One Raven – by Kathleen Jones

Algebra of Owls is a lovely new online journal publishing a good mix of poetry. Very pleased to have one of mine included!

Algebra Of Owls

That day by the lake
when you wouldn’t stop and
I made you and you stalked
off into the bracken and I sat
on the rock looking up
at the crag wondering why
do I always take it why
am I still here and then
saw a bird circling
as a crow circles its carrion –
but more slowly, wings spread wide
and the feathers fanned out against the sun
and it seemed larger and darker
with more history than a common scavenger
and then I knew I was watching an omen,
riding the thermal, effortless,
croaking a harsh truth.

Kathleen is a poet and biographer living in the north of England.  She has a couple of pamphlets published by Redbeck Press, a full collection with Templar Poetry, and is now working towards her second collection which features poems written while travelling among the First Nation people of British…

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Around the World with Elisabeth Gifford

This is a wonderful site for armchair (and any other kind of) travellers.

Linda's Book Bag

The Around The World Book Trip is a partnership between TripFiction and #BookConnectors ~ bloggers and authors, travelling the world, through fiction.

Around the world bannerTripFiction ( was created to make it easy to match a location with a book and help you select good literature that is most pertinent and relevant to your trip. A resource for armchair and actual travellers, it is a unique way of exploring a place through the eyes of an author. We blog, and chat books and travel across social media, and love to meet authors and bloggers as we take our literary journey.

Book Connectors was created as a place on Facebook for bloggers, authors and small publishers to share their news. We encourage book promotions; information about competitions and giveaways; news of events, including launch events, signings, talks or courses. Talk about new signings, about film deals …. anything really.

Book Connectors is  a friendly group…

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Uncommon Ground: learning to read our landscape again

That's How The Light Gets In

Recently I was presented with a beautiful gift – a book by Dominick Tyler called Uncommon Ground: A word-lover’s guide to the British landscape. The book is the product of a year that Tyler spent travelling the length and breadth of the British Isles to photograph specific features of the natural world.

Realising how limited was his vocabulary for naming the things he saw in the landscape – ‘There was a hill, then a dip then some lumpy bits and then it got stony’ – Tyler began collecting words for landscape features that would improve upon the vague generalisations we tend to use today, such as hill, rock or stream. The terms he collected had invariably been used for generations by ancestors who depended on specific words to give directions, tell a story, find a place, or describe the land on which they worked.

The words collected by Tyler – words like zawn, jackstraw, clitter, logan…

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Heart of darkness: from the time-honoured barbarity of the Tudors in Ireland to Islamic State

We have more in common with ISIS than we think.

Mathew Lyons

The leader of a small military force – perhaps 500 strong – is determined to subdue a province, and to do so quickly. Terror is his explicit policy. Every inroad he makes into enemy territory is followed by indiscriminate slaughter and destruction. Every man, woman and child is killed. Houses, churches, crops – everything is burned and despoiled.

Each night, the heads of all those who have been killed are lain in a path to the commander’s tent so “the people . . . see the heads of their dead fathers, brothers, children, kinsfolk and friends, lie on the ground before their faces, as they come to speak with the colonel”.

If this sounds like the barbarity that Isis has made commonplace in the news in the last couple of years, think again. It is not Isis. It is the English in Ireland in 1569 and the leader in question…

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The Sixth Extinction: humanity busy sawing off the limb on which it perches

That's How The Light Gets In

Atelopus zeteki, Panamanian Golden Frog

Atelopus zeteki, the Panamanian Golden Frog

Though it might be nice to imagine there once was a time when man lived in harmony with nature, it’s not clear that he ever really did.

Elizabeth Kolbert is a journalist who writes on science matters for the New Yorker. She has written two books, the first being Field Notes from a Catastrophe: A Frontline Report on Climate Change. I’ve just read her most recent book, The Sixth Extinction, which is only partly concerned with climate change: travelling across the world to report on the latest of the mass extinctions that have occurred on Earth in the last half billion years, she reveals how this sixth and most devastating extinction is all down to human impact – but climate change is only a part of it.

Kolbert begins her journey across the planet in search of the evidence for the latest mass extinction in central…

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9 Reasons Why You Should Not Read These Books

9 reasons why you shouldn’t read these books . . .

Pills & Pillow-Talk

In case you’ve somehow missed my bragging, seven of us indie authors have got together to create an ebook compilation called OUTSIDE THE BOX: Women Writing Women. Some literati types like Dan Holloway and JJ Marsh love it already, but what do they know? I think it’s only fair to slap on a great big warning and tell you it’s not for everyone. 

Warning about Outside the Box

Here are nine reasons why you might want to steer well clear of OUTSIDE THE BOX:

1 You don’t like reading.

Maybe, like Kanye West, you are not a fan of books.  Kanye adds, ‘I would never want a book’s autograph. I am a proud non-reader of books.’  If this applies to you too, you’ve read too much already. Stop right now and go rinse your brain with the finest hip-hop until you’re out of danger.

Kathleen Jones

2 You only read books written by men.

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The ability to dream

Dreaming in Cuba? ‘ Dreaming leads to sadness and disappointment.’


I spend the long hot days chatting to the women, helping to clean the house, washing and feeding my youngest as she crawls around the floor whilst my eldest Eleanor is playing in streets. Eleanor disappears after her breakfast – a hastily consumed egg and a roll – running down the street to call on a prima. She reappears periodically, rosy cheeked to beg for water. She can be easily rounded up for lunch but by early evening has to be found and bought home (kicking and protesting) to be bathed before her dinner. By then she’s usually rosy cheeked and black with dirt. Her clothes are unrecognisable from all the dust. Cubans are strong believers in bathing before eating and virtually never bath afterwards for fear of it stopping their hearts.

Eleanor is four and I genuinely have very little idea where she is for most of the day…

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Putting a poetry pamphlet together.

Excellent advice for editing a collection as well as a pamphlet.

Roy Marshall

This piece is addressed to those poets who haven’t had a collection published before, so I’ll be covering what I consider to be the basics of putting a pamphlet together based on my own experience and including ideas and advice I’ve picked up from my reading and listening to others.

The majority of poetry pamphlets contain twenty to twenty-five poems. The first thing you will need (apart from enough poems of course) is to set aside some



Selecting and ordering poems is a creative exercise that requires attention and care.  If you are hurried or under pressure to meet a deadline you probably won’t be able make the best judgements and as a result you are unlikely to enjoy the process or have the satisfaction of knowing you have put in your best effort.
It’s best to start the process and return to it over a period of days, weeks or months.


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