It’s a week-and-a-half until Christmas and the Yuletide spirit is contagious. Just about everyone is in a festive mood. How do writers celebrate Christmas? They party with other writers — as Crime Writers of Canada’s Toronto members did this past Tuesday evening at their gala Christmas celebration. My writer buddies in the Haliburton Highlands, where I spend my summers, have already had a few seasonal gatherings, and they plan to get together again on Dec. 19 with a Live Poets Society event at the Dominion Hotel in Minden.
Writers also write Christmas stories at this time of year. It’s a time-honoured tradition. Charles Dickens, O. Henry, Kenneth Grahame and other great writers of the past turned out memorable Christmas tales that are retold every year. And writers today are following in their footsteps.
Thanks to Inga Kupp-Silberg–writer, book blogger extraordinaire and online friend who lives clear across the globe from me in Estonia–I’ve just written my first Christmas short for her Holiday Short Story Contest. Titled “Maxie,” it’s a prequel to Safe Harbor and takes place a few days before the novel opens on Dec. 30. It tells the story of how the Golden Labrador, Maxie, joined the Tierney family. You can read it on Inga’s book blog here.
While “Maxie” is my first Christmas short story, Safe Harbor is novel that speaks about the spirit of Christmas. It opens on the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, and centres around a very special boy child and the important part he comes to play in the life of Pat Tierney. Through him she learns to forgive, to accept and to err on the side generosity.
Like to read some new Christmas stories? Gather the family around the computer. Inga will be posting stories from writers around the world (who write in English) on her blog this month. And if you’d like to write one yourself, check out her rules. Rules, contest prizes and all the stories that have been posted to date can be found here.
Happy reading and writing!