The 13th Cycle - a thriller novella by Sabrina Ricci

Amara Randall is a college student with a passion for exposing the truth. When she sees the havoc the Maya calendar predictions wreak, she decides to debunk the myths and try to restore the peace.
Mahaway is a charismatic young scribe in ancient Maya. But her world is torn apart when a greedy new king declares war on her city.
Now at the end of 2012, Amara's obsession leads her to uncovering a deadly conspiracy, one with roots dating back more than a thousand years. Using clues Mahaway has left behind as a guide, Amara must stop the conspirators' terrifying plan before December 21. If she doesn't, the world really will end.
I came up with the idea for The 13th Cycle earlier this year. I had just graduated from NYU with my M.S. in publishing, where I had spent the last two years studying the digital trends. My family came to visit me from California for the ceremony.
On their last day, my mom pulled me aside. "Now just remember, you need to come home for December 21. If the world ends, I want my family to be with me."
I thought this was silly. But then I started getting scared. What if the world ends this year? I thought. Where would I want to be? I tried to shake it off. Nah, that's ridiculous. I can't let fear dictate how I live.
Then it hit me. Maybe I could write a book about the Maya and their end of the world prediction. It could be a thriller, and it might be a comforting way to deal with the doubts and fears. With any luck, people would read it and be reassured that the world will not actually end this year.
But how to go about it? Well, 2012 is a time of rapid change in the publishing industry, between creating new genres, to publishing digital shorts, to trying out new business models. Personally I love experimenting. For  The 13th Cycle, I decided I wanted to try agile publishing.
Agile publishing comes from the idea of agile software. In the startup world, entrepreneurs use the agile structure to quickly and effectively evolve to meet their customers needs, without wasting time or money. Some publishers, such as SourceBooks, are now using agile publishing to write books they know customers will want to read.
For The 13th Cycle, I created a website, On this site, I regularly posted chapters of my book. I got a lot of feedback, most of it private, which I incorporated as I went along, shaping the story into something I and other people would want to read. Then I used crowd-funding to raise the money to get it properly edited and copy-edited. My friends helped me make an awesome video involving dinosaur puppets. 
Now my novella is available on my website, Amazon, and more. And it's all thanks to my friends, family, and an amazing group of readers who gave me feedback along the way. If you do buy my book, I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.