Welcome to Love of Place. Most of my work celebrates our connection to the natural world.

I'm pleased Diary of a Citizen Scientist: Chasing Tiger Beetles and Other New Ways of Engaging the World just won the WILLA Award for Creative Nonfiction from Women Writing the West and is a finalist for the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards (winner to be announced this November). The book was listed as a top ten nature book in 2014 by The Guardian and is recommended reading for the Sigurd F Olsen Nature Awards.

My new historical fantasy Teresa of the New World is also a finalist for the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards and for the Arizona Authors Award, to be announced this November. This would be a walk in the desert, the numinous desert. The desert in your mind.

Feel free to contact me at http://www.sharmanaptrussell.com or through my author Facebook page, Sharman Apt Russell.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Running on a trail today along the Gila River and listening to music: Para bailar La Bamba; catclaw are always sharper than I remember; Para bailar La Bamba; sycamore like a white-limbed goddess; Se necessita una poca de gracia; trail running is so wonderful; Una poca de gracia; if I fell here, though, it would be a long limp back to the car; Para mi, para ti, ay arriba, ay arriba; this is one of my favorite songs, which really dates me, but who cares?; Ay, arriba arriba; I’m so grateful I can still do this after giving up running for ten years with a bad back in my forties, but now, amazing, being sixty-one and running again; Por ti sere, por ti sere, por ti sere; is that a twinge in my knee?; Yo no soy marinero; the mighty Gila River!; Yo no soy marinero, soy capitan; don’t start thinking about lunch now, you have four miles to go; Soy capitan, soy capitan; the tips of the cottonweed trees glowing orange; Bamba, bamba; high cirrus clouds like friendly doodles in the sky; Bamba, bamba; I’m so lucky; Bamba, bamba, Para bailar La Bamba!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Some nice news. My YA historical fantasy Teresa of the New World won the Arizona Authors Award for Children's Literature and was runner-up for Arizona Book of the Year. The word "raven" appeared 63 times in that book! Coincidence? Or cause and effect?

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Sometimes I like going for a brief swim in the internet. My photographer friend Elroy went to Alaska and sent back this photo. “Pensive grizzly,” I thought and wondered why bears so often do look pensive and then what other people had to say about that. Googling “pensive” and “grizzly” got me rows of images ("pensive grizzlies") as well as a stock photo labeled “American grizzly bear pensive in front of a waterfall” which I could have bought for $15. Flikr and Pininterest both had sites titled "pensive grizzlies." I went to Google Scholar hoping for a biological explanation for pensive grizzlies but only found articles on things like ex-pensive foraging behaviors among grizzlies and had to be satisfied with this comment, “His thoughts may be about blueberries. Or perhaps salmon. He needs a quiet moment.” There is also the pensive music of a band called Grizzly Bear. And the caption on the photo of a lion eating a baby hippo: “You can see the pensive look on his face despite the grizzly nature of what he is doing.”

Saturday, October 10, 2015

My friend took this photo of events and activities in her back yard. And that’s the thing: so much is going on in our back yard. Meetings, conversations, opportunities, death, birth, sex, showmanship, loyalty, greed, self-sacrifice. The theater of the back yard is open all year round. Tickets free. (Photo by Karen Weller-Watson)

Sunday, September 20, 2015

I have never liked the colors purple or hot pink much, not even when I was seven years old. Then, yesterday, I went for a run up the Black Range Crest Trail and a patch of hot-pink/purple verbena exploded right in front of me, trailing clouds of glory, and changing my life forever and my sense of fashion, too. I don't have a photo of the wildflower verbena to do this experience justice. I found this image on the internet though and I might start wearing tutus just like this one.

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

I am really looking forward to talking about citizen science in Los Alamos this coming Tuesday at their beautiful nature center.

Pajarito Environmental Nature Center

My upcoming science fiction novel, Knocking on Heaven's Door, actually takes place in the Los Alamos labs in a future that includes mammoths and teratorns.

 It's strangely hard for me not to write about mammoths.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Butterflies in summer: they don't seem dangerous, but it can be perilous to ignore them.