TopShelf Blogs

placing your books in bookstores

There may be an inside track for authors who wish to be published.
It won't be easy to get there and your story telling has to appeal to those as an intended target
Publishers Weekly
Chinese online retail giant Dangdang to open 1000 bookstores in 3 years | CRI

For those who already understand the ins and outs of publishing in paper format it will tough enough getting a foot in the door. Others who have only published via the web such as Amazon and like, a steep learning curve will be required.

Marriage Licences


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I have been trying to find my marriage licence for quite some time now. This is a required document for me to file for divorce and for me to legally change my name in the State of Massachusetts. Well, today I finally found my one and only copy of my Report and Certificate of Marriage USFK Form 164, (USFK REG 600-240).

Quick Writing Update

Just a quick update. While I continue to work on the next Christy story, I've also been writing a new story and toiling with the idea of combining my DRU vampire stories into one narrative, fleshing them out and expanding upon them.

I hope to get something new done and published soon :)

As I Age


1. I talk to myself, because sometimes I need expert advice.

2. Sometimes I roll my eyes out loud.

3. I don't need anger management. I need people to stop pissing me off.

4. My people skills are just fine. It's my tolerance of idiots that needs work.

5. The biggest lie I tell myself is "I don't need to write that down, I'll remember it."

6. When I was a child I thought nap time was punishment. Now it's like a mini-vacation.

Happy Thanksgiving to All


Yes, it is a US holiday, though a few other countries celebrate something similar on other dates but I think it is kind of a universal theme. We all need to take a moment out now and then to be thankful for what we have.

I'm thankful for the community we have here that stepped up and met our goals for the month with gifts. I'll update the Hatbox box later.

I'm thankful for lots of other things, too. I hope everyone has a lovely day. :)


Happy Thanksgiving to all

Happy Thanksgiving to all of my sisters (and brothers) here at BCTS. I pray that you all have many things to be thankful for. I know I do.

I have a loving wife of 48 years who, though she sometimes struggles with it, accepts me as I am. I have two daughters who know and still love me. I have two grandchildren who delight me. I have a job that meets my needs and I have no long term debt.

Life is good and God has surely blessed me.

Different kind of thanks.

Everyone has been saying thanks for family et al for Thanksgiving I'd rather give an atypical thank you here.

Part of my heritage is Irish/Celtic and I was never a big fan of the popularized aspects of Irish culture. That being said, Maggie Finson writing about Fey and the Sidhe by extension makes me truly proud to have such interesting folklore as part of my ancestry.
So thank you Mags for writing about Fey and the Faerie by extension. Additionally, I hope you are doing well my friend.


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Hello, confession time here.

I'm not sure how to start this and I'm really not sure about doing it, but a part of me needs to.

Yesterday I posted something that I shouldn't have as with some other behind the scenes acts. Two days ago events in my life started coming to a head. My fears coming to fruition of what I wanted and the only one that can be blamed is myself.

Thanksgiving here in the US......


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A very good friend just reminded me that I have much to be thankful for this year. She did that by taking the time to care about others, which is something that we as a people do too little of - and I am just as guilty as others of this.

Yes, I am constantly thinking of those that I care about; about those that I have loved and lost. I am reminded every day, with every breath I take, of those to whom I owe my very existence. I cannot wake in the morning without thinking of those wonderful young men to whom I owe my life, pitiful as it may seem at times.

"Love's Shame, Love's Salvation" Published on

It has been a busy week; however, I finally got "Love's Shame, Love's Salvation" published. Finding the right cover was difficult; however, what we finally found works perfectly. This is it, the end, La commedia è finite. I enjoyed writing the series very much, and it took me the best part of twelve years. Thank you Gwen Brown for discovering "The Heart of the Beholder" and telling Holly about it. She was such a big help, and she made me realize I could do more and get better. I don't know if I will write any more novels or not.

"Soaring With Eagles" Now on Amazon

Book Cover Golden Eagle.jpg

"Soaring With Eagles" is the seventh Volume of A California Saga. You might remember that there are two transgender characters in the novel. At least they were, but that was taken care of. If you read the stories before and enjoyed them, please go to Amazon and write a review. If you buy through BCTS, they will get a commission. Here's the link:


Seasonal care

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Once again the seasons have changed. For me its now getting cold, for others its been that way. I do wish that all my brothers and sisters are taking care to protect themselves from the elements. Dress appropriately for the weather(you don't have to sacrifice style and taste to do so) and make very sure that you're also taking measures internally. Drink plenty of fluids, one can dehydrate quickly in winter just as well as summer. Teas, coffees, hot chocolates are nice but don't forget juices. Vitamin C and potassium are vital. slips and falls are frequent so Vitamin D is also important.

Problem with Chrystal Hall Whateley Academy site


Hi all,

I've been trying to get caught up on the Whateley Academy line of stories (not a trivial task) and, when I reached "To Be Merry and Escape From It All - Part 4" I received "The requested URL /merry7.htmlpart4 was not found on this server." I didn't find a link for someone to contact in case of problems on the Chrystal Hall site but I saw something there that seemed to indicate that I should post this problem here. If I'm missing something on the correct way to do this please let me know who I should contact.

Gaby San - part 2 now on Kindle!

Well as the title suggests I did get the second part finished and you should be able to access it on Kindle later today! I will sort out a paper version and Lulu download for next week.

Also today you can read the next part of Book 12, chapter 22 or 502 if you want to be pedantic!

There being no rest for the wicked i'll push straight on with the next arc of book 14!

Audio BCTS stories?

I'm a regular radio, podcast and audiobook listener and my mind wandered to who I would choose to read Angharad's 'Easy As Falling Off A Bike' - British of course with maybe a slight regional accent - suggestions welcome.

Why stop there though? I remember one BC link to a short TG themed audio story but imagine readers know others which I'd like to hear about. In the meantime if anyone wants a challenge how about posting a-reading-a-day from the beginning of Bike?

"The Redhead and the PM" now available on

I've published The Redhead and the PM on I hope Anglophiles and the fans of A California Saga take a look at this one. It does not have a huge amount of TG content; however, Musetta Gigliotti O'Donnell has important roles. Kleenex is recommended in several chapters. If you've read it in the past and enjoyed it, please leave a review on Amazon.


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Not Again!

Fraid so. As we draw near to the next completed century with Bike ie 2800, I feel a need to ask the readership if they'd like me to continue writing regular episodes as usual, or not. This is assuming Auntie Erin is happy for me to fill up her servers as before. Remember, Bike is only available at BC - that's Big Closet not British Cycling, so take advantage of its exclusivity, get involved and write a comment (but keep them clean).

In other words, let me know what you think, assuming you can after reading Bike.


Eight Years In A Quandary (And How They Grew)

Yes, it's true: I'm eight years old today, as far as any of you know.

My first post, in fact, was sent in by telegraph, back when the world-wide-web barely stretched past Pittsburgh. Every website was still all black-and-white, and all the pictures were cut from linoleum blocks.

Oh, but those were the days!

Anyway, it's been amazing to be here with all of you. I'm sorry I don't have all the time I had eight years ago, when I could spend hours a day reading and writing and exchanging notes.


The warehouse I work out of sells excess pallets to a Hispanic gentleman. I have often helped him load. The pallets tend to get tippy as they come off the dock plate and I helped steady them. About half way through the loading process, he asked, "What's your name?" I answered, "Pat." He then asked, "Patricia?" Since it was work where I try to maintain a male persona, I corrected, "Patrick." He smiled and nodded and went back to work.

Serious SF/F which explores gender???

If you have a recommendation about great speculative fiction which explores gender in some way, please send the recommendation to the Tiptree Award jury. They’re reading now for works first published (as a book -- or possibly an e-book) in 2015 only.

James Tiptree, Jr., as you may or may not know, was a woman.

Wikipedia Entry:

Transgender Woman found Dead in Male Prison


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It seems the British legal system while on one hand protective of transgender people shoots itself in the foot by two recent cases of people who've lived their entire adult lives as female being sent to male prisons because they hadn't reregistered as legally female. In the first case a voluble protest by activists caused the woman to be sent to a female prison, in the second it turned to tragedy and the woman concerned seems to have carried out her threat and taken her own life. I suspect guidelines might change now that it's too late for poor Vicky Thompson.

"Five Love Stories en Brochette" now available on Amazon


The fifth novel in A California Saga, Five Love Stories en Brochette is now up on Amazon. Remember, any purchase helps BCTS. Mad River Cover Design Blank.jpg

If you've read any of the stories in the series in the past, and enjoyed them, please leave a review.


{Link added. -- Erin}

The Enhanced TRI and Moongoddess

First of all, I hope Moongoddess is okay. Secondly, will there be any more of The Enhanced TRI posted? The story is so good, but I'm more worried about Moongoddess than I am about the story.

Here's hoping all is okay with her.

Catherine Linda Michel

Looking for an Editor

Well, I'm looking for an editor to help me out before I start posting my current project to the site. I'm keeping the project under wraps for right now, since I want to have enough written to post on a more consistent basis. But, I need an editor to help me out. Is there anyone out there willing to help me out?

Gender Swapping Dinosaur Musical


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So I was researching some music for a friends radio show the other day and I came across something interesting and I thought I would share what I found. So first some background. The show has a feature called The Musical Moment where he plays a song from a film or a musical. In my research this week I came across a show called Triassic Parq. Basically it's the story of Jurassic Park but told from the point of view of the Dinosaurs. However there is a little bit more to it than that. This is a description of the plot from the show's Wikipedia page

A little help, perhaps a prayer?


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OK, no drama here, no one gets excited. OK?

Probably like many of you, the events of the last couple weeks have made sadness seem ... common? With my Middle Eastern background, it feels impossible to hate. It is painful to be unable to resolve this. Yes, I know, life's a bitch and then you die, right?

Like most of us, there will be no partner to share the remainder of my life, and the doctor recently told me that I am likely to live another 32 years. What the hell? I so wanted to be a wife.

Opening up the world of Winnisimmet to all


I just finished the final book in the Finn Family Chronicles. I originally wrote this saga as three separate books but after posting here it flowed together into one long three year span story. Well that is over with, it's time to move on to another project. I didn't want to leave the world to wither so I have one story ready to edit, one partially started(a Christmas story of all things), one suggested story in the pre-planning stage, and the final side story that gave two characters that were removed from the saga a chance to break back in.

Hatbox Still Needs Money


{updated again}

Hate to be that blunt about it, but there it is. We need about $1300 (yes, this changed again) by the end of this week, and we have about $300 in the bank.

It's just that time of month.

Here's the link to the subscription page:

Or if you want to send a one time gift:

Makeup Can Make a Moviestar


I have no idea how many of these makeup transformations I have seen over the years. Some of them really do tug at the belief it could be possible. Always enjoy looking at the power of makeup when it is applied with the touch of those who understand how to use it. Kinda reminds me of the old Glamor Photo ads. "If we can't make you beautiful, no one can." I wish everyone could experience a makeover if only once in their life to see with their own eyes what they can be.

No SKYPE without makeup !


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So I left a skype message for one of my friends in old soggy this morning and when I looked at the screen the fowl image reflected there nearly caused me an episode of PTSD. Alas, said image was me !

To my UK friend, I promise not to get on skype again without spending suitable amount of time concealing the fact that I look like one of the ghostly Valkyrie. Good heavens, I even frightened myself. So, it's come to this has it? It's a wonder that I didn't char one of the undersea cables.

Got a call from a friend yesterday


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I got a phone call from one of the ladies at my church yesterday.

I've missed the last couple of weeks, and since the last time she saw me I was in a lot of pain and struggling with flashbacks, she was very worried about me.

So I made her a promise, that should I start to feel like harming myself, I would call her first.

Link Gets Pretty

Ok so I've seen numerous female Link pictures and stories for years now. It seems to be one of the big staples with a lot of TG artists. He's not the only one who gets gender flipped actually---loads do. However he seems to be the first to get it done to him officially.

Yep, Link is now a girl...sorta lol.

Dreams... Strange dreams and leg cramps...


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So I had that dream yesterday...
I was a relative of a deceased wealthy someone. Then I had strange things happen to my calves... But reason for this will be obvious in several lines...
Next I tried to help to investigate that death... And there was an interesting plot with murder of the vitness disguised as the death of the one of the "bad guys" at the hands of the one of the "bad guys" (who was female and my ex in that dream)...

Best laid plans

And all that!

4 more chapters of the new Gaby book are in the can this week but that leaves me three short of completing the second arc and putting it out. With nothing really standing in my way this coming week I should manage to have it ready for next weekend for the impatient amongst you.

That's pretty good for me, only a week later than planned!

Of course tomorrow you can look forward to reading another chapter from book 12, chapter twenty.


what would you do?

so explanation, i'm stuck in Canada awaiting the final stage of immigration into America (the physical and interview) as such all I have to occupy me is my imagination and a tablet that is WOEFULLY inadequate for writing.

so i've been working on an idea that was built off the story 'Darling Dainty Donna'. The general concept being that a boy is punished for being a transphobic bully via forcefed valium and public humiliation.

Now i used that as a springboard into a concept that I want feedback on.

What's In an Efin Name?


The other day I was thinking about the pseudonym one of the BC authors has adopted when I ran across this website.

The site is all about online financial planing. "e" fin "plan".

Not "EF" in "plan."

Given how conservative most financial planners are, it's highly unlikely they have any idea how their name looks to many.

A Love So Bold

LoveSoBold_0.jpgA Love So Bold
by Anon Allsop

I am so thankful that I have finally gone back through the edit's and FINISHED with A Love So Bold. It is amazing to me that my editor JP has read through my book not once...not twice, but three times. I myself have probably been through it at least six times since I have written it. It is officially done and I am slowly posting it here online. Each time I post it, I re-read it again just to be certain that it is flowing smoothly. This story is a true labor of love and has gobbled up much of my free time.

Many here would probably agree that unless you write, a person can't really fathom how much of an author's soul goes into a much it becomes an extension of yourself. This story was that way with me. I'm just happy and thankful that it has turned out as well as it did. I appreciate everyone who has read and commented on it, hopefully you will continue and enjoy it to the end. If anything, I hope it helps people forget about their daily troubles if for only a little while.

May we all bow our heads in a minute of silence for all those in Paris who died today in the Terrorist attacks


Hi everyone
I believe we should all give a minute of silence in support for all those who died in the Paris, France terrorist attacks today.
It was a horrific attack on the people of that lovely City and I am sure was an attack upon all those who desire to live peaceful lives around this world.
Take care all and PEACE in your lives always.
Janice Lynn

Writing short stories

I love short stories, reading them and writing them. They have a very varied spectrum in terms of type and genre, as much as any other form of writing or story. They might describe an entire event, or the impact on just one individual. They can reflect just a moment in time from a lifetime of events, which is my favourite sort to write. They don't have a build up just an event, or an encounter and they're over - gone; leaving us to work out what happened before and after, which may or may not be what the writer intended.

Utah Judge, in Shift, Lets Lesbian Couple Keep Foster Child

A Utah judge on Friday reversed, at least temporarily, his order that a foster child be taken away from a lesbian couple because of their sexual orientation, but he continued to question the placement of children with same-sex parents.

Thank You

For just having been posted for a few days the responses to "The Heart of the Beholder" and "The Narragansett Fork" on Amazon have been very encouraging. "The Narragansett Fork" could use reader response, if someone would be so kind. The story is one of my favorites because it introduces Fanny and Musetta. I'll be posting "Musetta's Waltz" soon.


I am bringing Half-Term break up to date

Well as some of you may have noticed I am bringing Alex and Chris & my Gaby fanfiction up to date. Some of these were put on Maddy’s site which appears to be down. So I thought I better bring the stories on this site up to date. I will be trying to post daily until I go into hospital. If there is a gap then it will be most likely I have had surgery on my arm and shoulder. Sharphawlad

Little Girl-Boy (New Story)


I've been thinking about the Little Boy-Girl Saga. And it came to me by way of a friend. She said to make the main story better bring in a girl that wants to be a boy. So I did and came up with a story i hope you will love. Little Girl-Boy it's about a girl named Ashley and the problems she had to deal with. losing her dad days before she born then losing her mom at five years old with no family that would want her.

Am I accident prone


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Back in July like thousands of others I attended the Great Yorkshire Show. On this day my knee decided to play up and gave way. I was propelled forward landing on my left shoulder. When I got home I took some pain killers. Several weeks later as I was still in considerable pain in my left shoulder and could barely lift my left arm I went to the doctors.

Utah judge removes child from lesbian foster parents

Can't post the text as it explicitly states that is not allowed.

GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr these kinds of judges are disturbing

Too scandalous to keep secret

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So, I will admit that this story might be outside the scope of normal practice, but since I am still red faced and hot with embarrassment, I thought some might enjoy my temporary discomfiture.

So, last night I put a "certain movie" into my Blu Ray player and had watched it about half way when suddenly it was muted by Cinava, an anti piracy company.

Which character to feature in new story?


I am trying to figure out what to do with an upcoming story. I have two in the works, one an original non-Finn story and a Christmas Finn-related story.

My problem is this, I love the Finn-verse but after looking over all of the characters I haven't done much with except have them interact a couple of times I don't know what to do. There are a few that get their bigger moment in the 1st non-John/Jaimie related story but many others just don't have much to do.

A Little Help Please - The Heart of the Beholder


I know there were a number of my readers who enjoyed The Heart of the Beholder. If some of you would be so kind as to write review on Amazon, I would really appreciate it. Remember, the better the sales, the more money BCTS gets. Here's the link:


The Heart of the Beholder - Update

I took the plunge and put 'The Heart of the Beholder' up for sale on Amazon. It is published under my official name, so please be kind. Erin will alter the link so that BCTS will get to make a lot of money. Sapphire is working with The Cynthia Chronicles for me, and we share the take for that. Volume 2 will probably go up in a while. BCTS will get all my profits from the sale of the Chronicles. Here is the link for The Heart of the Beholder:


My first ever e-book


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Hi guys,

It's been a very long time since I've been a proper member of the BC community.When I was writing 'Kate Draffen' you guys helped shape the story with your amazing comments. Comments that I find myself rereading once a year or so. I have wrestled with my TG thoughts and my feelings about them, I got married and tried to ignore TG fiction and wonderful and weird people who surround it. I didn't post anything for years but I have 30+ half finished stories on my computer.

Sci-fi book with mild TO element

I just finished a book called "Figment" by Marco Guarda. It's a pretty fair piece of science fiction in its own right. Icing on the cake for me was mild TG element. Not so much cross-dressing, per se as feminine emotional reactions and actions as a result on implanted woman's memories. Good book.

Football Girl ...

Burly footballers are left reeling by rival's incredible skills on the pitch - when 'he' removes wig and make-up to reveal she's a woman

Read more:
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Does this remind anyone of a couple of the stories on BCTS?



A Lost Tail

I have lost a tale. Or a tail. Either I am more confused than I thought I was, or I make up fantastic stories during the rest of my 3 - 4 hours of sleep left me after enduring the regular nightmares I have to put up with every night, These nightmares are things that were caused by my being at age two caught up in a horrible war - we lived then in the east end of London, and before we were evacuated because the house we lived in had a bomb fall on it and it fell to bits and I had to be dug free from the wreckage.

Reform Jews approve far-reaching transgender resolution


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Reform Jews approve far-reaching transgender resolution

Reform Judaism movement in US approves far-reaching resolution supporting transgender rights
November 5, 2015 11:37 PM

By Mike Schneider / Associated Press

Rise in numbers of children seeking gender identity advice


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The number of children gender identity problems referred to the Tavistock Clinic in London is increasing. Interestingly, more girls than boys. It's also thought the wider availability of information and the effect of celebrity changers might be responsible for this phenomenon.

Chapter 2 of Welcome to Windy City is mostly complete...

... but damn, it need revision. Lots of revision, as it turns out. Chapter 2, Scene 1 is more-or-less done. Scene 2 is cut completely - I may or may not restore it, but I think it is superfluous. Currently editing Scene 3, but with relatively fewer critique, finding and fixing the problematic part is more difficult. Same with the rest of the writing.

I think it is prudent to have more test readers, so.. anyone is up to it?