Young Adult Sunday Drabble competition

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Amy Riddle- DeClerck


A vast and sprawling city lay before him. Towering skyscrapers so tall they were ringed in clouds made shadows on the streets.
“Where is this place?” he wondered. He had come here from far away, walking over deserts and through forests. This was the f
irst civilized place he’d found. His watch was ticking louder than normal, and he was stunned to see the second hand running backward. He tapped it. Broken, of course. He walked down the wide center street, looking for someone to tell him where he was. At last, he saw a woman in a bright blue dress in the corner. She smiled when she saw him and gave a curtsy.
“Excuse me, but what do you call this city?” he asked.
“Good morn, Your Majesty. Why, this is your city, of course. We did not rename it while you were away!”
“My city? I don’t know this place.”
“But, Your Majesty, this is the city of your birth. This is Oz.”
Oz, he said to himself, but it made no sense. He was from Kansas, and a weary traveller in a strange land. Surely, this was all some jest.
“To the palace for you, then?” the woman asked. She waved at the tallest building, a crystal jade monstosity with dark windows and a foreboding air.
“Yes,” he said, intrigued despite his apprehension. “To the palace.”


Kasey Mart


She opened her eyes as she felt the first drops of rain on her face she sat up slowly looking around. She wasn’t sure where she was or who she was but one thing she did know she was hungry. She stood up and started walking hoping to find help. She stopped as she seen a buck a few feet in front of her. Her fangs came out and she attacked. The buck struggled under her. She snapped his neck and fed. After she drained the buck she walked on. She stopped seeing cars drive by on the road. A car stopped in front of her. A woman got out of the car and headed towards her.
“Are you alright?”
“You sure your covered in blood”
“I tripped over a dead deer”
“What’s your name?”
The girl thought for a moment. “Kassie” she.
“Well let’s get you into the car and we can take you to the hospital”
“No hospital”
“Are you sure”
“I’m sure”
“Well get in the car and out of the rain”
Kassie looked back at the woods then got into the car


Terra James


I awoke to the sound of Dibs scratching. I’ve had enough of his shenanigans this week. I know he can’t possibly help how his panic attacks effect him, but his little fairy wings twitching a hundred times a minute scratching on the door’s wood sounded as if a giant tiger was scratching with his sharpened claws.
“Dibs, what’s the matter, now?” I ask him exasperated.
“I’m sorry princess. Can you ever forgive me?”
“Yes, you know I can, but what seems to be the problem?”
“If you find a dash at this party, you’ll have to marry according to tradition. Where will that leave me?”
I throw myself a cross my vast king size bed and sigh. The truth is I don’t have an answer, but marriage isn’t even in my plans for my future. I will have to run away from Aldagad. The question is will anyone miss me? Where will my marriage leave me? I know where, stuck with a jerk, I don’t love. This just saddens me. I pull back the covers and slide into bed. I cover up and force my eyes shut. Praying sleep will take me to dream land, where these problems don’t exist. As I drift off to sleep I murmur to Dibs. “I don’t know dear friend. Will you come with me?”


Terra James


The princess is snoring before I can ask her where I’ll be accompanying her to. I will do anything to stay with her. I’ll follow her anyway. It’s against the law of the kingdom to fall in love with a human if you’re a fairy, but my heart only knows what it feels. These things can’t be decided. They’re just mere emotions for God’s sake. Would princess Jasya marry me? Is it possible? I’d make her the happiest woman in the land. My fairy wings would look radiant on her beautiful body. This is the last thought I have before I drift off to sleep to meet her in our dream land, because even in sleep we won’t be separated. I hate you so king Delvar .


Kimberly-Reader Vanderbloom


I tried to grab on to something as I fell. It was so dark. I tried to scream but nothing but air came out. I prepared myself for the landing, if I was going to die I hope it would be quick. All of a sudden I started to fall slower almost floating. My feet touch the ground first. It was soft like walking on new plush carpet. I looked at my surroundings. The sky was purple with teal clouds. There were vivid pink trees. How could I have landed in Wonderland? Wonderland doesn’t exist or does it?


#fantasycon, #drabble, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #short-story, #ya

Steam Punk Saturday Drabble competition

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Kasey Mart

Scene from my book The Night Family-

I was pissed beyound pissed. My boyfriend’s ex who is also my enemy is pregnant with his child. Could things get any worse? I was so pissed that I left my house without saying anything and went to see Alin. He knew right away something was wrong when he seen me.
“Let’s go to the dungeon” he said it was a vampire bar.
“No i don’t want to”
“What do you want love”
“You” I said I walk up to him and kiss his neck.
“Kassie” he says
“He slept with someone so it’s my turn”


Don Ford

A Story To Tell

I was a late nightscribe. Maybe it was the routine of tea before bedtime that kept me up and burning the late night oil. When I got a story going in my head, I was persistent in laying down the ink.Then something queer happened. I remember it was a Friday night, and I had fallen asleep writing a new chapter, “In Harms Way”. When I woke up in the morning, the chapter was finished. I don’t mean I finished it; someone or something else had stayed up all night and completed the tale I was spinning.


Kelly Erickson

A Halloween story.

I was driving to my Mom’s on Halloween when I saw a disheveled man hitchhiking. I stopped and asked where he was going.
“To the train station.” He said.
I waved him into the car. “The train station is the other way. Come on. I’ll give you a lift.”
He can’t figure out how to put the seatbelt on. “I never been in a fancy new car like this.”
My old SUV is 12 years old. Okaaaayyy…
He starts telling me he didn’t think people stopped for hitchhikers any more. “Special wise a girl.” He asked where he needed to go to get a BART pass. He had a strong southern accent so I guessed he hadn’t used our Bay Area Rapid Transit before. I explained how to get a ticket. He gives up on the seatbelt and starts searching all the pockets on his baggy camouflage cargo pants. About that time I started to wonder if it was a good idea to pick up a hitchhiker in front of the county mental hospital.


Kimberly-Reader Vanderbloom


With a kiss of her cheek I left. I knew I would never see her again but I needed to kiss her one last time. I was heading out to sea. All boys were considered men at 16. The forced everyone into a draft. Of course I got picked to go to the sea. I’m scared of water, sea dragons and petrified of tge mermaids. Those mermaids will steal the skin off a young man like me. With a deep breath I aboard the ship to meet my new destiny.

#fantasycon, #drabble, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #short-story, #steampunk

Urban Friday Drabble competition

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Lu Whitley

“Watch out!”

Ella grabbed a handful of jute, took a deep breath, and stepped off the catwalk. Fire exploded through the rigging. Her compatriots screamed as they burned. With a pained grunt, her shoulder took the brunt of the force as she hit the end
of the rope and swung toward the cockpit. Toward Baron Wakefield. She landed with a clang, her boots skidding on the plated metal deck. “Face me, you bastard,” she yelled above the roaring flames.
Baron Wakefield turned slowly, a sneer curling his scarred upper lip. “Captain,” he chuckled humorlessy, “It’s time we finished this, don’t you think?”


Hilary Anderson


The city groaned under its own weight, people rushing here and there and everywhere. Skyscrapers towered to the skies and winds whipped through the manmade canyons. But here and there some people kept the faith. Small secret gardens bloomed: some humid and heady and others just a few wayside flowers. But those little green spaces and the guardians who tended them anchored the city to the earth and gave the city its soul.


Varsi Richardson Appel


The sun glinted off the shiny copper tubing that comprised the circulatory system of the old airship. Citrine squinted trying to see the docking station attached to the Tower of London. It had been 150 long years since she had set eyes on her beloved home base. She had heard in her absence the Sentinels were having trouble holding the city against the Robathions, robot warriors from the north intent on taking London by force.
Citrine heard a voice calling her name. Turning towards the sound she spotted her sister, Magenta, running towards her through the waiting crowd. She opened her arms just in time to catch Magenta as she leapt into her arms. She hugged her right and whispered, “I’m home. I’m finally home. “


Jenifer Boles


Steam bellowed into her face from the engine of her thirteenth attempt at an engine for his majesty’s latest contraption. How she was supposed to raise his small ship to the clouds was a feat which had kept her up at her tiny desk, pencil in hand, through the night. “Laurette?” Her brother called from the entrance of their workshop. “The king is almost here!” He was panicked and had every right to be. She shoved her plans at him as she dashed to her hiding place. “What progress have you made, Lord Bruntwood?” The king barked from the door.


Emily Stillings 

“Death by Snail” 

The town was abuzz at the arrival of Snailcraftsman, Shelley Joransbergen. Her giant snail slithered down the main drag. The shell of the snail was bronze, the light from inside shined through like stars, from the many windows, into the night. Atop stood Shelley, an accomplished tinker-woman. The snail came to a halt in front of all the townspeople, and Shelley descended to the dirt ground. They were waiting for her to speak. She swiveled her brass horn from behind her ear to her mouth. “Prepare to die!” she shouted. All the snail shell windows turned to canons, firing.


Virginia McKevitt Author


Ellie closed the hatch and wiped the sweat from her forehead.
“Grandpa would be proud of you, Ellie. You get your smarts from him.”
Ellie patted the boiler with her gloved hand and smiled. “Well, little brother, it looks like that crook, Marshall Cog
gins won’t be getting the Crescent Queen after all.” Ellie grinned. “Hear that, Billy? The paddles will be turning soon. Get Georgie to untie us from the dock.”
“Ellie!” Someone screamed from the open hatch above. “He’s coming, Ellie! What do we do?”
“Hold on tight, Billy. Looks like the dock is coming with us.”


Lesley Donaldson


Crunch-Grrr. I can picture it, the creature behind me. Its cloven feet, bifurcated tail and mangy coat are bearable next to the sound of its breathing. Part grunt, part whistle and all disgusting, I can’t stand to listen to the noise as it eats Dan’s bones and breathes through its mouth at the same time. If I lie still, maybe it won’t notice me. It can’t smell with that shoved-in nose, can it? Crunch-Grrr. Crunch-Grrr. Honey, why did you have to go camping in the Devil’s kitchen on a cryptid hunt for your 40th? Crunch-Grr. Crunch… It found me.


#fantasycon, #drabble, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #short-story, #urban, #urban-fantasy

Fairytale Thursday Drabble competition

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Marcia Bucktin


The night was cold and raining as the shadow of the man walks down the street. The man looked neither left or right as he continued down the street. He was dressed all in black and if you looked at him very closely you could see that he was over 6ft 6 with dark chocolate skin, with a very muscular build.
As he continued down the road, the quiet of the night was broken by the sound of his phone ringing.
He reached into his pocket and pulled out his phone.
” hello Nick here “
For a moment everything was quiet again and then……
” for crying out loud ..Yes I know you want chocolate ice cream Ironman. Thor wants strawberry and black widow banana now get off my phone….


Kimberly-Reader Vanderbloom


Gor the first time I wasn’t embarrassed that my dad was a doomsday prepper. When the world collapsed, we were on board a yacht. We made our down to Brazil when our engine failed. We were drifting. In the distance I could see an island. We had no choice, we jumped overboard and swam to the island. Exhausted, I turned and looked at the jungle. There were hundreds of small eyes looking back at me. We were on Snake Island where the golden lancehead vipers mutated.


Kasey Mart

Strange Things

A weeks ago something strange and unexplainable happened to me and my friends. We were out in the woods smoking a blunt when a plane flew over head and dropped something. Of course me and my friends went and checked it out. It looked like a meteor but it was glowing purple. As soon as my friends touched it it exploded. Three hours later we woke up with a Purple glowing Mark on our shoulders and gifts. Now the government is after us.


Amy Riddle- DeClerck


Ash covers everything. We bleed dust. Somewhere in the past is a memory of sunshine and stars. That is gone now, too. There are three of us left; Jessica, Jeremiah and Julie. Three Js. Does that matter? Probably not. We don’t say names anymore. We don’t talk. Hunger has been stalking us, famine on his tail and death at our door. When the world ended I was me, but now I am only a human. One of the last, I think. Jessica is weak and Jeremiah dull. I might be the only one who makes it. But do I want to? I know I’m too stubborn to give up, but maybe that’s worse. Hanging on til there’s nothing left but starvation. Drinking my own piss until it runs out too. Sometimes being strong is a curse.


Rebecca Bingham


Tired. So tired. How am I suppose to keep going? This place is like a deathtrap, he thought angrily. He stepped over a smaller piece of rubble, carefully avoiding the sharp edges. Remnants of the city’s courthouse lay just ahead.

That’s where he was suppose to meet her, this supposed ‘savior’. How ironic, he thought, chuckling. As if this city needed saving now. Better late than never doesn’t really apply once everyone is dead.

He’d heard she made a deal. It was hard to know for sure what was truth and what was wishful thinking though. The few people he’d spoken to and helped out couldn’t say for sure but they thought she was going to get them out of here. He couldn’t see how without giving into their demands, giving up all they held dear.

As he got closer he noticed a sound, faintly at first but steadily getting louder. What the hell, he thought. Nothing like announcing your position to everyone! She was going to get him killed. Women!

Crouching next to the building he slowly moved along the wall and peeked around the corner. There she was. Beautiful really. If only he could take her back to his hideout! Impossible of course but a man could dream, right?

And there next to her was the one responsible for allowing all the racket. Cam. “Hey!” he called out. “Are you trying to get us caught?” She smiled and lifted a gun he hadn’t noticed, pointing it right at him. “Sorry Nick,” she said, “but I have to. You’re the sacrifice.”

Shit. Maybe she did have what it takes to save those that were left. If only he hadn’t been staring at that car maybe he would have noticed the gun. Too late, he felt the bullet enter his chest. The last thing he heard was the purr of that engine.

#fantasycon, #drabble, #fairytale, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #short-story

Dark Tuesday Drabble competition

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Rick Haynes


The shaman washed the crimson from his hands. He glanced at the girl chained to the table, his eyes sparkling with the satisfaction of a task quickly completed.
Dagfinn, could hear the words screaming through her smashed lips.
‘Abbarane, is dead.’
His mind whirled with the new possibilities.
The witch would never interfere again, nor would her chosen successor. He turned back to the girl, a long blade in his hand.
A golden halo sparkled around his prisoner.
“A last present for my beautiful daughter, Ula.”
As the talons of the eagle ripped his face apart, Dagfinn couldn’t even scream.


Virginia McKevitt Author

Winter’s Raven

The first of winter’s snow danced and swirled into the valley on a soft breeze. Melkin watched as the white powder settled on his boots. He pulled his cloak closer and spat on the ground. His hatred for this place and its inhabitants grew with each cold breath he took.
He smiled as he watched the unsuspecting hoard of townspeople move into the valley. Killing his sister, the queen, was supposed to be his glory and these brainless pigs had ruined it all.
He turned and looked at the being closest to him. “Kill them all, Deadenfall.”


Desireé Moon

The Journey

My cloak swirled about my shoulders. An icy wind burned my cheeks, forcing a deep choke of air from my lungs. I lost everything. No one survived. With no other choice, I abandoned the only home I knew. Snow-capped valleys filled with orcs await me. Wraiths who live in the wood seek to steal my soul. But I do not fear the monsters ahead. I fear the fear. I fear the rage roiling inside.
Have I the strength to go on? Have I the strength to survive?



#fantasycon, #dark-fantasy, #drabble, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #short-story

Crimson Cloak Publishing on Fairytale Thursday

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Veronica Castle Welcome to Fairytale Thursday with Crimson Cloak Publishing

Crimson Cloak Publishing. A refreshing new voice in the publishing world.

My own involvement in Fairy Tale books began when I was asked to illustrate a book of Fairy stories called The Fairy Folk of Bracken Lea Wood, by Esma Race (now called The Magic World of Bracken Lea Wood). Chapter-heading sketches became more pictures scattered throughout the book, and Carly McCracken at Crimson Cloak Publishing received it via an agent and liked it!

I’ve since done more cover art and internal pictures, here is one…

Here are six ghostly tales by Melissa Harker Ridenour to delight children, with a chapter discussing the…



And here’s another I did the cover for, Little Big Toe byWesley Tallant

Little Big Toe’s small body holds a big heart: he is always helping others. Now he will fulfill his destiny.…
There’s a lovely video for Melissa Harker Ridenour Children’s Books‘ “Scary Ghosts” book which uses my sketches:

Veronica Castle's photo.



Here is my picture of “Horrid Rex”, the naughty puppy who first meets Glodwyn the Gnome and his friends when he runs off and gets lost in Bracken Lea Wood, in the first of The Crimson Cloak Anthologies, which was actually called Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest because the stories were collected as a means of self-publicity for the authors concerned before I joined Crimson Cloak. Carly McCracken liked the idea so much she wanted to continue the series: but many platforms don’t allow permanently free books to be listed, so it was decided to charge for the book and donate the money to charity. You can find Horrid Rex again in Santa’s Little Helpers, the fifth volume of the series, where he accidentally meets Santa Claus!…

As I also illustrated Little Bear’s Trial, a charming little story about a young native American boy’s moral education, by Roger Bone, I hope no-one will mind if I mention that here too!

Little Bear’s Trial is a children’s book by Roger Bone from Crimson Cloak Publishing. A Native American…

You can find children’s coloring pages along with other crafty ideas to occupy your children for hours in Crimson Cloak’s CHILDREN’S CORNER, which are my own designs based on each of our children’s books

Pages of fun tutorials, coloring pictures and free downloads for children

If you are looking for a clever Christmas present for a child, what better than a book of fairytales accompanied by coloring pictures and a pack of crayons? Anyone is welcome to download these for free. Find them here

Santa’s Little Helpers was a tongue-in-cheek reference to our generous donors for the fifth of The Crimson Cloak Anthologies but there are plenty of elves and fairytale characters within. Get the book for your own little imps here and support Action Against Hunger with every purchase!…

Volume 5 of the Crimson Cloak Anthologies is a children’s miscellany of stories and crafts, for…

Video for some of Santa’s Little Helpers author/illustratorJohn Barnett‘s other books


L Sydney Abel made the teaser trailers for Santa’s Little Helpers!




New author Barry Harper co-wrote the charming story of Sybil the Sneezing Snake for our fairytale Christmas book Santa’s Little Helpers

Barry Harper and John L. D. Barnett’s story Sybil the Sneezing Snake appears in volume 5 of the Crimson…

Hello to L Sydney Abel, whose magical story of a mouse and a wizard can be found in Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest (and don’t miss his Rude Rhymes, in Santa’s Little Helpers)

Crimson Cloak Publishing offers a wide range of great books for all tastes
Catch Lynne North‘s gorgeous stories The Fiery Sneeze, and Gordon’s Great Adventure in volume 5 of The Crimson Cloak Anthologies Santa’s Little Helpers. Watch for her upcoming books Emily and the Enchanted Forest, Witch in Progress, and Be Careful What You Wish For. The latter sees a young leprechaun who yearns for adventure kidnapped when he strays from the leprechaun village and is displayed as a sideshow at a travelling fair.

Action Against Hunger USA's photo.Action Against Hunger are the charity supported by the fifth Crimson Cloak anthology Santa’s Little Helpers

Charity Organization


Meet Esma Race, author of the Bracken Lea series, who has also contributed a story to each volume of the crimson cloak anthologies

Esma Race is an author at Crimson Cloak Publishing

Saleh’s Gift is the story of how a horse, an owl and some magical wolves save a ranch: catch Gary Winstead‘s charming story in Santa’s Little Helpers

Gary Winstead is an author at Crimson Cloak Publishing

Author Janice Clark writes wonderful fairytales and has contributed a story to all The Crimson Cloak Anthologies: catch The Carousel Unicorn in Santa’s Little Helpers, volume 5

Janice Clark is an author at Crimson Cloak Publishing

Prolific Fantasy writer Helen Alexander Rusinoff donated her story The Ugly Princess to volume 1 the Crimson Cloak Anthologies Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest, as well as a vampire story Nigel, which can be found in Love Matters, which was volume 4: find out more about her other work here…

Crimson Cloak Publishing offers a wide range of great books for all tastes

Rosita Bird‘s clever fairytale The Elf’s Secret will be out soon from Crimson Cloak Publishing. Her story Santa’s Great Idea, illustrated by the talented LynnCostelloe IllustratorAuthor, can be found in Santa’s Little Helpers

Rosita Bird is the author of several children’s books with Crimson Cloak Publishing

Lynn Costelloe‘s gorgeous illustrations have a fairytale quality about them: find some in Santa’s Little Helpers. She has illustrated several books for Rosita Bird: have a look at Emma Tate and the Magic Plate …

Lynn Costelloe is an artist and author with Crimson Cloak Publishing

Author and poet Don Ford has two items in Santa’s Little Helpers

Don Ford is an author at Crimson Cloak Publishing

A shout out to author Cynthia MacGregor, whose children’s craft ideas can be found in the children’s Christmas book Santa’s Little Helpers: fairytale fun for children, in support of a great cause

Crimson Cloak Publishing offers a wide range of great books for all tastes

Author John L D Barnett has contributed many of his illustrations to Santa’s Little Helpers: look for Tim and Betsey Save Christmas, by Peter Bernfeld

John L D Barnett is an author with Crimson Cloak Publishing. He is the creator of the popular Friz the…

Elves and fairies galore appear in volume 1 of The Crimson Cloak Anthologies Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest. A delightful collection of children’s stories collected by a gnome…

Here is the eponymous gnome Glodwyn, one of the Fairy Folk of Bracken Lea Wood created by Esma Race. The Magic World of Bracken Lea is the first in this series…

World Literacy Foundation's photo.The Charity supported by sales of the first Crimson Cloak Anthology Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest is the World Literacy Foundation – help a child change their life through the power of literacy today.

Charity Organization
Here is the Bracken Lea video




Author Mary Filmer contributed a charming fairy story to Glodwyn’s Treasure Chest

Crimson Cloak Publishing offers a wide range of great books for all tastes

Fairytales are a popular genre which can delight children and adults alike: we have many to choose from. Try The Wishing Elf, byWesley Tallant: this is the charming tale of an old man whose childlike belief in the Wishing Elf living in a tree in his garden is the key to saving his granddaughter’s life …

Can a magic elf grant an old man’s wish that his grandchild be able to walk again?
If it’s magic you’re after, what could be better than a wish-granting dragon? Garson is the creation of author Bill Hunt (William Hunt)…

Sun, sea and sand: a get-away-from-it-all fairytale? Captain Jolly is living many adults’ fantasy, in Captain Jolly’s Do Over by John Ingrisano…

Captain Jolly’s Do Over is a candid, politically incorrect novel about relationships, freedom, loss and…

Visit a fairytale world in which an elf must help to save the town that has forgotten Christmas, in this charming seasonal story by Jane Finch…

With a touch of magic and some unusual helpers, Mary arrives in Berryfield with two missions. One is to bring…

The Easter Lamb by author Mark Conte is the fairytale we all wish could be true. Children conspire to save their Easter dinner from its horrid fate, in this funny and heartwarming story

The Vianello family buy a lamb to fatten up for Easter dinner, but the children have other ideas and hatch a…

Video for The Easter Lamb by Mark Conte, Author



#fantasycon, #childrens-book, #crimson-cloak-publishing, #fairytale, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #publisher, #the-crimson-cloak-anthologies

#FantasyCon is up and running. Are you there?

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It opened yesterday about this time, and we’ve already had two wonderful groups of authors come in to start talking about their books with visitors, fans, and just about anyone else who stops by their booth.  I don’t have an exact count, but I think it’s somewhere in the range of 50 authors, and from the fertile minds of just this small number of participating people, I’ve already seen almost double that in the subgenres of books that are out on display.

Sci-fi Sunday was a huge success, and it’s not over yet.  Paranormal Monday was just as much fun, and IT’S not over yet.  Seriously, if you like fantasy, romance, erotica, sci-fi, paranormal, or any combination in between, you should come see this event.  We’ve got authors from around the world, which means that when you get there, there’s a good chance someone will be around to chat with.  No lines, no roar of the crowds to talk over, no travel.  What else could be better?

Come on over and check it out!

Oh, and if you like to take a walk on the darker side… Dark Tuesday is about to start!  Whee!

Sci-fi Sunday Paranormal Monday Dark Tuesday

#fantasycon, #artist, #author, #blogger, #fantasy, #fantasy-story, #live, #paranormal, #publisher, #reader, #sci-fi, #science-fiction