Damn, I missed Saturnalia yesterday. I was so enmeshed in gift creation and wrapping yesterday the Greco-Roman party day completely slipped my mind for much of the day. But I eventually remembered and then bought a lottery ticket! Learn more about Saturnalia here.
I found this rather interesting:
As a person raised on the Macy’s Parade and recently exposed to the Krampus parade, and now the Roman parade, all I can say is Wow. Winter celebrations spanning cultures around the world definitely bear more research. If I only had time to follow my curiosity. There just too much to do before the big 12-hour Solstice drumming we’re hosting this Saturday. Next year I’ll be ready. 🙂
Tracking says the new laptop comes as early as tomorrow. Instead of dealing with a desktop that acts like a giant cellphone (aka Windows8), I’ve decided to install the devil I know — Windows7. I would have gone for WinXP were it available, but the geek scuttlebutt says Microsoft is ending support for that operating system. That’s a grand plan for all the people out there still using it. Bah humbug Mr. Gates. Take care the ghost of operating systems past doesn’t come rattling its chains one wintery night.
I’m posting another bit from the sinking ship’s files today.
The following is a portion of an interview I had earlier this year. My second book in The Witchy Wolf and Wendigo saga had just been released. It has it’s own info page.
Can you tell us a little bit about your newest release?
Thank you for having me today. My most recent release is the second book in my shape-shifting shaman saga The Witchy Wolf and Wendigo (Book 2 Eluwilussit). Here’s the blurb for book 1 to give you some idea of the story:
What does an immortal Native American shaman do when the grave he’s sworn to watch over for all eternity disappears under urban development?
His purpose of guarding his wife’s burial mound gone, Ashkewheteasu seeks to end his immortal existence. In his despair, Ash assumes the form of a wolf and steps in front of a moving car and into the life of Dr. Olivia “Livie” Rosalini. The veterinarian saves the animal’s life, and in the process saves the man within. Livie has no idea the wolfish dog she’s taken into her home and grows to love is a magical being seeking to win her heart as a man. While Ash is learning a new world filled with new love, friendship, and happiness, an old menace makes plans to steal it all away; just as he had 3000 years before.
What inspired this novel in particular?
It all began on a local artists’ tour. My husband and I came across an author selling her stack of books in one of the studios. We talked for a time about publishing then she explained some of the research that went into her book. The topic – the Wisconsin Werewolf. It wasn’t a book I would normally buy, but she was so nice taking the time to explain the publishing world. I was unpublished at the time. We bought it and I read as he drove the tour. Apparently there had been eyewitness accounts for centuries. It’s hard to imagine but people have sworn they’ve actually seen the creature several miles away from my house.
As we drove home, we talked about what people could possibly be seeing…everything from shadows to bigfoot to dimensional beings. Later that week, I looked into the Native American legends that went back who knew how long. A friend came to dinner and we talked about the book and the local sightings. He said maybe people are seeing a shaman in ceremonial attire. Once I had those thoughts tied together, my imagination cascaded. Yes, a shaman, but not just any shaman — a shaman associated with the ancient burial and effigy mounds in the area. Suddenly a question came to me: What does an immortal Native American shaman do when the grave he’s sworn to watch over for all eternity disappears under urban development? My mind ran with it.
Without giving too much away, I’ve taken the urban legend and combined it with archaeological facts. My goal from the start was to make a completely realistic and somewhat plausible story. No kidding. Comprised of two books and spanning three thousand years, I do believe this is one of the best stories I’ve written to date.
Who is your favorite character in this novel and why?
By far that would be my hero Ash, also known as Ashkewheteasu. He’s one of the best heroes I’ve ever had the pleasure to write. His wife Aiyanna was murdered and he chose to stay by her side forever. That says a lot about him. When he finds her grave (burial mound) destroyed, and his reason to live his lonely immortal life destroyed along with it, he decides to commit suicide. Not impossible when you’re immortal, but the consequence is dire. What comes next eventually leads to a new reason to live.
What comes first–characters or plot ideas?
Definitely the characters. I don’t know how they manage it, but occasionally they’ll pop into my head fully formed like Athena coming out of Zeus’ skull! I *see* them moving through their world and the next thing I know there’s a story forming around them. Sometimes, they write themselves. I love when that happens.
How important is setting? Does it play an integral role in this story?
Yes, setting is important. I use the setting for layering details – those velvet curtains, the lemon oil on the wood paneling in the study, that cinnamon-laden apple pie. As a reader, I enjoy rich details. It’s a fine line though. It’s easy to get carried away describing the setting rather than letting the characters experience it themselves, and through them, relay that experience to the reader. At least that’s the case for me. After six novels, I finally have a handle on that. It’s good to remember readers like to use their imagination too. I know I do when I read.
As for this tale, yes, I’d say the setting is very important. I’m literally merging two worlds – the past and the present. I’m also walking the reader though the spirit world, and Ash’s dreams. The layering give all of these vastly different scenes dimension and depth.
What motivates your main characters?
What is the central conflict?
The ancient shaman Eluwilussit (Eli), Aiyanna’s murderer, also lives. Bared from the White Spirit world of the ancestors, Eli knows Ash has access and that’s something he wants. But filled with rage and jealousy like he is, Eli also wants Ash dead. The problem is, Eli tried to get into the White Spirit world and inadvertently ended up in an ancient version of hell – the Red Realm of the Forsaken. There he acquires a terrible gift. He becomes a Wendigo.
What is your favorite aspect about being a novelist?
Seeing appreciation for my work lighting other people’s eyes. I love stories, hearing them, telling them. I have wonderful family and friends who encourage me along the way. One dear friend and her husband always have something nice to say. I find myself wanting to create scenes I know they’d enjoy. I also have an artist friend who periodically reads my scenes. I know we’re on the same page when he comments on my characters and scenes as if he sees them as real because they’re real to me. That does something to me; it fills me up in some inexplicable way and makes me want to write more complicated scenes to see if he can follow me there. I’ve always been sort of an oddball that never fit anywhere; I suppose it validates how my mind ticks.
Are there any other genres you can see yourself writing and why/why not?
I love romance and romance stories, and I do enjoy writing them. I have a labor of love I’ve been writing for five years. There isn’t a suitable name for it yet so I just refer to it as my magnum opus — MO for short. My MO is not erotic romance, so yes, I can see myself writing other forms of fiction. I’ve written childrens books and I may even whip up a cookbook or two! Writers have that drive to manifest thought into something tangible. If it wasn’t romance, I would have to create something!
What’s your goal as an author? By that, I mean…why write? Why is it important to you?
I’d like more than anything for my writing to contribute to buying a nice piece of land for my husband to retire on. That’s been my goal from the start. He’s worked so hard for our family. I came to our marriage with rheumatoid arthritis, a disease I’ve had since I was 15, a disease he married along with me. Since I’ve never had good health in all the years we’ve been together, the financial burden has always been on his shoulders. That’s not to say I’ve haven’t worked, but he’s always done the lion’s share. Second to that, I’d like to set up a foundation that gives grant monies to people and organizations that do good things for the environment, animals, and mankind. I liken the desire to picking up Ben and Jerry’s torch and running with it. I dream big. 🙂
If you could snap your fingers and transport yourself anywhere in the world, where would you go and why?
I’m fascinated by the first religions and sacred sites of the world. Especially Gobekli Tepe in Turkey. I suppose I’d snap myself into a tour of all the major ancient sites. The human brain needs to understand how we fit in this world and change our modes to reflect fitting that. I know we can do better fitting in with everything else on the planet. I suspect the reason we don’t might sit squarely on destroying the earth/goddess worship mankind has taken part in.
Tea or coffee?
Coffee first, then more coffee, then tea. 🙂
Night person or early riser?
Tell us 5 little known facts about yourself.
- I love fiddle music from everywhere, but especially Irish, Roma, and Appalachian.
- To combat shyness, I took a DJ job in college.
- I’m a World drummer
- I’ve walked on fire three times
- I’m night blind
Love Waits in Unexpected Places – Scorching Samplings of Unusual Love Stories
Sample books 1&2 of The Witchy Wolf and Wendigo & the rest for free!
If you’re here for the first time, my husband and I are building a vintage holiday postcard scrapbook one card at a time. I’ve been posting one or two post cards each day and plan to keep it up from now until January.
I just love this one. But what exactly in the guy dressed in black…a Christmas ninja? He seems to have a ladder. Is he a chimney sweep?
Here’s another fun recipe selection from the mountain of files. Not much to either but both are very cute. A plate of them might make a nice gift.
You will need frosting, Hershey Kisses, and mini Nilla Wafers. I’ve also seen them made with mini Nutter Butter cookies. Use the frosting as “glue” to hold the cookies and the kisses together. Put a dab on for a tiny stem. Some people attach pretzel piece stems with frosting. Refer to the picture to see what’s what. They’re cuties.
4 oz cream cheese (at room temperature)
1 pound (16 ounces) of powdered sugar
1/8 – 1/4 tsp. of ONE of any kind of flavored extract, vanilla, lemon, almond, etc
add food coloring if you wish.
Mix first three ingredients. Then with powdered sugar on your hands, roll into small balls, pipe onto waxed paper, or press into flexible rubber molds.
our guest Author Lynn Crain.
RB4U is participating in author Nikki Barrett’s READER APPRECIATION GIVEAWAY — Lots of prizes. Enter today!
Our December contest has approximately 30 prizes for one winner, including a $75 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. I’m adding a free book from my backlist to the loot. Read the pages and find the dancing Santas.
Several promotional opportunities for romance authors can be found on my Exquisite Quills group blog.
First Kiss Wednesday ~ share your best 300 word kiss.
Set the Scene in Six ~ share your backdrop or lead-up on Sundays.
The Genesis of the Story ~ share the spark that ignited your novel
Author Interviews ~ We’re booking 2014 now.
* FREE * FREE * FREE * FREE * FREE * FREE * FREE *
Exquisite Quills presents A Holiday Anthology Vol. 1
Many holiday short stories in several styles written
by more than a dozen authors. And it’s FREE!