Congratulations to my dear friend, my mentor, Johanna Harness, on the publication of her novel SPILLWORTHY! It’s a remarkable story told in such a clever manner, the reader will inhale it in one sitting. The characters are beautifully exposed in their own writing. As the story unfolds, the suspense builds urgency. SPILLWORTHY is so worth your time. If you found this book, you were meant to find it.
Surely you know Johanna Harness, at least by name, if you’re a writer or reader on Twitter. She created the enormously popular #amwriting hashtag and community. Whether you know her or not, take a look at her bio at the bottom of this piece.
Have you read the excerpt Johanna posted? Oh, do read it! It’s a choice segment from the start of the story which introduces a charming, somewhat jaded young man. Reading it will make the next part of this blog make more sense. Go on, take a moment. We’ll wait.
See, the fascinating mind of Johanna Harness suggested writers put together cameo appearances of one of *our* characters within the SPILLWORTHY world. That’s what’s coming next. So much fun to write! My character, Dawn Garson, writes in first person. She appears in the first book of my Mirror saga, as yet unpublished.
Did you read the SPILLWORTHY excerpt yet? Yes? Good. Here’s Dawn’s cameo, which does NOT appear in the book:
SPILLWORTHY, Cameo of Dawn Garson
Encouraged by my sons, I took a vacation in this world. Of course, they didn’t know of my sojourns into the other one. Having heard so much about Portland, I chose it as my destination. The last two days proved it was the right place. So green and lovely.
I’m not exactly made for tromping around sightseeing, but my cane and I made good use of the time. I found myself in a little neighborhood not far from the hotel which suited my budget. Glancing around, I caught sight of a second hand store. On impulse, I crossed the street to it and browsed a bit. I found a pretty blouse and a couple of beautiful coffee mugs which would be practical in both worlds.
As I left the store, still stuffing the new items into my shoulder bag, a shop window grabbed my attention. It was a music shop, a lot like the one in which I worked so many years ago. While the medium changed over the years, music store windows did not. This one was plastered with promotional posters, still album cover sized. Rampant images and color gave way to… what was that?
I honed in on the unlikely poster. It was not a poster at all. In fact, it looked like a pizza box top, complete with a couple of grease stains. Dense handwriting covered it. I stepped closer and read about Keats. It was like stepping into a cloud of happiness. The writer not only analyzed Keats’ writing well, the prose was positively lyrical. Clearly, someone with a poet’s soul wrote from his joy. I wished I could meet him or her and share a meal, just jabbering about whatever came up. Giddiness bubbled inside me at the thought.
Hungry by then, I stopped in at a nearby pizza place. I guess I was inspired by that not-a-poster. A couple supreme slices later, I had the rest boxed up to put into the minifridge in my hotel room. As I left, a kid quietly stopped me and asked if I would give him the leftover pizza. Poor kid was grubby and wore clothes made for someone of another size. I didn’t have to think about it. “Yes, please take it and enjoy. It’s still warm.” His face lit up and after thanking me, he walked to the corner and sat next to an old man with a dog to share the feast.
Portland. Such a good choice.
Johanna Harness bio, as taken from Goodreads: Johanna Harness writes middle grade and young adult stories in both Northwest and fantastic settings, often forgetting which is which. She created the #amwriting community on Twitter.
My opinion of her bio? Far too short, but once the writer starts on a complete picture of this woman, it’s hard to stop. Not just a talented writer, she’s a mother, wife, homeschooler, caretaker of critters large and small, and so much more.
You’ll want to read SPILLWORTHY, available in paperback and Kindle format. I predict awards and great things for this novel and for Johanna herself.