A Free Romantic Short Story For You


The Phone Call

An original short story by Angelina M. Lopez

Sam was her husband's best friend and the man who got Rosemarie and her daughters through the worst two years of their lives. Now he was Rosemarie’s best friend, and he always picked up the phone when she called, no matter what, no matter when.

But when she calls him a few days before Valentine’s Day to ask for the one thing their friendship isn’t providing, will she destroy their relationship forever?


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Talking Romance At My Local Independent Book Store

 Moderating the first Romance Roundtable at One More Page Books with authors Lori Ann Bailey, Mia Sosa, and Sharon Wray. Photo credit:  One More Page Books .

Moderating the first Romance Roundtable at One More Page Books with authors Lori Ann Bailey, Mia Sosa, and Sharon Wray. Photo credit: One More Page Books.

I learned some amazing new facts last night when I moderated the first Romance Roundtable at our local independent book store, One More Page Books.

  • Romance novels are contraband in high-risk maternity wards because they make a woman contract prematurely.

  • Some well-known authors use the term “wood working” when having analytical discussions about sex scenes in their books while their children are around.

  • Not even a depressing news day and rain can keep diehard romance fans away from a premier Romance Roundtable.

I was honored to be asked to moderate this panel featuring phenomenal romance writers Lori Ann Bailey (Scottish historical, the HIGHLAND PRIDE series), Mia Sosa (contemporary romance, PRETENDING HE’S MINE), and Sharon Wray (romantic suspense, the DEADLY FORCE series). Since it was the first of what we hope are many romance panels at One More Page Books, we decided to talk about everyone’s “origin” story — how they came to and started writing romance — as well provide some foundational info about the romance genre.

Yes, the writers all agreed, a guarantee of a “happily ever after” at the end of a romance was paramount.

Yes, romance novels were more important now than ever, with their visions of an aspirational world where women are admired for being bad assess and men understand that consent is sexy.

Some favorite tropes for the authors are enemies-to-lovers, brother’s best friend, marriage of convenience, and star-crossed lovers. Sigh.

And all the writers agreed that they set aside a time and a place, a drink (wine or coffee) and a playlist to write the steamy love scenes that are important to the tale of two adults falling in love.

One More Page Books established a new romance section days before the event (watch video here). I’m thrilled to be part of this movement supporting the romance genre here in my home town!

Come See Me in Boulder at My First Book Store Event

This whole author thing gets more and more real every day!

Never more real than when I see my name and picture alongside the likes of New York Times bestselling author Roni Loren and international best-selling author Tiffany Reisz.

On Wednesday, July 18, at 7:30 p.m., I will join these and three other romance writers -- Aliza Mann, L. Penelope, and Maggie Wells -- to take part in a Romance Authors Panel at the Boulder Book Store in Boulder, Colorado. The event was arranged by our spectacular agent, Sara Megibow, who will also be part of the panel.

It's $5 to attend, but you will receive a voucher worth $5 that you can use in the store. 

Come see us!

I Have An Agent

I was going to come up with a clever headline. But there is no being clever when you've hit the biggest accomplishment of your adult professional life. I have no irony or sarcasm or wink, wink, nudge, nudge when I realize I've crossed the threshold from "I want to be a professional romance author," to "I AM a professional romance author."

Or, at least, Sara Megibow thinks I can be.

I met Sara in the spring of 2011 at the Washington Romance Writers' retreat, and we were super into each other. Unfortunately, she wasn't super into my book. She nailed what was wrong with it -- the dialogue was flat and stuffed with info. I wasn't ready. That summer, however, we chatted for a couple of minutes out on the tiny four-person balcony of NYC's famous Flatiron Building, where St. Martin's Press had its annual party. 

Every time I see a picture of that iconic building, I think of Sara.

This time around, she thinks I'm ready. I think I'm ready. Still, it's astonishing to me that another human being is going to hang their paycheck on the words I type at my desk in my pajamas. 

For her to believe in the words, the book, my present skills, and future ability is staggering. Mind-blowing. I'm still in the "pinch me" state. I know this honeymoon phase won't last forever, but damn, I'm going to enjoy while it lasts. Sara certainly helps, with her vibrant "WOO HOOOO" responses every time I get an email from her. Her woo-hoos make me feel like I can climb mountains.

I'm thrilled I've found someone who wants to climb with me.

A Shout Out to My Arrow Fanfic in USA Today's "Happy Ever After"

Guess who was mentioned in USA Today's romance blog, "Happy Ever After?" THIS GIRL!

Denny S. Bryce, HEA columnist and romance author, first interviewed me in 2015 about my Arrow fanfiction story Desperately Seeking. I didn't realize at the time that it was her first interview for her inaugural blog about fanfiction. Three years later, she's revisiting her favorite stories and chose mine to lead her column. 

 Excerpt from  USA Today's "Happy Ever After" blog by Denny S. Bryce . Roxanne was my pen name.

Excerpt from USA Today's "Happy Ever After" blog by Denny S. Bryce. Roxanne was my pen name.

I've known Denny for a few years now and she's a hardworking author as well as a generous soul -- she's given so much of her time and energy to our writers' organizations, the Washington Romance Writers and Romance Writers of America. I don't know what I did to fall under this woman's special light, but I will be eternally grateful.

I wrote Desperately Seeking after a three-year writing hiatus. This story and Wattpad helped re-ignite my love of writing; it gave me my creative soul back. So having this story recognized and praised this way is tremendously gratifying. And comes just when I need it. I'm currently riding the roller coaster of submitting my book to agents, having one agent tell me she loves the concept while another agent tells me my characters are unlikeable, and writing confidence is a shaky thing right now. 

Denny's praise of my story three years later helps me believe that all these hours I've spent at the keyboard aren't a waste of time.

Check it out.

Must-read fan fiction: Denny S. Bryce celebrates 3rd anniversary of fanfic recs with ‘Arrow,’ ‘Bones,’ ‘Farscape,’ ‘Firefly’ and ‘Scandal’

by Denny S. Bryce


Can you believe it? I’ve been hanging out here at Happy Ever After, sharing fan fiction recommendations since Feb. 18, 2015, people. That’s three years! And I still haven’t covered nearly as much fic as there is out there!

Now, you know, I do have some favorite genres I simply can’t back away from. You’ve seen my unabashed love of all things BtVS from my very first post. I also have a weakness for anything and everything sci-fi, or with vampires, and I like my fan fiction heroes superhuman, alien or Supernatural. (And yes, that was a shout-out to the boys!)

For this month’s column, I decided to do a throwback fan fiction post. So, I scoured a few of my early columns from 2015 and am sharing some of those recs, here again, this month.

Happy anniversary to me! (Click to keep reading...)