Pieces of Paper: A short story set in Tokyo


A chance encounter brings a hint of romance to a young woman’s journey through the streets of Tokyo. This semi-autobiographical short story explores questions of identity and connectedness in the digital age.

Note: All author proceeds from the sale of this story will be donated to the Red Cross for the relief effort in Japan.

Cover art by Jaxadora Designs

Read Excerpt

Buy: Amazon | Smashwords

(I am still working to get the story onto PubIt for Nook)

This story was excerpted a ways back during Excerpt Monday with the working title of “Shinjuku”. I considered submitting this story to literary or women’s fiction magazines, but realized that many of my current readers who might be interested in the story wouldn’t be able to find it. The popularity of self-publishing and distribution through sites like Smashwords and Amazon provided a space for a short like this that doesn’t fit with Harlequin or any other romance publisher.

Any proceeds that I receive from the sale of this short story will be donated to the Red Cross relief effort in Japan. In light of recent earthquake and devastation in Japan, and given that this story is based on my experiences in Tokyo, I cannot conscientiously do this any other way.

To any readers who may have  read my other works, I should let you know that there are no swords or warlords in this story. There’s not even a fight scene to be found. The story is not a traditional romance, though as the blurb states, there’s a hint of romance in it.

Reviewers: If you’d like to review this story, please contact me through my Contact Page to request a coupon for a download.

From the front of the publication:


The brevity of this story may lead one to think that I banged this out on my laptop over a sleepless night. That I was perhaps moved by the recent earthquake and tragedy in Japan to set a story in Tokyo. I can assure you that this is not the case and that this story has been written, re-written, pondered over and prodded nearly as much as one of my novels.

I first started this tale over two years ago before I was a published author in historical romance. It’s a semi-autobiographical work based on two days I spent in Tokyo back in 2002. So the story has truly been in the making for nearly a decade now.

I’m very happy to finally be able to share this journey. I’ll leave it up to the reader to decide where I might have stretched the truth and by how much.


The outpouring of support over this project has been overwhelming and humbling. I must give a heartfelt thanks to Rhonda Stapleton who edited the work at a moment’s notice and made it worthy to be seen by the public. To Jax Cassidy: a friend, soul sister, and true artist who designed the cover that captured the vibrant and nostalgic Tokyo of my memories so perfectly. It was only through the earnest effort of these two talented individuals that this project was produced so quickly.

And a special acknowledgment to Gwen Hayes and the Romance Divas. During a diva brainstorming session when I was trying to figure out what to do with this short story, it was Gwen who suggested I publish it and donate the proceeds to the relief effort in Japan. And now I can’t see doing it any other way. Thank you Gwen for lending your guidance and generous soul to this project. There’s a reason we coined the phrase, “What Gwen said.”

To the people of Japan who have endured so much through the recent disaster and who continue to endure: My thoughts and prayers are with you.


  1. Jeannie Lin | Award-winning historical romance author
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 16:15:20

    […] Pieces of Paper: A short story set in Tokyo is available for purchase. Proceeds will be donated to relief effort in Japan. […]

  2. gwen hayes
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 17:05:38

    Oh now I’m teary.

  3. Dara
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 17:13:01

    Let me know if you get it for the Nook! I think I may be able to download the ePub or PDF format on the Smashwords site and get it on my Nook too. If not, I’ll buy it anyway and just read it off my computer 🙂

  4. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 17:18:00

    Gwen – I have a habit of that lately, don’t I?

    Dara – I’m working at it! I got overconfident when the first two formats went so well, but I definitely want to get it onto the Nook.

  5. Redd
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 19:54:00

    I’m a tweeting on this!! XD

  6. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 21, 2011 @ 22:25:59

    Oh thanks Redd! I was going to tweet tomorrow since it was so late in the day, but I appreciate the support.

  7. Jax Cassidy
    Mar 22, 2011 @ 18:24:39

    I loved the story so much! It such a different voice and made me miss traveling…

    You inspired me with this piece so I was so happy that I was able to help…you’ll always be my soul sister! So proud of you and all you’ve accomplished. 🙂

  8. Aron White
    Mar 22, 2011 @ 20:26:50

    Sounds intriguing 🙂 I’ll be downloading it tonight for sure!

  9. Walt M
    Mar 22, 2011 @ 21:38:44

    My Nook awaits. I know I’ve read it already but would love to own a copy.

  10. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 22, 2011 @ 23:17:52

    Eek! I found some wonky paragraph formatting in Kindle and I’m re-uploading. Hopefully not too many people were thrown off by it.

    Pubit is going through some verification process with me. This is definitely a good learning experience.

  11. Amanda Brice
    Mar 23, 2011 @ 09:34:25

    I loved the story, wonky formatting and all. It’s definitely well worth the 99 cents.

  12. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 23, 2011 @ 10:10:56

    Thanks Amanda! Glad you enjoyed it

  13. Rashda/SpiceBites
    Mar 23, 2011 @ 13:52:24

    What a wonderful idea! I’m going to tweet it too!

  14. Rhonda Stapleton
    Mar 23, 2011 @ 14:34:15

    I loooooved the story. 😀 Thanks for the shout-out, sugar!

  15. Rita
    Mar 24, 2011 @ 07:28:52

    Loved it, wish there was more. Very effective short story; I usually don’t like them much. The only downside was the ending– it was very apt, artistically, but sooo frustrating when I’m just about to go to bed.

  16. Jeannie Lin
    Mar 24, 2011 @ 07:56:58

    @Rhonda – Thanks for the awesome editing job.

    @Rita – I’m happy to hear that. Well, not happy to mess with your sleep, but happy to hear it’s something you thought about.

    And thanks to everyone for the tweets and posts.