Going full circle…or wreath. The completion of the Merry Chrissy novel series

An early sketch of Chrissy I drew on October 7, 2012. More than a year before I started writting the first “Merry Chrissy” book.

On November 1, 2013 in a hotel room in New Hampshire, I began what I considered an unusual journey; Writing a book. The most complex writing I have ever done in my life was the occasional assignment in college. I’ll admit it, I’m not the most avid reader on earth, but as I started with some simple doodles of a silly Christmas-obsessed girl with an ornament dangling on her ponytail, I felt something more was needed. She needed some background, some substance and a story. More than 4 years later, my blue sky ideals have finally become a reality. Over the course of 3 novels, Chrissy Deigh changes from a silly and at times naive, 9-year old Christmas fanatic who is desperately clinging on the belief of Santa being real to an almost 11-year old that is on a mission as the first ever girl and kid Santa. Of course, some things didn’t pan out ideal-wise. Would it be neat to have a pet penguin instead of a magical talking pet mouse or would it be awesome to see Chrissy visit a convention of fake Santa Clauses instead of going through “Santa Boot Camp” training with a mean trainer that makes her go to the limits? I may never know.

As I turned older while writing these books, not only Chrissy changed, but the world has too – sometimes for better and recently for the worst. When I started writing these books, the world, particularly online through social media has become a lot more nastier and meaner. I really didn’t want to make a political statement on this book series, but looking at the past with a clear, critical lens shows its a product of that time. I wouldn’t consider it an “outdated” product, but a product that asks the reader, no matter what the odds or whatever wrenches are thrown at you, good will triumph over evil.

Chrissy Deigh on the surface feels like a simple girl with simple aspirations. She wants to be accepted for who she is and of course meet the real Santa Claus. Her peers in 4th grade certainly won’t treat her with kid gloves and at times grown ups will do the same. Much like real life, people and the world may treat you like an outcast, a loser or even worse. To put it kind of bluntly, if you’re going through some…umm “stuff”, I hope you relate to her struggles. It may not be the same as being accepted for your odd obsession with all things Christmas, but its certainly for those “weirdos” who never seem to fit in right in society.

3 books later, I constantly ask myself, “why did I write these stories”? I write them for the underdogs and so called “losers”. The rejects, misfits, outcasts, childish, nerds, anyone who is NOT considered normal. I like the holiday season for the music, happiness, good food, family and friend gatherings and cookies. It doesn’t feel as materialistic to me as an adult. Chrissy is the personification of the Christmas Spirit. The feeling you get when you trim the tree, unwrap those presents or ride in a one horse open sleigh. Those “feels”!

Merry Chrissy’s story has finally finished production after 4 long years! I hope you enjoy it the heck out of reading it!. The first two “Merry Chrissy” adventures are out right now. The final adventure, “Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit” will be released on November 25!

“Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit” release date, synopsis and launch info.

Hi. RH here, with a long overdue update on “Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit.” The 2 year journey writing and drawing Chrissy’s final adventure is finally coming to an end. I’m now adding the finishing touches; ensuring that both the eBook and paperback versions are as perfect as possible.

So, to all the readers, when do you expect to begin reading “Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit.”?

Saturday November 25, 2017.

You can pre-order NOW at the following.

Amazon

iBooks

Google Play

Kobo

The paperback will be available on or around the same date on Amazon. Still putting the finishing touches on that.

Remember, this book is NOT a stand alone story. That means you need to read the first 2 “Merry Chrissy” adventures to get up to speed. If you’re NEW to the world of “Merry Chrissy”, start with “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth” then “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” before taking on the final book. Best yet, you don’t have to wait until 11/25 to read them as they’re are available NOW to read.

Let’s give you a synopsis of what’s going to happen in the third and final “Merry Chrissy” adventure.

“NEVER STOP BELIEVING!”

The FINAL adventure in THE MERRY CHRISSY NOVEL SERIES!

Chrissy first found out the “Truth,” then discovered new “Awakenings,” but will she “Triumph” in the end?

Chrissy’s world has changed. She and her family are under constant watch by security as sinister forces from the North Pole remain a threat. Despite such threats, 10-year-old Chrissy still wants to enjoy her summer vacation with friends. From joyrides with her angel wings to magical mid-air summersaults, the “Christmas Spirit” continues to find ways to have fun with her Christmas magic.

And just when you thought Chrissy would be done with working for North Pole Incorporated, an unusual loophole in the rules will make her the youngest Santa…ever. That’s right, she has to fill in for the big guy in red! With training non-stop from learning how to fly with 8 reindeer on a sleigh to placing each package with loving care under the tree, young Chrissy has a lot of preparation in store…and a LOT of cookies to munch on! Will she triumph or falter under the pressure of delivering all those presents in ONE night? Find out in the thrilling conclusion of the “Merry Chrissy” saga!

Keep an eye out on the Merry Chrissy and Ronald Hennessy social media for updates and more reveals.

The 3rd and final Merry Chrissy Adventure: Title and book cover unwrapped!

I’ve been on a very, merry long road. I spent nearly two years on Merry Chrissy 3 (and four years total on the trilogy) making this book series a reality. Back in 2013 when I started writing the first book, “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty of Nice Truth”, I didn’t even know I would make it to the 3rd. It was my first novel. I was nervous, doubtful and uncertain about the whole reason for doing this thing. Despite that, my mind said I had to write a story about a Christmas obsessed 9-year old girl and boy I did. More than 200,000 words, 250 illustrations, 112 chapters and 3 covers later, the making of the adventures of Chrissy Deigh and friends are finally coming to an end. All I have to do now is the finishing touches before this book is released later this year. 

Of course, you didn’t come here to see me talk about making a book. You want to see the cover art and title, right? Let’s unveil the title to Chrissy’s 3rd and final adventure.

Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit

Right now, I’m going to keep most of the story under wraps. However, there is one thing I certainly can’t keep hidden from you guys. Let’s say that Chrissy has a new job title…SANTA Chrissy. 

“Merry Chrissy and the Triumph of the Spirit” will arrive November 2017! Keep checking this site and my social media for updates.

Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings #RevealWeek: Release details and more on Merry Chrissy 3

At long last, the sequel to my first Christmas novel will finally be “unwrapped” (With a name like “Merry Chrissy”, I don’t do a “release”.) After almost nearly two long years of countless revisions, sketches and illustrations done, I’m finally ready to let to world know when “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” will be “unwrapped”. Get ready folks, the moment of truth is finally upon us.

Here we go!

“Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” will be “unwrapped” in THREE phases.

It will be unwrapped FIRST for iBooks (iPad, iPhone, Mac only) before any other platform on Saturday, December 10.

All other digital storefronts (Amazon Kindle, Google Play, Kobo and Nook) will have an unwrapping date later on Monday, December 26. (The day after Christmas.) Pre-orders are NOW available.

The paperback version will be available only through Amazon in 2017. Pre orders are NOT available yet.

As for Merry Chrissy 3, the FINAL installment in the Merry Chrissy series. I expect to release that book in 2017. Right now, I have no concrete date for release, but expect it around the holiday season. There is still a lot of work to do on that one, but I feel I’m getting closer to completion compared to a year ago when it was the rough draft.

Introducing Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings #RevealWeek! Plus Merry Chrissy 1 book updates

Wow. Been such a long time since I updated the blog. Its for a very good reason. Over the course of nearly two years, I’ve been hard at work on the sequel to “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth”. Writing a book while working on a full-time job is certainly a tough task. I’m glad I endured the many tireless days and nights, adjustments here and there and the many illustrations that will accompany the story. This story as with all of my stories is a truly 100% individual effort. No publishers, no agents, no promotional budget and certainly no advance. Of course, its now up to the reader to discover the world of Merry Chrissy.

 Updates on the 1st Merry Chrissy book

In an effort to keep the storyline in check with the sequel and forthcoming Merry Chrissy 3, some editing was done to the the first title originally released in 2014. Most changes with the story were cosmetic and minor, nothing too jarring. The bigger changes made were primarily with presentation. Namely with the quality of the illustrations in the digital eBook versions. Illustrations now have descriptions for accessibility. The eBooks were revamped from the ground up. If you have purchased “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth” online before, the the FREE update will be available to download now. Of course, if you haven’t purchased the first book yet, I HIGHLY recommend doing so. The sequel “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” starts where the first one ends. Reading the first book is absolutely crucial to fully understand Chrissy’s second adventure.

Merry Chrissy 2 #RevealWeek

I’m introducing 4 new characters that will be featured in the newest Merry Chrissy adventure. Starting on Monday, December 5 and ending on Thursday December 8, a brand new character will be “unwrapped” for the world to see. On Friday December 9, the release or “unwrapping date” for “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” will FINALLY be revealed. (Hint: It will be released in December, but sooner than you think depending on the type of device you have).

A Delayed Awakening.

In the past few months, I’ve been preparing to get my second novel and 4th overall project, “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” for release this holiday season. While a lot of the work has been finished, the important parts of the book — namely editing and proofreading will take longer than expected. The edit and prooreading processing costs money and time, both which I don’t have much of (especially when you’re saving it for the future). It is with great sadness that I must delay the release of “Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings” to 2016. While this is being delayed, it not only gives me time to focus on those two major steps with tender loving care, it also gives me the opportunity to make adjustments to the first release and start work on the upcoming 3rd installment that will close out the “Merry Chrissy” saga. Who knows, if I play my cards right, I can release BOTH Merry Chrissy 2 AND 3 in the same year!

I can’t give you any promises that will happen, but I’m aiming for it. It’s going to be a lot of writing and drawing between now and the end of next year, but I hope doing so will ensure that the Merry Chrissy saga is given the attention it deserves.

I started with picture books of Maddie Mckenszie back in 2012 and moved on with Merry Chrissy as a simple NaNoWriMo project in 2013. I’m staying in this game and I will never, ever give up on my dreams. If I have to wait a little longer for this project to be perfected, so be it.

What on earth is #projectvirignia?

For months on Twitter, you might have noticed me use the “#projectvirginia” hashtag. I’m like this with all of my projects. #projectsprinkles was the first Maddie Mckenszie Picture Book back in 2012, #projectwafflecone was the 2nd Maddie Picture Book in 2013. “#naughtyornice” eventually became “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth”. So, for those curious out there, what the heck is #projectvirginia? Is it some major building development in the Cavalier State? A government secret involving the Pentagon? Something involving an 8-year old girl’s faith in believing Santa? (HINT HINT: You’re getting warmer now.)

If you haven’t put two and two together, I’ll tell you exactly what #projectvirginia is really supposed to be. 

#projectvirgina is the sequel to Merry Chrissy!

In other words, the name of this book is entitled…

“Merry Chrissy and the After Christmas Awakenings”

Right now, I’m going to keep a lot of things under “wraps and bows”, but there is one thing I can tell you right now: Christmas may be over, but Chrissy’s story is just beginning.

I released my first novel back in December of 2014. I have alway intended it to be a series, not a standalone product. Since January 2015, I’ve been hard at work, writing (and re-writing), drawing (and re-drawing) day and night before and after work. This time, the approach to work was much easier than last time as I set up realistic expectations before hand and stuck to a very tight schedule. Right now, most of the illustrations in the book are done. The story is still being refined and will eventually go through an editor and proofreading, but expect to read the continuation of Chrissy’s adventures later this year. A release date has yet to be finalized, but expect it to be released possibly by Thanksgiving if everything goes according to plan.

In the upcoming weeks, read more about the book, including new characters I’m introducing to the Merry Chrissy universe in my blog. You can also follow me through social media as well. Thanks for reading and as Chrissy always says, “Have a very merry day!”

Building the world of “Merry Chrissy”

Making a book is hard. Doing it independently is even harder. These are the stories I want to share behind making “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth.”

 Rough sketch of Chrissy meeting Tyler for the first time.
Rough sketch of Chrissy meeting Tyler for the first time.

When I began writing this story, I had a very light framework of what Chrissy’s world would be. I knew early on we would go back and forth between the real world and the fictional world of the North Pole. Much of Chrissy’s life in the real world is focused on her everyday life in school and at home, mostly dealing with the relationship with her mother and friend Tyler. In the North Pole, Chrissy is highly controlled by her mentor and trainer Mistletoe and the company in general. With Chrissy being 9 years old and very talented magic-wise, “North Pole Incorporated” is hesitant because a similar person that was a little older caused some “issues” several years ago.

 A rough sketch of the cover art
A rough sketch of the cover art

I envisioned the North Pole as a small city state, completely independent of the world. The entire city’s economy is dedicated to Christmas and related industries making Christmas possible. NP doesn’t answer to the UN, they answer to a higher authority that’s even more secret than NP. That organization being simply known as “G.I.F.T.”. “Gratitude International Friendship Trust” is the parent company that controls much of the purse strings of NP. By the namesake, you may easily figure out that G.I.F.T. is the company that is responsible for all holiday celebrations big and small. There’s a division for Halloween, Easter, Valentine’s Day, and the list goes on and on. NP is the most important division for G.I.F.T. and is the the most expensive. The costs of doing Christmas is a major issue with North Pole Incorporated, particularly with one key factor it making it all possible – Christmas Magic.

Rough Sketch: Lister Peppermint Paula confronts Noel Carollton, the CEO of “North Pole Incorporated”

In the world of NP, Christmas Magic costs money to produce and acquire. Mistletoe makes Chrissy aware of this early on, but Chrissy’s inexperience in “listing” (checking on kids naughty or nice) makes her use a lot of magic. As the story unfolds, dealing with magic will become a serious issue for Chrissy and will affect her emotionally and physically. Not everyone can handle so much Christmas Magic, even for a girl who has the Christmas spirit year round.

 A rough sketch of Chrissy's Holly Jolly Room.
A rough sketch of Chrissy’s Holly Jolly Room.

Chrissy’s real world interactions as I said before are mostly focused on school, home and the town that she lives in. At the start of the book, Chrissy observes her town riding on her bike, looking for Christmas spirit…in July. Chrissy’s elementary school in 4th grade is the most hostile environment outside of the North Pole. The themes of acceptance, bullying and dealing with an indifferent faculty who indirectly enable her adversary Charlotte are dominant in these chapters. Of course, it’s not all mundane and unwelcoming for Chrissy. Her home, particularly Chrissy’s bedroom is her “safe space”, naturally full of Christmas wonder…and a giant Christmas special collection. Her mother, while distant at times, respects her interests in Christmas year round. However, she realizes that Chrissy doesn’t have any friends and from the very start she forces her daughter to begin socializing. 

In the real world, Chrissy’s best (and only) friend is a quiet, well-mannered boy named Tyler Dirkelson. The two kids don’t have the same interests, but forge a bond when the bullying gets rough. The relationship is not perfect. Chrissy often at times is a little too enthusiastic about Christmas and Tyler is often a pacifist that avoids conflict as much as possible. The two kids need each other in a turbulent environment and the friendship bond grows stronger as the story goes on. Does he or does he not believe in Santa? That is the question going forward.

 Chrissy and Tyler converse during Lunch in this rough sketch.
Chrissy and Tyler converse during Lunch in this rough sketch.

Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth is a middle-age grade novel designed for ages 9 and up that is now available. Go to www.merrychrissy.com to purchase the book. You can also follow Merry Chrissy on Twitter and Google Plus.

Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth – OUT NOW! Featuring a very special MERRY message!

Here we go! North Pole we have LIFTOFF! The 3rd Ronald Hennessy Project and my first ever novel, “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth” is now available for your reading pleasure! I’ve talked a lot about this book in the past few months, so this time, I want to share a “different” voice that is certainly enthusiastic and eager to share her story. Ladies and gentlemen, here is a SPECIAL MESSAGE from Chrissy Deigh!

“OH
My

Gingerbread!”

Hi! My name is Chrissy! I like Christmas A LOT. I like it SOOOOOOOOOO much, I have my own personal Christmas Tree decorated…in my ROOM!  My music player is filled to the brim with holly jolly music, and I may have the worlds largest collection of Christmas specials on video! My Mom thinks I was born with Christmas Magic and calls me “The Christmas Spirit” and she’s totally right! This Fall, I entered the 4th grade!  A lot of kids tease me ENDLESSLY for my merry little spirit. They make fun of my clothes and call me names like “Stupid Christmas Girl,” especially from that rich kid Charlotte! I don’t have many friends except for this quiet boy named Tyler. He’s so awesome and never teases me at all. I do wish he was in the Christmas spirit a little more though.

Not everybody knows about this, but I have a HUGE SECRET that NO ONE knows, not even my best friend, Tyler! I work for the NORTH POLE and I get to check on little kids all over the country to see if they’ve been good or bad for Christmas! I get to use Christmas MAGIC and I can transform into a FAIRY with wings…and I even get my own magic tablet! I need to get used to it though since using too much magic can make the company angry. Not only that, it tends to make me queasy when I transform to normal. Yuck! The only problem is I CAN’T use my magic outside of my job, so that means I can’t turn Charlotte’s face into a green ugly mess! Bummer! Also, pets seem to like me when I’m a fairy…a little too MUCH! I have the dog slobber to prove it!

This Holiday Season read about ME, Chrissy Deigh in my all-new adventure “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth!” You can follow me on Twitter at @chrissydeigh and follow the writer, a guy named “Ronald Hennessy” at @ronaldhennessy for more updates!

HAVE A VERY, MERRY DAY! : ) 

***Chrissy Deigh***

So there you have it. The Christmas Spirit herself. If you’re Interested in reading more about Chrissy’s adventures, check it out now! Right now, it’s at an introductory price of only 99 cents! You can download a free preview as well. If you like what you read, please leave a review or contact me online to share your thoughts. Constructive feedback is welcome. 

The paperback version will be out shortly.

Merry Chrissy Character Profiles: Meet Mistletoe

Making a book is hard. Doing it independently is even harder. These are the stories I want to share behind making “Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth.”

Part 4: Meet Mistletoe – A Merry Mentor

Mistletoe, a.k.a “Missy Toel” is an employee…from the North Pole. She used to be a “lister” after taking a new position leading the entire “listing” division of “North Pole Incorporated”. (A lister is a person who travels from home to home to check if kids are Naughty or Nice.) There is open position that she must fill on short notice and this is where she meets Chrissy Deigh for the first time…in her bedroom. At first, Chrissy is reluctant in doing such an odd job, but she changes her mind once she finds out she will meet the real Santa at the end of the season. A born leader, Mistletoe trains what will be the youngest ever lister in North Pole Incorporated history. Little does Chrissy know that  Mistletoe has quite a history with the company and is reluctant to reveal anything about her past.

She s a 26-year-old woman who, like Chrissy, is full of the Christmas spirit. It’s important to note that she is much more experienced in dealing with non-believers, so her enthusiasm about Christmastime can be muted at times. She is very career-minded, moving up in the ranks rather quickly than her peers. This will be a major issue of contention with another rival lister.

Not only Mistletoe is tasked to help Chrissy become a lister, she also is handling logistics – a.k.a. to ensure that the whole company doesn’t fall apart…which is showing signs of instability with the executives meddling into their mission of making kids dreams from 1-92 come true. While Mistletoe often has the best intentions for Chrissy and her well being inside and out of the North, she still must follow the many myriad rules that she is asked to adhere to.

Designing Mistletoe

 The first ever (rough) sketch of Mistletoe.
The first ever (rough) sketch of Mistletoe.

The motif of Mistletoe’s design is Winter. Her hair is blue and so is the rest of her outfit in mostly blue hues. She is dressed appropriately for the cold weather she faces inside and outside the world of North Pole Incorporated. It may not be too flashy, but comfortable for her to wear. As a worker who is under high stress, she is known to kick back and drink an Egg Nog to keep her nerves at bay. The rules and regulation that she must follow at work frustrate Mistletoe and  Chrissy as well, but she sometimes finds a way to make Chrissy happy at her job.

We hear that Mistletoe knows a lot more about Chrissy than she does! I can’t say much more, but you’ll need to read my book to find out! 

Merry Chrissy and the Naughty or Nice Truth is a middle-age grade novel designed for ages 9 and up. It is scheduled to be released on December, 5th 2014. Go to http://www.merrychrissy.com For the latest updates. You can also follow Merry Chrissy on Twitter, Google Plus, Pinterest and more.