Books… by me!

Let me introduce you to my books. I’m rather proud of both of them!



‘New Horizons’ features sixteen short stories that explore how people respond when they encounter experiences and events they have not foreseen, or when they discover new horizons in their lives.

‘New Horizons’ is listed on Goodreads.
Paperback: Amazon or
Ebook: click here for all stores



‘Leaf’ is my first published collection of  poems that explore my own humanity, experiences, and observations about life in ways that challenge the reader to see things from a new perspective.
‘Leaf’ is listed on Goodreads.
Paperback: Amazon or Xlibris.
Ebook:click here for all stores.

You’re also welcome to visit for more news.

Leave a comment

Filed under Author Life, Books Worth Reading, I'm A Poet, Leaf - Poetry by Joanne Van Leerdam, New Horizons - Short stories by Joanne Van Leerdam, Things That Make Me Smile, True Story, Writing

Exciting times for the WordyNerdBird.

It’s an exciting time to be the WordyNerdBird!

I’ve been busy over the past weeks putting the finishing touches on the new poetry book, ‘Nocturne’, which will be available in February.  I’ve held the first proof copy in my hands, made the necessary final edits, and just ordered my first batch of paperbacks. The files are ready to upload to ebook stores, and I’m hoping to do a cover reveal soon!
The image you see here is just a tease, and I’m really excited about how fabulous the cover actually looks.
fb-page-cover-photoNocturne is due February 1, if I can actually wait that long. If you’re on Facebook and keen to know more about this book, you can like & follow Nocturne’s very own Facebook page.



I’ve loved mystery books ever since my mum gave me an old Agatha Christie book to read when I was about ten, so I’m really happy to announce that I’ve been reading and reviewing books for Mystery Thriller Week, which will take place from Feb 12-22.
The events of that week will happen on the MTW blog, various other blogs and websites by readers, reviewers and authors, and via the MTW Facebook page.

My teaser for those reviews is on my Book Squirrel blog! It’s where I post book news, reviews and author spotlights. If you love books and reading, you should probably be following that blog!
It’s very cool that I’m being acknowledged as an official blogger for this fabulous week of celebration of mystery and thriller novels, and the incredibly talented people who write them!


I’m also gearing up for a new school year. As a teacher, that means I have homework to do. I’ll be spending the next couple of weeks doing planning and preparation, so that lessons and classes run smoothly in the new year.

So, it’s head down and tail up for me.

Leave a comment

Filed under Author Life, book launch, Book Review, Teacher Life, Things That Make Me Smile

RIP George Michael et al 2016

RIP George Michael,
Another favourite gone.
First Bowie, then Prince and Rickman
And then it was Leonard Cohen.
But Donald Trump is alive and well –
What drug has this year been on?

1 Comment

Filed under Clear As Mud, Grief, I'm A Poet, Just Saying, Observation, Oh, the irony., opinion., Pensive, Poetry, Politics, Popular Culture, Reflection, Sadness, Things That Make Me Sad, True Story

Leaf: special price for Christmas Day!

Would you like some poetry for Christmas?
Well, here’s your chance.
I know everyone has had lots of financial demands this month, so this is a special once-off opportunity.

‘Leaf’ is available as an ebook for just $0.99 US for Christmas Day, only on Amazon.

I wanted to make it free for everyone today, as a gift to you all, but Amazon wouldn’t let me. Hopefully this makes it more affordable for poetry-lovers today!

Leave a comment

Filed under Books Worth Reading, Christmas, I'm A Poet, Just Saying, Leaf - Poetry by Joanne Van Leerdam, Poetry, Things That Make Me Smile, True Story

Just… wow!

I got published… again! In two issues in a row!
This is such an unbelievable feeling!

I shared a fortnight ago that The Australia Times Poetry Magazine published one of my poems in their Vol 4, No. 25 issue.

I’ve just opened Vol 4, No. 25 to find that it contains another of my poems, Rogue Wave. That’s the poem that was shortlisted by Wildsound Festival of Poetry in November, and performed by Michelle Alexander as part of the Wildsound Festival.

1 Comment

Filed under Author Life, I'm A Poet, Poetry, publication, Things That Make Me Smile, True Story, Writing

My poetry, performed!

A few weeks back I announced that my poem had been shortlisted in the Festival of Poetry selections for November.


That poem, Rogue Wave, has now been recorded by Michelle Alexander as part of the WildSound Festival.
It’s really rather cool to hear my poem being interpreted and spoken by someone else. I’m really pleased, though, that the performance is exactly how I thought it should be.

You can watch the video of Rogue Wave here.

Thank you for taking the time to watch the video. I really appreciate it.
Please feel free to like and share with your friends and social media followers.

1 Comment

Filed under Author Life, Drama & Performance, I'm A Poet, Poetry, Things That Make Me Smile, Writing

Why I Won’t Discount My Book

There are a lot of authors discounting their ebooks to 99 cents or free on Amazon.

I won’t be one of them.

To be quite frank, I believe my work is worth more than that. I believe that is true of most of the authors who discount their work. It’s certainly true of almost every book I’ve been willing to buy. For the record, the ones I haven’t liked were not on Amazon – one was a classic and one was a bestseller.

I fully understand not everyone will buy, read, or be interested in, my books. In the same way, some folks don’t like chocolate or pizza or coffee, and not everyone on the planet is going to like or understand me. I’m cool with that.

Even so, I believe that my work and what I have to say through it, are valuable. If I discount my book, doesn’t that cheapen my work? Doesn’t that just make it less attractive? Doesn’t that make it seem like I don’t think it’s worth reading?

So, I have decided that $2.99 is a fair price for an electronic copy of my latest book, and probably the next one.

It’s less than a cup of coffee. It’s less than a slice of pizza or a sandwich.

I’m worth it, dammit.  L’Oréal said so.


Leave a comment

Filed under Author Life, Books Worth Reading, I'm A Poet, Leaf - Poetry by Joanne Van Leerdam, New Horizons - Short stories by Joanne Van Leerdam, publication, True Story

Published again!

So, after spending a November on the very attractive pages of Yours & Mine magazine, my work is now gracing the pages of The Australia Times Poetry Magazine!

The amazing editors there have given me a great bio and a three page spread for my poem, ‘The Sea’, enhanced by some lovely photography, on pages 22-25 of Issue 24.


It’s always a thrill to find out someone likes something that I’ve written. That kind of connection is why writers write, and why artists paint, sculpt and create.
Can you imagine my excitement when I saw the beautiful treatment they’ve given my poem?

I hope you’ll take the time to click through and read my poem.

Of course, my poem isn’t really just about the sea. It uses the sea, and the shore, as an allegory for depression and anxiety. The poem itself is about living with and through that, and surviving.

TAT Poetry is a great magazine every month, and I am really honoured to be featured in it!

I’d also really appreciate it if you’d share it around on twitter, facebook, or your other preferred social media.


Filed under Author Life, I'm A Poet, Poetry, publication, Things That Make Me Smile, True Story, Writing