Welcome To Kyrosmagica! So lovely to see you Esme.
MJ: Tell us about your life Esme.
Esme: I’ve had two lives, and both are hard to understand. In my past life I appeared to be free but never experienced freedom. I felt trapped in my body and my mind didn’t feel that it fitted, like a puzzle piece trying to correspond to the wrong shape. My mind rebelled; I self-harmed. Now that I am a prisoner in the mirrors of Amelina’s house, I can’t self-harm. I can’t do anything. I’m a victim of a curse but I’m not the only victim.
MJ: Why did you self-harm?
Esme: Everyone expected me to be perfect. I couldn’t cope. The pressure kept building up and up. It was my way of dealing. My personal punch bag.
MJ: That makes me so sad. I wish I could help you.
Esme: I know you do. You feel my pain and wrote about it in your novel.
MJ: I tried to do it justice; I hope in some small way I succeeded.
Esme: You did. But can we talk about something else? This is making me anxious.
MJ: Of course, is it okay to talk about the curse? Or is that off-limits?
Esme: No, that’s okay.
MJ: Who else was a victim?
Esme: Amelina’s dad.
MJ: What about the rest of the family?
Esme: They’re trapped too but they’re not prisoners. Hey, wait a minute. They are prisoners in a way… sometimes you don’t have to be a prisoner to feel like one.
MJ: It must be a really sad story…
Esme: Yes it is, but it’s also much more. There’s light and laughter, darkness and shadows. Many magical threads tangle this story together, like many loves, and yet there are no real lovers.
MJ: It’s no romance then?
Esme: Read the beginning and you might think it’s a romance but read the end and you’ll know it’s not.
MJ: It sounds puzzling…
Esme: Yeah, it’s meant to be. Each chapter starts with a numbered puzzle piece instead of a chapter heading. Then there’s an awesome Tanka poem teaser.
This is my favourite from Puzzle Piece 12:
Think you know someone,
No, you don’t know anyone,
We’re all cheerleaders,
Carrying our false pompoms,
The mirror captures our truth.
MJ: A teaser… interesting… Are you a poetry fan?
Esme: Hey! All artistic and tortured souls love poetry.
MJ: I love poetry!
Esme: Oh! Ha Ha… That means you’re a deep thinker.
MJ: I am. Talking about deep thinking… If you had a twin, what would you say to her?
Esme: I have a twin, inside me. It’s like there are two people in my brain. One’s happy, one’s sad, a yin and yang twin…
MJ: I wish I could make you whole and happy. Perhaps I might write your freedom…
Esme: Could you? Pleeease. But make sure that you write my freedom beyond the prison of my mind. Don’t send me to the land where shadows live.
MJ: Sigh. I wish I could promise that, but I haven’t finished book two yet and I have no idea what will happen in book three!
Esme: You authors have a wicked sense of power…
MJ: Yes, it is true dear Esme. You are without a doubt the most challenging character in my book and that is why I love you so…
Esme: Ahhhhh, thank you!
I hope you will love Esme as much as I do. She might make you sad but there is a young person like her out there somewhere. Self-harm is a growing problem in our young people. Let’s not bury our heads in the sand and pretend it doesn’t exist. Speak out about mental health issues, fight to take away the stigma. Help someone you know who is suffering, it’s the little things that mean so much.
Please feel free to comment and share.
The illustrations of the Creature and Esme will appear in black and white in the paperback book due to be launched April 2018.
Images copyright – talented artist Carolina Russo: https://yesterdayafter.com
Previous interviews on Kyrosmagica:
Bye for now,
Authors Website: https://mjmallon.com
Collaborative blog: https://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
My Facebook Authors/Bloggers Support Group: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club
Since I have been writing and blogging there have been so many cases of serendipity, discovering like-minded souls who share similar interests. My lovely friend Colleen Chesebro, fellow writer, chief sister, (blog originator,) at The Sisters of the Fey, loves crystals, fairies and all things magical. Colleen helped me enormously with my manuscript The Curse of Time. She went way beyond a beta read and I am so indebted to her for her kindness, helping me achieve my dream to publish my first book.
Carolina Russo who blogs at Yesterday After (my illustrator,) also has a crystal connection! She makes crystal jewellery and has created two wonderful pieces of art to illustrate my book, which I will be sharing in a special feature on my next blog post on my main blog – https://mjmallon.com so keep an eye out for that!
And the lovely Samantha Murdoch, who loves cats and crystals kindly emailed me lots of photos of her beautiful black cat Lily to promote my cat character Shadow, as well as an image of the Bloodstone which graces the spine of the paperback.
I would also like to mention, Irene who fashioned this beautiful necklace promoting Colleen’s YA novel The Heart Stone Chronicles – The Swamp Fairy https://colleenchesebro.com/category/the-heart-stone-chronicles/the-swamp-fairy/ which I adore wearing. You can order it and other pieces of Irene’s jewellery via her Etsy shop:
My friend Wendy Anne Darling had a magical challenge too, to transform Dr John C Taylor’s brilliant images of the Corpus Christi Clock into a magnificent book cover. She did a fantastic job. Do pop over to Wendy’s blog, and check out her book design service.
Oh, and did I mention that Dr John C Taylor, OBE, inventor of the Corpus Christi Chronopage clock is a keen geologist, loves crystals and of course clocks too…
Such is the power of serendipity! Would you believe it?
I truly believe that The Curse of Time and all these wonderful connections were meant to be.
Have you ever had a similar experience, when everything came together in such a magical and mysterious way?
Do comment I’d love to hear all about it.
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
To join in with Colleen’s weekly poetry challenge follow the link:
HELP LOVELY PEEPS REVIEWS NEEDED. I really need some!!!! PLEEEEASSSEE. If you’ve read The Curse of Time #1 Bloodstone and liked/loved it could you write a short review. It doesn’t need to be gazillions of words just a few would do and post to relevant sites: amazon, goodreads. I’d be most grateful.
BOOK REVIEWERS: IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN RECEIVING A FREE e-pub, mobi or pdf copy in exchange for a review please leave a comment below, or email me firstname.lastname@example.org. The Curse of Time would appeal to readers/reviewers who enjoy YA/MG fantasy fiction. The story is set in Cambridge, UK.
There are many themes in the book but the main ones are:
Time, (Inspired by The magnificent Corpus Chronopage Clock, Kings Parade, Cambridge.)
Here I am with the esteemed inventor Dr John C Taylor, OBE by the chronopage and grasshopper.
Crystals, (Inspired by The Crystal Grotto – The Light Pours Out of Me by Anya Gallaccio- Juniper Artland, Wilkieston Scotland.) https://www.jupiterartland.org/artwork/the-light-pours-out-of-me
Magic, (Inspired by a love of magic!)
Light, Shadows, Deception, Art, Poetry, Music, Mirrors, Mental Health Issues, Myths – (especially in Book two!)
This is book one in a proposed trilogy. IF YOU READ AND REVIEW BOOK 1 YOU WILL AUTOMATICALLY BE ADDED TO MY LIST TO RECEIVE AN ARC OF BOOK 2.
Chronopage and Grasshopper – Dr John C Taylor, OBE. Please visit his blog to find out more about this remarkable man: http://www.johnctaylor.com/the-chronophage/
Male character – Ryder modelled by Joseph English photographed by my daughter Georgina Mallon.
Female character – Amelina modelled by Elise Hackney Photographed by my daughter Georgina Mallon.
Bloodstone crystal photographed by Alex Marlowe, via Samantha Murdoch – https://samanthamurdochblog.wordpress.com.
Photo of the crystal grotto is my own!
Art Credit – Carolina Russo – ©Copyright Carolina Russo – Portrait of Esme (featured in above slideshow,) now available to order – https://yesterdayafter.com/…/new-release-esme-bringing-ali…/
At last! It’s my launch party today for my kindle e-book and I can’t believe it – I am beyond thrilled.
Come in and let me share with you some news.
I’ve been keeping a very special piece of art tucked away to reveal to you today!
It’s a wonderful portrait that Carolina Russo of Yesterday After created for me of my character Esme.
What are your impressions of Esme? The tears in her eyes convey her sadness but the golden hair of the mysterious girl facing her (no spoilers!) is bright and vibrant, suggesting hope. Carolina has done an amazing job, I can’t thank her enough for all her hard work in creating this stunning artwork for me. Collaborations makes me so happy. That is why I love writing and blogging so much. I would never have ‘met’ Carolina otherwise. It’s so wonderful to be able to collaborate with talented and creative individuals like Carolina who live so far away.
Isn’t that beyond awesome? I am speechless. Dr John C. Taylor has been so generous, allowing me to use images of his incredible creation The Corpus Christi Chronopage on my social media and my book cover.
Look at a close up of this bug of a fellow below… (courtesy of Dr. John C Taylor) – My interview with The Grasshopper – The Curse of Time
Amelina – modelled by Elise Hackney
Ryder – modelled by Joseph English.
I have had the joy of collaborating with https://samanthamurdochblog.wordpress.com/ Samantha happens to have a black cat supermodel Lily who looks just like the black cat Shadow in my book.
Isn’t Lily amazing?
Samantha loves crystals and so do I! Her son Alex Marlowe took this stunning photo of a Bloodstone crystal that features on the spine of my paperback (the paperback is still to be released.)
I can’t thank my good friend Colleen Chesebro enough for all her kindness. She started off beta reading and then took me under her fairy wings to do a full scale edit. Thanks also to my beta readers – blogging friend Graeme Cumming – first draft beta reader and my eldest daughter Natasha Mallon for all her help too.
Below are the links to the kindle e-book – The Curse of Time – #1 Bloodstone.
If you’d like to leave a review, I’d be thrilled if you would.
So let’s get in party mode, perhaps have a drink or two…
Whatever your tipple…
or a cup of very special tea?
Perhaps a cake? Ritu at But I Smile Anyway is a legendary baker, hint, hint… xxx
A big thank you to all my lovely friends who have featured me on their blogs leading up to the book launch and those who will be featuring me, thereafter. Your support and help mean so much.
Features and Excerpts to date:
An early introduction by my good friend Vashti – https://vashtiqvega.wordpress.com/2017/06/12/spotlight-m-j-mallon-author/
Plus Dan with his pre-author Q and A: https://danalatorre.com/2017/05/08/author-profile-23-questions-with-marje-from-kyrosmagica/
Huge supporter of authors Sally Chronin, who really has been sharing my new book so widely I can’t thank her enough. Here is one such example: – https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2017/08/01/sallys-cafe-and-bookstore-new-on-the-shelves-the-curse-of-time-by-m-j-mallon/
Today’s special release day post by Allan Hudson at South Branch Scribbler: http://allanhudson.blogspot.co.uk/2017/08/guest-author-marjorie-mallon-of-england.html
Author Spotlights on the subject of Self-Harm:
A big thank you and hug to Adele – https://firefly465.wordpress.com/2017/08/09/marjorie-mallon-curse-of-time-1-the-bloodstone/
Another hug to Christy Birmingham – https://whenwomeninspire.com/2017/08/21/self-harm-fiction-writing-guest-post/
Author Guest Posts with Poetry as a theme:
A big thank you to Charli – https://carrotranch.com/2017/08/22/raw-literature-haiku-tanka-and-a-debut-novel/
And fellow Scot Seumas who like me has a fondness for the Far East, and has a way with words! Such a charming fellow – https://seumasgallacher.com/2017/08/22/marjorie-mallon-poet-and-authoress-extraordinaire-come-be-entranced/
My lovely friend Ritu shared my jokey piece of poetry about inspiration – https://butismileanyway.com/2017/08/25/marjorie-mallon-poetic-inspiration-thecurseoftime-blogtour-author/
My original story written about friendship, rainbows and crystals shared via my very special friend Colleen who has helped me so much I can’t begin to thank her enough: http://colleenchesebro.com/2017/08/24/fairies-myths-magic-author-spotlight-guest-posts-rainbow-child-by-mj-mallon/
Some of the posts that I’ve already started planning that will be forthcoming after the release and in September/October 2017: Chris Graham at The Story Reading Ape, (inspiration,) Sacha Black (my marketing plans,) my fellow rainbow girl Debby Gies – D G Kaye Writer (a question and Answer post,) the huggable Hugh at Hughs Views and News, Eloise De Sousa, Helen Jones at Journey To Ambeth, Gloria McBreen at We Are Holistic, and Esmé at Cook and Enjoy, etc.
UPDATE: Since the release on 26th August, thank you to: Christoph Fischer for his post on 29th August.
Thank you for all the reblogs, kind comments, and to the lovely bloggers who have been so supportive to me, I can’t thank you enough.
Particular thanks goes to Amalia at Aquileana for being so kind and sending me a personal message of support.
So no more waffle.
It’s time to PARTYYYYYY!!!!!!! Come and add your links, comments, photos, thoughts, music, (we need a play list!)
Join the fun here and on my Facebook Party and Instagram!
Launch Party Playlist:
Today, I am delighted to share with you my cover reveal for my debut fantasy YA novel:
The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone
I’m delighted with the cover – Wendy Anne Darling at BOOKXEEDO Book Covers has done a marvellous job. Isn’t the cover just beautiful? Thank you Wendy so much.
Cover photography credit: Chronopage and grasshopper – John C Taylor, OBE.
Cover photography credit (spine) : Bloodstone – Alex Marlowe, via https://samanthamurdochblog.wordpress.com
On Amelina Scott’s thirteenth birthday, her father disappears under mysterious circumstances. Saddened by this traumatic event, she pieces together details of a curse that has stricken the heart and soul of her family.
Amelina longs for someone to confide in. Her once carefree mother has become angry and despondent. One day a strange black cat and a young girl, named Esme appear. Immediately, Esme becomes the sister Amelina never had. The only catch is that Esme must remain a prisoner, living within the mirrors of Amelina’s house.
Dreams and a puzzling invitation convince Amelina the answer to her family’s troubles lies within the walls of the illusive Crystal Cottage. Undaunted by her mother’s warnings, Amelina searches for the cottage on an isolated Cambridgeshire pathway where she encounters a charismatic young man, named Ryder. At the right moment, he steps out of the shadows, rescuing her from the unwanted attention of two male troublemakers.
With the help of an enchanted paint set, Amelina meets the eccentric owner of the cottage, Leanne, who instructs her in the art of crystal magic. In time, she earns the right to use three wizard stones. The first awakens her spirit to discover a time of legends, and later, leads her to the Bloodstone, the supreme cleansing crystal which has the power to restore the balance of time. Will Amelina find the power to set her family free?
I couldn’t have asked for better prompt words – music and art.
Both feature as a wonderful source of inspiration in my writing. In our family, there’s always music playing – my husband is a keen guitarist and loves to strum away whenever he can. He serenades me at night in our garden…. Our next door neighbours get cranky about this! We are lucky to have a room dedicated to music with many guitars and an electronic piano too.
Creativity, Photography and Art inspire my writing to such a degree that I have decided to collaborate with one or perhaps two artists/friends to showcase the character/s, and crystal cottage that feature in my book The Curse of Time – Book 1 – Bloodstone which I intend to release late this summer. More about that to come…
One of my artist friends Catherine S. Walker had her first open studies event last weekend. My friend Timea and I had a lovely time visiting her and viewing all of her awesome art. I’d love for Catherine to create a stunning art piece of the crystal cottage that features in my book…
Take a look at Catherine’s awesome artist page on Facebook: Artist Page: Catherine S. Walker, scroll down her facebook page to see her Acrylic and Watercolour paintings and line drawings: trees, rocks, flowers and landscapes. And detailed buildings too…
So, my Tanka this week… is especially for Catherine, wishing her much success. We spent the day enjoying her art, sitting in her garden, and blowing bubbles!
My good friend Timea looked so wonderfully elegant in these photos…
Bye for now, time for a celebratory cocktail… No bubbles, just a parasol!
My social media links:
Fellow Administrators of our Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club #ABRSC on Facebook, myself, my good friends Colleen Chesebro and Debby Gies. Click on Colleen’s and Debby’s photos to be directed to their awesome blogs. These ladies rock!
When I saw Hugh’s Photo Challenge this week I knew that I had to join in the fun.
I had just the photo in mind, and here he is, Mr Frowning Tree.
Isn’t he extraordinary?
I photographed him some time ago when I was working as a Christmas temp at John Lewis. I was on my way to work one morning, and there he was greeting me with that wretched face. I had to stop and photograph him, I couldn’t walk pass without doing so. I have to admit that on that particular morning I just wasn’t in the mood for work. He knew it. I knew it. I just wanted to spend time blogging or writing!! Anyway, I saw his sad face and his monumental frown had me in stitches. He knew what I was thinking: There is nothing as fulfilling as spending time being creative. So that sad tree kind of frowned in sympathy, cheeky so and so….
Today, I was with my daughter in Ely. We were prom dress shopping. We went to a charming shop called Something Special and we found just the right one. The amazing thing was it wasn’t one she had picked. I spotted it! C’est Moi, the Fashionista! It had no price tag on. Eek, but she tried it on anyway, and I prayed it wouldn’t be too expensive. It fitted her like a glove. This in itself was a big bonus as she is so petite that finding a dress is no easy feat. This is the moment when she transformed from a very pretty sixteen year old into classy, and beautiful. The dress is simple, elegant, with just the right amount of detail for her to look like a total knock out.
She just loved it. Of course this midnight blue gown was way over my intended budget. I tried to make her see sense but as we left the shop, she kind of worked her magic on me. Of course she convinced me!! We only walked a few yards down the road, and then we were heading our way back to the shop much to the shop assistant’s amusement and the rest is history. Anyway, that sad tree has a lot to answer for, he’s probably chuckling now, cracking his bark, with splinters of spontaneous laughter. My poor wee bank account…..
So how did my daughter manage to work her magic on me?
We mothers just can’t resist their daughters when they look so beautiful. But, as an insurance policy she promised to get A’s and B’s in her GCSE’s and to help with the price tag…. Clever lass. So I can’t complain. Perhaps this will spur her on to do extraordinary things….
This is when my day out with my daughter turned into an extraordinary day.
We had such a lovely day in Ely, it was such fun. The sun shone. We walked down to the waterfront and took loads of photographs. This is a common interest as we are both photography mad. I banished the thought of my money blues by suggesting that we visit a free event at the Babylon Gallery. Yes free, can you imagine? The Gallery is right on the waterfront. There is a very interesting exhibition at the moment called Time and Time Again, by Helena g Anderson from 20-31 January. Today is the last day, so hurry if you want to go see it. It totally took my mind off the state of my bank balance. In fact it was such a wonderful idea to go, as my daughter is doing GCSE Textiles and is a keen photographer and this exhibition really inspired her. The main theme of the exhibition is “an opportunity to look at the changing nature of time on the human condition, where one sees the body deteriorate but the soul remain omnipresent. Women and girls were photographed in 10-year increments, ranging from 0 to 100 years old.”
Startlingly we recognised one of the photographed faces, a friend of my daughters. Isn’t that quite amazing? It can only happen in Ely you know, you must visit!
More about Babylon Gallery here: http://www.babylonarts.org.uk/gallery/view,time-and-time-again-helena-g-anderson-2031-january_1906.htm
My photos of Ely will shortly be on my Instagram account so if you’d like to see them please follow the link: https://www.instagram.com/kyrosmagica/
I just love Ely. It is a must see place to visit, with its beautiful cathedral, lovely places to eat, riverside restaurants, and independent bookshops. Moreover, I just love spending time with my daughters, even when they cost me a fortune. I even found a dress for the Bloggers Bash too. It was in the same shop, fortunately the price wasn’t in the same frowning price tag league!!! But it was really pretty. So two dresses bought in one day, ouch…. what a day!!
Yes, I’m intending on going to the Bash again this year. I went last year and it was such fun. A day not to miss….
More about the Bloggers Bash this year via Sacha Black’s blog. The date is 11th of June, so do put it in your calendar. By all accounts it sounds like it’s going to be an awesome event. I just can’t wait.
And my account of last year’s event:
Want to meet the organisers and attendees from last year? :
Here’s the link to Hugh’s blog if you’d like to join in his photography challenge:
Here’s Hugh’s advice on what to do if you want to join in:
This week take a photo of an object that looks like it has a face. Rather than taking photos of the faces of people or animals try and capture an object that looks like it has a face.
Want to join the fun? Here’s what you need to do.
1. Take a photo of an object that looks like it has a face.
2. Create a new post on your blog entitled “Hugh’s Photo Challenge: Week 10 – Faces.”
3. Add the photo(s) you have taken to the post and tell us a little about what you are showing.
4. Create a pingback to this post or leave a link to your post in the comments section below so that other participants can view your post.
Bye for now,
Marje @ Kyrosmagica XX
Encouraging young people to believe in themselves and find their own voice, whether it is through drama, writing or art is so important in giving young people a sense of self-worth. Michael Morpurgo.
I absolutely believe this is true, and the photograph below, (which I’ve edited with Michael Morpugo’s quote,) is taken from my youngest daughter’s art work when she was still at primary school.
Here’s a trio of Georgina’s artwork from primary school, the one on the left and right remind me of batik, The middle one is very colourful and exotic too! Batik is a technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to whole cloth, or cloth made using this technique. It is found in various countries, including Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, India, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Nigeria. More about Batik on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Batik
Author’s Bio – Goodreads
If you are artistic or creative and would like to be featured on this blog, I will be posting artistic, photographic, writing, poetry, creative, and dramatic pieces, (written accounts for the drama please!) by youngsters in the age group 11-18. So do get in touch if you are interested in featuring, leave a comment below.
This is my photo for Julia’s Camera Lucida this week. The theme this week is The Colour of Life. If you’d like to join in or check out Julia’s awesome owl post here’s the link: https://myredpage.wordpress.com/2015/09/14/camera-lucida-the-colour-of-life/
My photo of Alice’s card filled hair is a bit of a steal really as it is a photograph of my daughter Natasha’s artwork when she was studying GCSE Art but it seemed to fit the theme very well, as it is so colourful and vibrant. This week I will be doing some posts about celebrating and encouraging the artistic endeavours of young people. Life is full of challenges and possibilities pick an Alice fantasy card and see where time will take you. I Love the wackiness of Alice in Wonderland, our lives should be full of exuberant, eccentric moments and this painting sums it up for me.
Hope you liked my post. If you’d like to share any of your children’s art work/photography in the comments below please do.
Marje @ Kyrosmagica. xx
In my earlier blog post today, Secrets and Lies, I mentioned that I would be revealing one of my secret sources of inspiration. Well here it is, The Corpus Christi Clock in Cambridge, a stunning timepiece that is featured in my writing. The clock is a very popular tourist attraction that’s frequently photographed. People tend to respond to the clock in many different ways. I found the grasshopper thought provoking and weird looking. What do you think? Are you enticed by its fine gossamer wings, or repelled by its stinging tail?
I discovered a couple of interesting videos on Youtube about the Corpus Christi Clock and I’ve shared these on my Tumblr site, here’s the link: http://kyrosmagica.tumblr.com/.
I’m not going to tell you any more about the grasshopper other than to say he plays a very interesting part in the mysterious Crystal Cottage.
I’m excited to say that writing inspiration can be found everywhere, all you have to do is look with a keen eye. Museums, Art and Photography displays can provide such a wonderful source of ideas. In fact, I’m desperate to visit the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge to view the Silent Partners Artist & Mannequin from Function to Fetish exhibition. Sounds weird but interesting! It’s free too, where else can you get entertainment for free? Ok, libraries you say. C’est Vrai. Absolutely.
Here’s the link and trailer about the Fitzwilliam’s Silent Partner’s exhibition: http://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/whatson/exhibitions/silentpartners/
Enjoy. Have a very Happy Weekend, and if you’ve been shopping this Black Friday hope you’re aren’t too exhausted. I’ve ignored the Blackest of temptations and stayed well away from the shopping queues. How about you?
Photos: My own.