Happy (Belated) ValenTINY 2017!

Susanna Hill’s annual ValenTINY contest kicked off last week, before this website was up and running.  Since it’s never too late for love and gorging on candy, I’m reposting my submissions here.  The challenge was to write a story – in either rhyme or prose – of no more than 214 words, with a Valentine’s Day theme and at least one confused character.  I couldn’t decide between rhyme and prose, so I did one of each. Enjoy, and check out all the other great submissions here!


Happy Valentine’s Day? No way, not for me,
Because I’m allergic to romance, you see.

It doubles me over. It makes me cramp.
My eyes well up, and my palms get damp.

I wretch, I gag, I spew something sticky.
I’ll spare you the details; it gets pretty icky.

But love didn’t always affect me this way.
My problems began on a Valentine’s Day.

First I received a love note from Mandy,
Along with a box full of chocolate candy.

Sally then told me how she did adore me,
And gave me a cookie that she baked just for me.

Meg gave me warm gooey cinnamon buns,
And Jen gave me kisses – the edible ones.

Rita’s love letter was very enticing,
Written on cake in strawberry icing.

I didn’t want to be rude or ungrateful,
So I ate it up, every last plateful.

But when I finished Annette’s berry crumble,
My poor tummy issued a very loud rumble.

I’d had too much love and sappy emotion!
Romance had given me belly commotion!

Now I turn down all those Valentine treats,
And hide from admirers with sugary sweets.

Hearts and red roses just bring me dismay,
‘Cause I can’t stomach love, or Valentine’s Day.


“Santa Shmanta!” said Cupid. “Why does he get all the attention?”

Suddenly, it struck him… like an arrow! If Cupid wanted to be as popular as Santa, he’d have to give gifts. Spreading love just wasn’t cutting it.

Cupid didn’t have elves, so he used his own cash to buy fancy gifts. He knew it would be worth it when kids started writing him letters and lining up to sit on his lap.

On Valentine’s Day, Cupid snuck into Mrs. McGee’s third grade class, the first stop on his gift-giving spree. He dropped off presents at each desk and then hid.

“A video game!” cried one student.

“A bike!” shrieked another.

Cupid grinned. But then, something changed…

The students began to look around suspiciously. Nobody guessed that Cupid had brought the gifts. Instead, everyone thought the gifts were from secret admirers. Things in Mrs. McGee’s class got really awkward.

Billy bragged about Emma having a crush on him. Emma denied it. Geoffrey defended her, secretly thinking he was Emma’s crush. Billy and Geoffrey got into a fight. From there, the entire classroom erupted in chaos.

Cupid sighed and decided to stick to love instead of gifts.

Plus, with the money he saved on gifts, next year he could finally afford a pair of pants.


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