Hey folks! Today I’m hosting my good friend Lillian Francis and she is writing about her cute Christmas novella When Love Flue In.


To Epilogue or Not to Epilogue

Thanks to Therese for hosting me today. I’m here to talk about my new release ‘When Love Flue In’, happy endings, and epilogues.

Everybody loves a happy ending, especially when it comes to romance. There is nothing worse than investing your time and energy in characters or a relationship only to discover that ‘everybody dies’. Yeah, Mr W Shakespeare, I’m looking at you. Hard.

However with a short story that takes place over the space of two days how much of a happy ending can you expect? (No, not that kind of happy ending. They are a regular occurrence.) The most you can hope for is the start of a relationship with a positive outlook for the future.

So how do you prove to your readers that the love between your characters can endure when the story format is too short, or the tale you’ve told goes no further than the bumpy road of getting together and finding a happy place?

Obviously you could write a sequel dealing with life after that first surge of relationship adrenalin has passed. For that you need to have another story to tell, or be happy to put your much loved characters through the emotional wringer (again!).

Alternatively you could tag on an epilogue. One final chapter set at a future point to round off the story arc. I think that is an important point; a successful epilogue needs to tie in with the tale being told in the main body of the text.

If the main story had been a fun caper about a stolen manuscript, the thief, and the FBI agent who loved him despite his profession, an epilogue about their future wedding would feel forced and out of place. However, if the item stolen had been a gold shipment or a huge stash of jewels and the epilogue was their wedding but made the point of focusing on their rings. The implication that the rings had been made from the original horde would tie everything in and show how their relationship had developed (depending on whether the rings had been commissioned by the FBI agent or the thief).

With my shorter stories I don’t feel the need for an epilogue. The time invested with the characters is short, the hurdles they have overcome are more easily solved than those required to sustain a novel. As an author an epilogue narrows down the opportunity for any future sequels that might spring to mind for the characters. As a reader I don’t feel the need for fresh new relationships to be so firmly defined.

As a reader how do you feel about epilogues?


A soot-haired chimney sweep, an exploding flue and an uncooked turkey. It’s an unholy trinity that may make all of Dominic’s Christmas wishes come true.

Dominic is celebrating his first Christmas since his divorce, and although he’s spending it on his own, he’s determined to have a traditional Christmas morning, including a roaring fire. Unfortunately, Dominic’s chimney is blocked, which is why Reagan, a soot-haired chimney sweep, is head and shoulders up Dominic’s flue. Dominic is just lucky the man had a cancellation on Christmas Eve.

Unable to take his eyes off Reagan’s low-slung jeans and enticing arse while Reagan sets about the hearth with rods and brushes, Dominic knows five years is a long time to be obsessed with the man who sweeps his chimney every Christmas. This year there’s nothing to stop Dominic from acting on his desires—except his own insecurities.

An exploding flue provides the opportunity for more than just polite conversation and could be the catalyst for a perfect Christmas. But Dominic will need to stop hiding who he really is before a special sweep can light a fire in his heart.

Publisher’s Note: This book was previously released by another publisher. It has been revised and re-edited for release with Totally Bound Publishing.

 Buy Links

Totally Bound

All Romance ebooks

Amazon US

Amazon UK


About the author

An avid reader, Lillian Francis was always determined she wanted to write, but a ‘proper’ job and raising a family distracted her for over a decade. Over the years and thanks to the charms of the Internet, Lillian realized she’d been writing at least one of her characters in the wrong gender. Ever since, she’s been happily letting her ‘boys’ run her writing life.

Lillian now divides her time between family, a job and the numerous men in her head all clamouring for ‘their’ story to be told.

Lillian lives in an imposing castle on a wind-swept desolate moor or in an elaborate ‘shack’ on the edge of a beach somewhere depending on her mood, with the heroes of her stories either chained up in the dungeon or wandering the shack serving drinks in nothing but skimpy barista aprons.

In reality, she would love to own a camper van and to live by the sea.        

Find Lillian at

Website/Blog: http://lillianfrancis.blogspot.com/

Twitter: LillianFrancis_

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/Lillian_Francis