Roadtrip! And freedom...

#11・
11

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Lisa Edwards
Lisa Edwards
Ah summer days, and the promise of endless golden light and limitless horizons. I’m going to be travelling into both (I hope) next month as I begin to amass material for book three… and set a book free (to download).

Meet Poppy the campervan!
Meet Poppy the campervan!
This is Poppy. She’s a 1973 San Francisco Bay vintage VW campervan and I’m going to be driving her around North Wales for a week or so next month, returning to some of the places I wrote about in Dark Horses Ride. I’ve been longing to return to Anglesey and the Llyn peninsula so after a return to the shepherd hut in Benllech, I’m going to pick Poppy up and drive around in her for a bit. And sleep and eat! I can’t wait to wake up in her by the glorious coastline.
To this end, I’ve been doing refresher driving lessons with Sue in Worthing and I’m roadworthy again. It’s amazing how quickly it all comes back, although some road rules have changed, such as letting people cross first at junctions, and not stopping at junctions if you don’t need to. It’s how the police drive, Sue tells me - tactical driving to keep moving, keep emissions low and keep the driver behind occupied.
Follow me on my Because You Can Instagram page for daily updates. I’m hoping to do lots of hiking, driving around, chatting to people and finding cute cafes for a bit of bara brith (Welsh fruit bread). Let’s hope the UK railway strikes don’t scupper my plans.
New in children's books
I’m proud to say that my first agented title publishes today, written by Kenyan author, Shiko Nguru, and published by the UK’s Lantana Publishing. I have family ties to Kenya dating back to the 1950s so it gives me so much delight to bring Shiko’s stories to the UK and the rest of the world. Mum and Dad would be proud, I know. Find book one – a super-warrior school story aimed at 7-12-year-olds, here.
What would a dog do?
Also out tomorrow is my own book for Franklin Watts – the first of 8 in the Healthy Habits series – Dog’s Guide to Helping Others, aimed at 5-7s. The series is aimed at gently introducing subjects like kindness and friendship to children through the behaviour of animals. It was a joy working with designer Rachel Lawston and illustrator Siân Roberts on this series. We’ve just finished the 8th and we’re a bit bereft! I’ll post each one here as they publish.
Dark Horses Ride runs FREE!
Yes, my second memoir is free to download for the next five days. I’m delighted by the response so far – and thank you to everyone who has read it and posted a review on Amazon and Goodreads. I can’t stress how much these ratings mean to an indie author (or any author!).
What am I reading?
I thought I’d add a new slot to my newsletter, as my reading mojo has returned for good, it seems. I’ve had months and even years where my brain wouldn’t let me read a book for pleasure unless I was on holiday.
I’m reading The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak, a British-Turkish novelist. This book is set on the island of Cyprus and charts its division through the lives of two lovers on opposite sides, with much of the story being told by an old fig tree that stood in a restaurant on the island.
This is totally up my street because it’s a book set in a distant (although not that distant) land and it has elements of magical realism, where magical things happen in real-life settings (storytelling trees, for instance). I love the beautiful cover too. Sometimes I think that the non-fiction element is a bit forced in and doesn’t feel organic to the prose, but it’s a tricky thing to pull off. Elif’s writing is beautiful, especially around love and the natural world.
I can’t help but think with an editor’s hat on when I’m reading, and always have ideas of how I’d improve it. However, I’ve learned not to blast those opinions all over Amazon and Goodreads because I know the author will see them and possibly be upset. Since I published my own books, I’ve gone back and deleted some highly critical reviews. I thought I was being so clever, but in actual fact, I was being hurtful to authors.
A lesson learned.
Buy Elif’s novel here, and escape to Cyprus for a few hours.
Here are some of the other books I’ve enjoyed this summer, both have island settings and magical realism themes:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mermaid-Black-Conch-spellbinding-winner-ebook/dp/B093HDNG2C/
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Love-After-Ingrid-Persaud/dp/0571356192/
Until next time...
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Lisa Edwards
Lisa Edwards @BecauseYouCan50

Because You Can – one woman living a free and happy life. News about all my books - for children and adults - and my solo travel and hiking adventures.

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