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It’s beginning to look a lot like springtime….

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Hope this finds everyone in good spirits, having survived what turned out to be a very challenging couple of months weather-wise since Christmas, in Ireland and the UK at any rate. Such storms and floods are thankfully a rarity here – albeit slightly more commonplace over the last few years – but hopefully we’ve seen the last of them now till at least next winter. Today in Limerick it’s calm and dry, and I fancy there’s an air of spring about the place. It might be wishful thinking, but I’m going to go on wishing and thinking. Certainly things are budding in the garden, which is always a sight to gladden the heart and put me in mind of the long summer days ahead. Here’s hoping. (And by the way, did the regulars notice my spring-cleaned website? I asked my designer, Annette Thompson, http://www.meldrummedia.com, to freshen it up a bit and put in some new snaps I got taken lately by the very creative Eva Birdthistle, http://www.evabirdthistle.com – isn’t the whole thing looking rather well? I loved the green vibe, but it was time for a change. I’ve warned her that in a year’s time I’ll probably look for shocking pink. She’s fine with it.)

On the books front, it’s a busy time. After the Wedding, my sequel to One Summer, is just weeks away from hitting the shelves here (April 2 is the big day) and I’m currently chasing up all my media contacts and nagging them for a mention. I’ll also be writing a few features and begging the mags and newspapers to take them, so look out for my name over the coming weeks. As Mr Tesco says, every little helps. And there’s going to be a launch in Limerick, so if you’re anywhere local do drop in to O’Mahony’s Bookshop on Wed April 9 at 6.30 to see After the Wedding being sent off into the world. Scary Mary time for an author – but I’m heartened by all the lovely messages I get from satisfied writers, and so grateful that people take the time to look me up and drop the few lines. It means so much, and it’s wonderful to think of the books making their way around the world – no idea how some of them end up in the places they do, but I’m not going to question it!

I’ll be packing my bags for Italy at the end of the week. Poor old cat will have to manage without me for a month, but she’ll be fed and watered and well looked after while I’m gone. I’m hoping to have the guts of a new book coming home with me – plot, characters and maybe even a few thousand words, all going well. Fingers crossed everyone please! I’ve been trying to learn a bit of the lingo and I have the basics, I think. To be on the safe side, I’ve also learned scusi, non capisco, which I suspect will come in mighty handy… Should be an interesting trip; will report back in due course. Keep an eye on my Twitter feed, @roisinmeaney, for on the spot feedback.

Right, time to spring clean my house – it’s looking a little worse than the wreck of the Hesperus at the moment. Now, where did I leave that bucket and mop?

Be good,

Roisin xxx

Baby’s fledged

ImageWell, it’s out there – as of a few days ago Something in Common is sitting on a bookshop shelf near you, waiting to see what everyone thinks of it. Very scary time, always on tenterhooks until I get a feel of the reaction – and thankfully the comments from readers of review copies have been good so far. Will be keeping an eye on the bestseller list over the next few weeks…fingers crossed, everyone!

In other news, work is progressing nicely on my sequel to One Summer, which I’m calling Another Summer for the moment, but that may not stick. Have to say it took me a while to get my teeth into it – in my innocence, I imagined a sequel would be less work than a new one, as all the characters are there….not so. I realise now that the hard work is in finding something new and interesting to say about them! Hopefully I’ll pull it off.

Going on holidays today, heading to Lanzarote for a week of lying in the sun, if it’s there…someone on Twitter came home from there yesterday and weather reports were a little off-putting to say the least…bringing the laptop so it won’t be all rest and no work – need to keep the momentum going with the book so I’ll be putting in a few hours each day. Will try and time it so I’m writing when the clouds are out!

Pic is of one of my dwarf apple trees covered in blossom. Love this time of year, when even the gardens of mediocre gardeners (me) look smashing. Everything budding and greening up, perennials reappearing, shrubs growing steadily. The other day my little toddler nephew helped me to plant flower seeds – and when I say helped, I’m using BIG artistic licence – picture seeds being flung willy-nilly! So we’ll be keeping an eye on them over the next few weeks – hopefully about half of them landed roughly where they were supposed to! Of course they’re still in danger from my cat when she’s out and about and looking for a suitable spot to spend a penny…poor things, talk about odds being stacked against them…

Have a happy May, wherever you are. Hope the sun shines at least some of the time. Do let me know if you read Something in Common, I’m dying to hear what you think of it.

Roisin xxx

Busy as a March Hare

daffsCan you believe it’s March? I can’t. January feels like last week. Time is skidding by.

So what have I been doing? Well, up to about a fortnight ago I was tweaking the skirts and shining the shoes of Something in Common before waving it off to the printers with a big lump in my throat (hate letting the babies go). I heard the other day that proof copies should be happening by the middle of the month. Can’t wait. I have a lovely parcel delivery man who says I’m his cheeriest customer. Of course I am – he brings my babies back, all dickied up with brand new covers. (By the way, there’s a fun marketing event in the planning for the launch of Something in Common – watch this space, particularly if you live in Dublin.)

And since there is no rest for the wicked writer, the sequel to One Summer is well underway – 20,000 word mark passed the other day. Plot not fully sorted – I’m going to try letting this one do a bit of growing all by itself, so we’ll see how that goes. Great to be revisiting the island of Roone and catching up with all my pals there.

This week I won’t get much writing done though – on Tuesday I’ll be paying a visit to a local school to chat to classes about the readathon they’re currently running to raise funds for their new gym – they’re getting sponsorship for each book they read, and they also earn skipping ropes to use in the gym. How clever is that? On Wednesday I’m travelling to Tralee in County Kerry to meet second year girls and talk books with them as part of their arts festival.  On Thursday, which is World Book Day in Ireland, I’ll be flitting around Limerick city leaving books in various locations – park benches, hotel lobbies, cafes, window sills – for people to pick up and bring home. I had a box of author copies of my US publications, and I thought it might be a good way to spread them around. Keep an eye out if you’re a Limerick native. And on Friday I’ve been honoured by an invitation to officially open the library in my old primary school –  is that not wonderful?

And on a non-book related matter, I’m about halfway through my lenten fast. I’ve given up chocolate, wine, desserts, crisps – basically, anything that constitutes a treat, until Easter. Ostensibly it’s to atone for my many, many sins (!!!) but I figure it might also do some good in the area of achieving my perfect beach body in time for a flit to the sun in May. We can only hope.

Happy spring, wherever you are.

Roisin xx