We Have a Winner!

Last night was the official drawing in this month's giveaway, for a smashwords copy of Blue Bells of Scotland.  I sent a message to the winner, Kelly.  Enjoy! 

This has been an unusually busy couple of weeks, between a much busier teaching schedule this quarter, a full read-through of The Minstrel Boy (Book 2 of the Trilogy), getting back to my Gaelic Word a Day blog, an author talk, and practicing for two harp performances, in addition to the usual work that life involves.

I finished the read-through last night and sent off for proofs.  I will be taking a brief break from my own medieval Scotland to finally get to Island of Secrets, which I have been eagerly anticipating reading and posting about here.  I try to stick with books that have similar themes to my own, and in that spirit, it is time travel, but in the United States, and to a much more recent era than the 1300's.  The author, Tammie Clarke Gibbs, will also be here with a guest post and interview.

The first harp performance was Friday night for The Red Show at the Maple Grove Arts Center.  (In the Red Show, art work may be any media, as long as it has some red in it.)  Lorrie and CJ put on a very nice opening night, with wine, champagne, meatballs, cheese, and crackers.  John Stanton did a performance of spoken word and a reading from Byron with a guitar accompaniment, I played harp, and Brian Beck and Justin Knauss of the Hallstoos Trios played guitar and sang.  Justin informed me that in the spirit of guitarists everywhere, I would jam with them.  Hm.  Do harpists jam?  He promised me my only job was to 'look cool,' which hopefully I did, because I'm pretty sure I wasn't always playing the same chords they were!  As a musician of more of the classical persuasion, I'm very used to having notes in front of me.  But we had fun.  John has put together a video with the art and music, which hopefully will be available soon.

The second harp performance was this morning for a crowd of ninety.  Okay, so it was ninety 3rd graders at my sons' school, but it was fun!  It motivated me to remove the cover from my larger harp, a 40 string Camac Mademoiselle, after longer than I care to admit playing only my smaller 33 string harp.  I brought both to the school so they could see a little bit about how different harps can be, although I have neither a small lap harp nor a concert grand pedal harp to show the real extremes and variety.  The kids were a great audience with lots of good questions and comments about harps. 

I do have another harp job coming up in March, but in the meantime, I'm glad to have a little extra time, and hopefully get back to more regular posting here, and back to more posting about the history of Scotland.


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