Newly Published – The 27th Letter

Ooh, look what I did!

Yes, the stories I wrote two years ago as part of the A to Z Blogging Challenge have been published in a fancy-dancy new paperback! The ebook will follow in a week or so, as soon as I get the thing reformatted. I do love using InDesign, but it’s making this process a little more difficult than I expected.

I also added an extra story that never appeared on my blog, of which I am particularly proud. Which is to be expected, I suppose. I mean, I put it in there and put it up for sale, so I’d better like it, right? Right. Um…

Well, you can find the paperback on CreateSpace or Amazon. Perhaps if you missed the blogs, you’d like to read one of the stories now? Then awesome. I shall share one. Continue reading Newly Published – The 27th Letter

Writing On…

It’s an interesting thing, really. I started writing in November for National Novel Writing Month, and didn’t stop until the 2nd of January. Well, that’s not exactly true. There were several days of non-writing going on – but not even one since November ended. Hmm. Think on that one, I should.

And of course you’ll notice that I crossed a New Year’s during that writing, and with a new year comes resolutions. I made one, and part of that resolution (Never Give Up) is that I write about 1,500 words every day.

And since I finished the first draft of “Living Up” Thursday, that means that Friday I started a new story!

Okay, it’s not exactly new. It’s a story about a woman who gets trapped in a wedding dress for 24 hours, and you can read the prologue of it on my blog here:  Abandoned. I started the story as part of the 2013 A to Z Blog Challenge, where I was going to write a chunk of the story every day (an hour of the 24 hours, actually, plus prologue and epilogue), but then Life Happened. (And if you read my previous post, you’ll recognize that this is an actual excuse, not just some nambsy pambsy excuse that really means I just SQUIRREL! You know?)

The story isn’t called Abandoned, though, it’s got a working title of “The Cyan Dress”. Cyan is the main character, and she gets her heart stomped on a bit in the beginning. I’m not even going to apologize for that. She was dating a jerk, and it was about time she got rid of him!

But as the story progresses, I hope to teach Cyan to stop trying to plan and control everything, and to have a little bit of fun. I also am excited to use my favorite method of enjoying special things – by using them, not just looking at them. (You know what I mean – the wedding china that only comes out for holidays and can’t go in the dishwasher? The sweater you love so much that you wear once a year in case it gets snagged by a rogue ring?) So Cyan’s stuck in her dress, and I’m going to make sure she enjoys it. Hopefully everyone else will too, by the time I’m done with the story. :D

What Happened Here?

Well, now, it’s been a while! I can explain, honestly I can. You see…

Life Happened.

I’m offering that as a viable excuse to anyone who has started a project and hasn’t followed through very well. Because sometimes, it just does.

But I am back on track! You might not see any short stories from me in a while, but I am working on a novel right now, temporarily called Living Up. It goes like this…

Everyone has retreated to towers to escape the sentient plant life that has turned toxic in response to humans’ abuse. When Tash gets a promotion and a new apartment, a forbidden printed book makes it into her posession. With the NECs and the government after her and the book, there’s no one left for Tash to trust.

Have I hooked you? Well, it’s okay if I haven’t. That’s not my best attempt at a blurb. And honestly, I’m still in the writing stage. As in, I started in November, and 125,404 words later I’m still not finished yet.

And editing? Well, that’s scheduled for January 7th with a bunch of writerly friends in the Lehigh Valley, so really, I’m under a bit of a crunch. There is No. Way. That I’m showing up there without my story in a binder. And quite honestly, I hope to have it done by Friday, since that’s my birthday and one of the things I want to do that day is get the sucker printed and put in a binder suitable for editing.

So I’m back, and I’m going to put a lot of updates here (and by “a lot” I kind of mean when I’m stuck and need a tiny writing distraction, so whenever that happens) about it, because…

Because I really don’t post here enough, and I think this in-progress story is a good reason to take advantage of the blog-space I have. Maybe nobody reads blogs anymore, but this is it for now.

Wish me luck!

Confessions over Pizza


I’ve hopped back on the wagon and got another What I.F.? story written finally. It’s been a while, and I’m a little angry with myself for letting it go so long. But the important part is that it’s written. Would you like to learn a little bit more?

The aftermath of a battle can be worse than the battle itself. After sending a troubled (read: murderous) imaginary friend back home for some much-needed help, Tess needs to clean up the mess left behind with her best friend Bet, and Bet’s brother, Sam. Only one of them is prepared to allow Tess back into their life, though, and Tess has some hard realizations to accept of her own.

All my friends are now giving excerpts for their stories, so I thought I’d give it a shot. Right after the links for purchase points, check out the first 30% or so of the story. (U.K. – De – Fr – It – Es), Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords

Continue reading Confessions over Pizza

Not Exactly Helpless

I finished another one! Helpless is the latest by Niina Ivy, number four in my personal 6-100 Challenge (which I will post about shortly, I promise), and also, coincidentally, number four in the What I.F.? series. This took a bit longer than the others because I got the idea and plotted it out. For some reason, that always slows me down a little, and I’m not sure why. It’s something I need to overcome, because I think a little planning can go a long way.


Helpless has a completely different tone than the previous three stories – it’s definitely darker, and delves in to what these rogue Imaginary Friends are really capable of, and why they need to be put away. I don’t think I’ve spoiled anything there. (I hope!)

What has the world come to when Imaginary Friends aren’t imaginary anymore? This is Tess’s world. She has been reunited with her best friend from childhood – Buddy, a horse – and she has finally agreed to help him rid the world of the deviants of his kind. But she had no idea what she was going to be up against, not really. Not until now.

You can find Helpless for sale at the usual suspects. I am also thrilled to be able to say that the previous three stories in this series are now available in Apple’s iBook store! (U.K. – De – Fr – It – Es), Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords.

I would also encourage anyone who reads it to come back and let me know what you think, good or bad – thanks!

I’m Awake Already

Awake is the newest short story in the What I.F.? series Niina Ivy is working on. I promised I wasn’t going to spell this out because I thought maybe it was so obvious as to be silly, but now I can’t help myself.

These stories so far have been about denial – What Imaginary Friends? And curiosity – What if Imaginary Friends are real? And friendship – What if I don’t help my friend when he’s in need?

Did you have an imaginary friend as a child? What form did it take, and when did you outgrow it? Or did you outgrow it at all?

Tess has to make a choice. She can either deal with the fact that her imaginary friend from childhood, Buddy, is something real that most of the world doesn’t understand, or she can let herself deny a friendship. But why can’t she just accept it? Her best friend from childhood is back in her life. And he’s brought friends, and he needs her help. With a bunch of imaginary friends that have the potential to go insane and start messing with people’s heads – or worse – who needs enemies?

You can find Awake for sale formatted for your favorite e-book device at one of these fabulous retailers! (U.K. – De – Fr – It – Es), Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. Check it out – I hope you’ll enjoy it!

Seal of Approval

As I make my way through 8-hour work days and evenings spent writing (and sometimes, avoiding writing), I find time for some of my other hobbies. Like the evening I spent an hour creating a logo, or a seal, for myself.

I actually got the idea from a logo designer. I’ve been pondering the idea of somehow combining a hippopotamus into my logo, but I don’t have the skills for such an animal. I might someday, but I do also like really simple stuff, like this.

Which is how I got inspired for the sticker you see to your left.

Niina has her own logo as well, and I’m rather proud of it. As I write more (and thus design more covers), I feel these logos will be best presented on any paperbacks I create. So you might not see these logos in use on my covers for a while, but you will see them eventually.

Charmed, I’m sure

I have another short story by Niina Ivy up for sale! It’s the second story in the What I.F.? series, catching up on Tess the morning after her birthday party.

I started this short about five times before I hit on something that stuck, which is kind of typical for me at this point after starting a project. When writing during NaNoWriMo, I would have just pushed through it and ended up with a junkable section that needed to be removed during editing. This time, I edited the story into submission. Is good.

A night of hard drinking is enough to set anyone’s world on end, but Tess has more than just a hangover to deal with. There is a horse at her door, and he’s set on getting her help. She promised, after all, and a real friend doesn’t back out on a promise. But Tess’s question is, what do you do with an Imaginary Friend that doesn’t stay in your imagination?

You can find Charmed on (U.K. – De – Fr – It – Es), Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. And if you missed it, you can read about Reunion, the first book in the What I.F.? series. Enjoy!

Welcome to the Reunion

It’s been a while since I posted only because it’s been a while since I had anything to publish!

The frequency of my posts will change shortly.

I have a new short story published under the pen name Niina Ivy. It’s fantasy, which is Niina’s specialty, and you’ll start to see more and more of her work around.

When Tess was young, she invented an imaginary friend. His name was Buddy, and he was a very large horse. He was a companion and confidant when she had no one else to share her childhood and pre-adolescent pain with. But now Tess is celebrating her thirty-fourth birthday, and Buddy is back and not quite so imaginary any more. Her choice is simple – suspend disbelief, or turn her back on the best friend she ever had.

Niina is working on a series of short stories, so if you enjoy this first story, you’ll really need to come back and read some more.

For now, Reunion is available at your favorite eBook retailer! (U.K. – De – Fr – It – Es), Barnes & Noble, and Smashwords. Check it out – I hope you’ll enjoy it!

The 27th Letter project

Right now, I have a couple of projects under construction, but the one most likely to be finished first is a collection of short stories I’ve written for the Blogging from A to Z April Challenge, 2012.

While you can currently (and through the end of the year) view the posts I wrote directly for the challenge online, I will be spending the next couple weeks sorting through each story, editing and expanding (or replacing) them as necessary so I can gather them up and plop them into a collection suitable for consumption on your favorite e-reading device.

I have to say, this A to Z Challenge was amazingly fun to participate in. I was successfully writing quickly enough to stay on goal for the entire 26 days, which is a pace I usually reserve for November.

Stay tuned – I’ll hopefully have the collection up before the end of May, ready to focus my energy on the June Camp NaNoWriMo session where I intend to churn out another novel-length story to also publish this year.

Did I say I was going to be busy? Why yes, yes I will be.