Written Fireside is a round robin style written, short story feature based on the campfire game where one person starts a story then passes it on to the next person gathered by the fire to continue.

For each story I write part 1, then each participating author (a Fire Writer) adds a part in turn.

Dec 22, 2014

Naughty or Nice? Home for Christmas by Mandy Baggot

This Christmas enjoy how each author creates a unique tale from the same starting sentences written by

Georgia Beyers
the author of 
can be followed online 

twelfth in the anthology is

Mandy Baggot
fellow Harper Impulse author 
and a Fire Writer for Written Fireside 

Home for Christmas

Charlotte sat at the bus stop wondering whether she would make the naughty or nice list this year. Last year she had rescued a stray kitten and therefore considered herself most definitely “nice”. This year she had broken Daniel’s heart into a million tiny pieces, so “naughty” seemed to be the only answer. There’d be no Santa Claus coming down her chimney anytime soon. – Georgia Beyers

Chapter One - Christmas Sucks!

My eyes are rolling now and I close the magazine up. I should have guessed this week’s fiction feast would be another lame Christmas story. 

It’s Christmas Eve Eve and I am so sick of the sleigh bells ring-a-linging and Rudolph’s very shiny nose and I would happily stamp all over the Little Saint Nick. What I want to know is, who decided the whole of December should be sugar-coated, sickly sweet and drizzled in tinsel? 

My mom for one. The woman who was born wearing an apron and pays homage to Nigella Lawson. Thanks to my mom there’s always packets of stuff I don’t understand in our kitchen. Foreign nuts, damsons (?!), royal icing (as if the Queen of England has actually commissioned it), essence of wild boar… OK, that one might not be strictly true. But there are cherries that have had every natural flavor removed from them and are so glazed I can use them like a mirror.

I’m watching her now, in between reading lame stories and pretending to do homework. Homework in the holidays sucks particularly when it’s math. I understand math a whole lot less than I understand damsons. 

Mom’s humming freaking Nat King Cole while she sashays around the kitchen in her ‘Queen of the Grill’ apron. Dad bought it for her last birthday. Most moms would have thrown it back at him and demanded to know where the diamond necklace was. Not my mom. She squealed like she was sixteen, threw her arms around him and said it was the best present she’d ever been given. That’s the last time I buy her really really expensive tickets to the theatre with all my allowance… and every cent I could find down the back of the couch. 

‘You won’t finish that math by looking at me, Darla.’ 

Darn. Note to self: When reliving family memories stare down at homework book not into space. 

I drop my head before she can suggest I get all sugar-coated with her. 

‘Why don’t you come help me bake?’ Uh oh. Note to self: Drop head back into book a whole lot faster next time or do homework in your bedroom.

Copyright © Mandy Baggot

Read the rest of Home for Christmas plus fourteen more short Christmas stories for free right now. 

Mandy's bio: 

Mandy Baggot is a romantic fiction author. In 2012 she won the Innovation in Romantic Fiction award at the UK’s Festival of Romance. Her self-published title, Strings Attached was also short-listed for the Best Author Published Read award.
Also in 2012 she signed with American publishing house, Sapphire Star Publishing, who produced her novels, Taking Charge and the romantic suspense, Security.
In June 2013 she signed a two book deal with Harper Collins' digital first romance imprint, Harper Impulse.
She is a regular contributor to writing blogs and on-line magazine, Loveahappyendinglifestyle.
Mandy loves mashed potato, white wine, country music, World’s Strongest Man, travel and handbags. She has appeared on ITV1’s Who Dares Sings and auditioned for The X-Factor.
Mandy is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and lives near Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK with her husband, two daughters and cats, Kravitz and Springsteen.

Mandy is the author of 

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