Therese Arkenberg's home on the web


Here I try to keep a comprehensive list of all my works currently available. If you have have corrections or questions about any story and its availability (including stories not listed here that you think, recall, or suspect are by me), drop me an email, it’ll be appreciated!

If the story title is linked, the piece is available to read online. Otherwise, the link leads to the book, anthology, or magazine subscription page.

“Ghostwitch”: two thousand words of terror

This an update I actually should have shared over a month ago, but time got away from me. By which I mean, I misremembered “Ghostwitch’s” publication date in the online Two Thousand Word Terrors anthology as August instead of July, and I also have spent the summer in a fugue of work — editing, of course, and some writing, but also preparing for the 2023 Sustainability Fair in Waukesha County. If you’re in Southeast Wisconsin and looking for a fun and informative, mostly outdoors, all-ages event, check it out!

I’ll be honest, I can’t think of an elegant segue from environmental sustainability to “Ghostwitch,” which is a short tale of ghosts, the collecting of stories, and lingering, dangerous desires. But here’s an excerpt:

“Are those the ghosts you speak to?” I ask.

“The only kind you can. The other isn’t capable of that.”

“…And what is that sort like?” I ask, ending a minute when the only sound is the scratch of my lead pencil over paper.

“A remembering.” She sounds uncertain, though. “An impression—the shape of something past. It lingers where they died, or around the means that killed them. A sort of feeling, usually. People have told me of that, sometimes, when they come seeking advice, but I’ve never experienced one personally.”

An urge, the opposite page calls to me. To walk…

“I think they’re the most dangerous.”

Into the waves…

“Why do you say that?”

The ghostwitch sighs. “A feeling that can’t be resisted—isn’t that the most dangerous thing in the world?”

And could not be called back…

My pencil scratches furiously, leaving scars across the paper.

The full story, with a gorgeously eerie illustration, can be read for free on Rooster Republic Press’s website:

Money Management and Living on a Budget for Freelancers: the Ebook

First, I’d like to thank my mom and dad. In all seriousness, they raised me to be frugal, or at least to focus on value rather than flashiness when making purchasing decisions, and to save money whenever I could, whether it was in a piggy bank or a CD. Then I became a freelancer, and I had to be frugal by necessity. I’ve developed habits to make frugality more automatic, and I’ve learned ever more tips and methods to save on expenses or to earn extra income. Some of them I wish I’d learned much sooner.

Every so often, I’d advise a friend who wanted to become a freelancer, or just could use some advice. There’s nothing to help you know what you know like telling someone else about it.

Ultimately, I started writing some blog posts to help people from all walks of life discover options that can help them financially. I had a good friend who didn’t realize credit cards could offer cash-back rewards until I helped him sign up for one at Costco. People miss the chance to clip coupons, buy generic, or take advantage of sales. People have recurring subscriptions to websites they never visit and storage units they haven’t stored anything in for months. My fellow Wisconsinites don’t know they can receive energy-efficient lightbulbs for free through Focus on Energy. People who don’t have MyPoints might not realize they could earn points for shopping at sites they use routinely, or for clicking a few emails each week. People dread the thought of having to negotiate with their phone company and don’t realize services like BillFixers exist.

Anyway, those blog posts–originally intended to be a single quick post listing ideas–grew to be 12,000 words long.

For your ease of reading, I’ve now bundled those blog posts, revised them for clarity and to remove some typos, and made them into an ebook, which you can download for free from this blog post:

Money Management and Living on a Budget for Freelancers by Therese Arkenberg

While I help create Kindle and Smashwords ebooks for a living, this is an ebook of another order. By which I mean, it’s a 27-page PDF. There’s no DRM or anything. I didn’t even make cover art for it. The value is in the content. And if you find that content useful, please feel free to spread this book far and wide. Again, there’s no DRM. Email it to your friends. Post it on your own blog. Can you put PDFs up on Instagram? Do it if you’re so inclined, with my blessing.

Some of the websites I discuss in the book are linked to with affiliate links, so I could earn a few points, or dollars, or discounts, or a gift card if you sign up for programs through them. These referrals add no cost to you, and they have not affected my choice of what to recommend. All the services and websites linked to in this ebook are ones I use myself because I’m satisfied with how they work for me. And ultimately, this ebook is a guide to what works for me: I hope it’ll work for you too, but I can’t promise anything (and I’m not a tax lawyer or financial advisor). Take what sounds good, pass on what doesn’t, and do your own research. I hope it’ll inspire you to be a bit more aggressive in hunting down savings, a bit more encouraged in building up a bank account balance, and a bit less nervous of numbers with dollar signs in front of them.

New Story Collections: Heroes, Apocalypse, Loyalty and Betrayal

Embarrassment is a poor motivation for writing, so I won’t be ashamed about how little readers have seen of me over the past few years. I haven’t been wasting my time – I’ve edited dozens of amazing novels, helped to plan two Waukesha County Sustainability Fairs, and found out this online dating thing might be all it’s cracked up to be (even if it means off-line interactions require an hour-long drive. I’m taking audiobook recommendations, by the way!).

All that said, I agree that it’s high time I published some fiction.

And now I am!

This December, I’m putting together three ebooks of re-released short fiction – a great opportunity to revisit old stories (some of which I’ve revised) and to discover new ones. They’re currently available from Amazon, iBooks, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and more, and I’m so excited to share their cover art:

Six stories explore the ways and the price of survival when everything seems lost:

An astrologer loses her stars but not her faith in them. A woman watches as her lover and her planet transform with new life—or die with it. A young man seeks revenge for unwelcome mercy granted in a world where every breath is agony. A group of artists discovers the strange loveliness which is all that remains of all the other worlds.

At the end of things, people display selfishness, exhaustion, but also connection. Friendships are betrayed and nurtured. If hope is gone, there is still determination, curiosity, and beauty.

Available on Amazon (including Kindle Unlimited)

Four stories of courage, compassion, and endurance celebrate:

The young man chosen to die in the place of a hero who can never lose
The secret at the core of a marriage society approves
The woman who built a forbidden flying machine, and the woman who loved her
Resilience under terrible odds

These are the things no regime can entirely repress—and they can make anyone a hero.

Available on Amazon and wider distributors through Draft2Digital 

An epic, tragic, bewitching tale of strange spells and unexpected loyalties.

To Hethan A’Manth, it seemed like a routine enough mission: one more message to deliver. Certainly, this time it was to a rebel queen, but he knew to keep his head down as he passed through the affairs of monarchs, armies, and sorcerers.
Yet he becomes beguiled, entangled in the last stand of southern kingdom against the most puissant Empress—and in the friendship he forms with Asmadene the Halcyon, which might yet change the shape of history.

Available on Amazon and wider distributors through Draft2Digital 

Aqua Vitae

Jenes Inarya wants to live to experience everything, and it just might be possible. Her quest for immortality leads her through myth and legend to the farthest reaches of the galaxy (well, so the Jericho magazine article said, although it’s prone to exaggeration). And it’s only the beginning. The rest of a very long life is about to start–but Jenes doesn’t yet know how to live it.

“Aqua Vitae is only 70-pages long, but manages to pack a lot…part science-fiction drama, part cautionary fable…by the end, Aqua Vitae offers an interesting discussion on mortality and what it means to live, through the lens of a character who wants more from her life…Overall, this was a quick and thought-provoking read, set against an universe made interesting by its reaches into various mythologies, and I would recommend it to anyone with a little free time on their hands and an appetite for the speculative.” -James N. (Amazon reviewer, 4 stars)

“Bottom line: an engaging and challenging read, with some food for thought if you have the patience to ferret it out. “-Joan Leib, The Future Fire Reviews

Short Stories: A Dark and Wonderful History

Dark fantasy stories based in the same secondary world, centered around women.

Short Stories: Across the Curse-Strewn World

Stories featuring Aniver, a wizard of the city Nurathaipolis-that-was, now lost to rogue time, and Semira, the sailor who joins his quest to save it.

Other stories in this setting:

  • “After Zandar” at Sorcerous Signals

Short Stories: Heart’s Kindred

The adventures of Rathin and Anweth, a wandering couple equipped with sword and sorcery.

Other stories in this setting:

Short Stories: Xeocin Empire

Short Stories: Science Fiction Stories

Short Stories: Fantasy Stories, Secondary World

Short Fiction: Unsettling Stories That are Almost in This World

Short Stories: Myth & Humor