Monday, 22 April 2013

Top Authors Give Proceeds to Middle School Gardening Project

Top authors from around the world will come together on Facebook this Saturday to raise funds for a gardening project for students at Curry Middle School, located in Jasper, AL. The project is sponsored and coordinated by Bea Kunz of Sage Hill Farms.

“The project will be ongoing from year to year, with different students and teachers participating,” states Kunz. She goes on to say, “I am thrilled to be a part of any project that enlightens or peaks an interest in better foods for better health."

Kim Mutch Emerson, owner of Master Koda Select Publishing, got wind of the project and gathered authors together from around the globe who were excited to offer the proceeds of their sales on Saturday, 27 April to this worthwhile project. 

For a preview of the books being offered you can visit this blog:

The benefit event will include games and contests for the attendees, and takes place on Facebook this coming Saturday, April 27, from 10:00am to 3:00pm Eastern time. The public is welcome. Proceeds from the book sales will go to the Curry Middle School Organic Gardening Project. 

To join this worthwhile event, simply go to this link and click join:

For more information or to donate to this non-profit project contact Bea Kunz on her website at Dr. Thomas Kyzer, Assistant Principal at Curry Middle School, Jasper, AL.

I have put forward my book, Kiwi in Cat City, so all royalties from copies sold on that day will be donated. In the right-hand grey column you can see a list of links - 'where to buy my books'. Just click on one to get to where the book is on sale. 

Kiwi in Cat City
24 5-star reviews on Amazon US

For children aged 9+, teens and adults...

One dark night, Amy cannot sleep and she looks out of the window into the garden to see her cat, Kiwi, transfixed by the moon, which is glowing brightly like a cat's claw. Waking her brother, James, Amy suggests they follow Kiwi to see where she goes... whether it involves a hunt for mice or something else. Little do they know that, with a flick of her tail, Kiwi is going to magically change them into kittens and lead them on the adventure of their lives to a land they never knew existed in their wildest dreams. In the blue-lit world of Cat City, the budding detectives help Inspector Furrball to solve the mystery of the missing catizens and find out what happened to Madame Purrfect.

This book is the first in the Kiwi Series. So far, there are six books.


Sunday, 21 April 2013

A Poem a Day (24) - Beyond & some senyru

Hi! Greetings from Poland. I'm on holiday for a couple of weeks in Poland. We flew yesterday (tweet tweet), so I didn't post any poems, but I'll try to post every day. LOL, we'll see!! 

Anyway, here are some 5-minute poems for A Poem A Day. They are inspired by the prompts from Robert Lee Brewer in the Reader's Digest April PAD Challenge. If you want to join in with the challenge, here is the link:

Here are my offers for PAD 20 and 21. 

The prompt for 20 was to use the word 'beyond'.

The prompt for 21 was to write a senryu. I had no idea what this was. Turns out that it's a haiku in the 5-7-5 syllable style, but about the human condition, so it seems I've been writing these for ages and have loads in my haiku book, Life's Rhythms, but I'd no idea that they have a specific name! You know what they say about learning something new every day!!

Okay, well have a lovely day and here are my poems!! :)


Beyond the day
Afore the mentioned
Skimming the waves
Bridging the fjord
Footsteps in the snow
Melting the roses
Spilt like blood, red
Casting brilliance
In a white blanketed

Beyond the moon
Where the stars dance
In the darkest heavens
Enjoying their wealth
Their courage foreseen
Casting silver dust
They float suspended
Darting across the skies
Swept up in a draft of


Mindless he strays, far
From the heart strings that pull so,
Imagining light

Sinking in the dark
Where the gutter sucks him up,
He tries on a smile

She wakes in the morn
Wanders to the shower, sighs,
Stops and cannot start

Chasing the deep bark,
He throws the stick wide, laughing
Where the lake invites

He takes the plane where
A hundred signposts signal
The hunt for freedom

Pegging the clothes she
Stares into the ache beyond
As the days wear thin

copyright Vickie Johnstone 

Friday, 19 April 2013

A Poem A Day (23) - a trio

Morning! Sorry I haven't posted for so long. It's been a very busy past week. I went to the London Book Fair on Monday, which was cool and hoped to go back, but time has seemed to sail away this week! You know how that goes!! 

Anyway, having missed doing my 5-minute Poem A Day, so I've just written 3 in a row. They are inspired by the prompts from Robert Lee Brewer in the Reader's Digest April PAD Challenge. If you want to join in with the challenge, here is the link:

Day 18 - prompt 'I am'

I am

I am
As the day finds me
Wandering through
Beneath the sun’s rays
Beyond the lines
Of grey buildings

I am
In the spaces between
Where things crawl
The skin twitches
Eyes open wide
In the morning fresh

I am
As the birds fly high
So the clouds chase
Ever turning moments
Find me
Waiting here

I am
Where the ocean roars
And the wind howls
As night falls
A curved moon rises
So I go to sleep

Day 17 – prompt 'express/expression'

Express Man

The brown envelope curls
At the edges;
Thumbed and worn.
It bears a single stamp
To reveal the tale -
Someone struck it there,
Sealed it closed,
Wrote upon the surface
In straggled prose.

I wonder as it sits
On the table’s edge
Waiting eagerly for me
To slide my finger along
The sealed edges,
What will I find inside?

Hearing the engine roar
Outside the window
Of the postman leaving,
My attention breaks
But not for long -
This writing seems familiar
In its constant curl,
Resurrecting the ache of
Memories long hidden.

My finger hovers along
The top, my breathing rises
And I back away.
It’s time for a cup of tea
Before I open this door
Full of distant echoes.

Day 16 – prompt 'impossible or possible'

The possible impossible

He digs in
As his heart pounds
Sweat pouring from his brow
Taking it in
Roars and whistles blowing
The constant ache fades away
He digs in
Passing them by, the crowd cries
Roaring its approval, pushing
Taking it in
He runs the fastest lap
His short life has ever seen
He digs in
As the finish meets him
In an embrace of like minds

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Thanks for reading!! :)

Thursday, 11 April 2013

A Poem a Day (22): Why

Morning! Today's 5-minute poem is inspired by the prompt from Robert Lee Brewer in the Reader's Digest April PAD Challenge (day 10). The prompt is suffering.

If you want to join in with the challenge, here is the link:

Here's my effort -


He sits shaking in the cold
Waiting for the morning
Drooling for some water
Yearning for some feeling
But none will come now
In this impenetrable dark
Where his only companion
Is the cage

He stares across the dirt
Lying clumped on concrete
Wishing he was elsewhere
Wanting his world to change
Almost desiring his death
But no one can help him now
In this oppressive dark -
Stolen away, his new home
Is the cage

Scuffing his black-furred paws
He stares at the missing claws
Waiting for the man to come
Wishing that he never would
Clearly desiring his death -
All they want is to drain him
Keep him here, locked away
Chained with a ring in his nose
In the cage

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

A Poem a Day (21) - Hunted

Morning! Today's 5-minute poem is inspired by the prompt from Robert Lee Brewer in the Reader's Digest April PAD Challenge (day 9). The prompt is hunted or hunter.

If you want to join in with the challenge, here is the link:

Here's my effort -


Beneath the curved moon’s stare
She runs

Livid in the ice-cold touch
Of air’s fingers
She turns

Lithe limbs burning,
Her mind sets on nothing
But the escape -
She dashes

Silver in the distancing,
The silent shimmer
Of the lake entices -
Knowing, panting, slipping,
She leaps

Into the dark, inviting depths.
Chill water cascades,
Dipping her ears,
Coating the twitching whiskers -
Flicking the droplets
She swims

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Monday, 8 April 2013

Books for Boys- Reviews and Fun!: Kiwi in Cat City! A chapter book of fun.

I just got this marvellous review for Kiwi in Cat City. Me = very, very happy!

Books for Boys- Reviews and Fun!: Kiwi in Cat City! A chapter book of fun.: Let the mommy part begin first- all 4 boys read this, in part or whole, to one another.  Bobby and James read it alone, Brenton read it...

A Poem a Day (20) - a sevenling

Morning! I had a busy weekend so no poems! Hope you had a good one. Sigh! Apologies! And kick up the butt to me as these poems are meant to be every day!

Today's poem is a Sevenling, thanks to today's prompt from Robert Lee Brewer. I'm doing his April PAD Challenge. 

So, what's a Sevenling, I hear you ask...
According to the website, it’s a 7-line poem that features two tercets and a one-liner in the final (third) stanza. The first two stanzas should have an element of three in them that can either play off each directly, work as juxtaposition, or have no connection whatsoever. The final line should work as either a punchline, weird twist, or punctuation mark.

If you want to join in with the challenge, here is the link:

Here's my effort -

She hovers on the water’s edge
Bare feet digging into softest sand
Awaiting the horizon’s rise

Its misted line feels so comforting
A fleeting glance of eternity
Endless in its stark burn of colour

Dawn breaks as she enters the waves

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Friday, 5 April 2013

A Poem a Day (19): Plus one

A ten-minute poem based on the prompt 'plus', given on the Readers' Digest poetry page I'm following.
Plus one
It’s meaningless, this plus one

You so wish I would bring.
I am here, though alone,
Accompanied by my thoughts.

I only want to sit in the corner,

Tucked away from the bustle,
Eat a little dinner, something light,
Drink a glass of sweet red wine.

Here I can watch the people,

Listen to their funny stories,
Enter their unique lives,
But remain anonymous.

What does it matter to you?

It is only me, the widow
As my dearest plus one
Passed so, so long ago.

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Thursday, 4 April 2013

A Poem a Day (18): Hold that thought

A short poem from the prompt 'Hold that Thought' from a poetry site I was checking out yesterday. This one isn't a five-minute poem. Probably ten or so.

Hold that thought

“Hold that thought,” squawked the bird
As he peered down from his cage
“If I fly out, where would I go,
What would I eat, do you know?”

“Don’t be afraid,” soothed his friend,
Who watched him from beneath.
“I will catch you if you fall
Though I doubt you will at all.”

“But I’m scared,” squeaked the bird
Bobbing his yellow head to and fro.
“I’ve never gone beyond this cage,
“Ever since I was the youngest age.”

“Don’t you yearn to be free?
To soar overhead, oh so high,
Looking down on all of us?
Why do you make such a fuss?”

Canary turned his eye to the door,
Fastened with the simplest clip.
All this needed was to push a bit
And really that would be it.

Weighing up all his options,
He cursed his yellow heart.
Why did he tremble and shake
Over the journey he could take?

“Maybe another day,” he chirped
To his four-pawed, furry friend,
Whose whiskers suddenly drooped
As the bird was not to be duped.

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

A Poem a Day (17): Some haiku

Five-minute poems to keep writing every day...

Some haiku

Trembling on a leaf
Yellow wings, dotted with black,
She flutters and flies

With just a knife, she
Splats a zillion zombies,
Only to be spam!
(RIP Andrea!!)

Darkness rises, here
In the pit plunging down - where
Fear hides itself

Scurrying away,
Whiskers twitch, a latch clicks back -
Cheese rockets his way!

Tomorrow, he thinks 
As the white blanket rises
On the sleeping field

He watches the tide 
Sliding back and forth, waiting
As his heart splinters

copyright Vickie Johnstone

Monday, 1 April 2013

Guest post: World Autism Day? No! World Autism WEEK!

By Nicole Storey

Hello! As an author and a mother of an autistic child, I try to do my part to support autism, whether it be research, grants for people with autism, therapy, resources for parents, and the like. World Autism Day gives the world a chance to show their support for all autistic individuals and I want to do my part.
So, with that in mind, my publisher, Inknbeans Press ( and I are offering a special edition e-book that includes all three titles of the Grimsley Hollow series written so far for only $6.99! With every purchase of this book, a donation will be made to Autism Speaks. The book will be available for purchase from Monday (4-1-13) until Friday (4-5-13) ONLY!
For those who aren’t familiar with Grimsley Hollow, I got the idea for the series from my son, and he is the main character and hero of the books. It is a YA fantasy with a touch of paranormal and a lot of Halloween! It is recommended for ages 10 and up.
Please consider grabbing a copy of this book and helping autistic individuals everywhere. Remember, not all heroes wear capes and these extraordinary people ARE heroes! Here are the links below:
Nicole Storey’s Face Book Page:
Twitter: @Nicole_Storey
Thanks so very much for your support! Together, we can make a difference!

Thanks Nicole for telling us about this very worthy cause. Readers, I also reviewed her book, Grimsley Hollow, and gave it a 5 out of 5 stars. 

A Poem a Day (16): In the blue

I hope everyone had a good Easter. Mine was pretty busy and lovely! Also ate too much chocolate! :)

Here's a five-minute poem for A Poem a Day...

In the blue

We rise with the tide
Sink with the ebb
Flowing within
A splash of blue
It takes me down

Into the unknown
Spinning in circles
Caressed by waves

Treading water
We chase bubbles
Of incandescence
Reflecting white
Rays from above

Into the unknown
Spinning in circles
Caressed by waves

The sun breaks
This surface film
Finding us here
Where we swim
Diving deep down

Copyright Vickie Johnstone