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A Vocalite Holiday 2023

"Vocal+Assist December Prompt"

By Lamar WigginsPublished 3 months ago Updated 3 months ago 6 min read
Top Story - December 2023

The following story was written for the Vocal+Assist Facebook group's prompt, A 'Hallmark' story. Enjoy the details below.


"Attention everyone! Before we feast, it’s time to share some thoughts. Let's start with you, Dharrsheena!"

This EPIC assemblage of esteemed writers became the first of its kind in Vocal's history, an idea conceived by Mother Combs and River Joy. They endured many headaches hashing out the details including arranging flights, coordinating hotel rooms and decorating the hall in sophisticated, holiday fashion.

Sponsored by Vocal Media, the turn out couldn't have been better. Faces like Rick Henry Christopher, Real Poetic, Randy Wade Jellison-Knock, Babs Iverson, Novel Allen, JBaz, Cathy Holmes and her dear brother Gerald were all seated at table number one. Table two was just as vibrant with Judey Kalchik, Scott Wade, HandsomeluiiThePoet, Caroline Jane, Donna Fox, Heather Hubler, Sara Wilson and Andrei Z.

Everyone was happy to see Paul Stewart make an appearance. His book signing was pushed to a later date and was able to surprise the group. He sat at table three with Hannah Moore, Kendal Defoe, Mark Gagnon, Tiffany Gordon, Mariann Carroll, Oneg and Dana Crandell.

The last table featured the craftiness of Mathew Fromm and, Veronica Coldiron. They were both dressed in chain mail. Mysteriously, everyone else said they didn't receive the memo. They were seated with Grz Colm, Kristen Balyeat, Donna Renee, Jay Kantor, Dana Stewart, and of course, Dharrsheena . She stood up, looked deep within her soul and began to speak.

"I can’t tell you how excited and grateful I am to be here with all you freaking amazing people. I love the stories that come out of your big heads! Oh, not like big as in large but like ego! That's not the word either... dammit! Never mind. Anyway, I'm also thankful for the engagement I receive on my stories. I love creating the blood, the gore and the suffering of deserving souls with the use of twisted, unforgiving plots full of mayhem and surprise. Like, take The Island Blind Date for example. I couldn't wait to have the MC dig into the-"

"Whoa whoa whoa!" River uncomfortably interjects. "Spoiler alert everyone ha ha! Thank you for sharing, Dharrasheena but some of us may have not read it...yet. Shall we move on?"

Everyone took their turn sharing random thoughts and giving thanks. Judy and Andrei arm wrestled to see who would speak last. Judy won of course and ended the gracious session with constructive words of wisdom.

The feast was Blessed by none other than Pastor Randy, who was also the first to dig in. He continued thanking the lord all the way back to his seat. Mother Combs spent days conceptualizing and preparing the impressive meal. She even made all the desserts, including an elegant cake created in the shape of a book with the words 'Submissions on a Mission 2024' written on it.

It was time for the festivities to continue. As a surprise, River set up a ten-foot screen and projected her favorite Hallmark classic, One Royal Holiday. Everyone was excited except Kendall. He had seen it fourteen times previously and knew it was a tearjerker. He searched for a box of tissue and told everyone… "Take one, no, take two and pass it around. Trust me on this!" He was right. Real Poetic was the first to shed a tear, followed by Scott and Marrian.

Dharrsheena laughed out loud as if it were pure comedy. Everyone glared at her each time her outbursts interrupted their enveloped fixation. She tried to muffle the laughter by covering her mouth, but the containment failed.

It became increasingly distracting to Novel who stood up and asked, "What the devil is so funny, child!" Their eye contact pushed Dharrsheena over the edge. She fell out her chair and began rolling on the floor. This prompted mixed emotions to swirl. Do we help her? Do we take her temperature? Should we call the police? Heather knew exactly what to do, she simply shouted, "LOOK! TOP STORY!" This was met with audible gasps from everyone as if the words were taboo. Dharrsheena also heard the reclusive words and instantly stopped. She eagerly asked, "Where? Who? When? I must read it at once!" She fumbled her phone around until it was facing her. Tiffany let her in on the ruse and said, "She was just kidding, Dharr! We needed to do something to get you out of that rabbit hole of laughter." Dharrsheena composed herself, brushed off her clothes and dramatically sat back in her chair.

"I'm so sorry everyone. It's Ricks fault!" She points a finger at him. The hall echoed with more gasps of shock. "He is making these weird faces every time I look over at him." All eyes turn to Rick who comes to his own defense.

"What are you all looking at? I can't help it! I'm on some new meds that leave me on the edge of sneezing, but it never h-happens."

Jay Kantor, being the diplomat he is, suggested they switch places so she couldn’t see his face directly. She agreed. The unanticipated, three-hour movie resumed.

A few minutes into the climax of the film where the characters decide to join hands in holy matrimony, Dharrsheena had another outburst. This time it was saturated in devilish delirium. She rushed the screen and ripped it down, but the image continued to play on the wall behind it. Panting, she turned her focus to the projector. She rushed and tackled it like an experienced linebacker. Mother Combs flipped on the lights as the reels continuously unraveled layers of film over the beloved Dharrsheena.

Still experiencing hysteria, she surrendered an explanation. “Okay okay you got me! It wasn’t Rick! It was this lame-ass movie! I couldn’t take it anymore! No one is even dying or getting stabbed. It's a complete buzzkill!” She began ripping the film to shreds as the onlookers faces silently cheered her on.

Grz stood up with a lightbulb moment blazing across his face.

"I got this! I always keep one handy. You never know when you'll need it, you know.”

To everyone’s dismay, he pulled out a straitjacket from an attaché case. Caroline quickly shook her head and gestured for him to put it away. It seemed like a great idea at the time.

Dana Crandell and Kristen used reverse psychology to calm Dharr. Kristen brought her spirits even higher by mentioning that A nightmare on Elm Street marathon was playing in the hotel. It worked! They then escorted her out the hall and to her room without further incident.

River faced the crowd with an undecided smile. “Um... That was different. Sorry everyone. Luckily, I brought a backup projector, we can watch A Dog Named Christmas instead. I’ll have it set up in no time.” The tone of the sighing changed to disappointment. No one really wanted to watch a movie to begin with, especially Cathy! She offered an alternative.

“Can’t we just play poker or something. Gerald brought cards and cigars.”

Babs was the first to agree, “Yes!!! Game on! I’ve got the chips and whiskey!”


>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Vocal Yearbook Photo 2023<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<

Dall E


Happy Holidays!


About the Creator

Lamar Wiggins

Creative writer in the Northeast US who loves the paranormal, mystery, true crime, horror, humor, fantasy and poetry. Take a chance, you'll be thoroughly entertained.

"Life is Love Experienced" -LW


Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Easy to read and follow

    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Heartfelt and relatable

    The story invoked strong personal emotions

  1. Masterful proofreading

    Zero grammar & spelling mistakes

  2. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

  3. Expert insights and opinions

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Comments (38)

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  • Sara Wilson2 months ago

    Congrats on your well deserved top story! I loved this. And I feel honored to be included in the party ^_^

  • Denise E Lindquist2 months ago

    Congratulations on your well-deserved top story!! 🎉🎉🎉

  • I thought I have commented on this. But I haven't. This is really a fun raid Lamar. Congratulations on your top story.

  • I always wondered what it would be like if us V+A folks met in person. This is such a good approximation of ideations in my head. LOL! Congratulations on Top Story 💜

  • Poppy 2 months ago

    This was so iconic and enjoyable. Absolutely brilliant idea and equally good execution of it!! Well done

  • Teresa Renton2 months ago

    Ha ha! What a creative idea! Just brilliant! Congratulations for a well deserved TS ❤️😂

  • This was great

  • Raymond G. Taylor3 months ago

    Ha ha! What a fun read and well done for a deserved TS

  • Daphsam3 months ago

    This is so fun! How creative.

  • Grz Colm3 months ago

    OMG. I laughed so hard at the top story part and D having to read it at once!! 😁 Thanks very much for all the laughs Lamar and a very well painted picture of a most blessed event. I had a great time. Here here! Until next year! 😁👍

  • Paul Stewart3 months ago

    Aw...I have been avoiding Christmassy stuff...wish I had seen this sooner. This was lovely and very hilarious, bud. Book signing bit made me cringe and laugh at the same time and love that you incorporated so many of the important people that make the Vocal community awesome. Well done on this getting the Top Story it deserves!

  • Celia in Underland3 months ago

    This is fab -Love the cast of characters! Congrats on TS!

  • Hannah Moore3 months ago

    Love this. I've been off vocal for a few days, reading this thismorning made me realise I miss you all!

  • Now that is a scary assembly! 😂 Fun and clever story, Lamar!

  • HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!! I don't know who laughed more, the me in the story or the me reading this!! 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 Gosh this is like the funniest thing I've ever read!! You wrote my character so perfectly. So freaking accurate with the way I actually talk. And I would definitely laugh so much at a Hallmark movie 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 The way I blamed Rick hahahahahahahhaa. The way Novel asked what in the devil is so funny child 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 I just cannotttttt!!!! You sir are a comedy genius!!! Thank you so much for making my day with this story! You're the best!!!

  • River Joy3 months ago

    Hahaha this was hilarious and so much fun! Great response to the prompt.

  • Shirley Belk3 months ago


  • Babs Iverson3 months ago

    Fabulous holiday tale!!! Humorously wriiten!!! Loved my line, "Yes! Game on! I've got the chips and the whiskey!!! Congratulations on a fun and entertaining Top Story!💕❤️❤️

  • Kristen Balyeat3 months ago

    🤣 Lamar, this was SO much fun to read! What a kick ass party that was! So happy I was invited!!! Super glad to have Dana as a sidekick to distract Dharrsheena. 😂 🙌🏽 What a fun and creative piece. Can’t wait for next years gathering! Well done!! 🎉

  • Kendall Defoe 3 months ago

    Oh, boy. Next time,make me the caterer... This is fantastic work, and a good TS! 🏅

  • Cathy holmes3 months ago

    Haha. That was great. I really want to see Judey and Andrei arm wrestle. Congrats on the TS.

  • Tiffany Gordon 3 months ago

    Omg that was the cutest thing that I've read in a long time! LOL 😂Kudos Lamar! I am thoroughly amused! Grade A storytelling my friend!

  • Donna Fox (HKB)3 months ago

    Lamar I smiled and giggled through out the entire read!! I loved your portrayal of Dharrsheena the best, made my whole day and felt almost too accurate! 💚 This might be my favourite piece of yours to date! Great work my friend and congrats on Top Story!!

  • Tressa Rose3 months ago

    Haha I knew it!!! Congrats on top story, more than deserved!

  • Novel Allen3 months ago

    Seriously, if you had put another Hallmark movie on, I would have pulled out the shotgun. The screen would have been toast. Hallmark...Bah Humbug. Anyone check on Dhar...Ah This was such great fun. Sorry Jay, but Lamar beat me to it. I wonder if i can still do one, he did such a dang great job. Def RSVP-ing, barring acts of God, apocalypse or some such happening. Huge congrats on TS. So happy to have been invited.

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