Blogland Lane Logo by our own Tessa Edwards

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Life as an author

It's such a long time since I've posted here, I thought I should drop my Blogland Lane neighbours a line. Life's been very busy. CUT SHORT has now been reprinted and I'm back book signing again, booked every Saturday until June, with invitations starting now to sign on Sundays. I am passionately committed to supporting real bookshops, but I have to keep one day a week free for writing!
ROAD CLOSED, the second in my series, will be published in June. It has already been selling on amazon - it reached 10,000 on amazon sales ratings. With so many people preordering, I felt like Dan Brown!
I'm now working on DEAD END, my third book, which will be out in June 2011. And after that... well, my publisher have already approached me for a fourth book, but that's one to think about next year.
If anyone on Blogland Lane would like a scanned signature, just drop me an email.
You can see photos of my recent events on my author blog http://leighrussell.blogspot.com
I'll be back here on Blogland Lane again soon, to spend some time in my little purple house on the hill overlooking the sea.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Most Beautiful Forest

I just feel like sharing on of my favorite photos tonight. It was given to me by my blogfriend Human Being, who lives in Iran and struggles because she cannot live in freedom in her country.
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This is a BIRCH forest. I thought it was bamboo but my friend Laurel straightened me out. And I think I'm a gardener, which I am. It seems Trees 101 is a different course! In any case, blow this image up and you will see how very beautiful it is.
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My thoughts and prayers are with Renee. And if you have a moment, please pray for Human Being. She is the most amazing poet trying to keep her spirits up with oppression all around her. I was surprised to learn how rich and beautiful the nation of Iran really is.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Seeking Prayers

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Many of us know Renee, who is presently in the hospital resting and trying to control the bats in her stomach that leave her so sick and uncomfortable.
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Renee lives at # 9 and 3/4 Blogland Lane, between me and Studio Lolo. She is a card carrying and card reading member Pattee's Gypsy Caravan and she has stage four imflamatory breast cancer. That last part is important because she lives as if there's no tomorrow. If you don't know her, this is as good a time as any to know why she is so loved by so many. You can find her at www.circlingmyhead.blogspot.com
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Please pray often and deep for the time being. It's not the same without Renee, many of us are worried sick, and we need her Angel Wings here on earth
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Thank you, neighbors.
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Love
kj

Monday, February 15, 2010

formspring.me

Ask me anything http://formspring.me/marianasoffer

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Is Our Dear Renee in the Hospital?

I can't barely think about it....

Does anyone have information about her???? Please write me at
dancingbuffalo@earthlink.com...

She is a light in my life that I never want to see go out...
Love to Renee and her family~Pattee

Art Box Swap

In the second art box swap, my partner this time was Marianne in the Netherlands. Talk about big things coming in small pages. The little treasure chest of a box came absolutely loaded with goodies. I've been organizing it and examining the contents this week and yesterday I decided to make a Valentine ATC for The Hubs.


I used to make ATCs constantly years ago but it's been a good 3 - 4 years since I've done anything like them. My interests started to changed but recently ATCs have been landing on my radar again. Thank you Marianne for the wonderful materials you sent to me. I'll be posting more.

Oh, and by the way, The Hubs liked the card a lot. I think I really surprised him.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Happy Valentines To All My Gypsy Sisters

I've invited a gypsy band, serving red wine and chocolates...
Come over and enjoy~
http:www.travelinggypsycaravann.blogspot.com

What a Sweetie!

So . . you like sweeties? Lollies? Candies? Liquorice Allsorts?

Yesterday we popped over to the 'warehousing' section of one of our lovely science museums where they were having an open day. Among the exhibits a lovely friendship quilt in which one of my daughter's friends participated, the AIDS quilts, so sad, so delicate and providing tribute to those who had died from HIV infection. Then, we came across this!




Once designed as a novelty bicycle for the Gay and Lesbian Mardis Gras, this gorgeous thing is one of three amazing bicycles now used as a 'diversion' in Guide Dog Boot Camp to teach our lovely pups to stay focussed and not be distracted by such colourful yumminess . . .isn't it fun!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Happy Valentines Day


Wishing you all a romantic and love-filled weekend.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Cut Short

update amazon.com sold out of CUT SHORT last month just one week after restocking. 500 copies on their way. Might be best to preorder before they sell out again.

EURO CRIME
CUT SHORT one of a reviewer's
TOP 5 READS of 2009
http://www.eurocrime.co.uk/reviews/Top_2009_Reads.html

and two new reviews this week:
http://noirjournal.typepad.com/
http://www.nyjournalofbooks.com/

and another 5 star review on amazon.co.uk
Excellent, 9 Feb 2010
By
Cormac Mac "Crime king" (London) - See all my reviews
Cut Short is an excellent first novel. It was recommended to me by a friend who loves the Karl Kane series of books by crime writer Sam Millar. I wasn't disappointed. Steel is a name you will be hearing more of in the future. Buy this book. Steal it. Whatever you do, read it.

Extract: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wW3Ixmq3OyA
plus
CUT SHORT one of many titles included in 4 for 3 offer on amazon.com http://www.amazon.com/Cut-Short-Geraldine-Steel-No/dp/1842432710/

A good week!

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Neighborhood

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Hello Neighbors! How is everyone is doing on Blogland Lane?
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Have you found the place that makes fresh lobster rolls?
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And the Hardware Store where advice on anything is always free.
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How about our fantastic Public Market?

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And the Wine Shop on the corner?

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And the Library?

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And the Ice Cream Shop on hot summer nights?

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I love living here.

And the best part of all is my neighbors.....

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Bit of Real World-Sorry

I don't like to post real world stuff here, but I need to let you know I've been one two three punched with sick family, sick me, sick animals and weather.  Ok, that might be four.

So-I've got a couple of requests pending for residents-hope to get to it next week.

I owe Marianne my art box and I feel awful about that and my own is at the post office-I haven't left my home it two weeks (via car-I did step outside a couple of days ago for the first time).  At times my living conditions have been quite primitive and not being able to bend over has added a unique twist to several activities of daily living.

Yes, some of it was serious, a critter or two hasn't made it and I still can't walk very well.  But I will get better and I will be back.

We'll push out our art showing to be fair to Marianne-details to follow.  In the meantime, keep the faith and keep your humor-sometimes that is all we have to pull us through.

Friday, February 5, 2010

party alert!

Wow. Everyone here is so creative! I just dropped by to see if anyone fancied making their way up to my little purple house on the hill overlooking the sea, for a glass of wine. Just chilling out after a hectic week, working and looking at the final edits for ROAD CLOSED which will be published in June, so expect a party here!
It's lucky CUT SHORT sold out again so book signing had to stop for a while, otherwise I really wouldn't have had time to sleep!
CUT SHORT is now back in the shops again, and amazon have restocked, so I'll be off again soon. First stop, talking to a local book club this week, then it's a local literary festival on the 20th after which the bookstore signings and interviews start up again. I must get my edits done. My deadline to get it all off to my publisher is the 20th.
After that, I'll be working on book 3 which is due out in 2011. It sounds like a long way off, but it's no time at all to get a book out...
So I hope you'll accept my apologies for not posting and commenting very much here. Not lazy. Busy.
It's good to be back on Blogland Lane - in my slippers - and fleecy dressing gown - watching the sunset with my neighbours -

New review of CUT SHORT on Noir Journal http://noirjournal.typepad.com/noir-journal/

Thursday, February 4, 2010

For Renee & Jacquie

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Don't ask me how it can be that love is able to take root just like that, across the miles, so the hearts of many now mourn for the heart of one, a woman named Renee in Winnipeg, who has lost her Mother, at a time when she and her sister Jacquie are being tested every which way already.
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The following poem is for my beloved friend Renee, Jacquie, and their families. It is one of my earliest poems, written just after my friend Willa died and just as I came to understand the power of love.
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Astonishment
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If I were dying tonight,
Lying in my bed with plastic tubes and half-filled bottles
on the small table nearby
and bedpans and oxygen there to diminish any shame,
Perhaps forcing my breaths
with the strength of a desperate parent
who implausibly and frantically lifts two tons
of mangled steel off a broken daughter—
If I were dying tonight and I wished to tell you
What will astonish you,
I would tell you this:
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Be sure to notice white flowers in the moonlight,
Because the softened glow is like no other.
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Appreciate the lingering scent of garlic on your fingers,
Because healing is possible from that alone.
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Tell the truth when it matters least
Because then you will be sure there is another honest person in the world.
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Always spend the extra money for dimmers
Because light that builds in intensity and then gently fades is
good for your spirit.
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Over and over, ask yourself, “What is the lesson here?”
Because then you will forever be a student and never a victim
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Never believe for a moment that the world is going to hell
Because you only need to love outside yourself to know better.

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If I were dying tonight, I would tell you all this
Because astonishment is brethren to curiosity,
Which leads to observation,
And dedication,
And finally appreciation.
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If I were dying tonight, perhaps there would only be minutes,
Perhaps only seconds,
To tell you that I will leave with all the love
I have ever felt, and ever given.
I will take it all with me, tucked under my angel wing—
The accumulation of grace from every breath I have ever taken.
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Here’s what’s astonishing: I will also leave all that love behind,
It will be embedded in my daughter’s stunning light and my partner’s quiet
courage,
It will guide my friends and coworkers when the layoff comes.
My brother will remember how I tried to do my share
And Joey will find someone else like me to help him tame his fears.
Even the woman at the grocery store that day I let her go ahead of me—
will remember how we were both comforted from that simple act.
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If I were dying tonight, I would also tell you
That within, under, because of, and from the little moments
Comes all the wonder and astonishment you could ever hope for.
The little moments that aren’t so little.
I would tell you to let those moments astonish you.
I would tell you this because it is all you need to know.
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Love,
kj

Monday, February 1, 2010

Using My Quiet Time

I've been snuggling in and staying warm and dry. I've been using up old yarn and have been happily at work making curly scarves. Some are more successful than others. The pattern and yarn choice makes all the difference.

The coasters above are a bonus. I had just enough Louise Harding Nautical cotton leftover from a purse project to make these sweet little coasters. If you knit or crochet and have never used this particular yarn, I highly recommend it.