Happily paying it back…

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Good morning everyone!

I hope you don’t mind, but I really want to share something with you all.  The beautiful book cover (shown above) is what I will be using for my second book in The Seelie Princess Trilogy and how it came to be is simply amazing.  Let me explain:

I am a member of a wonderful group on Facebook (The Dragons Rocketship) where members share their writing, ask for – and receive – opinions from the others and generally  find people who are willing to lend a  helping hand to those that need it.  In short, it is the most supportive group I have come across and I treasure my membership immensely.

I posted pictures of the cover I was trying to create for my second book.  They were (quite rightly) slated as although I love writing, artwork is not my forte!  Enter Roy Mauritsen.  I’ve had no interaction with this wonderful man before, yet he took time out to create the above for me and did so overnight.  He ‘got it’, sorted it out and cheerfully passed it back to me for use.

I cannot thank him enough, particularly as he expected exactly nothing from me in return for his help.  (How often does that happen?!) So, I checked out the link to his author website, Shards of the Glass Slipper. 

Wow!  Just wow!  The book (of the same name) sounds amazing and his artwork is award-winning.  Do yourself a favour, click the above link and check his work out.  I think you’ll be impressed.

Rise of the Dragons

Rise of the Dragons 3.pub

Apologies if you think you’ve already seen this! For some reason Puff the Magic Dragon appeared and blew away my previous blog post!  All I can put it down to is stupidity.  (Mine, obviously!)

Never mind, it started with a rant about the stinking weather (I like a whinge about having to dig out the canoe to get anywhere) before I led into the main part, which is that I’ve been playing with the new book cover to Rise of the Dragons.  A version of it is above, but I’ve got someone ‘proper’ helping out now, so there’ll be a proper, proper version coming soon… (Keep up!)

Let me have your thoughts.

The book is due for release at the end of October (31st) and will be available for pre-order shortly.  I’ll keep you posted as to when.

Leave me feedback and I will select ten people at random to receive a free PDF copy…

In case you need to keep yourself up to date with what has happened previously, The Seelie Princess is still free on Kindle Unlimited.  It is also available in general on Kindle as well as in paperback.

Reviews

I’ve had a bit of a rough week for one reason or another:

Office closure of the current day job (bad), offer of another job (thank you, thank you, thank you,) (fab);

Missing cat (bad), found after two days after having been possibly locked in neighbour’s shed (good); having her stuck to me like glue, nudging my arm as I type?  Hmmn, I’m not entirely sure whether that’s good or bad!  It’s taken me twice as long to do this short blog…

And lastly, having to change the title of the second book in the trilogy (after I’d created a front cover for it) as I didn’t know that it has been used previously – to some acclaim apparently – ‘When Worlds Collide’ – Google it – I wish I had!

I’m now racking my brains for a new title… how does ‘Rise of the Dragons’ sound to you? Or ‘When Worlds Collide, Dragons Rise’…?  I suppose ‘Enter the Dragon’ is out of the question?!

Anyway, as a result my emotions have been all over the place and I’m way past tired going on cream crackered!

So it was rather lovely to get an email with this very nice review of The Seelie Princess:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1394045457

I’ve received reviews before but those that pop up out of the blue are rather wonderful because they’re a validation of the hours put in to create something that you hope someone will like, not daring to believe that anyone will.

I thank you, my kind reviewer, you have made my week.

And to all of you that have posted reviews previously, you have my humble gratitude; your kind words give me the momentum to carry on writing.  The next book is very nearly ready.  Provided I can decide on its title…

DIGITAL_BOOK_THUMBNAIL SPYou can get your copy on Kindle (free on Kindle Unlimited) and in paperback here: The Seelie Princess

18th Birthday Gifts

The-Giraffe-Women-of-the-Neck-Rings-2Imagine the scene: your daughter’s 18th birthday is fast approaching.  Excitement fills the air.  All year you worry about what to buy for a suitable present – something that says, ‘Hey, my precious child, here is something ultra special just for you because I love you more than you will ever realise or understand.’

So, you rack your brains to come up with something that you think she’d like:

A new car?  Maybe, if you have the money to buy her one.

Jewellery?  This is a favourite for girls (along with anything with the word Swarovski in it) as the vast majority of girls/women love pretty things.

Note to men: women loving jewellery does not mean that you should buy her a gold chain every Christmas for six years running… yes, this happened to me and by the end I was a bit, (ungrateful cow that I can be) ‘Oooh, another chain – did I join the Ndebele?’ (See the pic.)

Perhaps you could gift your daughter a gap year holiday with her friends, or even, if desperate, simply ask her what she wants so that you’re sure that the gift she gets is gratefully received.

Whatever it is, I bet my bottom dollar that it wouldn’t be what one daft bint gave her daughter:  12 bags of cocaine so that she could ‘make sure she had a good time.’

Seriously?  I shudder to think what this household is like on a daily basis.  It’s reported that said daft bint has six, count them, six, previous convictions including one for possession of amphetamines, yet she escaped jail (nine months suspended sentence and 250 hours ‘onerous’ unpaid work – nope, no idea what that means either,) all because she cares for her 14-year-old son and, apparently, on occasion a young grandchild and an elderly grandmother.

Cares for?  Forgive me, but how is caring for children defined nowadays?  Is it possible to ‘care for’ any child when off your nut having a ‘good time’?

Look, we all know that drugs are prolific and that our kids are exposed to them probably far more than we know or care to know about.  But should they be on offer from the one person who is supposed to love and protect them?

Welcome to adulthood, kid.  Have some Charlie…

Resting Bitch Face

I recently heard this rather charming expression.  Apparently it’s what someone looks like when they are simply sitting and doing nothing much.  Thinking, gazing into space, reading, writing or walking around town.  In short, anything that doesn’t involve interaction with another person.

It’s how you are generally perceived.

Ever wondered why people steer clear of you? Blame resting bitch face.

Ever wondered why people don’t hold doors open for you?  Resting bitch face strikes again.

“I have one,” my beautiful youngest daughter informed me the other night after she had told me what it meant.  (She really doesn’t!)

I, however, apparently do.

She took a photo of me when we were away recently.  An off-guard photo.  I downloaded it last night (and NO! it’s not going up on here!) and I could only stare in wonder at who this crabby person was looking back at me.  Do I really look like that to other people?

Sadly, I probably do.

I think it’s an age thing.  As we get older, everything starts to – how do I put this delicately?  Ah heck, I may as well just get stuck in – everything starts to sink.  Including faces.  Those jowls you see on an older person?  Sinkage!  Saggy eyelids?  Sinkage! And where the hell has my bum gone? Yes, that’s been a victim of sinkage too.  Quick, give me a massive paper bag now!

I don’t care what anyone says – if you’ve got a natural resting bitch face there’s no amount of creams, lotions or potions that are going to fix it.  Massage might help a bit I suppose, for a short time at least, but make no mistake – within an hour or so you’ll be back to normal, no matter what you’re promised.  I suppose Botox may help, if you’re a fan of having poison shoved into you (and have the money to maintain it,) and a face-lift could do the trick (again, money permitting and as long as you don’t end up looking like a Stepford Wife or worse – a couple of people spring to mind here, but my sagging lips are sealed!)

As for me, well, if you ever meet me and I look miserable and unapproachable – blame it on Resting Bitch Face.  I’m actually ok, once I locate the musculature to raise a smile.

You can help me practice by taking a look at my book (and maybe buying a copy.)  The Seelie Princess – it’s for older kids and it’s rather fab (and it contributed to my RBF!)

The Wit and Wisdom of Writers Blog

Author JM Turner

Hello and welcome!

As you may or may not know, I write books.  Mostly for children, although adults seem to quite like them, too.

So far I’ve finished two and published the first: The Seelie Princess.

The second is in publication at the moment.  I hope it goes down as well as the first one (which, to my utter amazement, reached best-seller status on Amazon).

Since I first published The Seelie Princess I have been asked several times how to write a book by people thinking about writing one themselves.  As a result (and for what it’s worth as a comparative newbie to this profession) I offer the following advice:

Stop thinking about it!

Yes, you read that right – stop thinking about it!

Instead, go and make yourself a nice cup of tea, coffee or whatever gets your creative juices flowing (gin helps, I’m told,) then sit down, take up a…

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Back to School

That time of year has rolled around again.  Yes, it’s the new school year.

Ouch, stop cheering – you’ll make my ears bleed!

Parents are skipping for joy (or will be by the end of next week!) But how many teachers and children are happy about it, do you think?

My own is lucky (!) – she’s not back until next Monday and isn’t really looking forward to it.  She has made the most of the holidays by laying in bed until midday (whilst I work my socks off), then watching as many films as she possibly can, eating chocolate and slobbing on the sofa. (Jealous? Moi?).

School uniform is mostly purchased.  Finding trousers took a while – too wide-legged, too slim-fitting, too ‘schoolish’ – but we got there in the end.

And then we went for shoes.  Ah, school shoes.  The bane of my life.  My heart sinks at the thought of it every year – and all the times in between when the ones she decided on fall apart.

We must have been in every shoe shop in the locality, tried on every pair in each shop, annoyed all the sales staff in the process and she still hasn’t found a pair she’ll deign to wear.

This Saturday I am taking her to one more shop.  If she doesn’t find any then, it’ll be too late.  And we’ll have had a little falling out.

Truth – I actually love the camaraderie of traipsing around watching her trying on pairs that are totally impractical or totally ‘dorky’ (her words).

And by God I will miss it when she’s too cool to go out with her mum.

How have you got on?

Grab yourself a copy of The Seelie Princess and cheer them up when they get home – or at least, keep them quiet!                                                                                DIGITAL_BOOK_THUMBNAIL SP

The M25 car park

BC9P3M Congested M25 Motorway at Junction 14, Greater London, England, United Kingdom. Image shot 2009. Exact date unknown.
BC9P3M Congested M25 Motorway at Junction 14, Greater London, England, United Kingdom. Image shot 2009. Exact date unknown.

I went to visit a close family member last week and had to go via the M25 (for those of you not in the UK, this is the main orbital car park ring road around London that was created to stop everyone going through it).  My satnav gleefully informed me at the start of my journey that I’d be there within 2 hours and 45 mins.

The M25 was a good idea at the time of its inception.  Shame whoever thought it up didn’t allow for the fact that cars and lorries might actually deign to use it.  It goes, in parts, from two lanes to three, sometimes four and on occasion, six and (this is the key part) there are ALWAYS roadworks.

I was travelling half way around it and for the majority of that journey the roadworks meant that there was an average speed limit of 50mph.  50mph! I ask you!  On a motorway!  Now my little car would be hard put to reach the national speed limit (70mph for those who don’t know) but the sad fact was that it would have been good to be able to get to 50mph. Much of the never-ending journey was spent travelling between 0 and 20mph because it rained.

Ok, that’s not quite how it was – it poured – it teemed down – don’t get me started on cats and dogs – it made it impossible to see where the lanes were (which was good fun along the assault course that the people conducting the roadworks had laid out) and there is always that one idiot swerving between lanes making people jump on their brakes, just so he could see if he could get there ahead of everyone else by aquaplaning joyfully (yes, Mr Audi man – I am talking about you and your dodgem car ‘skills’).

So, it took over 2 1/2 hours to complete a maximum one hour journey and I still had a damn long way to go after that.

So, I pulled off the M25 with a stiff back and shoulders expecting to be able to gleefully actually drive. No such luck.  The M3 was bolloxed also at a standstill due to sodding essential repairs to the road.  Oh, and the rain had flooded the inside lane…

FOUR AND A HALF HOURS LATER…

(On a brighter note, the return journey only took three and a half!)

Grab yourself a copy of  The Seelie Princess and treat the children.