Winter Short Story Contest Winner

Happy Short Story Day and first day of Winter! It’s a time to relax and celebrate, and we certainly are celebrating at the Press. We’re excited to announce our Winter Short Story Contest Winner: Cati Aevaliotis!

Cati Aevaliotis is originally from Covington, Ga but now lives in Dahlonega while attending UNG. She is an English major and a Psychology minor. In her free time, she enjoys reading, writing, handicrafts, and doing service with Alpha Phi Omega Co-ed service fraternity, where she is the Vice President of Service.

Cati’s winning story is below. Leave a comment or visit us at FacebookTwitter, or Instagram to share your responses!

A Recipe for a Misfit Christmas


  • 1 old lady with a diner who, over time, lost her family and misses the feeling of having a Christmas with those she loves and realized that others might feel the same way too.
  • 1 single mom with a small child who wasn’t sure how to explain to her child that their Christmas wasn’t going to look like the ones on TV and that was okay. Her boss at the diner invited her to Christmas dinner and she had no other plans and thought that a Christmas with other people would be good for the two of them.
  • 2 gay men whose family didn’t want them around so they found their own among the people who also frequented their favorite diner.
  • A handful of young people fresh out of the town they grew up in and now trying to find their own place in the world but somehow ended up in this small town with a dinner who was offering Christmas dinner.
  • 1 old man who has been going to the diner so long that it was speculated that has a crush on the owner. In reality he is just lonely and enjoys the company of the diner patrons.
  • An old jukebox that plays old Christmas songs and other classic hits from the 60s.
  • A ham dinner made lovingly by someone who missed making big dinners for her loved ones.


  • A soft sprinkling of snow. Because snow makes everything feel more like picturesque and Christmas like.
  • Presents! Though sometimes hard to come by when money is tight, they are always welcomed no matter how small the price tag. The thought is always there.


  • Add The Diner Owner early so she can start the preparations for the rest of the guests.
  • The Old Man will be added shortly after. He might bring the flavor of some wine or whiskey as a hostess gift for everyone to enjoy after dinner.
  • The Single Mother and her child will have the intentions of being added early but because of complications will be added later. The Single Mother will help in the kitchen while The Child will be in charge of decorating the rest of the restaurant with the help of The Old Man.
  • Add The Gay Couple right when things are about to get started.
  • Others are added randomly to add spice and variety.
  • Let sit for many hours while everyone eats and enjoys each other’s company and finds family in the strangers they meet.

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