Story Notes

Below is a master list of my stories that have been published thus far. If you’d like to learn more about how the story came to be and the process behind the writing, just click on the title of your choice.

Blushing Blue

In a world where tattoos come to life, aspiring tattooist Aiva and her diver sister Yunka are living through the aftermath of a typhoon that smashed their village to smithereens and swept away many lives–including that of their mother. One day, the girls find a valuable sea rock containing the ink used in making magical tattoos and Yunka comes up with a dangerous idea for cheering up their father, one that Aiva is guilted into going along with.

Call of the Rimefolk

Manila, 2136. Migs is a government programmer at a dead-end QA job. When his partner Roland, a successful sculptor and university professor, gets a grant to study psychic alien life forms called the Rimefolk on Pluto, Migs is forced to deal not only with the impending separation, but with his own life’s lack of direction. Interspersed with expedition logs of the first Earth team on Pluto, who studied the Rimefolk but never quite revealed all their findings on the creatures.

How the Jungle Got Its Spirit Guardian

In the village of Tozk, everyone has a set role: the men hunt and the women cook. But Daza, the village healer’s son, is a hopeless hunter–even after years of training under Tozk’s best hunter Idra, and his daughter, the ruthless and musical Tenu. Daza has a gift with food, however, and the lengths he and Tenu will go to hide that gift will shake both Tozk and the surrounding jungle to their very cores.

Ink: A Love Story/An Author Takes a Wife

Two authors enter a mangkukulam’s shop and come out with magic ink. They both write their perfect lovers into existence: easy on the eyes, intelligent, and well-versed in all the things that please their creators. But even constructs that well-written will begin to question what more there is to their existence.

In the Shadow of the Typhoon, Humans and Mahiwaga Cooperate for Survival

Two months after Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan), journalist Rosa Herrera is invited by the diwata Maria Cacao on a magical relief operation spanning Central Visayas to witness how life goes on (with a little magical help) after the storm.

First Play For and By Tikbalang Triggers Uproar on Opening Night

Journalist Ma. Rosario P. Herrera chronicles from conception to opening night the controversial attempts of an ambitious theater director to bring to life on stage a play adapted from the Tikbalang epic Noladi, whose troubled production is populated by various creatures of Philippine mythology after most of its human cast and crew left in protest.

Odd and Ugly

In 19th century Philippines, a kapre is stunned when Maria, a young woman from the nearby town, forces her way into his tree and declares herself his housekeeper. As the months roll by and they fall in love over reading lessons and mundane chores, the kapre doesn’t know if he can keep his secrets from her. But Maria has a few of her own up her sleeve, and their secrets combined may either save or destroy them.

Song of the Mango

Saha sings like she’s god-touched, yet she’s the lowliest of the Ayuran tribe’s handmaidens. Tila is heir to the Ayuran’s history and songs, yet she sings like a frog. Saha has always hated her lot in life–to serve Tila–but she becomes an unwilling participant in her brother Maragat’s courtship of Tila despite the promising future it would bring her. When Maragat’s hunt for the dowry boar goes horribly awry, only Saha’s voice can bring him back; but performing for all-powerful Diwata in exchange for favors will have far-reaching consequences across not only among the Ayuran, but across the rest of the archipelago as well.

To Megan, with Half My Heart

Told as a letter from Elena to her daughter Megan. Childhood friends Leni and Vince have much in common: they ride the same school bus; they love stories about mythological creatures; and they don’t feel like they fit in. Vince even talks about kapre, diwata, and duwende as if they exist, to the delight of his bullies. As their friendship blossoms into a romance as they age, Leni starts to realize that there may be more to Vince’s half-foreign heritage than she thought–something inhuman. She believes she knows Vince well, but how much does she really know him?