Sunday, January 28, 2007

The Weekend Before the Week

This Saturday I woke up with a screaming headache and the arthritis in my wrist playing up something chronic. So instead of spending the day practising my talk for next week, I lay around whimpering and taking pills. My children helped me by forming a cult, making me the Messiah, and sitting at the foot of the bed saying "Teach us how to whine, Oh Great One!" And then fighting about who was or was not a heathen. And lo and behold, it worked! Today I have no headache - okay, I still can't use my right hand much (worryingly it is my book-signing hand - the plan currently is for Callum to come to the talks with me and sign copies of Questors with his name instead, and we'll just hope nobody notices) - but am I complaining? Well, yes, but not as much as yesterday.

Ten talks next week - 2 days in Dundee, 1 day in St Andrews, 2 days in West Lothian. Details on News page of the website. (

The Wickit Chronicles now has its own website! It's very beautiful and green - if you don't believe me, go and see for yourself:

Wish me luck for next week, even though it's going to be fine. Absolutely. No doubt in my mind whatsoever. Just fine.

Joan. (Not nervous, me.)

Saturday, January 20, 2007

"Welcome To My Worlds"

"Welcome to my Worlds" is the title of an article about me, Questors and Ely Plot that came out in The Scotsman today, written by David Robinson, and accompanied by one of the approximately 4.3 million photos taken by Walter Neilson that I told you about several blogs back. (It is a fine photo, though not the one of me and the sheep skull, AND, as one of my sons immediately pointed out, "Look, Mum, it doesn't make you look fat!") It's a fabulously nice article, and will, I suspect, bear many careful re-readings ...

(If you don't have ready access to Scottish newspapers, try this link - you don't get the picture that way, but you do get the text.)

There have also been some more good reviews this week - enough now to make it sensible to move them from the NEWS page of the website to the QUESTORS page, so feel free to go see them there (!

Exotic Spotter of the Week pretty much has to go to my nephew who found (and bought - good boy!) a copy of Questors in Hong Kong, but my more local spies are still doing a great job. You know who you are, as they say on the Dedication pages, and many thanks!

Well, it's been at least a minute since I re-read nice things about ME, so I think I'll close now. Till next week, then.


Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Joan Lennon Clippings Service

The trickle has become a bit more of a dribble this week. Fortunately I have many spies, otherwise I'd miss half of what's going on in Questors land. First off, which I found out about because a friend's brother-in-law posted it to her, was a feature in The Scotsman from 1 Jan. - "Scotswomen To Watch in 2007". (There are 15 of us.)

"14 Joan Lennon
Age: 53
What does she do? Children's writer
Why you should watch out for her: From her house in Fife, overlooking the Tay, Canadian-born writer Lennon dreams up a number of alternative universes that will be coming our way in 2007. First up this month is Questors, in which three teenagers from three different worlds are in a race to repair a tear in the space-time continuum. Later this year, she'll be unveiling the first of her Wickit Chronicles series."

Very nice, I thought, until, being human, I read the other entries and realised that although one woman's 37-inch legs and the amount they were insured for was written about, my own legs were not mentioned at all. Not either of them. Alerted, I've been checking every other article and review this week even more carefully than usual, and would you believe it, not one person has spoken of my lower appendages, not even in a critical way. I won't say I'm bitter, but it has taken the edge off a little ...

On Friday, I walked into my Tai Chi class and was greeted with cries of "We saw your article in the paper!" Thereby alerted, I rushed off (well, after the class - I'd have had to do it in slow motion otherwise) and bought a bunch of copies of The Courier. The article is called "Where There Be Dragons" and is not far off half a page, with a big picture of me and the Chinese horse. The charming young Jack McKeown has done me proud, even without finding leg-room. So to speak.

I'm still doing interviews, and teaching has started, and I'd like to say I've started writing again, but I can't because I haven't. It's the trauma with the leg thing. Really it is. Maybe next week ...

Cheers, Joan.

P.S. Full face copies of Questors have now been spotted in the Waterstones in Edinburgh and St Andrews and TWO Waterstones stores in London. Keep me posted, all sightings will be welcomed!

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Are You Out There?

The Scots have this thing where they say Happy New Year to you the first time they see you in the new year, not just on the day. So from the slightly more than 5o% of me which is Scottish (based on years of my life lived in said fine country), "Happy New Year!"

2007, The Big Year, has begun as more of a gentle trickle than anything avalanche or torrent-like, but I couldn't ask for a nicer review than this one, to be found on the Waterstones website:

"Bookseller review



Bryn, Maddie and Cam think they're just a normal boy, girl and…well… Cam hasn’t quite decided what it's going to be yet. They're all quite happy on their 3 different worlds until they're summonded to the London House, which doesn't quite reside on any one of the 3 worlds. Here they discover they are The Questors - born with the purpose of saving the worlds when they reach the age of 25. Unfortunately, the worlds need saving about 10 years early! A brilliant fantasy adventure with great humourous undertones, I couldn't stop chuckling, and absorbing characters, I defy anyone who wouldn't want a Nan like Mrs Mac. Children and adults alike will love it."

Obviously a woman of discernment and impeccable taste.

So here's your task now, Globbers - go into your local bookshop, where'er that may be, and find out if Questors is there yet. If it is, give it a maternal pat from me, then make sure it's been put someplace really prominent, preferably full face. Or you could just buy it. That'd be nice too.

But ...


Let me know what you find! Cheers, Joan.