New Harp! New Book! New Plans!
You might have noticed I've been on a blogging break for some time. My apologies if you've missed me! I've been busy talking with book groups on Zoom, creating my new website, publicising my third book, throwing together ideas for my fourth and doing harp gigs which are (hooray!) happening again. It's now high time that I showed off my wonderful new harp, which was put together by Scottish harp-maker, Mark Norris. So here it is, freshly-made and standing proud in his harp workshop. Isn't it beautiful? It sounds absolutely gorgeous too!
In case anyone is wondering, no, I didn't base my protagonist in Ellie And The Harp Maker on Mark. I hadn't met him when I wrote my debut novel, although this harp is actually a present from me to me to celebrate achieving that unexpected and miraculous thing: publication. After a two-year wait (you can probably guess why – nothing has been normal these last two years) it's amazing to finally own this marvellous instrument. I will soon be updating my life and getting a mobile phone that does reasonably good recordings... so keep an eye on my websites and social media if you'd like to hear the harp in action.
My other big news is that my next book will be out soon! Readers seem to love my oh-so-prickly but fabulously determined character, Veronica McCreedy, so I've given her another penguin adventure. I do hope you'll enjoy Call Of The Penguins. It hits the UK in November and will be out in Canada in the New Year, I'm told. It's available to pre-order now (and please remember that pre-ordering really, really helps authors!) There's no news on the USA front yet I'm afraid, but all my fingers and toes are crossed that it will be available there too.
I'm excited to be appearing at Yeovil, Taunton and Exeter Literary Festivals next month. If anyone is around in southwest England do come along!
Time has this habit of evaporating and books, alas, don't write themselves. So I've decided I won't be blogging quite as much as before, but I'm going to do a very authorish thing and send out newsletters instead. Please sign up on my author website if you're interested. My next letter, by popular request, will include some writing tips as well as penguin and Exmoor content...
Books have always given me enormous comfort when times are tough. As I venture into my fourth novel I am more mindful than ever of the need for uplifting stories. In the meantime it's my hope that Call Of The Penguins will provide you with many smiles during the winter months ahead. Stay warm, stay well, and Happy Reading!