Blog of Oonah V Joslin -- please visit my Parallel Oonahverse at WordPress

where I post stories and poems that have not been seen elsewhere - also recipes and various other stuff.

and see me At the Cumberland Arms 2011

Friday, 31 December 2010

Thursday, 30 December 2010

2010 Morpeth to Baltimore and back

Jan, Feb, March
We both had our set-backs in the early months of the year and it just goes to show how iunpredictable and surprising a year can be! I didn't expect any of what happened next. I honestly think it has been the most surprising year of my life and certainly full of memories I will treasure for the rest of it.
Avis and me
family old and new

March April May
it all began to change - seeming endings led to new beginnings. In May we made a long overdue visit to family we knew in Suffolk and quite by coincidence, (some would say fate) met family we didn't know we had, who as it turned out live very close to us here and whom we now regard as dear friends. We also caught up with some old friends this year, Avis Hickman Gibb for a start and we met her husband Mike.
A Genie in a Jam Illustrated by Jerry Wright

June July August
Then our freinds from S Wales, Alun and Mary came to visit with us... we'd not seen them for 17 years and it was great to catch up. Next, change came again in the form of sudden early retirement for my husband. At the start of July - employed - 21st July - desk cleared and feet up :)  The we had our 30th Wedding Anniversary in August and decided, instead of Barcelona, our destination should be BALTIMORE :) So we planned that. I always said I'd never fly that far but I knew that this man below was at the other end of that flight and it would be worth every minute to shake his hand.
Nathan and Jenesta

Sept, Oct Nov
My Novella, A Genie in a Jam was serialised at Bewildering Stories in the Autumn and Jerry Wright surprised me with that wonderful illustration of DJ, and late Seotember we set off to Baltimore where we had a great time getting to know Nathan Rosen of Microhorror (and I didn't shake his hand I just grabbed the poor guy and hugged the breath out of him and serve him right for being so lovely!) So I got to know Nathan and his beatiful wife, Jenesta, EDP poet Jody Costa and Writewords friend Jennifer Stakes and her husband Fred. I introduced Jennifer and Nathan and she is now Assistant Editor at microhorror :) Good work!

Then  I had the privilege of setting and judging the Hallowe'en Competition I'd won for the past three years - thanks for that Nathan! Go along and read the winning entires :)

Another unexpected turn was that I was totally enthralled with Baltimore itself. I didn't want to come home! But let's face it - I'd never survive their summers! I also got to visit D.C. and Philadelphia and the Maryland Rennaissance Festival, Fort McHenry, meet Nathan's mother, Jenesta's brother... two bands of PIRATES :)  Oh I enjoyed every single minute!
Jody and us
There are many more photos in Parallel Oonahverse

Now in these last few fading days of December, I finish the year with off with a story at Microhorror, Genie has been selected for The Mariner Awards at BwS and at EDP we have the delivery of out first EDP Anthology.

Yes, It's been an extraordianry year. It's been fun. It's been a year to remember.

To all my Family, Friends, Pirates, Poets, Writers,
May you have all the Love your Hearts can hold
for that is worth more than GOLD

Monday, 27 December 2010


Bad Blud is a nice horror story for New Year's Eve and good news about A Genie in a Jam which has been voted best of the best at Bewildering Stories this year so if you've not read it, do.

A refreshing change :)

Monday, 20 December 2010

Angel sang of
peace on earth
goodwill to all men
yet if you believe in angels
there is little hope of either.
If you believe in any god
he must exclude all others
and any belief cannot be in
mankind.What would an angel know
of peace on earth? What would an angel know
of death or birth or all the things between? Angels do not live
as you or I
or die.

Monday, 13 December 2010

The Voyage of the Dawn Treader REVIEW

My favourite Narnian story has been released as a 3D film and I'm delighted to say it was well done. The Dawn Treader was everything I thought she would be and I felt as if, at last, I'd sailed on her. I read one critique that said the film disappointed. Perhaps it would disappoint the jaded palate of a film critic, it did not let down this life-long fan of the Narnia Chronicles.

How does this compare to Harry Potter? We in this 'critic's' opinion that is like comparing the depth of MacBeth to East Enders. I did try to read a Harry Potter book - once. I haven't bothered since.

I think that the 3D format gave this film a real boost because there's such a lot of story to cover within such a small time frame, and it brought the whole thing to life. It also greatly enhanced the presence of the ship, itself a main character. That is always a difficult thing to pull off but I think it succeeds here.

Any plot adaptations that were made were in keeping with the spirit of the book and further served to unify and bring extra meaning to the themes. Also the almost noises-off presence of Susan and Peter, Anna Popplewell and Will Moseley helped continuity as it was seeing old friends.  

Most main characters' faces were familiar to those who have seen the previous films. Tilda Swinton's  continued presence as the embodiment of evil (a green mist this time) works well because let's face it, Tilda Swinton can be green mist if she wants to be - or anything else... Her role is one reason I hope the production team will try to make The Silver Chair - a gift vehicle for such a talent!

Reepicheep was as adorable as ever and the change of voiceover in this film I think, improves his gravitas and boy does that mouse have gravitas ;) I have to say the furry characters are much furrier in 3D and when Lucy hugged Reepicheep you could almost feel that fur. The poor, funny Puddleduffs are quite adorable too.Fellow Ballymena-man Liam Neeson is the voice of Aslan once more. (God just has to be a Ballymena man!)

In this film Georgie Henley, Skandar Keynes and the very dashing Ben Barnes reprise their roles as kings and queens of Narnia. It has been said they cannot carry the story but these stories do no rely on a single set of actors to carry them. The whole point of Narnia is that the characters change but the story goes on. That depth of meaning allows Will Poulter as the obnoxious Eustace Scrubb (he really does deserve the name) to be ultimately redeemable and he can take credit for a fine artful-dodger-style performance although not for the cgi dragon...

I was interested to see how another director would handle Narnia. Michael Apted's direction was a seamless takeover from Adamson, I imagine that was a conscious decision and the right way to go. Apted did a fine job in bringing this film to the screen and as one who has waited 40 years to see it, I loved what he did with the magician's Mansion, Death Water, Dark Island, Ramandu's Island... I can't think of a single thing that didn't exceed this Narnia fan's expectations and I look forward to the next.

By the way, if you already own 3D glasses of that type with red/green lenses, they won't work here. 3D is not done like that any more. It's done by polarising lenses. Light rotates clockwise for one eye, anticlockwise for the other and then the frames are alternated on screen at terrific speed to fool your brain into thinking the images are not alternating but simultaneous. Anyway, I'm looking forward to the extended dvd so that I can study the making of... One of my favourite things about film is getting behind the scenes. Ooooo how do they do that? How did they make that water so - wet?

I was glad to hear the name Jill Pole mentioned right at the end of the film - it held out hope that I will indeed be going back to Narnia even is Edmund and Lucy will not. Can't wait.

"Once a King or Queen in Narnia, Always a King or Queen."

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Treading the Boards

 Found this old photograph circa 1979 of me in the Glyn Derw High School Pantomime playing the swash-buckling tenor (more baritone really) with two other members of staff, Pat Cadwallader on the right and I think the one in the middle was called Liz but I'm probably completely wrong. This was my first teaching post (I taught only French in that school) and my first year in Cardiff, out on my own. I was 25.

Think I rather suited the theatrical mustache.

Not sure why this is in monochrome... Ah, the good old days ;)

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Watch the Birdie

Oh I haven't been in Static Movement for a few months but I'm back with a right good December love story Date that I hope you'll like and I have a couple of poems coming up in BwS so look out for those too.

There's been plenty of static movement here - we;; more stuck than static ;) We're snowy here. Over a week of snow and drifts of two feet but we've had some nice visitors too

and though you can't always catch them

it's worth having  go

Even if they don't seem pally


Wednesday, 10 November 2010

The Fittest

Okay so this particular motoring tip wouldn't do your radiator much good - but it does work - I can personally vouch for that.  Sometimes a girl has to cook up a solution...

It was 1982 -ish and my first mini was overheating on the way home from school. I didn't have any groceries in the boot but I was calling into TESCO on my way home when a brilliant plan came to me - if I could make it to Tesco's car park...

Well I did :) and see what I came up with.

The Fittest

Friday, 5 November 2010

Three in a row at Microhorror

Okay so I know I'm judging the competition but it was too nice a theme to miss - SPACE :) Besides would it not have been churlish to eschew the competition just because I CAN'T WIN?  So here you have them - three in a row on the subject of SPACE

The Unknowable Unknown
Oubliette Oubliee

of which if I am allowed a favourite, it is The Unknowable Unknown.

And I'm having a great time reading all the entries! And more stories are still in the pipeline. Nathan you see had an appendectome and has got a little behind - actually quite a big behind - I was being kind :) Progress is being made - fear not!

Monday, 1 November 2010

Another chance to SHINE

Hallowe’en 2006 I thought my world had come to a painful end and that, having been treated SO BADLY by people I’d thought of as friends, I had very poor judgement, was worthless and didn’t have a friend in the world. Hallowe’en 2010 I have friends all over the world - good friends!

Life's Love Affair
For all of you GOLDEN people X

Tuesday, 26 October 2010


Asked to write about something that defined a city we knew it came to me that Belfast was known for it's religious divide and its renowned hospitality - a strange contradiction that such friendly people should pose such a threat to each other and that so many years of misery could be caused by faith in a loving god...  It brought back memories - from my youth - 3 specific ones oddly enough - a shamrock of memories - a triptich and so I wrote them down more or less without embellishment and the became The Belfast Triptich now at The Linnet's Wings and very beautifully presented.

Friday, 15 October 2010

The Baltimore Observer

You see many strange things at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland.  Some are in the water
Others are more - in your face...

'Does she have to do that?'   'Maybe if we ignore her she'll go away!'

Unlikely!  The motto of the species is Tenax Propositi.

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Nathan Rosen Reads Microhorrors

A most entertaining set of readings of his own work and that of other writers is available at
MicroHorror Audio, now available at Bandcamp!

on "MicroHorror," and three classic stories by Poe, Bierce and Lovecraft
on "Legends of Horror." Learn more here:

Check it out.  My favoutite story was 'Sins of the Flesh'  :)

ALSO read Magnanimous Gesture on the site now.

Friday, 10 September 2010


Mellow days of purple sedum
                                                         and an orange coloured sky

I was reminded of George Melly :)

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Deej is at it again!

“DJ blushed so hard, his ears burned with little bluish flames at the tips.”

O ‘eck! What’s that Genie up to this week? Find out at:

Walter Giersbach was kind enough to say: Some mighty fine writing!

Saturday, 28 August 2010


Here we are at the August Bank Holiday weekend and where did that go?  September is on its way and I'm going to meet the fabulous Nathan Rosen of Micro Horror this September.  Really looking forward to that.  And I get to choose the theme for this year's Micro Horror Hallowe'en Competition having won it three times in a row, Nathan has devised a suitable punishment ;)

There's a new micro fiction up at Doorknobs and Body Paints - Escaping Heat and I'm in the excellent company of Frances Gapper and Angeal Readman so go and have a good read - which Doorknobs always is.

Saturday, 21 August 2010

Gardening Ghosts

My story Should have worn wellies, is up at MicroHorror today with an unpleasant surprise for a man who just wanted a quiet life
Well would you trust these two? ;)

Sunday, 8 August 2010

A Special week

It has been a rather special week, a Pearl Anniversary is apt to be special.  We had a meal out, flowers, champagne, friends - what more could you ask for?

The bouquet we were given by our good friends Joe and Bet

30 years ago
The gorgeous card my sister made.

And Moving Times went down well at Every Day Fiction.  Thanks to everyone who read and commented :)

Friday, 30 July 2010

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Late Summer, Early Morning

The weather is so sultry and over at The Pygmy Giant you'll see I don't sleep well on muggy nights :(  We wait all year for summer, then when it comes...  There's no pleasing some folk is there.

But my roses are lovely                 

and so are my lilies though I couldn't help a little gilding ;)
so dramatic :)

Friday, 16 July 2010


is my latest drabble at Micro Horror and over at Parallel Oonahverse there's a whole series of features and photos from the past going on, leading up to our

30th Wedding Anniversary  - I'm told that's Pearl

so please visit and take a look at the quaint fashions oh-er.. of yesteryear.

taster: Me in student days at The White Rocks, Portrush.

Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Computers of the future

not too distant future in fact, may have voice interface and they might even be able one day to hold a conversation.  I had some idea what that would be like for me...  Te choco logically speaking that is... and it's here at Short Humour.

Saturday, 10 July 2010

Birthday Flowers

My favourite combo - sea holly and roses

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Musings, Turn About and Only a Small Eden

These are up now at Static Movement, Every Day Fiction and Micro Horror and of course A Genie in a Jam is still popping up at Bewildering Stories.  I hope you enjoy them all.  I'd say that was a good birthday week!

Turn About
Only a Small Eden

Monday, 28 June 2010


Illustration by Jerry Wright of Bewildering Press

First 3 chapters at Bewildering Stories

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Announcing: A Genie in a Jam

I will be making links to this series of 17 chapters in Parallel Oonahverse's Vaults
so make sure you don't miss any
they'll be coming out weekly

and with a wonderful piece of artwork specially created by Jerry Wright!

Monday, 21 June 2010

Gone and done it again

Yes I'm in BwS Quarterly Review once more - this time 3 poems and a few articles in the challenges section.  And it's Midsummer's Day - what better way to celebrate?

Sunday, 20 June 2010

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

New story at Static Movement

The Catalyst is up now - a sweet tale of romance - I must be coming down with something nasty ;)

Twin Pansies Aw!

Saturday, 12 June 2010

a rose by any other name would smell just as much...

It's a line from a cartoon, I forget which, maybe my sister would know. Was it Musky the muskrat? Anyway, Montagues and Capulets aside,

here is my unique perspective on what's in a name at Left Hand Waving - my first time there :)

With a name like that you should be a writer...

Monday, 7 June 2010

Spring Song

Don Webb called this rondeau one of the best nature poems they'd published at BwS and my, they have some good poets there so I was well chuffed. But I do like this little poem and I hope you will too:

Here's a bonus haiku:

a bee on the snap-dragon

buzzed off before I snapped

camera shy

Saturday, 5 June 2010

One of my weirdest stories

The Carmody Complex is up at Microhorror

Keep taking the medication!

My big box garden

Last year I had big boxes built from railway sleepers erected in my garden and the neighbours wondered what they were for. This year they are fulfilling their purpose and hopefully by next year these plants will have climbed to the top.

Monday, 31 May 2010

At Bewildering Stories

My fuuny take on the difficulties of writing Sci-Fi

I blog about why I wrote it here:

Monday, 17 May 2010

Sunday, 16 May 2010

Lovely time in Aldeburgh Suffolk

We stayed at the White Lion

and had dinner with one of my Writeword's Pals, Avis Hickman Gibb and her husband Mike.

Friday, 7 May 2010


I was disappointed to hear that my favourite gift's shop Su Heart is going to close in June. Shop rental costs on Bridge Street has defeated them. If we get another damned charity shop I'll spit in someone's eye! As if that weren't enough, the council has gone and put up parking charges to 60p/hour but to include the hour between 5 and 6 when a lot of working people drop into Morrison's or Mark's' Well they'll most probably go t0 ASDA instead where the parking is FREE. And the new arcade? Wye aye! I shop in Laura Ashley all the time, mun! Divvint ye?
Su is going to be making her jewelry to sell on-line though so when she sets up, I'll add her to my friends. Good luck Su!

Sunday, 2 May 2010

New poem

Dead Magazine - drabble at Static Movement

Locus of Control at The Pygmy Giant

We worship commerce it seems like we used to worship volcanos. We worship what we fear. What we really fear is losing the locus of control. What we should recognise is that we never had it to begin with.

Friday, 30 April 2010

Photobucket | virginia woolf Pictures, virginia woolf Images, virginia woolf Photos

Photobucket virginia woolf Pictures, virginia woolf Images, virginia woolf Photos

Recorded Voice of Virginia Woolf

But what she has to say... Thrilling stuff!

And there's a very nice photo of her and Lytton Strachey (who wrote Emminent Victorians which introduced modern biography as an art form).

He once asked Virginia to marry him and when she said yes he said "It was ghastly" :) They'd been friends since childhood...

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Two new stories for you

I'm rather fond of On with the Motley it's cute but it has a bit more depth than it looks. Find it The Pygmy Giant

Cider Sunrise is a satisfying revenge tale over at EDF.

Oonah's comments comparing two industrial poems by herself and John Stocks here:

and So much to learn about haiku at Parallel Oonahverse.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Responses to Stain of Light

Monday, 12 April 2010

At BwS this week

Tapping the Salamander is about a steel works' closure

and I am honoured by what John Stocks and Don Webb said about my poem Stain of Light

Thank you both so much.

EDP Anthology News Flash

The Contributor's List is here

Thursday, 1 April 2010

The Head Gardener at 10FLASH Quarterly

Happy Easter Everyone
I have a poem on BwS this Monday

One of the editors wrote to me specailly to say:
I just wanted to tell you how much I liked STAIN OF LIGHT. A really
beautiful poem. Good job!

Thank you Bill X
While you're there read August Evening by John Stocks and Fehmida Zakeer's story Canvas of life.

Over at Static Movement is the closest thing I'll ever get to ChickLit ;) and if you like chocolate, you'll like this.

There's a whole new (okay I can't resist) crop fo great stories to read over at 10FLASH Quarterly and among them is one of my favourites of mine - The Head Gardener. Whatever you're planting or harvesting...Well good luck :)

Wednesday, 31 March 2010

Binnacle Award

As an Honoree in The 2009 Binnacle Contest
They sent this sweet little presentation box, and inside a citation, a set of all the winning entiries on cards (top right) and copies of my own poem on separate cards (btm right).
It's gorgeous!

April at EDP

Read Robin Herrnfeld today and an interview with her tomorrow at EDP. Also on our ToC for April is an interview with that laureate of Limericks - lock up your daughters, Errol Nimbly - and congratulations to our editor for this month, Kathleen Cassen Mickelson on her first solo edition :) Check it all out.

Sunday, 28 March 2010


Duotrope have this listed about us :
This market ranks among the 25 Most Approachable Poetry Markets
This market ranks among the Most Personable Poetry Markets

Very nice :)

Monday, 22 March 2010

BwS 1st Quarterly Review

I'm delighted to have had my work chosen again for the QR at Bewildering Stories. This time I'm in the Short Poetry section, the Flash Fiction section where they chose only 5/23 pieces of the published pieces and there's a link to my essay about 'Flight of Starlings'.

Cogratulations to John Stocks and Nick Allen too.

Sunday, 21 March 2010

Spring in the garden

crocuses snowdrops
give back colour they borrowed
from last year's sunlight

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Spring at last

At around 5:30 today, the tide turns, the season tips, we welcome the Equinox. And I for one, depite this damned cold I have, am determined to be irritatingly optimistic so

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Happy Saint Patrick's Day

For suggestions for reading today - from the Vaults of Parallel Oonahverse click this link

I'malso at 10FLASH QUARTERLY today with a guest editorial called When Worlds Collide which you can find here

Monday, 15 March 2010

Letter/Essay at BwS

In Bewildering stories last week, I had a poem about starlings. This week, I have an essay set around the questions that arose from that poem. This makes me look very intellectual indeed and I like that ;)

Also in this wee'k issue, my good friends, Nick Allen's - The Other Way Round and John Stocks' - R is for Rocket...

I'm also here with a story - First Contact

Monday, 8 March 2010


John Grey, John Stocks, Sarah Ann Watts and ME - all together in one Issue - what's not to like?
Bewildering Stories index to issue 375

Thursday, 4 March 2010

The Large Hadron Collider

If you would like to read another of my unpublished works The Large Hadron Collider is now here:
The truth is out there!

Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Spring is in the air

Or so it would seem from the behavoiur of the swans. The frozen lake didn't seem to cool their ardour ;)

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

To Love is to Burn

New story up at Static Movement but also look for contributions from my good friends Jennifer and... Jennifer :)

Sunday, 28 February 2010

St David's Day

Welsh cakes are traditional:
8oz SR Flour
4oz butter
2oz sugar
1tsp mixed spice
1 egg
a little milk
1-2ozs sultanas mixed in before cutting...
Make as you would scones but cut in 1/4 inch thick rounds. These are baked on a dry griddle or non-stick pan over a low heat. Each side takes 5 minutes roughly - don't ry to rush it - do preheat the griddle and don't turn over too soon. If you turn the heat up they'll burn. Sprinkle with sugar when done. Makes about 14.