Welcome to the galaxy! I’m J J Mathews, New Zealand science fiction author and dreamer of alien worlds.
Since New Years Eve it has been dry, not and mostly sunny here in the North Island of New Zealand. December (and November) were pretty wet months, which tends to be the trend here most years. From wet (and sometimes cold) to dry, dry and hot, summer seems to have settled in, and we should be looking forward to mostly summery days until mid-March.
A very nice time of year to visit, but also a dangerous time to be outside unprotected. Burn times from the sun are around 12-15 minutes this time of year (no, not kidding. We have a slowly recovering ozone hole that is still very, very thin – you can feel the sun prickling your skin in the first minute as it starts to burn. Nothing like the warm summery days in Canada where it took hours to get a tan.) Skin cancer is a common and serious thing down here!
So if you are out and bout in the South Pacific this time of year, remember to Slip, Slap, Slop, and Wrap! (Slip on a long-sleeve shirt – or into the shade, Slop on some sunscreen, Slap on a hat, and Wrap on some sun glasses). Don’t go lying about trying to get a tan.
Note: if you come from the northern hemisphere, leave your suncreen at home and buy it locally. My mother brought Canadian SPF45 lotion with her on a trip to visit us years ago and got a bad sunburn in half an hour. (Yes, she had applied the Canadian SPF45 thoroughly). After she bought some NZ SPF50 she found she could stay outside most of the day without getting much colour at all. It makes a difference!
Yes, Australia definitely gets a lot hotter than New Zealand, but you have a higher chance of a sunburn in a shorter time in NZ due to the ozone layer getting thinner the closer you get to Antarctica.
And for those of you enduring the biting cold and snow of winter in the North, remember that spring is just around the corner.
Of course, there is one ‘hot‘ thing that requires no sunscreen (unless you decide to start reading it outdoors)…
At long last, Intercession is now available on Kindle, Smashwords and other online retailers, as well as in paperback. (I decided not to do the KDP/KU phase for this book, so all three are now widely available). To celebrate the launch of the 3rd book in the Taylor Neeran Chronicles, The Intercession eBook will be available at the $0.99 for 3 weeks, then it will go up to the regular price of $2.99 USD on February 2nd.