birthday, a strange and complicated gift arrives from the East.
Conqueror, alt, complete though a first part of what might be a longer story.

Earth's Song by LH Miller [finished/alt]

Added part 5 of Love on the Line by Dimples

Added part 12 of Hammer and Nails by Lucid

Added part 8 of What Mother Never Told Me by Leslie Ann Miller

December 5th, 2003

Answer by GirlBard [über/alt/incomplete]
The continuing story in the Jaden & Grace series. Begins immediately after At Last.

Added part 4 of Heart's Choice by Lois Kay

Til the Music Stops by Trish Shields (ArdentTly) [finished/alt]
Story takes place during the Haunting of Amphipolis and Heart of Darkness.

Announcement

How about treating yourself or someone you love to the gift of good book for the holidays? Order now to get "The Last Train Home," the "First Lady/Madam President, 3rd Edition" 2 book set (sold at a discounted price and with complimentary covers), and/or "First Lady" and "Madam President, 3rd Edition" individually. These books have an estimated ship date of December 14th. Ever wonder if your reader feedback makes a difference? The print versions of "The Last Train Home" and "First Lady" contain new scenes that the readers asked for!
For more information:
http://www.starcrossedproductions.com/Cavalier/store.htm

December 4th, 2003

Here are four more from Mavis Applewater's Wednesday Afternoon Series -

Hidden Agenda
An executive is searching for a spy within her company only to discover that one of her employees has a very interesting secret life.

King's Frolic
A trip to a drag show proves to be very entertaining.

Home Stretch
During a long car trip a woman encounters, rain storms, traffic jams and romance.

Briars Creek
A saloon girl, a card game and a mail order bride brighten up a dreary mining town.

Added part 11 of Hammer and Nails by Lucid

Added part 4 of 1000 Miles by PsiDraconis

December 3rd,2003

The Way of Honor by TZ
A new addition (after five years!) to the Way of Life series.

The Way of the Regent by TZ
A couple of days in the life of Ephiny, Regent and Second-in-Command to Gabrielle. Highlights the stress and endless duties brought on by the war between the Spartans and Greeks, which is slowly encroaching on Amazon land. It is a bridge story in the Way of Life series (story #10 in the series).

New eBooks
Remembering Genevieve -  Amanda Calkins
Gift (The) - Meghan O'Brien

December 2nd, 2003

Announcement

Blayne Cooper aka Advocate had a bit of a technical problem with her email and deleted many well-thought out emails from readers that she received in the month of November. She fully intended to respond to these but now they are lost. She extends her regrets for the problem and wants people to know she didn't ignore them. If there was a specific issue you needed addressed, her email is up and running again.

December 1st, 2003

Tis the season and December's image is up.

This one isn't cute, folks...it is precious. <.g.>

Check out Little DarRob Cratchit and Tiny Ker (and, of course, Chino makes an appearance too) from A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

We have ornaments available this month, as well as holiday greeting cards, and cute little teddy bears along with our limited edition prints, tiles, shirts etc.

The mugs would make a lovely gift...especially if you stuffed them with chocolate...ooh yeah... M&Ms...no...Hershey Kisses...yum...

Ahem...I digress.

Anywho...

If there is an item you would like, but do not see...email me and, if I can, I'll be happy to put one up for you. If you would like the ornaments, or any apparel item, personalized with a name...email me, I can do that too. I'll send you the link(s) to the personalized item(s), so you can place the order. However, it's gonna cost you an extra 50 cents, per item.

StoryPlus thanks you for the extra donation. :o)

http://www.cafeshops.com/bc_projliteracy

Thank you for your continued support of StoryPlus via the LOTMC.

You Roc!

Phil, BardCon Staff
BardCon 5/29/04-Orlando

In The Light of Day part eight of Mavis Applewater's series Whispering Pines, a visitor to the manor, troubles Anna, while Shawn is troubled by the events of her birthday.

Added part 10 of Hammer and Nails by Lucid

 



 
 



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