A March Blog

9781781321867-Cover.inddoceans front only jpgIt seems such a long time since I spoke of these two, my first fantasy duo. It seems such a long time since I wrote them! But recently I had to send off some extracts, and I thought I’d dust off their pretty covers again (the work of two talented folk, Derek and Rosie), to talk of life.

Now, wildlife conservation and sustainability have always been very important to me, as you will know if you follow my blog, and I try to write with these in mind:

“…Toxics, set in a world in which the environmental balance has been altered by the birth of a new species…This fantasy world will encourage older children (10+) to think more carefully about the environmental issues of their own planet.”

In March we have the beginning of spring.  A time of regeneration, and of hope. The world feels particularly precarious just now, doesn’t it? And yet there are always messages of positivity, of hope and peace. Mother Teresa once said,

‘We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.’

A pair of fantasy children’s novels hoping for balance, a new novel on its way dreaming of conservation…drip, drip…how can a few words help when I read the headlines? I don’t know…maybe something I say will inspire a budding conservationist…a brilliant ecologist…a wise peacemaker…who knows? …drip, drop.

I wish you hope, peace and joy this spring, and the desire to do whatever you can, in your own small or large way.

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BLOG OF AUGUST

Summer crop

AUGUST

Thunderclouds gather, and the fields glare back.

Sun has curled the leaves of the abandoned raspberry canes, and three broody hens stick their noses out to sniff the approaching storm,

before returning to their empty nest.

In the middle of a small country, all is verdant, hushed, still.

Then a passing lorry roars at the crows in the treetop, and they clatter their wings.

And on the wind comes a song of ancient time –

It travels across the land, and calls to me as I sink,

It speaks of wind, and wave, and open sky,

Blue-glass walls spitting their salty spray –

I inhale deeply,

Soon, I think. Soon I shall be with you.

August, to me, has always been the month to head for the sea! Oceans – the sequel to Toxics– arrives as the summer fades. I will post the date it is published for digital or print purchase – here and on my FB page:  www.facebook.com/IsabelBurtNovels

Meanwhile, here’s a lovely description of Oceans, in an early review to help you decide…

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“Following on from ‘Toxics’, Isabel Burt offers in ‘Oceans’ another rich and absorbing world that quickly draws you in – great for young fantasy lovers!

In ‘Oceans’ we see 18-year-old Felicity return to the Old World after three years back with her family and friends in the modern world. During that time she has yearned to find her way back to her love, Reuben, from whom she was separated underwater at the end of Toxics.

Given the modern setting and introduction to Felicity’s best friend, Al, in the early chapters I was a little unsure as to whether I would be convinced by the Old World again – but Isabel Burt doesn’t disappoint. Once Felicity finds her way back, we are quickly drawn back into a new part of her fantastical and colourful world whose rich character cast is this time dominated by ocean dwelling creatures incuding Thessalons (giant turtles), The Draar-sil (an army of protective sea lions) and the Humb (ill-meaning giant squids) — as well as the dying-out race of the ‘Meshi’ ocean people whose existence had been hidden from Reuben’s Old World.

Makia, the withering and scheming Meshi medicine woman, is portrayed brilliantly as she scuttles and schemes from her sunken sea cave where she holds not only Reuben, but also a lost Meshi princess captive – playing with potions and allowing for some clever tension at the start of the book between Reuben and Felicity. Makia has a pivotal role as the plot develops and is a joy to encounter on the page (if not for real!).

An ever-present threat comes in the form of the lurking GRAI whose menacing soliloquies from the ocean deep open many of the early chapters, foreshadowing the inevitable climax of the book in which darkness descends (literally) on the Old World. Gradually it becomes clear that Reuben, Felicity and their immediate team have been thrown together to try to understand and save the Old World from this dark force.

Whether they succeed is for you to find out!”   Karen Inglis, author of The Secret Lake

oceans front only jpg Available to order from all good bookshops, or online, very, very soon!

BLOG OF JULY

Safety!

When I was tagging this blog, I realised the tags represent some of the themes in TOXICS, and its sequel, OCEANS.

Adventure – Alternative worlds – Life – Lovers of mystical worlds – Nature – Fantasy for children – Ecofiction – Felicity and Reuben – Conservation –

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I joined the PDSA at a very young age – illicitly using my pocket money – and my bemused mother would pass me my membership envelopes from the small animal care organisation, trying to understand her strange child!  IMG_0296

I have continued, by adopting animals, and educating my children. We have supported a variety of wildlife. Adopted through three conservation establishments, and adored by my children. Although my human children have all but left the nest, their sister, Sonje, is still protected, and learning to survive in the wild, a step at a time.

Wildlife conservation, and therefore the protection of their habitat, and then by definition our ecosystems, is, I accept, an incredibly difficult balance, but the survival of humans must share itself with the survival of animals, and our global habitat! How can we not care to support that aim, in whatever way we can?

Only a very stupid creature would destroy its very life-source, wouldn’t it?

Peter Rabbit

In Toxics and Oceans, the Old World is threatened by ignorance.

I have a magnet on my fridge that says to me ‘ Relax – all the worries of the world are not yours to bear.’ No, we can’t solve the world, only something greater than us could do that. But one man or woman with a dream can change many things. For us, and for our wildlife.

If you want to know more about the wonderful people who strive for a better world for our friends, please click on the links below, and warm your heart. Maybe you will be moved to help, in a way that you feel is right for you.

Have a lovely July.

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Durrell Wildlife Trust

Sheldrick Wildlife Trust

Ocean ConservationFootprints in the sand

More Ocean Conservation

BLOG OF JUNE!

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 PLACES YOU CAN FIND ME:

Here!

Twitter

Instagram

Facebook

Friends, I have discovered Instagram! For me, it’s the easiest, funniest of them all :)

So now I have the blog, the tweet, the snap and the chat of FB. A tumble is being improved, but I have resisted the pin, so far!

And as you all know, this is only a few mainstream channels!

So as I am a self-confessed reluctant blogger – having discovered I prefer to read of other people’s lives, books, and advice – I am streamlining this blog for a bit. I have done this in the past, but this time, I shall stay with a regular monthly post – a sort of round-up of news and views – others and my own!

I will still post the Friday quote – I don’t think I could make it through the week-end without some Friday Food for thought!

Find me on the above links tweeting, and snapping, reviewing and chatting.

Find my reviews on Goodreads, or on Amazon, and I do pop up on a real blogger’s site now and then :)

But most of all, I am writing. Writing. Writing. Writing :)))

It’s true I escape, once in a while, and can be seen squinting at the occasional litfest or author event, heading towards the tea, cake, and later, wine!

Oceans is set for release around the end of August 2015 – and I will, of course, post news on all the above channels – I may even produce that rarely-sighted object – my newsletter!

I will be back on the first of July, and meanwhile don’t forget to pop in for that Friday feel-good feeling – helped by my author on a Friday spot!

Byeeee :)

week-ends = family!

Publishing pebbles

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Oh, OCEANS is so close, now. I can smell the sea-salt and hear those pebbles!

It’s been a long spring, tidying it up, but to all who await the return of Felicity and Reuben – fear not!

It’s going off to the editor this week, for its spit and polish – do you see those tiny extra gaps between words that are invisible? They do!

Then the cover will commence! Something to echo the glorious colours of TOXICS, and yet the feel of the Ocean must be strong.

This adventure is set far in the Western Isle, and in the hidden territories of the Meshi – a sea-folk as yet undiscovered.

I had so many horrors wanting to outdo each other in vileness – to increase tension, a writer must increase obstacles. In OCEANS, Reuben and Felicity meet plenty !

Will they succeed, again? Or will this be the end of their love? Well, you’ll just have to wait and see!

OCEANS

 

 

 

 

 

Story snippets

tumblr_ms73ayARMY1rqgv0oo2_1280 Hello! Today I was thinking about my next story, and I thought I would discuss storylines with you – my own, I scribble on bits of cardboard, in cheque book covers, on the back of brochures – and of course all over my phone notes. If you write – where do you put your story ideas? After my fantasy duet of TOXICS and OCEANS I have a story I have been planning in my mind for well over a year. But like a class of naughty children – all these other storylines keep pestering me – I suppose the choice is the most exciting bit – like Christmas eve! How do you choose your next plot?

cropped-image006.jpg P.S. I hope winners of my giveaway are happy – I will email you with choices of how to receive your novel when the time comes – and meanwhile – there are still two days left if you would like the chance to have a copy of Oceans sent to you – see last Tuesdays post ‘a novel giveaway’ if you want to enter.