Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Control. Possess. Seduce. Contest

Control. Possess. Seduce.

• Control: the power to influence or direct people's behavior or the course of events.

• Possess: have as belonging to one; own.

• Seduce: entice into sexual activity, attract powerfully.

Nicffwhisperer & CarrieZM are thrilled to announce the
 Control. Possess. Seduce. Contest for Twilight fanfiction!!

Give us an Edward with one of these characteristics or maybe all three! This is not a BDSM Contest, but a dominant male contest. We want strong, intense, all encompassing Edwards.

Entries are being accepted starting January 7, 2016. This is an Anonymous contest.

Follow us on Fanfiction to find out the details:
Come follow us on Twitter:  @CPSffContest
Come follow us on Tumblr:
Come join our facebook group filled with picspiration for writers & readers:

Length: 3,000 to 15,000 words
Genre: Any genre.
Rating: M only. Readers, judges, and participants MUST be over 18.
Pairing: Edward/Bella ~ONLY~

Number of Entries: 2 single entries per author, plus 1 collaboration allowed.

Continuations: After voting is completed & the winners have been announced, you’re free to continue your one-shot. All submissions will be validated upon receipt to make sure rules have been followed and to check a base level of quality. Betas MUST be used.

Bring the sizzle, the dirty, and the seduction. Write us an Edward we just can't forget!

Have questions?

PM the Contest FF site

Monday, December 21, 2015

What we're reading in TLS this week ~ The Classics

In our last post of 2015, we wanted to bring you a list of what TLS considers cult classics in the Twilight fandom.  A "your fandom card may be pulled" if you haven't read them sort of thing. You may have even jumped on a bandwagon or two while reading and obsessing over them at the time! To be a cult classic in this fandom, these are the stories that stay with you long after "The End". While many of our classic favs have been pulled, all fics considered for this list are still available to read on a website. We hope that you will enjoy this list of cult classics long after 2015 ends.

Have a Merry Christmas and a wonderful holiday season!

♥ Nic & Six

A Compendium of Thoughts by ItIsRaining
After Edward is struck with a serious illness, Bella offers to give him a ride to school every day. His musings on life are priceless and unique. Based in its entirety on a true story.
Rated M

A Rough Start by ItzMegan73
Overnight irresponsible Edward goes from bachelor to father of a 5 yr old. Meanwhile responsible, prepared Bella begins her first job as Kindergarten teacher at Forks Elementary. When irresponsible meets the epitome of responsible, sparks will fly! Rated M

Air by Rochelle Allison
Edward and Bella meet at a summer barbeque. A story about - what else - falling for someone, hard. Rated M

Alphabet Weekends by the-glory-days
Bored with their dismal love lives, best friends Edward and Bella come up with the idea of exploring the world of sex using the alphabet for the next twenty-six weekends. What happens when things go from two friends having fun to something serious? Rated M

An Undefined Affair by jayhawkbb
Bella, recovering from a broken heart, meets Edward, who isolates himself emotionally. Their attraction is immediate, but can they be friends and lovers - without the love? Rated M

Art After Five by Sleepyvalentina
Bella Swan had life figured out until she met sixteen-year-old Edward Cullen. A few months and an intense emotional connection later, she finds herself on a journey toward self acceptance while questioning everything she'd previously accepted as true. Rated M

Awake in the Infinite Cold by quothme
Sometimes the fruit is forbidden for a reason. A mélange of Twilight and How to Be, with an Artward who so carefully and so softly sneaks under her skin and into her soul. Rated M

Bella Swan: Kidnapper by Kambria Rain
Um. Hi. I don’t really know how to say this, but I have your kids with me, and I was thinking maybe you would like them back. So yeah… call me. Rated M

Beyond Time by TKegl
After the Cullens leave Forks, a twist of fate lands Bella in Chicago in 1918. She thinks it's a second chance to build a life with Edward, but when she finds him, he's not quite what she expected. Can Bella create the future she's hoping for? Rated M

Branching Inward by LifeInTheSnow
He's a brilliant, sensual, tactile artist with a huge personality and love for least, he used to be. She's a shrewd historian, content to observe from a distance...until now. At Newcoven College in Clearwater, OH, no secret is safe. Rated M

Cabin Fever by Coldplaywhore
Trying to hide from their separate lives in Seattle and Los Angeles, Edward and Bella accidently end up at a cabin together for two weeks leading up to Christmas. They can't stand each other, but will that mutual hate eventually lead to more? Lemons Rated M

Constant Bearing, Decreasing Range by Beegurl13
Two consenting adults. One wants more. What happens when the other doesn't, and never will? Is there such thing as true love in the real world? And will they see what's coming before it's too late? Rated M

Cracks in the Pavement by VampiresHaveLaws
Life is never perfect, the cracks always appear. "My Polaroid would show the face of a girl who has forgotten how to truly smile." Even the strongest of dreams can fail to become enough. Rated M

Dear Isabella by wtvoc
He said "always". She wasn't so sure. Rated M

Departures by TheFicChick
Every day for the rest of my life, I will wonder how kissing a virtual stranger goodbye could have felt like a hello. Rated M

Deviant by Planetblue
He pissed me off and then he turned me on. Spectacularly. Rated M

Do Over by Tkegl
Every Christmas Eve, Edward Cullen sits in a bar and regrets the decision he made ten years earlier that tore Bella from him. But when he gets a second chance to right that wrong, it's not quite what he expected. Rated M

Dusty by YellowBella
Se loves him. He loves her crazy. She's a hopeless romantic. He's just hopeless. She's afraid to let go. He won't let her. A story about a silly girl in love with a foolish boy. Here, forever is a lie. Rated M

Edward in the Afternoon by Cosmogirl7481
My birthday present for Marvar: A boy meets girl story with sweltering heat, iced coffee and lots of sex... ExB, AH and OOC because no one is a virgin. Rated M

Elemental by TallulahBelle
When the Swans return to their birthplace, Bella learns she is no ordinary teenager, and Forks is no ordinary town. Can she fulfill her destiny with the powerful Edward Cullen, or will the dark forces that threaten their families destroy them all? Rated M

Expectations and Other Moving Pieces by chrometurtle
Everything I had done in my life seemed to lead up to this moment. The moment when I found myself bound inextricably to a man I didn’t love, trapped in a life I didn’t want. And if I left him, I would be entirely alone. Rated M

Faking It by Spanglemaker9
Half of Hollywood's most famous couples are faking it. That's how Bella Swan's publicist convinces her to pretend to date troubled Hollywood bad boy Edward Cullen. And she'll do anything for her band and her music. Rated M

Firefly in Summer by Primary Colors
Edward finds himself back in the little beach town of his childhood when he inherits the local bar from his uncle. The elusive, pretty girl next door has killer legs, a sketchbook and secrets that are slowly eating her alive. Rated M

For the Summer by camoozle
Every year Bella waits for the 'Pay Checks' to roll into her sleepy river town and every year Edward's hers, just for the summer. Rated M

Gravity Series 1: Blood & Glory by drotuno
The definition of a mercenary is a soldier for hire. His crew are trained fighting machines. Hers are smart PIs. What happens when they need each other to survive? Rated M

High Fidelity by IReen Weiss
Damaged Edward, damaged Bella. Two sides of the same scarred coin. When one side is up, the other is down. Language and lots of it. Lemons eventually. It's a slow burn, slow and painful. Mature. Lots of random pop culture references. Rated M

Hit by Destiny by ocdmess
Bella wants to die, and almost gets her wish fulfilled when she gets hit by a shiny Volvo. She is left with serious injuries, and the only thing keeping her from dying is the person who hit her. Rated M

Maybe I’m Falling for You by Coldplaywhore
Edward and Bella meet one cloudy May morning at their neighborhood coffee bar. Little do they know that they have actually been conversing for several months under assumed names. Collaboration between CPW and FLB11. Rated M

Mutually Assured Destruction by Jandco
I've plucked the line "You're my brand of heroin" and applied it to an all human universe. No drug use. Rated M

Osa Bella by Myg
Bella is a school counselor, but Edward is a vampire posing as a student. Will Bella defy her head and follow her heart? Or will she conquer her desire and do what she believes is right? Rated M

Outbound by Aftrnoondlight
Two beautiful souls humbly traveling life's lonely path, until fate suddenly shows her hand. Will Edward and Bella surrender willingly... A tender, romantic tale of love and life in the clouds. Rated M

Paper CutOuts bytwistedcoincidence
Bella prefers the virtual to the actual, but feels herself being tugged from the safety of her online realm into the world of a rough edged Edward. This time she'll write her own story. Collab with astilbe13. Rated M

Pocket Change by aWhiteBlankPage
I know of three kinds of change: the kind that jangles around in your pocket, the kind that happens slowly, every moment of every day, and the kind that blows you away in an instant. Rated M

Practice to Deceive by Livie79
I saw her today. I wasn't impressed. But he wanted her, and that was enough for me. She was just collateral damage. Rated M

Ride by Kris Salvador
Bella wanted to fulfill a fantasy - to be groped inside a crowded train. She gets her wish and more, when a sex-starved ex-convict decides she's fair game.  Rated M

Scotch, Gin, and the New Girl by Wtvoc
Les Liaisons Dangereuses, je crois. We were Cruel Intentions. We are Gossip Girls. We do not care. At all. Rated M

Son of a Preacher Man by LaViePastiche
The wild son of a famous televangelist, Jasper likes to love ‘em and leave ‘em. Will he meet his match in Bella, who’s in love with his sister’s boyfriend Edward? And what happens when Edward finally notices her?  Rated M

Starry Eyed Inside by Rochelle Allison
High School Fictional. No one sends Bella into a tailspin quite like Edward Cullen... but can she make him hers? The ups and downs and all arounds. Rated M

Stay by Crimsonmarie
As an actor, Edward Cullen is surrounded by people that he couldn't
really care less about. What happens when he buys a house in the middle of
nowhere and meets his new neighbors? Rated M

Stranger Than Fiction by MasenVixen
Six years after Edward left, Bella's written a bestselling book about a girl and the vampire who loves her. Edward returns to her, hell-bent on recapturing the happily ever after that he destroyed. Rated M

Summer of Salt by lola-pops
The heat wave lingers. Sweet, savory and slick. Jasper, Rose and I wade through the humid days, content in our relative isolation. We spend June through August at our family lake property, and this summer is like any other. Until it's not. Rated M

The Age of Consent by Littlesecret84
Bella's summer internship turns interesting when Charlie arranges for Edward to drive her to and from the courthouse. As they talk and get to know each other, the sexual attraction Bella feels from the beginning evolves into something more. Adult stuff. Rated M

The Art Teacher by Spanglemaker9
He gave me art and words and passion and life, but all I wanted was him. Rated M

The Best I Ever Had by WhatsMyNomDePlume
Sex between friends complicates everything. Bella knows this. But she has no idea how much more Edward is going to complicate things. Rated M

The Blessing and the Curse by The Black Arrow
By pretending she is falling for Edward, Bella is fulfilling Esme's dying wish. But sexy, possessive Edward can read her mind. Will she ever get into his? Can Bella forget the pain of her teenage years, and can she resist his relentless seduction? Rated M

The Cannabean Betrothal by ItzMegan73
Edward has immersed himself in the Cannabean way to ward off the hurt of a life-changing experience; but an unexpected betrothal teaches him how little he knows about life. Rated M

The Consequences of Miracles by Travis Birkenstock
Sometimes, the miracles we plead for come at a terrible price. Rated M

The Cullen Legacy by pattyrose
Legacy - A gift; sometimes unknowingly bestowed. Bella met Edward in a London pub, never imagining where each would be 7 years later: he a Congressman fueled by ever-growing political ambition, she the woman with an explosive secret that can end all his dreams. But Bella might soon find that revenge isn't all it's cracked up to be, and that Edward may harbor his own dark secrets. Rated M

The Ex Factor by AngelAtTwilight
Edward & Bella are exes. 4 years later, fate gives them a new hand by reuniting them together in their father's joint cabin, with the assistance of their clashing friends. How will it end? Hmm.Rated M

The Give Away Girl by MrsSpaceCowboy
Honor student Bella Swan has mastered the arts...of manipulating her divorced parents, rolling the perfect joint, and faking an orgasm. Who wouldn't want to keep a girl like her? An unconventional coming of age tale for Gen Xer Bella. Rated M

The List by LauraACullen
Four weeks before her wedding to Edward, Bella is frustrated. She knows there's little-to-no chance of getting him to bend his rules and boundaries now, but there's no harm in fantasizing about what could happen later. So she begins compiling a list. Rated M

The Teenage Angst Brigade by Jandco
This story has been inspired by the books, of course, and also employs a concept from the movie Normal Adolescent Behavior. Rated M

The Tutor by ItzMegan73
New student Bella Swan needs to break out of her shy
exterior and her guidance counselor has the answer: tutoring. And Bella is too
new to know she shouldn’t want to tutor Edward Cullen. Rated M

There is a Light by belladonnacullen
This was 1987; before the Internet, before Twitter, before Facebook – this was back when it was still possible for people not to know about things: big things - like bands, and little things - like G-spots. Rated M

This Is Not My Life by IsaKassees
Follow Bella as she tries to survive a madman's abduction and keep a stranger's child from succumbing to his wild fantasies, and follow Edward as he tries to stay sane searching for his daughter taken right before his eyes. Rated M

Tides of Fate by SparklingTwilight
After four years in a bad relationship, and two years of
depressed seclusion, Alice and Rosalie drag best friend Bella on a tropical
vacation designed by fate. Rated M

Tropic of Virgo by
He's a young but jaded musician writing lyrics for his band, and she's a naive, frustrated poet looking to break out of her shell; their words collide online. What happens when they meet in high school, unaware of their literary connection? Rated M

Unexpected Circumstances by Savage7289
When a knight from another kingdom wins his choice of bride, he claims the handmaid instead of the princess. Isabella finds herself married and tossed into the middle of political schemes. What happens when she can't give him the one thing he must have? Rated M

Volition by Rochelle Allison
It's Belfast, N.Ireland and the year is 1972. Bella's worried about her brother and his best friend, Edward, and their dangerous involvement in the Irish Republican Army. Is it really wise to fall in love with a rebel? Rated M

War of the Roses by edwardandbellabelong2gether
What do you do when you find out the one person who should never betray you...has? When Edward & Bella have trouble conceiving and he turns to someone else for comfort...will she ever be able to forgive him? Rated M

We Come to Life Beneath the Stars by Lillybellis
As Bella Swan starts over with hopes of finding her future, Edward Cullen is hanging on desperately to his past. She's treading water, and he's a corporate golden boy. They share an office, but few words...until one night changes everything. Rated M

We Were Here by lola-pops
Upon waking, there's a brief, blissful period in which you don't yet recall the sins of the night before, but eventually, you have to open your eyes. I'm Bella Swan, seventeen years old, cheerleader. This morning I woke up in the wrong bed. Rated M

Wide Awake by AngstGoddess
"Edward and Bella have dark pasts that leave them severely emotionally scarred, with nightmares that force them to stay awake. They meet and begin to form a bond during the night hours. Rated M

With Teeth by TaluluBlue
Edward is a 27-year old alcoholic/addict struggling with his recovery. Bella is a 23-year-old who's moved back home after college. This fic chronicles how they meet, fall in love, and struggle with the complexities of their relationship.Rated M

Monday, December 7, 2015

What we're reading in TLS this week ~ Holiday Edition

Can you believe how close we are to the holidays? We are giving you some real holiday treats this time! Some are classics and some are just beginning but all are sure to put you in the holiday mood. We hope you enjoy these TLS approved selections and will leave the authors some love, letting them know where you saw their story recommended.

♥ Nic & Six

A Christmas Partnership by Lost In Fanfiction
What happens when Bella resorts to unusual methods to catch the attention of Edward, a shy and slightly oblivious co-worker? Rated M

banner by CullensTwiMistress

A Home for the Holidays by CullensTwiMistress
Bella's roommate, Kate, offers her a place to stay during Christmas break. Unfortunately for Bella, Kate's dad is kind of hot. Attraction, UST, and a meddling daughter may just bring these two together. Rated M

A Snowfall Kind of Love by TheFicChick
There's one thing on my grown-up Christmas list, and while it includes a number of specifics in varying degrees of dirtiness, it really all boils to the one thing I've wanted for a year and a half: a do-gooder with unruly hair and a Mister Rogers sweater, and a lifetime of nights that would land me squarely on the naughty list. Rated M

 banner by FallingSnow Winter 

A Sprinkling of Sugar by Edward's Eternal
Edward Cullen is a busy executive, who lives for only one thing—his company. His gruff attitude and rigid ways are what make him a success. There is no room for fun or distractions. An unwanted trip close to the holidays, brings 3 huge distractions into his life—a chatty teenager, a tiny, lisping angel, and most importantly—one small, determined woman. How will he handle them? Rated M

banner by Kyla713

All I Want For Christmas by Kyla713
Bella's five year old son makes a Christmas wish she'd never expected, and sets her entire world spinning. Written for the Fandom for Preemies compilation. AH. Rated M

banner by DizzyMissLizzie

Christmas With the Cullens by BlueIsSoul
Ever since she can remember, Bella Swan has spent her Christmas with the Cullens. This Christmas its time to sort out those Edward related "complications". But what happens when Edward has a new introduction to make? Rating: Mature Pairing: EB, AH  Rated M

banner by Tkegl

Do Over by Tkegl
Every Christmas Eve, Edward Cullen sits in a bar and regrets the decision he made ten years earlier that tore Bella from him. But when he gets a second chance to right that wrong, it's not quite what he expected. Rated M

Gate 19 by iambeagle
After finding out her flight from Denver to Seattle has been cancelled, Bella accepts a ride from a stranger who is also hoping to get home for Christmas. ExB Christmas fluff, y'all. Rated M

banner maker unknown

Here We Are, As In Olden Days by Rinabina
Bella and Edward have been friends forever but ruth be told, it's always been a little more than that. A holiday collection of the history of Bella and Edward - Past, present and future. E/B AU AH Mostly fluff Rated M

banner by Jaime Arkins

In Every Life (A Little Snow Must Fall) by cosmogirl7481
Life happens. It passes us by in fleeting moments filled with unexpected encounters. It gives us choices to say and do the right thing. And chances to make it better, even when our choices were wrong. A short holiday story. Rated M

Memories of Christmas Past by Eternally Addicted
Bella and Edward dated in high school.Tragedy occurs forcing her to move away from Forks. Six years later another tragedy brings her back. What happens when on Christmas Eve with the Cullens, she sees Edward for the time since she broke his heart. Rated M

banner by Lolypop82

Merry Textmas by DH78
Bella is forced to tackle the crowds on Black Friday with her best friend, Angela. Can a random text message from a wrong number change the course of her day and her life? Banter galore! Rated M

Mistletoe and You by Harperpitt
Two little girls become instant friends, and their single parents are thrown into the game. Will their bruised hearts merge? AH, Christmas shortie. Rated: Fiction M

banner by AllyVera

Operation: Merry Christmas by nicnicd
When Bella, alone for Christmas, bumps into a shy and quiet coed outside of her dorm will her negative outlook on the Holidays change? My submission to the Twilight Gift Exchange on LJ. Rated M

Scrooge by kitchmill
Ever the Scrooge, Edward Cullen has no interest in celebrating Christmas. Will his attitude change when he finds a young woman down on her luck? Rated M

banner maker unknown

The Naughty Elf by Twilly
Santa believes there's no such thing as a bad elf. Bella's been fired from nearly every toy shop. How can Santa get her in the right position when everything out of her mouth is so very dirty? Santa, elves, chocolate starfish and phasing reindeer. Rated M

banner by Mina Rivera

The Red Coats by Ericastwilight
She loves the holidays. He loathes them. As new neighbors, they have to learn to tolerate each other. The problem for Edward is that she's irresistible in red. Can she bring the Grinch around in time to save him from a lonely New Year? Rated M

The Spirit of Christmas by RosieRathbone
"Bah, humbug", the famous words of Mr. Scrooge, and this year stubborn Ebenezer is coming in the form of Edward Cullen who lives in regret and no longer experiences the same thrill of the holidays like he used to. But with a little help he is determined to change what went wrong and start again. After all, 'tis the season to be jolly. Rated M

banner by Jaime Arkins

The Twelve Days of Christmas by Pattyrose
On Christmas Eve, Edward Masen meets his girlfriend Rosalie's younger sister. The twelve days of Christmas will sure be interesting. Rated M

banner by Jaime Arkins

Willow by Aftrnoondlight
First place winner in A Christmas to Remember contest - A quaint small town. A horse named Willow. Two lonely lovers. These are the ingredients of a DIVINE holiday romance. Rated M

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Grammar Gratitude Day Seven

Dear Iris,

I know you don’t like it when I shower you with sappy love and affection, so I’m going to try to keep it together.

But I love you a lot. So have mercy on me.

When I first came back to the fandom in January after being away for years, I pretty much knew no one. My first Facebook friend was LayAtHomeMom. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason, and you and Lay both completely fall into that category. Not only was I lucky enough for Lay to offer to pre-read for me, but I was lucky enough that she convinced you to take me on and beta for me. I’m very aware that you probably didn’t know what you were getting into with me, comma splicer extraordinaire, but you are exactly the type of beta I needed.

I don’t know how you always know what I need, but you do. You know when I need to be left alone to stew on my words. You know when I need to be pushed. You always have the right words of advice and encouragement.

You know when I need to be coddled, but you always know when I need to be yelled at. You listen to me spill out all my concerns, fears, and hang-ups, and you know when all I need is a signature Iris “SHUT UP, HOOKER.” Those are the moments I love the most, when you tell me you want to slap the shit out of me for doubting myself, but follow it up with hearts and “but ily” because it comes from the best possible place; a place of genuine belief in me.

THAT is the most important and most special thing you do for me. It’s not in fixing my horrific grammar (though that’s pretty great), it’s believing in me. It’s encouraging me to be the best I can possibly be and pushing me when I have those moments that I don’t believe in myself.

I’m just a tiny part of a massive fandom that you do so much for, but know that you’ve enhanced my experiences here tenfold. So from someone who struggles with feelings of inadequacy, thank you for making me feelings like just being ME is enough.

I can’t wait to smother you with hugs.

With my deepest, mushiest, gooiest love,

J Ray

You’d think that two people living in two different parts of the country wouldn’t have much in common.

This is true of me and my beta, Michelle Renker Rhodes (right now, she’s probably reading this and cringing while muttering, “my beta, Michelle, and I” to herself). She’s a sweet southern gal, and I’m a hardy city chick.

Yet Michelle and I first bonded over my story, “Thief of Hearts,” which I initially wrote without a beta. She’d comment on every single chapter, and having been a college lit professor, she’d give me all this constructive advice. Then, one day, I was like, “Hey, do you want to be my beta?” And she was like, “Yeah!”

And that’s how our beautiful relationship blossomed!

Seriously though, it has worked out beautifully. Through this Writer-Beta relationship of ours, we’ve grown into much more than just two heifers (one of Michelle’s favorite words) bonding over “Twific.” We’ve become great friends. We’ve found that we have so much in common, from children around the same ages and stages to husbands we love but who drive us both batty, to an almost irrational fear of lice (long story), and most importantly, to a possibly even more irrational love of sweets.

Michelle is my girl, and her role as my beta is almost secondary at this point. We’re there for each other when the world pisses us off, and we reach out to each other when “Pentatonix” is performing (She loves them. Me: meh).

But while I put up with her love for Pentatonix, she puts up with my constant misuse of commas, my knack for repeating the same mistakes chapter after chapter, and my habit of sending her chapters for review twelve hours before posting time. I believe it all evens out.

So no, we’re not always perfect. Our families keep us busy, and things slip by. But we’re having fun, and most importantly, we’ve found a good friend. That’s what matters.

Patty Rosa

The date was January 19, 2012.

The message was from Songster.

She was recommending a quality Scotch for the first story I’d ever written.  Because, in ignorance, I had called Maker’s Mark “Scotch.”  It’s Bourbon.

I had no idea.  I drink Vodka.

But Scotch seemed smart, manly, sexy.  (Really sexy - I went on to write practically a whole story about Bourbon and Scotch, high on my new knowledge.)

But on that gray day in January, all I knew was that the validator for the Age of Edward contest had reached out to correct me in the most gracious way.  I was timid and unsure.  I’d been “in the fandom” for all of about a month—gobbling up my first favorite stories by TKegl, Patty Rosa, and Kharizzmatik.  I didn’t know anyone.  No one knew me.

I had no idea the depth and breadth of the Twi Fic community.  I didn’t realize the kind of friend I’d just made.

Songster wasn’t my first beta.  Originally I worked with the big-hearted, super-sassy Dragonfly336 from Indie Fic Pimp.  I was on chapter six of High Fidelity—having fun (but not grammatically correct fun) when Dragonfly336 responded to my beta request.  She was my rock through that story.  She was my life-coach when I was unsure of myself, and my Twilight expert when my novice-ness left me stuck.  Her laugh was contagious.  She was awesome.  But as I started to try Original Fic—and Dragonfly336 began to fade from the fandom—another editor emerged.

Songster had been quietly encouraging my writing since the beginning.  Our friendship had gone from Scotch to Scots as we swooned over Jamie Fraser and the Outlander series. I never would have gotten through The Fiery Cross without her holding my hand.  In 2013 she invited me to participate in my favorite contest: Age of Edward—after which I swore I’d never do it again.  (I’m currently eating my words on that one… mmm tasty tasty words.)

But most importantly, she’s become my writing coach.  She’s taught me what a gerund is and how to use them appropriately (as opposed to every other sentence).  She’s taught me about passive and active voice.  She advocates the Oxford comma and inserts en-dashes when I overlook them.  She shares her insights and makes me laugh.  She rewrites the end of my stories when my macabre ending leaves her needing an HEA.  She signs her emails with a hug and a kiss… every time.  Like she knows I need it.

I’ve been so lucky to be able to work with such gifted people.  I’ve come a long way since my first story - and a lot of that is because of Songster.  I miss you.


~IReen aka Aja

I have an incredible beta named Hadley Hemingway. I don't need to know how any other writer\beta relationships work to understand how lucky I am. Though we live in different hemispheres, 8,500 miles apart, and have only spoken a handful of times on the phone, we have connected. We’re similar in all sorts of ways. We have many things in common.

LayAtHomeMom knew this when she fixed us up. We started a friendship from that introduction, sending marathon emails, because that’s what Hadley is like. She’s open and open-minded, interested and interesting, engaging, humble and, most of all, caring.

We talked less about the story that Lay had been pre-reading and more about our everyday lives. It was easy, like old friends who hadn’t spoken in a while, and I’m a foreigner, so that was a very big deal. As we started to work together, I recognized the times she allowed my quirks through unedited and the times she straightened up my ordinary. She identified things that were invisible to me.

Hadley has the ability to suggest, rather than take over or coerce, a quality that helps her excel at what she does. She makes me focus and think about significant words and the way I place them together, but I never feel like she’s being negative. Instead, she’s forever encouraging. I call her “delicately ruthless”.

Receiving a notification that she has started working on the doc is exciting because I’m always thrilled to see what she will come up with. Sometimes, when there are very few changes, I’m quite disappointed, but I think she’s training me. I’m just not aware of it happening.

Occasionally a comment in the doc will contain the single word, “WHUT!” It makes me cackle with laughter, very aware that I’m using uniquely Australian words.

I especially like the way she asks me to explain why I’m heading in a certain direction and her advice during these forays in invaluable. She rarely stops me, but she protects me from being trampled under a backlash, tempering my words so they won’t offend. Hadley gives me the confidence to enter the fray, ready for a barrage of unknown reviews.

My bet is she just sprinkles magic dust over a chapter, stands back and watches for the bits that sparkle and draw her attention. I don’t know why I think that, either. Maybe it’s because of the red shoes or the many mystical images she posts. I do see a fairly tale in Hadley Hemingway.

She doesn’t know it, but in my mind, she is “Haderley”, another thing I don’t understand, but it has something to do with her importance in my life. She needs a more personal nickname than her usual moniker. Haderley is the person I send my vents to when it’s too crippling to tell anyone else, because she will take a few moments to listen and offer real words of support. The fact that I trust her with my truths is the biggest compliment I can give her.

Since the initial story stumbled (wholly because of me) we’ve done six others together. I cannot believe it's so many or that she has put up with me for so long. She drops images on my wall, reminding me there’s still one unfinished and that the day will come when she will polish it into something acceptable to upload. Haderley won’t let me forget that I must find the ending, and I will, because now it’s for her.

It’s not in me to gush words in public. I’m too private for that, but this lady, Hadley Hemingway, makes me feel an outpouring of love. And a whole lotta gratitude.

She should know this song, and hopefully, she will get my meaning from this snippet.

“That is why all the girls in town follow you around.

Just like me, they long to be… close to you.”

Luffs Haderley!

xo Compass

Dear Ankita,

I just wrote this for a contest. Submissions are due tomorrow. Do you have time to look over it for me?

Just kidding! Although, I do kind of wish I could see your face every time I send you one of those emails. Do you ever think, “This girl is crazy!” If so, I don’t blame you.

When I was invited to participate in this event, I got to thinking…

If I could build the perfect Beta, she would have a superb grasp of grammar and punctuation. She would be well-read, with an extensive vocabulary, not just modern usage, but more archaic terminology, too. She would take joy in reading, but not be passive about it, always knowing when to start a dialogue that helps me see my own characters from a new perspective.

She would place equal emphasis on praise and constructive criticism. And if the entire story needs to be dismantled and reassembled, she won’t flinch away from telling me so. (Yes, I’m think of ROI. That first draft really was an unholy mess, wasn’t it?!?)

She would be a mind-reader, able to decipher my emotional flailing about my latest project, cut right through the mess and identify the exact lines or paragraphs that need to be improved or expanded. When I send back a second draft that is twice as long as the first, she would review it with the same attention and thoroughness as if she was seeing the words for the first time.

Finally, she would share her honest thoughts and feelings about the characters, content and readability openly, making me a better reader, a better writer, a better human.

Lucky for me, I’ve already found the perfect Beta. For that, I owe you about a bazillion hugs!

Thank you, Ankita! (Ninkita)

Maggie Chambers (NewTwilightFan)

This is an open letter to my beta.

Dear Iris,

There's so much I want to say, but it's hard for me to find the right words. I've been through a lot of betas and editors in all my stories. Sometimes, things were fine and we parted ways as friends. Other times, I've been dropped without warning from my betas, abandoned if you will, or my stories spoken badly--from these 'betas' who I'd trusted with my heart--and I had to fire.

Writing is the soul of me. It's the core of who I am. It hurts deeply when someone I trust stomps all over that.

Needless to say, time after time of bad connections, I was hesitant to let anyone beta for me ever again.

I've turned down people, who I adore and know well, who were willing to help, but couldn't allow myself to risk my heart again. It never felt right and I was convinced that I had bad luck with betas.

So, I just continued to edit my own work and hope what I'd learned over the years with grammar was good enough.

Then you came along.

And the funny part is, I didn't think twice about having you as my beta. The second you offered, I jumped at the chance. It was instinctual. Maybe I've always admired you and the authors you beta for, whatever the case may be, I have no regrets about that decision.

You're efficient, understanding, and honest. You make my words better. It's magic.

I told you once before, which you didn't believe me, but with a simple period here, or a comma there, and even just a little adjustment in a sentence, makes all the difference. It's insane.

How you're able to read my mind and capture my voice with your knowledge and beta skills is beyond me.

You've been a blessing. Truly. I'm so honored you wanted to work with me and beta SoCal.

Trusting my story in your hands is the best thing I could've ever done for myself and my readers.

You're amazing, and I wanted to take this opportunity to say thank you!

Hopefully, this doesn't have too many grammar errors and you're not pulling your hair out. I just couldn't send this to you for you to beta... (for obvious reasons).

Your biggest fan,

LOCA (KrazyK85)

TLS would like to thank all the participating authors for sharing their heartfelt words with us this past week. We are proud to have honored these ladies who do so much time consuming work out of the goodness of their hearts. Special thanks to SueBee Beta Fairy who so graciously gave us her words for the amazing introduction of this special feature.

TLS Admins

Monday, November 30, 2015

Grammar Gratitude Day Six


When I first started this writing endeavor, Nic told me she had a person in mind to be my beta. Of course I’d heard of you, you’re amazing at what you do but never did I think you’d agree to work with me. You’re kind of a big deal. I’d had the pleasure of meeting you (albeit briefly) before I’d ever really talked with you, at the meet up in Nashville. I saw this group of women flock to you and sing your praises. And at the time, I didn’t fully understand how important what you do is but I get it now. You give me the ability to put my thoughts into readable material, actually fit for consumption. I’m always nervous making an author’s note at the beginning of a chapter because you’ve not gone through it. I depend on you for so many things beyond just grammar. Working with you these past few months has been invaluable. I was actually able to tell a coworker with absolute certainty, what a comma splice is. Something I’ve no doubt learned from you. I want to thank you for everything you do for me and the entire fandom, we’d be lost without you!


Betas are amazing! The wonderful stories we fall in love with and cherish would not be possible without the selfless work they provide without any compensation. I feel honored to have a chance to express my gratitude to mine.

In the spirit of full disclosure, I should acknowledge that for a beta, I am the worst kind of writer. My schedule is horrible and I never get ahead in my chapters, yet I’m dedicated to meeting a posting deadline. For my partners in crime, that unfortunately equates to sending them everything at the last minute. I am incredibly lucky that I have two wonderful souls that have stuck with me despite that horrible habit and I appreciate them more than words can say.

Beautiful LostInPA,
You graciously offered to help me with my next project after I completed my first story. I’m still amazed that you wanted to, and I’m so thankful that you came into my life. You were truly my rock when I was writing Somewhere Between Nothing and Everything. I appreciate your willingness to re-read chapters as I worked my way through, even when the hour was late. You provided much needed confidence when I was nervous with gentle reminders to stop tweaking the chapter and send it off. You also gave me some much-needed sanity when I was overwhelmed and sure that I would never be able to make the next post. I wouldn’t have made it through without you and your beautiful spirit. Thank you from the bottom on my heart.        

Amazing Beautifulnightmarex,
Fate shined down when you were randomly assigned to me through Project Team Beta. Thankfully, you agreed to take me on fulltime and quickly became a constant support for both of my stories. I learned so much from you regarding the details of the scene, which helped to make everything better. Your thoughtful questions have become the voice in my head as I check each chapter. I am so thankful to you and your willingness to give me your time, even when your schedule was so hectic. This crazy writing journey wouldn’t have been the same without you. Thank you, you are truly amazing!

With all my heart,

Dear Kim/VampsHaveLaws/Srupy,

Hi. About a month ago, Nic and Lay approached the fandom with the wonderful idea to write a thank-you letter to our betas. So of course I said yes. And of course here I am, procrastinating, writing it two days before the submission date. Don’t pretend like you’re surprised by my laziness.

Anyway. I sat down, poured a glass of wine (no surprise there, either), and did a little thinking. And the more I thought, the more I realized why it’d taken me a month to write this thing. I couldn’t find the words to thank you as my beta, because you’re SO MUCH more than that.

You’re the person who puts up with me. You’re the one who’ll stay in a document with me for an entire day, just so I can get a paragraph just right. The one who endures drunk Skype calls at 2 A.M. and doesn’t hang up when forced to listen to me sing.

You entertain all of my ideas, no matter how big or small. You correct and simplify, but you never make me feel like an idiot (and let’s be real, I can be a HUGE idiot sometimes). You encourage any and all writing, even when I should be writing that one thing I started ages ago but seemed to have forgotten about.

You’re the most loyal person, the best encouragement, and I’m so fucking lucky to not only claim you as my beta, but a lifelong friend.

(This became much sappier than I’d intended, but I refuse to change a thing because every word is true.)

I love you, dude. Thank you for always being there, and for reminding me that I don't need to begin every line of dialogue with the word "well."


I’ve always felt like a late-comer to the fandom, having not even had Twilight on my radar until the New Moon movie was released in theaters. And then an even later comer to Fanfiction, since for some strange reason I resisted getting into. (Maybe I knew it would consume my life). But even back then I had plot bunnies hopping a muck in my head, but never an outlet for them.

My first attempt at writing in 2011 was a good one, the story wasn’t good, but the experience of getting the ideas out there was good. Then came the idea for The Most Eligible Bachelor and my first story was put on hold. I started posting chapters of MEB without it being beta’d, because I didn’t have connections or completely understand the whole beta process. I honestly don’t remember how it came to be but Texas Bella and Ja Mash took me under their wings. They took each chapter and fixed them. They pushed me to change things, improve it, but most importantly they encouraged me to keep going, to finish what I had started. Without them coming into my life at that time, I can almost guarantee I wouldn’t be still writing now. So I owe them so much. They have both phased out of twific, but Texas Bella is now a successful author on her own, RE Hargrave.

My second beta was cejsmom (Colleen). She too pushed me and encouraged me. I had the pleasure of meeting her in person. She’s a lovely person inside and out.

Many others have helped me along the way with banners, prereading, betaing and rec’ing: Ana Fluttersby, Ja Mash, Carrie ZM, Midnight Cougar, Nic, The Lemonade Stand, Cejsmom, Iris, Dawn, TwiFanFiction Recs, The International House Of FanFic (Ficsisters), and all of those who have tweeted, posted, liked and commented on fb links for my stories.

However, the person who I currently owe everything to is Rachel Kitchmill. She’s beta’d the majority of my recent stories, and is currently helping me complete Ready for You. She has been so flexible, easy and just amazing all around. She has a busy life, family, children, etc. and she always manages to squeeze in my chapters. I’m sure she’s thoroughly frustrated with my recurring grammatical errors, but I’ve hopefully made some improvements under her tutelage. She is always positive with me, giving me constructive feedback and suggestions on ways to improve my writing. I will be eternally grateful to her for all she’s done for me over the past couple of years. Only with her help has my current story Ready for You been well received.

Whoever started Fanfiction and the whole concept, especially Twific, had it right. If you think about it, for the most part Fanfiction is women inspiring and supporting each other, and that is always a good thing.


Dear Mid,

From the moment I entered the fandom you were one of the names I heard over and over. Both as a beta and a reader, your enthusiasm cast a light across Twilight fanfic, and I have to admit I thought you were way out of my league. So when you first reviewed Fix You I was all fangirly and excited, and when I replied and we started to chat, I realized just how much we had in common.

Although we live in different countries, separated by thousands of miles, there are a lot of similarities between us. Our love for our families, our love of reading, and a really dirty sense of humor are just some of the things that bind us together. But what really keeps us going are the stories. The excitement we get when a new fic starts to grow, the fun we have when we discuss plot twists and character flaws. The pure delight you show when you tell me, “people are going to hate you for this.”

But it isn’t simply your enthusiasm that makes you a wonderful friend and beta. It’s your kindness. From the beginning you’ve been nothing but gentle in teaching me the importance of sentence flow, that certain words are better left out, and that further and farther definitely aren’t interchangeable. In fact, reading through this letter I can see that it needs a good beta – perhaps you can cast your eye across it and let me know how it can be improved!!

It isn’t only in fanfic that you’ve helped me along the way. We worked closely together on both Halfway Hidden and Broken Chords, and you spent days combing through the story, bringing out the characters and then working on my often-woeful grammar. It was such a wonderful experience to be able to have a trusted friend edit what was an emotional and difficult book to write, and I’m so grateful you held my hand through it all.

There are some people that make the world a better place just by being there, and you’re one of them. A shining light in the fandom, a great friend when I’m facing writer’s block, and a wonderful beta who lets me know when something simply isn’t working. In short, you’re amazing.

Thank you for all you’ve done for me. I can honestly say that I wouldn’t be here without you. When I’m down you put a smile on my face, and when I’m stuck you send me inspirational pictures (and often rude ones too!) I know how lucky I am to be able to call you my beta, my editor and my friend.

Love you loads, lady,
Chocaholic123 xxx

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Grammar Gratitude Day Five

My dearest Carrie ZM,

I consider it a huge honor that you are willing to read my little bits of nothing. It’s nerve wracking as a beta to send something you’ve written to another beta – I’m always afraid that I’ve missed so many things. Each time, I’m completely convinced that you’re going to make me relinquish my betafairy wings. You’d think I’d get over that considering how sweet and kind you are (and how much you laugh at me for being embarrassed by my missing commas). You are so fast and good at what you do, and beyond fixing the commas and awkward sentences, you’re so supportive of my writing. It’s something I’m really unsure about, and you are always there to reassure me and cheer me on. I cannot tell you how much that means to me. I also know that I can trust you to tell me if it’s not working or if it needs that something extra. And I love that we can PM each other and ask random grammar questions!I do have to thank Planetblue too. We were getting a beer one night and I checked to see if she minded if I asked you to beta a contest entry of mine. She was fine with it but then gave me a look and said, “You’re lucky I like you.” She knew something I didn’t yet - I was about to hit the beta jackpot. My respect for you goes beyond what you do for me though. As a fellow beta, I love seeing the friendship that developed between the two of you and with Lay. The beta/writer relationship can be wonderful or can be fraught (or both) and I love seeing it flourish between you. Big thanks and love go to all of my beta friends who I learn from on a regular basis. I think of us as some weird, grammatically correct sisterhood, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. As much as I love you all, though, my favorite sister has to be Carrie. She’s an amazing, caring, kind, and hilarious woman who also happens to be the best cheerleader I know. I’m so lucky that she’s willing to take her red pen to my stuff, and I’m even luckier to call her my friend. I love you, girl!

xo, SueBee

Back in 2009, when I decided to participate in the original Age of Edward contest, I enlisted my good friend and fellow fandom devotee, Nicole (aka NicNic, or @nicnicd on Twitter) to help me as a pre-reader and beta. She was someone I trusted, and as we started working together (my oneshot didn’t place in the contest, but it did become a multi chapter story) I realized that I could not have chosen a better beta.

Nic is not only stellar when it comes to the nitty gritty, like grammar and spelling, she’s also gifted with context - which is a lot subtler. She gets *me*. She understands my style, which, admittedly, doesn't always submit to traditional methods of writing prose. So while she was quick to point out inconsistencies or errors, she always knew how to let me be myself. She got my flow, from day one. She is so intelligent, so quick, and yet she’s humble - we never clashed because our mutual respect overrode bickering.

I never looked for a different beta. I didn’t have to. I had the perfect one.

One fic turned into many, and while I didn’t have her beta my WitFits and a few other stories, she remains my go-to gal. In fact, she’s the pre-reader and frontline editor for the original fiction

I’m currently writing. There are few I’d trust, and I feel so blessed that I have her on my team.

Nicole started as a friend, became a beta and confidante, and remains a true girlfriend. I adore her, and am forever grateful that she stuck by my side as I dipped my toes in the world of writing. She’s really busy these days, and not too active in fandom anymore, but she’s around.

Love you, Nic! I don’t know if you’ll see this, but the sentiment remains the same: I appreciate you.

Ro (Rochelle Allison)

When you start out as a new writer you have no idea where to start, unless you’re lucky enough to know someone beforehand, so you take the first leap and hit publish, praying that someone reads your story and likes it well enough to leave you reviews.

As time goes on, you learn the ropes and soon realize that writing is a process and you can’t do it alone. You need a team of at least one pre-reader - to make sure your story flows as it should because, as hard as we try, we ALL miss the mark on key points sometimes - and you also need a good beta. You’d think these two elements would be easy to find, and for some it is, for others it takes longer to find the right people who work best with you. For me, it took some trial and error behind the scenes.

There are some fantastic betas in the fandom. You also learn this along the way - who is who and what they do. I was floored when one of them started reading my work and telling others about it on social media. I had a huge fangirl moment, and then another when she agreed to work with me when I needed to make a beta change.

The relationship is still fairly new, and I haven’t regretted one. single. minute. Not only does she do awesome beta work, but she helps you develop as a writer. Through her process of corrections, she shows you the rights and wrongs and all the whys behind them. It’s truly amazing.

Beyond and behind the technical stuff, and most importantly, she’s an all-around, wonderful person who’s been there when I needed advice and support. I can’t imagine doing this without her, and I wouldn’t want to.

My beta is Iris - aka MariahajilE - and I feel honored to work with her and even luckier to call her my friend.

Jenn ~ ifyouweremine

Dearest Jen328,

I can’t say enough good things about, you. You’re my Yoda, editor, and share a brain with me. And in April of 2011, for one glorious weekend, we got to hang out a lot. In fact, we went to the red carpet premiere of Water for Elephants and met Rob! I think we were shaking from the time we saw him to the time we got back on the train to leave the city. It was absolutely amazing, and it will be a memory I cherish forever.

I got into the Twi fandom in early 2009 and lurked for a good year or so before I even wrote anything. My first fic was unbeta’d, but as nearly every writing friendships starts, I met you on Twitter along with so many other amazing women.

You started pre-reading my stories then eventually became my beta for my last few Twifics and then my TWD fics. Jen, you’re the absolute best because even though you had nothing to do with TWD or even knew who Daryl Dixon was, you read my stories and edited them, and never stopped telling me to push myself.

Then there’s the fact that you’re so busy, but you’ve always made time for my stories and me. You’re a mom to two very active girls, you work, you co-founded Write Divas and act as CFO as well as editing OF for them. I don’t think you know how much it means to me that you keep up with me. You would edit my chapters on your lunch break when you could have taken some time to relax. You didn’t just check for grammar either. You would invest time into each chapter and question how this would impact the rest of the story. Jen, you pushed me to write better, and my absolute favorite quote of yours is, “Show me. Don’t tell me, K.”. It’s something I consider every time I sit down to open up a new doc.

Even now as I write a fic that you’re not editing, I use everything you’ve taught me, and hopefully I’m stringing together decent thoughts that would make you proud. The truth is, I miss your comments and sprinkles throughout my docs. The whole process feels like it’s lacking without your presence. That’s how important you are to me when I’m writing.

Jen, I’m so freaking proud of the things you’ve accomplished. You wanted to edit books, and now you do. You’re leaving a lasting impact on the writing world, and you’re using your gift to help other writers find their voice and also dig deeper and write better.

I’ve watched you grow as a writer in the past five years I’ve known you. I’ve watched you grow as an editor. You’ve moved on from the fandom in a lot of ways, but like all of us who have been here for a long time, you’re never far away, and you’ve made so many lasting friendships because of Twific, too.

I’m so thankful to know you and to be a part of your ride. I love you, and one day, I’m coming back to visit with my girls and husband in tow, and we can just let the guys babysit and flail our way all around the city.

All my love and **tacklehugs**,
Katie <3 (tanglingshadows)

Dear Lovelybrutal, Lellabeth, and Melissa,

I am more appreciative of you than I can express, but thanks to TLS for letting me try! I also need to thank Nic and The Lemonade Stand for this amazing opportunity, and all that you do for the fandom. You are a true treasure.

When I was first asked to write a letter to thank my betas for all they do my first thought was, “Fuck! Who the hell is going to check my commas and grammar?” So thank you, Cappie, for looking over this for me!

MelissaMargaret / Melissa, you are going to get in trouble one of these days for betaing during class and it will be all my fault. You are a writer, reader, and college student, who also works and has a life - yet you still manage to fit in looking over anything I send your way! And I mean anything. You take the time and effort to fix my commas, splices, typos, and general mess-ups. You encourage me to keep going, and knowing you’ve looked it over gives me the confidence to post whatever I’ve written. You are such a blessing to me. I hope you get the extra push you need to write again soon. We need less of my words and more of your beautiful Carlisle and Esme! Thank you for all you do, Melissa!

You may not see this, Lellabeth - school keeps you busy and I can only hope you are still writing - but I simply cannot thank those who have helped me without including you. Like Melissa, I know you are super busy, and write a good bit of your own amazing stories. Hell, I’ve read your Avenger slash not knowing who Cap or Bucky are and not liking boy sex, but I still loved every word. The idea that you even bother to read what I write is astounding to me. Masen Boys would never have been completed without you. I am thankful everyday for your betaing, but even more so for your support. You had my back and that means so much to me. I miss you so very much. Thank you for the all time you gave me, Lella. I am forever grateful.

Last, but never least, is my dearest Lovelybrutal. I tweeted one day that I needed a replied “beta coughs betafully” and holy shit, I almost fainted. I could not believe you would be willing to look at something by me, a nobody writing hundred word flashes in between my kids’ gymnastics classes. But you did. You spent the time to not only fix my splices (I think I’ve gotten a little better at those) but to also make suggestions. You ‘ALL CAPS’ commented your love for my words and my heart melted as my confidence soared. You asked me for more details and when I write anything I wonder what questions you would have for me; what more should I add? You are the girl who wrote Purple, and Shelter, and my favorite kiss on a ferris wheel, and you thought I was worth your time. Like me, you are a mom being pulled in a hundred directions at all times, and you squeeze me in. You honestly care about my little stories and I still pinch myself and wonder why. But so much more than my teacher and beta, you’ve become my sister and friend. When my family was thrown into chaos you kept me sane. You, pinkmoon, were and are my rock. I don’t have the words to properly thank you for all you’ve done for me. I’m not the poet you are who thinks up “obscene loudness” or “low lidded lusty” - but I can say I am eternally grateful to God for crossing our paths. Thank you for everything, especially for being you.

All my love and gratitude,
Jamie aka Jdifrans1

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Grammar Gratitude Day Four

Dear Iris,

Where do I even begin?

There was this one time I got a PM from this girl. I kind of knew who she was, but not really. I read a story she'd written a year or so before and it was great, but I didn't know much about her. Then she sent me that PM asking why I wasn't using a beta on the new story I was writing. I hadn't used one in a while and I was okay with it, but she was really nice and sounded super smart, so I was like “Why not?” and I sent her chapters of my story. Sure enough, she was smart, and funny, and so, so sweet. And willing to beta anything for me, from story chapters to one shots to interviews to Christmas letters. You know that saying “You're everything I never knew I always wanted”? That's pretty much how I feel about you. Every single day. :)

I was so excited to meet you at the TwiFic Meet-up last year and I was all nervous, which my friend Stacy just laughed and laughed about. Then we were at the Friday night mixer and I remember looking around, but I didn't see you. And then, I did. I don't think I'll ever forget. You probably thought I was a crazy person since I kept looking at you, waiting for you to recognize me. You knew what I looked like. You'd beta'd my Christmas letter with pictures, for goodness sake.  But you didn't seem to recognize me, so I resorted to holding my name tag right under my face as I stared at you and smiled. I think it took about 30 seconds before you finally realized who I was and then screamed and ran around the table with a blur worthy of any fanfic pixie-like Alice. The next day when I gave you the present I brought you, you yelled, “Shut your pirate-whore mouth!” at me in a room full of people. They probably thought we were crazy. :D We probably were. Are. Whatever.

You make my life easier. You overlook my hectic mom-craziness. You laugh at my random thoughts. You encourage me and support me like very few others ever have. You make me laugh. You make me smarter. You inspire me to want more from myself. You listen to me ramble and vent. You tell me I'm not crazy. You trust me. You endure my endless use of two spaces after a period. You make my words and my thoughts less jumbled and easier to understand. You make me feel special, and loved. You make me try harder. You make me forget I've been let down before. You make this whole fanfic thing simple and effortless and easy for me, while pushing me for more, to work better, to be greater.

You're more than just a beta to me. You're my friend. I love you endlessly and want desperately to make you proud. I hope you know that. And I hope you know how grateful I am that you took a chance on a random, disappointed, loner, rebellious, author-posing girl. Because I am grateful. More than you'll ever, ever know.


Hey Carrie, I'm not 100 percent sure I want to do this, but if I asked you to read what I had so far for story two, would you be willing? I've admired your reviews, and feel you might be brutally honest which is what I'd want. Not sure I'm ready to share, just feeling you out. Let me know.
Jan 19, 2013

Carrie ZM:
Oh wow ~ I totally just scared the hell out of my husband (I may have squealed rather loudly when I read your pm ;)
yes..yes...yes... I would be HONORED to read what you have written so far. Just let me know ~ I'm at your service:) ...and you totally just made my night !!
Jan 19, 2013

And so a beautiful relationship was born.

Those are the first few words (not as a review) that you and I shared one night, a night that has led to the best doggone decision I ever made. Working up the courage to approach you, I didn’t know that what lay ahead of us was years of laughs, support, tears, some anger, and the beauty of finding someone you were meant to be friends with.

Because I honestly believe that if you and I didn’t meet here in the fandom, that we would’ve crossed paths another way. It was destiny that you and I should become the friends that we are. No… the sisters that we are (cue cheesy, but heartfelt music).

Working with you is a dream come true. You’re brutally honest as I requested from the get-go because you want me to be as good as I can be. You want me to succeed; you want me to give our readers the best of me. Bette Midler would be proud of the support you give me and my writing. We’ve tackled oversexed bikers with funny mustaches, bloody and reckless road trips, art thieves with wacky eyes, controversial relationships and even death himself. This whole thing could never be as much fun if you weren’t by my side.

No one knows how hard you work to make my words pretty. When you aren’t sure of something, you do your homework, searching multiple websites for the answers. You take time from your family - from your life - in order to be a part of something that can be a one-sided venture sometimes. You don’t get the praise you deserve, the praise that the writers get with each review, but you get as excited about one of my stories as I do, if not more so. You’re my biggest cheerleader in the fandom and a lot of the success I’ve stumbled across is because of you. Every story we’ve worked on together is ours, because you give as much of yourself to them as I do. You never hesitate to tell me when you disagree (ahem, Half Pint leaving) and in most cases, you’re absolutely right. Your opinions really do mean so much to me and I take them all into careful consideration because I respect the way you see things. I want to scream from the rooftops about how dedicated and nurturing you are as a beta, but I also don’t want anyone to know so that I can keep you to myself.

Outside of fic, you and I have been handed some hard times the past couple of years. Unemployment, friend issues, family problems, and some really serious stuff. At the end of our first fic together, I faced one of the scariest health crises anyone can face. You proved to me what an astonishing human being you are. Excuse me; I’m tearing up… hold on….

Carrie, you were so scared along with me, but you thought of me first and hid that away, making me laugh, reassuring me, listening to me whine, soothing me while I cried, and sending me all the cookies. My time in recliner city was made so much less depressing than it could’ve been, and that’s because of you. Just knowing that there was someone out there that loved me so deeply her first concern was making me feel better meant more than you could ever know. It’s a trait that is so bright within you I can only hope for everyone to experience it someday.

And we hadn’t even met yet.

Two months later we met at TFMU in Chicago. It’s a moment of hilarity and wonderfulness I’ll never forget. I was recovering from surgery and the damn hotel room doors in that place were soooo heavy I couldn’t pull them open. You texted me when you arrived and I was all butterflies in my stomach, hoping you liked me in person. You told me to hold the door handle down in my room, and you’d push the door open from the hallway so I didn’t have to pull it. Well, that was hysterically funny but the moment we saw each other I remember both of us just smiling so big. It was like we were two pieces of a puzzle that had gone missing but finally ended up in the same box. I don’t think I had to struggle with one door that whole weekend because of you. You also introduced me to LayAtHomeMom that weekend, and the three of us started a relationship that has become more than just the stellar team I rely on for my writing, but a friendship that I can’t imagine life without (#MG4life). I’ve been lucky enough to vacation with you, and you’ve taken me into your home and shared your beautiful family with me.

BB, you are someone I aspire to be. Kind, generous, honest, funny, loving, gracious, positive, warm, smart, forgiving, witty, sympathetic, loyal, and encouraging. This was supposed to be a love letter to my beta but you’re so much more than that.

You are my best friend. I thank karma above for being as deserving as I am to have you in my life and that you put up with me and my frantic texts for immediate beta help before I hit the ‘post’ button, those calls that whine about what I’m working on sucks, and all of my craziness in general.

I make jokes about peeing on your leg, but honestly, I’ll pee AND cut a bitch if they ever try to get between us. I don’t know what I’d do without you and I know you’ll never let me find out.

xoxo, pizza confetti, and kissy emoticons


Your biggest fan,

To my lovely Beta, Kyla713:

When I was first asked to write this, you were the first person that popped into my head that I wanted to pen this thanks for. I've had my share of Betas, some who still remain friends, but none of them come close to you. I've gained a best friend in you, despite how many times I mess up my tenses, or have too many commas, you still stick with me. I am beyond thankful for that. I don't know what I'd do without you.

I'm not even sure how it came about that you became my Beta. I remember I was still trying to get over you liking my story The Missing as much as you did, and yet somehow getting up enough nerves to ask you if you'd Beta something else for me. You see...I still look at you as one of my favorite fandom authors. My love for Late Night Encounters knows no bounds, and when we became friends, I was still all insert fangirl screams here when it came to you. So, when I finally got the guts to say, “, wanna Beta She Gave Me Words?” I kept telling myself the worst you could say is no, and we'd still be friends. So when you said yes, you more than made my day! Then, naturally, the second thought that popped into my head was, “Oh my god, what if she hates this?” Which, I've slowly learned could never happen no matter how many times I drive you crazy with, “Was this good? It sucked, right?” You give me confidence in my writing, and you make me believe in myself when it comes to putting each and every chapter up, especially when I am so close to wanting to throw the towel in and quit.

I'm not sure if I can possibly explain just how thankful I am for all that you do. You take your time going through each doc I send you, even when you probably don't feel your best or on minimal sleep. You make my writing better, stronger even. So, like I said, there isn't enough thanks in all that you do for me and my stories, so I'll settle with thank you for being the amazing Beta and friend that you are. I couldn't ask for anyone better.

With Love,
myonlyheroin (Krystel)

Dear Best Beta Ever (A.K.A. Kim),

Do you realize we’ve known each other for a year and a half now? You’ve been my super fantastic beta for over a year and a half! Can you believe that?!

Now, onto the reasons why I’m writing this letter.

Firstly, you’re awesome. Honestly, I’m so lucky to have you betaing for me. Not only are you beyond helpful and ridiculously good at editing, you’re hilarious. The gifs and comments you leave for me have made me laugh out loud more times than I can count. Also, when I’m in a writing slump (as I’m in now), you’re encouragement always helps push me forward. Without you, I would never have seen Hollywood through and would have given up on Dark Paradise forever ago. Sometimes just the fact that I’ll get your sweet comments and crazy gifs give me the motivation to finish a chapter and get it sent off to you.

Secondly, you just need to know how talented I think you are. Not just at making edits but writing itself! I can’t wait to see one of your books on shelves one day. Your writing is honestly at a level I want to see mine on one day. I think you’re so much more skilled than you give yourself credit for, and I’d love to read anything else you’ve written (hint, hint, cough, cough).

Not only are you great at what you do, you do it with such kindness and grace. You’ve really made a name for yourself in our community as someone who is sweet, generous, and the best of the best. I know life has gotten in the way for both of us and we haven’t talked in a few weeks (which is longer than I’d like and I need my butt kicked), but I know that the next time we talk, it’ll be the same as always. Though we’ve never met, I count you as such a dear friend. Not only have you encouraged me every step of the way, but you’ve also improved my writing with your explanations and edits. Truly. If you read something I wrote before I met you and after, you can see the difference. I owe that all to you. So never doubt you’re talented and influential.

Love you so much! <3


I first “met” Midnight Cougar (D JS White) when I was collaborating with CullensTwiMistress on our story Seven Forty-Three. To say I was nervous to have her looking at my stuff would be an understatement. She works with some really big names, and it was overwhelming, as I often lack confidence when it comes to the words I write. I really had nothing to worry about. Mid is a fabulous beta. She doesn’t just pen up a document, she actually adds valuable input and ideas! The thought she puts into everything that she’s reading for me is phenomenal.

When I was writing Love Hurts it was her idea to change it from a one-shot into smaller multi-chapters, the idea would have worked better had I been more patient and able to stick to a posting schedule, but the way the story was received I was amazing and I doubt it would have been as big if I posted it as a one-shot. Not only is Mid a fabulous beta but she is a fabulous friend, always there for you if you need someone to vent to, and one of the brightest lights in our fandom! I love you girly, for everything that you do for not only us writers, but for the fandom as a whole.

Love, Maplestyle