Saturday, December 8, 2012

Write A Holiday Short Story - The Source of Magic by Melodie Campbell

Happy Saturday!

Me and Reading just launced Write A Holiday Short Story Contest yesterday and I am happy to share the first story with you! It is written by my online friend and author whom I admire - Melodie Campbell. Her books always bring a smile to my lips and they truly make me giggle... a lot.

Ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm welcome to Melodie!

The Source of Magic

By Melodie Campbell

It was the first Christmas since Mom had died and I was missing her badly.  But I couldn’t cry.  I hadn’t been able to cry yet.  There was too much to do.

The several weeks she spent in hospital had dragged into months.  Day after day, I sat at her hospital bedside, paging through Vogue magazines, remarking on the fashions. In her youth and middle age, Elena had been a fashion diva.  As a child, I delighted in looking at her.  To my eyes, she was an enchanted fairy-tale princess decked out in brilliant splendor. 

“There is magic in beauty,” she would tell me, her amber eyes twinkling.

 This time in hospital, she was too weak to turn the pages.  So I did it for her.

“Look at this gorgeous purse,” I said, showing her the photo.  The handbag in question was a delicious fuchsia patent leather, her favourite colour.

 “I love it,” she declared.  “Wouldn’t it be perfect with a black coat.”

That sent me on a mission.  My mother had a black coat.  I had to find that purse for her. 

News got worse from the hospital.  That purse became the mission that kept me sane.  One November day, I hit pay dirt.  It was a lot of money, but I didn’t care.  It was beautiful and she would love it. 

Now it was Christmas morning, weeks later.  The decorations sparkled under artificial lights.  But Mom wasn’t there, so they would never sparkle quite as bright.  And she would never open the box that contained the purse we had both loved.

After the holidays, I would return it.  For now, I couldn’t look at it.

The turkey was dressed and in the oven.  I had everything under control.  There was so much to do and I had done it.  I watched my daughters open gifts, and smiled when they were delighted.  But I was tired.  So tired.

After a quiet period I saw Dad standing before me.  He stood unsteadily as befit his age.  But there was a soft look to his face that held my attention.

He held out a box.  It had the telltale hasty wrapping of a man.

“This is for you, sweetheart.  It’s from Mom.  She had me going all over town to find it.  You know how she got when she was determined.  She said you had a black coat, whatever that means.”

The box sat in my lap.  With fumbling fingers, I opened the lid.  Before I could speak, I felt the tears coming.  Blessed tears.  Tears that had been deprived to me until now.  Tears that had been waiting for the right moment.

It was the same fuchsia purse that I had bought for her. 

It was beautiful.  In fact, it was magic.


Thank you so much for a wonderful and heartwarming story, Melodie!

Melodie Campbell has over 200 publications and was a finalist for the 2012 Derringer and Arthur Ellis awards. She is the Executive Director of Crime Writers of Canada.

Follow Melodie’s comic blog at

Library Journal says this about Melodie`s third novel, The Goddaughter (Orca Books):

``Campbell`s crime caper is just right for Janet Evanovich fans.  Wacky family connections and snappy dialogue make it impossible not to laugh.``




Gina Gallo would like nothing better than to run her little jewelry shop.  Unfortunately, she’s also The Goddaughter, and, as she tells her new friend Pete, “you don’t get to choose your relatives.”
When Gina is reluctantly recruited to carry hot gemstones across the border, the worst happens: they get stolen.  Pete and Gina have no choice but to steal them back, even though philandering politicians, shoe fetishists and a trio of inept goons stand in their way. 

Short Excerpt from THE GODDAUGHTER

 We got through the border with no problem at all.  Of course, it`s much easier to get through borders without a semi-frozen dead body pretending to be asleep in the back seat.

And the one that started it all:
ROWENA THROUGH THE WALL (paranormal comedy) on Amazon

Once again, thank you, Melodie, for participating!
Now, there is a giveaway connected to the Write A Holiday Short Story Contest.
To enter, leave a blog comment below the post and you must enter the RC form below.
Open internationally!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy commenting and good luck!
Happy reading!



  1. Okay. You made me cry too. Well done, Mel. Now I'm on my mettle to write a story too.

  2. Oh wow, that brought tears to my eyes, Melodie. What a beautiful story! Thanks for sharing it.

  3. Thanks so much for these kind comments, Alison and Cathy! Somedays, when I'm missing my mother, I just don't feel like writing humour.

  4. I love your humorous stories, Mel, and I loved this one too. Truly a touching tribute.

    1. Thanks, Gloria. It's been pushing at me, waiting to be written, that one.

  5. Mel, you can't be beat for short stories! I've admired yours for years now. They brought us together. Well, your stories and you yourself. A Pleasure to read and learn from you, share with you.

    1. And you can't be beat for kindness! I was really missing Mom when I wrote that. Thanks, Cindy, truly.

  6. That was such a beautiful story. Just full of feeling.


  7. Such a beautiful touching story, thank for sharing it.
    wolfswan1 at gmail dot com

  8. Terrific story, Melodie. Very well done.

  9. Christina K. in the rafflecopter

    This was awesome! Very good in terms of celebrating the Christmas spirit:)

    ccfioriole at gmail dot com

  10. You're the master, Melodie. You have the short story down pat. Not too many people know that you've made more money with ss's than any other Canadian, so the rumour has it.

  11. Heartbreakingly beautiful. I cried, thank you!