Seedlings: A Short Story Collection

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I did not know I was writing stories, until I realized that I had written several already over the years.

I had notes and ideas in my notebooks and drawing books, and I had mostly shared stories in my previous blogs as well. When I started Instagram around December 2013, it became a platform for me to share my drawings too and stories to accompany them.

Ever since I was young, I recall my Dad saying to me to write a book someday. He told me this several times all throughout. Recently, kind people gently tell me to write more as well.

So write I did.

For hours, I gathered the stories and short prose I did since 2009. While doing so, I went back to my memories and my life before. I remembered the reasons that led me to write those particular tales.

As if another needed affirmation from God, my friend whom I have not talked to in a while messaged me the night before I was about to finish my first book. She sent one sentence with a screenshot. The screenshot showed an award-winning author having her own exhibit.

My friend’s words were “Continue writing, Li.”

I did not know I was going to make a book, until I realized I had written all the content I needed for one for eight years.

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Dear friend, this is Seedlings: A Short Story Collection.Book Image


Stories, plants, trees, and people grow with the presence of both sun and rain. Written and illustrated by Maria Carlizza C. Pagaduan, Seedlings: A Short Story Collection
is her first e-book which is a compilation of short stories and prose about loneliness, sadness, and longing, hand-in-hand with light, joy, hope, faith, and love.

There are 60+ stories and prose with tiny pencil illustrations accompanying them.

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Find yourself in the company of the boy who gives flowers away for free, the girl who was late for love, the man who lost his originality, the sailor with the gentle eyes, the boy who trained bugs to grow big, a tree that bore dull ordinary flowers, and more characters for you to meet and befriend.

I encourage you to find yourself in the stories and use your imagination as to what the characters’ pasts were and what is in store for them in the future. Some stories I wrote were open-ended, so a reader may have the freedom of imagination to determine the character’s fate in his or her mind.

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Here are a few excerpts from the collection:

“Sometimes, when the town sleeps at night and everyone is under the covers, one girl goes out and grows and grows to the size of mountains.” – Moontalks

“It felt as if we were about to die then and there. The bus was going really fast, and I could see a bright light ahead of us.” – Going Home

“Here was once a girl who was too sad for a boy named Happiness.” – Happiness and Sadness

Here is one illustration of a dog, one of the characters you will meet, inviting you to grow with the Seedlings!

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For another sample, here’s the first story you will read in the e-book!

Sample Page of Seedlings

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Buy Seedlings: A Short Story Collection for PhP360.00 at

*The PDF is 44.0 MB and is best viewed in Reader.

You may also contact me at should you not get the download link in your email. If that is the case, please provide a screenshot of your receipt from the website.

Other modes of payment, aside from the platform I gave above, include BPI Bank Deposit and Paypal. Simply message me on Facebook, Instagram, or email me at the address provided above. I will send the PDF to your email after being presented with the receipt.

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Here is a review given by a good friend and colleague who also loves to write. She is behind the Filipino Boutique Bookstore 8letters.

“I love reading Arli’s collection of essays, short stories, and illustrations. It is straightforward storytelling, short and sweet. I find the stories genuine, each paragraph feeds my soul. The drawings that give the stories life are light-colored and very pleasing to the eyes. My favorite story has to be Girls that features imperfect girls with their powerful and empowering statements! It’s a very inspiring read for all ages.”

Cindy Wong Dela Cruz

Here is another review on Seedlings:

“What I love about Seedlings most is how I can relate to the stories and prose. There are stories that remind me of my own insecurities, fears and doubts especially in my younger years. […] And there are also that remind me of good memories with friends and families. Some of my favorites are Worrier, Yellow Butterflies, Roses, Weakness, and Going Home.”

– Diana Rose Cerda

Dear friend, I would love to hear about your thoughts on Seedlings as well! You may contact me through my email or my social media sites. Please feel free to message me and tag me with the hashtag #readseedlings. Share who your favorite character is, what your favorite story is, some lessons you’ve learned, and what stories or themes you were able to relate to. I’m excited to hear from you! From my heart, thank you.

The Seedlings are for you and for God who is the source of all love, creativity, and inspiration.

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Let’s grow with the Seedlings!