Solstice Bard Challenge #12
Votes are in
Visit to see who the writers were!

Tsunami/Earthquake donations

January 31st, 2005

Added parts 7-12 (conclusion) of The Edge by thenorm

After the Fire (The Edge II) by thenorm [alt/über/unfinished]
If you found out the one you loved was ultimately responsible for the ugly things that shaped your life, could you still love that person?

January 30th, 2005

The Edge (Part 1-6) by thenorm [alt/über/complete]
Two women working in a restaurant fall in love whle being stalked by a psycho.

Added part 7 and part 8 of The Ordinary Series by Evelyn C.

January 29th, 2005

Added part 12 of The War Between the Hearts by Nann Dunne

January 27th, 2005

Fool for Love by Erin Jennifer [alt/original/complete]
The quest for true love is filled with pitfalls and hidden dangers. Tired of the journey and alone on an empty beach, Kara Pavlovich was on the verge of ending it all when Faith jogged into her life. This is their story.

-from KG MacGregor
KG MacGregor is pleased to announce that her books -- Shaken, Malicious Pursuit, and The House on Sandstone -- are now available from Bookends Press at StarCrossed Productions - Shaken and Malicious Pursuit are slightly revised from earlier editions; The House on Sandstone is a brand-new release.

-from Sarkel Bard
Sarkel, the author of "All in the Family" ( has asked that the story be taken down because of a possible publishing deal. You have a week to save copies, so don't delay!


January 26th, 2005

Shards by Ladyhawke [alt/über/complete]
What if your past totally controlled the person you are now? When can you draw a line between what you know is real and what isn't? How could you fight against an event that created every fear within you, when it is locked in the past and cannot be changed.

All of these questions live as part of Jo's life and make her who she is. A life of lies, fear and conformity. That is until she meets someone who throws her controlled world into chaos and her rein on sanity begins to slip.

Can Jo face her fear and survive.....

Back To Reality (Island Dreams Part Two) by Mavis Applewater [über/alt/complete]
Robbie and Ginny are back for another adventure

Added part 5 and part 6 of The Ordinary Series by Evelyn C.

January 25th, 2005

Added part 5 of Second Son by A.K. Naten

January 22nd, 2005

Added part 11 of The War Between the Hearts by Nann Dunne

January 19th, 2005

Borrowed Reality by Siel LeDain [über/alt/complete]
"Somethings are just not meant to be. No matter how hard you fight, sometimes fate would sneak out its horrible hand and slap you over and over... that was Grace's story.
Some other times, when you don't seem to find the answer to something, you choose to consciously forget it, to erase it from your memory..., but the imprint is always there. That was my story.
And this is the story of how both Grace and I faced our demons together, as it should have been from the beginning. But, as I said, somethings are just not meant to be."

Power Of Your Heart by Debbie Dee [über/alt/complete]
Sam Knight knew the minute she met Cricket Jones that she was someone special. She found out how special when Cricket did her Magic of being able to move and seen things no one else could. What deep secret is Cricket going to find out now that they are close to the kidnappers. Could it cost one of them their lives. This is Part 2 in my The Magic In Your Heart Series

Added part 3 of Blood and Honor by Windstar and Zee

January 18th, 2005

All That Matters by SX Meagher [original/alt/complete]
Blair and David Spencer desperately want a baby. Unable to conceive after trying for a year, they turn to fertility specialists. One of the doctors, Kylie Mackenzie, grows to be a trusted friend and advisor for Blair. She and David keep trying, with the procedures growing more invasive. Blair has second thoughts and wants to take things slowly. But David is ready and willing to go to any lengths to make his dream a reality -- even at the risk of turning their marriage into a nightmare.

January 17th, 2005

Arbor Vitae by SX Meagher [original/alt/complete]

Added parts 10-14 of Once Upon a Time by Merry Shannon

Added parts 2-4 of The Ordinary Series by Evelyn C
More about our ordinary couple and Dee's affair. (follw-up to The Importance of Being Ordinary)

January 15th, 2005

Added part 14 of Control by Kim Pritekel and Alexa Hoffman

Added part 10 of The War Between the Hearts by Nann Dunne

January 14th, 2005

From Cavalier Publishing (and I can't tell you how excited I am to announce this! - steph)

Black by Gaslight (the classic novel of Victorian murder and mystery by Nene Adams, which has been completely re-written by the author and contains more romance, more adventure, and more suspense than ever) - published by Cavalier Press - will be available for the first time for purchase at the Burbank Con. For details, see (editor's note- the book cover is FANTASTIC!)

Added part 5 of Shot Down by Tianna Shepherd

January 13th, 2005

The First Time for Friends by Nativebard [über/alt/complete]
Julie has found the perfect roommate for her friend Nicole, but what happens when it turns out to be someone from her past?

from PD Publishing

PD has new authors to announce! Welcome our newest authors Susanne M. Beck and Okasha Skat'si. We will be publishing their story, The Growing, and it should be available by January 2006. For more information please see their author page, or

January 12th, 2005

The Decision Coin by Nyrdgyrl [original/alt/complete]
Until recently, therapy had been Odessa Martin's life and livelihood. Where could she turn when old practices don't work anymore? Sometimes answers appear in the most unlikely places.

A Triumph of Love, Part II: The Magic of the Solsticeby DJ Belt [short story/complete/alt/original]
In this sequel to A Triumph of Love, Sara and Jeni's first Solstice in Southern Breeze are full of surprises. In the midst of the social chaos on their planet, they redefine the meaning of "family" for each other in a most wonderful way.

January 11, 2005

A Night Full of Memories By Cheeyah [XWP/alt/complete]
Wanting their first time together to be perfect, Xena makes a reservation at an inn that holds a special significance for her.

January 10th, 2005

Added a revised version of part 11 of Desolation by Maderlin Bidmead

January 9th, 2005

Added part 9 of The War Between the Hearts by Nann Dunne

Added part 9 of Coward by Phair

Added parts 5-9 of Once Upon a Time by Merry Shannon

Added part 10 and part 11 of Desolation by Maderlin Bidmead

January 8th, 2005

Courting the Amazon Queen by Annaria [classic/alt/complete]
Courting the Amazon Queen is a first time story in which the Warrior has to stay ahead of the competition. Not very explicit.

January 7th, 2005

Warlock's Shadow by JH [über/alt/complete]
Every family has its share of secrets and skeletons. The Morgan family is no exception. But one of those skeletons is about to be dug up and Casey Morgan is not at all happy.

January 6th, 2005

Added part 7 of Even Heroes by PsiDraconis

January 5th, 2005

Added part 9 of When You Dance with the Devil by Harley

For Love by Karyna [X:WP, alt, incomplete (this is the first chapter), Post-FIN]
Gabrielle travels back to Greece after Xena's death in the hopes of picking up the pieces of her shattered life but Fate has other plans. Forced to find a way to bring Xena back with the help of one of her future reincarnations, Gabrielle struggles to find Xena's soul before it is to late... for everyone.

-from Steph

I just had to share this note we got yesterday. Phil does *so* much work putting these challenges together, I just want to give her a little recognition. Reposted with permission-

As a humble 'bard' I would like to offer a public appreciation to Oz and her helpers for consistently providing us with truly imaginative, yes difficult, but most of all fun "Bard's Challenges"
The nature of the challenges may vary but the standard is always of the highest.
At first glance some of them appear nigh impossible, yet that is where the challenge lies and that is what provides the inspiration for bards to 'give it a go'.
Writing them may be tough, goodness only knows how tough it must be for Oz to create the pesky things :) Thank You Oz, I salute you.

A grateful Bard

January 4th, 2005

Welcome to the Academy Keagan X. O'Conner!

God's Grudge? by Keagan X. O'Conner [PWP/original/alt]
This is the story of one woman with an incredibly frustrating day. Does God have a grudge against the small blonde medic or is does he just get a laugh from making her life difficult and being her torturer? Will she ever get the release she needs?

from OZ but totally shared by steph!

Okay Class...Your homework assignment for today is... go back to the Bard Challenge entries here: on a few of the stories that you read...and then click on the email links and FEED THE BARDS, please. You did all the tough stuff read, you pondered, you, do the easy stuff and make some folks very happy. Please take a few moments and feed a bard or seventeen. <.bg.>  Thank you. OZ

January 3rd, 2005

Added part 8 of The War Between the Hearts by Nann Dunne

Added part 2 of Blood and Honor by Windstar and Zee

Added part 2 ("New Beginnings") of Thirteen by Emyster

January 2nd, 2005

OZ's Correction...

Yes, the Great and Wondrous OZ made a mis...a mis...a mis...a slight boo boo yesterday. I implied that only one story went the whole deal above and beyond by including all the words, and the categories and the amazons.

There were two.

Story #8 Head Hopping for the Holidays also included all the words, all the categories and some amazons.

I humbly apologize to the bards of that story.

The Category 1 Winner remains Story 1.

If you are keeping score...
Story 1: 78 words, 12 categories and 5 amazons-- total 95
Story 8: 78 words, 12 categories and 4 amazons--total 94


Welcome to the Academy, Merry Shannon!
Once Upon a Time [original/alt/unfinished]
Princess Shasta Soltranis of Lysteria enjoys a pampered life of court dances, elaborate ballgowns and the occasional secret fencing match with her twin brother Daric. But on the day of her thirteenth birthday, her entire world is shattered by a brutal assassination attempt that takes her brother's life and very nearly hers as well. Her father declares that the mysterious slave boy who saved the princess is to become her personal bodyguard, to be trained as a soldier and follow Shasta literally every moment of the day, even sleeping at her bedside. What Shasta doesn't know is that her new guardian has a very well-kept secret: he's a actually a girl!


January 1st, 2005

Once again, we had a very successful Solstice Challenge... thank you Bards and thank you readers.

Oh boy...this one was a close one. We had two stories go neck and neck right down to the wire.

Now, because AOL and Yahoo decided to play "no so nicely" with each other during part of the voting period (I got locked out of my own lists for part of the time)


because we did have a few folks contact us because their votes kept getting bounced


because ALOT of folks mentioned in their votes that their decisions were between two specific stories...

I am going to invoke "OZ Prerogative."

Yes, Yes it is good to be OZ. ;o)

I'm declaring a tie.

The Academy will give prize packets to both winners (best story category 2) and also to the winner of the most words used (category 1).

I suppose now you want to know who the winners are doncha?


Category 1: Most Words Used Several stories used all 78 words and added a few amazons but only one story used all the words, added amazons and also worked in the list categories. And did it very cleverly too. Our prize for most words used goes to:
Story #1: Intimate Connections, Phone Tag--You're It by Chelle.

Category 2: Best Story (or in this case stories) FYI, every story received votes but these two led the pack (and with two very different types of stories)...
Story # 3: Sand Angels by Ladyhawke
Story #15: Fire and Water by S. Lynne

If all three bards would contact me privately, I will arrange to get your prize packets to you. Also, I wanted to mention again that wormser58 was our Punzle winner.

I hope everyone had fun and, fair warning, we'll probably have another Bard Challenge this summer. ;o)

Big thank you to Steph and the Munchkins for all their continued hard work on these challenges and for putting up with me <.bg.> and also to EVIL J for contributing evil, evil puns and the graphic expertise on the Punzle. Y'all ROCK!


New stories by Absinthe Angel 777:

Heroic Barding Junior Year [classic/alt/complete]
Young Gabrielle encounters some trouble during her third year at the Athens School of Fine Arts. One of my many alternate plots. 12/28/04

Indecent Proposal [classic/alt/complete]
Desperate for some cash Xena & Gabrielle take one of Hercules' junk jobs. Fun times in the tiny Kingdom of Eroticus

Promise [classic/alt/complete]
A private talk between Eve & Gabrielle

Butyrm Arachis Hypogaea et Quilon Acinus [classic/alt/complete]
Gabby's Latin isn't all that great. I'll blame any grammaritical errors on her. *s* Probably should have asked Livia but she was off with her wacky cult. Xena got it in her head to ask for a peanut butter & jelly sandwich and this is what resulted.

Help survivors and their families by making monetary donations to these organizations:

American Red Cross International Response Fund
Direct Relief International International Assistance Fund

United States Agency for International DevelopmentDonate to the International Response FundSupport South Asia Tsunami Relief Efforts Information resource for the humanitarian relief community

Archives 2000 - 2004

- HOME -