Writing Challenge: Meet the Parents

(American) Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and the holiday is so much more than food. And a good thing, too, since our last writing challenge already focused on all the heat that can be generated in the kitchen. In switching gears from stuffing and pumpkin pie (my personal favourites), we decided to turn to those who gathered around the table to share that meal.

Regardless of whether you share blood or you chose them (or vice versa), family is an integral part of Thanksgiving. It’s not just avoiding the big three forbidden topics of conversation (money, religion, politics), or enduring that one person you’re glad you don’t have to see the rest of the year. For the truly brave at heart this is an opportunity to have their friends, significant others, or friends who could become significant others over for dinner to better understand who made them the way they are.

While a number of our books feature heroes meeting children they never knew they even had, this challenge is about parents. That could be an aunt or uncle or grandparent, any adult who was a mother or father figure to the hero or heroine.

In three to five paragraphs we want to see you describe how one member of your couple first comes into contact with the person or people who raised their eventual happily-ever-after.

In keeping in my tradition of adding a bonus element, this meeting cannot take place over a meal. That said, maybe the hero is out buying groceries and sees a familiar silky black ponytail, only to be shocked that it doesn’t belong to the woman he thought it did. Maybe the heroine stops by to drop something off only to find out that he still lives with his parents (shoutout to Taffy, who won the last challenge!). The possibilities are limitless!

You have until the end of Sunday, November 24th, 2019, to send in your submissions. Swing back around Monday afternoon and we’ll be announcing the first, second, and third place winners! We’ll be keeping a close watch on every one that comes in.

I also want to acknowledge that I said the next challenge wouldn’t be until December, but honestly, who’s complaining?

UPDATE: Having read through all 21 submissions I will say this: you really love twists! There were some truly wonderful first meetings between hero(in)es and their future in-laws, but these three favourites made it into our Editors’ Choice Top 3:

1st Place goes to Yvonne, whose revelation that the heroine arrested the hero’s mother grabbed our attention (and that of a few commenters, too!).

Following close behind is Joice in 2nd Place. Having the doctor conducting the ultrasound also be the baby’s grandmother was a delight, as was the chaotic fallout when she realizes this.

Renee Toton won 3rd Place by taking a graveside visit and having the scene skew more heartwarming than morbid. It may not be how the hero thought he’d meet her family, but it was touching nonetheless.

Thank you to absolutely everyone who submitted to this challenge, and here’s to your good luck in the next one!