Ash Krafton: Secret Book Spy

October 15, 2009

Author and fellow Pennwriters member Ash Krafton is sharing a fun two-part series of articles that discuss the process of evolution from novel-writer to novel-author.  Join us at the Pennwriters Area 6 blog for parts 1 & 2:

Part 1: From Writer to Author: How I Became a Secret Book Spy


Show and Tell Friday

February 13, 2009

 Awning Icicles, © Copyright 2009 Jade Leone Blackwater

Welcome back to Show and Tell Friday!  I am slowly easing into my blogging routines, which means a return to our regular features here at Brainripples.


Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, © Copyright 2009 Jamie FordToday we’re talking about writers, and to kick off I’d like to share Jamie Ford’s debut novel, Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet which was released just two short weeks ago by Ballantine Books.  I finished reading Hotel today, and have long anticipated the arrival of this book since reading its predecessor “I Am Chinese”, a short story which was first published by the Picolata Review in 2006.

In Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet Ford artfully educates his readers on our not-too-distant past of WWII by telling us an accessible story about the love and friendship of two young Americans from Seattle, Washington. 

I’ll give you a full review another day.  Until then, there’s no reason not to hop on the bus and head to Seattle to pick up your own copy and meet Jamie Ford in person.  To see the rest of the stops on his nationwide booktour, visit


Now I’d like to point you to up-and-coming author and fellow Pennwriters member Ash Krafton.  Last year Krafton’s urban fantasy novel Bleeding Hearts won first prize for science fiction/fantasy novel and overall grand prize in the Maryland Writers Association 2008 Novel Contest.  She is currently marketing the Bleeding Hearts manuscript for publication.

Krafton just started the new Kraftmatic Adjustable Blog.  Be sure to check out her photo tour of Edgar Allen Poe.  I am embarrassed to admit that my announcement here is a bit late to encourage you to participate in the “Quoth the Raven” Poe Exhibition at The Free Library of Philadelphia, which finished today (February 13, 2009).

Also, check out Krafton’s short story Boots on a Branch, included in The Festival of the Trees 28, which celebrates the pursuit of inspiration, entertainment, and life-long youth.  Her poem Line will appear in the May 2009 issue of Numinous: Spiritual Poetry journal.


Next, I’d like to introduce writer Persephone Vandegrift whose work I first encountered while serving as Poetry Judge at Notes & Grace Notes.  Vandegrift writes beautiful poetry and fiction, and is a regular participant and multiple winner at Notes & Grace Notes, which is a new online writing community created by Harmoni McGlothlin.  Be sure to read Vandegrift’s winning poem Adam Paints a Picture; while you’re there take plenty of time to explore the other great writers sharing at Notes & Grace Notes.


Fellow Seattle-area writer Anita Marie Moscoso is still twisting our imaginations with her tales of the macabre at her Owl Creek Bridge.  Moscoso has been generous enough to invite me to share my darker shades of poetry at the Owl Creek Bridge, which most recently includes my poem Dehiscent.  In turn I invite you to join us there to read poetry and stories (such as my current favorite, “Typical Trixie“), and to explore Anita Marie Mosocoso’s hand-picked links to a wealth of writers, artists, and creative resources, which are certain to fire your inspiration.


My newest blog discovery is Mattie’s Pillow.  In fact, it is the author Cindy who happened upon the Brainripples blog and reached out to introduce herself.  Mattie’s Pillow shares a common interest in writing, art, and creativity, and includes extra inspiration from dreams, gardens, and horses, among other things.  Check out her Poetry Challenge 6 – my biggest challenge with this is, with which dream would I like to play today?

The Monongahela Review, Issue 3, © Copyright 2009Finally, as you can see from my previous post I’ve recently had two poems published at The Monongahela Review, an independent literary journal edited by Luke Bartolomeo.  Issue 3 of The Monongahela Review includes a beautiful selection of poetry, fiction, and visual art, so be sure to set aside a little time to wander and enjoy.


I’ll stop for now and save more for the next Show and Tell.  Feel welcome to share your latest goals, discoveries, or accomplishments, and have a wonderful weekend!



Nalini Nadkarni tackles trees and people on NPR Morning Edition

November 12, 2008

Full Moon Sunrise, October 2008, © Copyright 2008 Jade Leone Blackwater

Visit to listen to an interview by Robert Krulwich with author and forest biologist Dr. Nalini Nadkarni:

“Going Out On A Limb With A Tree-Person Ratio”
Krulwich on Science by Robert Krulwich.  Morning Edition, November 12, 2008

In her new book Between Earth and Sky: Our Intimate Connections to Trees (University of California Press, July 2008), Nalini Nadkarni explores the many subtle and extraordinary ways that people rely on trees for the products they yield, the imagery they invoke, and the ecosystems they support.

It was my distinct pleasure to support Nalini Nadkarni in the creation of this book. You’ll hear me chime in with a few words in the middle of this NPR broadcast.

Project Update

November 27, 2007

AppleJade, (c) Copyright 2007 Jade Leone BlackwaterI am a busy bunny this Autumn, and I thought it might be fun to tell you a little about my project world.

First, I am proud to announce that Dr. Nalini Nadkarni of The Evergreen State College has written a new book, Between Earth and Sky: Our Intimate Connections with Trees.  Between Earth and Sky is due out from the University of California Press in June 2008.

I have had the pleasure of working with Nalini Nadkarni as her research assistant in the preparation of her book.  Between Earth and Sky discusses the many ways in which people connect with trees.  In coming months, I’ll be talking more about her book and her projects.  For now, be sure to take some time to explore the International Canopy Network and the Research Ambassador program to learn more about Nalini’s work.

Second, I am equally proud to announce that I am launching a new project called PassionApple with my friend and business partner Jennifer Rendon.  PassionApple is a portal to healthy, happy living where we will be sharing ideas and resources for health, wellness, and happiness.  Jenn Rendon and I are currently in the brainstorming phase of our project, and we’ll begin with the PassionApple blog in Spring 2008.

Green Sweet Pepper, October 2007, (c) Copyright 2007 Jade Leone BlackwaterAs a part of the PassionApple project, I have launched a new blog called AppleJade (because, you know, two blogs just aren’t enough).  AppleJade is my place to discuss natural health and wellness via gardening, cooking, nutrition, goal setting, and attitude.  Regular readers at Brainripples know how much I value goal setting, and the Monday Morning Muses tend to give away my love of the garden.  I hope you’ll visit and tell me what you think!

Ongoing, I am still blogging at Arboreality about trees and forests, and I will be volunteering to host the Festival of the Trees again in 2008.  At the moment, I’m researching places online where I can put my photography prints up for sale.  If you are an artist/photographer who does this already, I hope you’ll share some thoughts on your experiences and any tools/websites you might recommend.

And of course, I am still writing poetry, sketching, snapping photos, and perpetually creating new projects with which to load up my proverbial plate.  In 2008, the Brainripples blog will continue to showcase independent artists, discuss artistic process, and explore creative inspiration.  You can always learn more about my work at the Brainripples business site.

Is there something you would like to see at Brainripples?  Leave me a comment, or send me an email.  Because, you know, I have loads of free time! (ha ha, hee hee).

Ok, now it’s your turn.  In the comments or via email, let us know what you’re working on, and where we can read all about it at your blog.  The next Show and Tell Friday will feature a collection of projects from your artistic worlds.