Brrrrr…… Is it cold. The added wind chill here took an already cold night and knocked it down to -50. This morning’s climb to -30 is a heatwave by comparison. This farm house is so drafty, I’ve just set up the electric heater next to the bird cage. Check out this bubble of icy misery:
Gratitude fills me this morning. We have fuel and food and a working well. My family isn’t living out of a car or shelter, we aren’t huddled under an underpass. My pets are warm and well fed. My family and friends and the animals they love and care for all live in the same state of grace. How fortunate we are.
Yesterday’s Wash Line Monday on Exquisite Quills was an incredible success. I sold a nice handful of The Witchy Wolf and the Wendigo yesterday, and that was the snippet I featured. It just shows people like to *see* the books they read.
My friend offered to do an illustrated novel of that story. He’s a little too busy at this point in his life, but perhaps one day we will. Of all the stories I’ve written, that one would lend itself well to it. It’s a very visual novel. Click here if you’d like to see those details.
I’ve mentioned before that I was involved with living history for a long time. We started our odd interest in 1984 and raised our family in it. There was a point we were off doing living history events across five states every weekend from April to October. Oh to have that stamina again!
Some of my fondest memories are of meeting up with living history lady friends, and the occasional gentleman, dressed in our colonial finery for afternoon tea. I’d set out my china and silver spoons and silver service, they’d bring fire-baked shortbread and cobbler, and dried fruits. Our antiques were the genuine article. You have to have antiques or fine reproductions to portray living history with any authenticity. The goal is always the suspension of disbelief.
At our gatherings we’d occasionally have a reader to entertain us with a passage from some old book or collection of poems. I always read the tea leaves in between refills. In other words, I divined our fortunes in the bottom of a china cup. 😀
Today and tomorrow’s portion of my symbol series is all about symbols being portents to some future occurrence. Things like luck charms.
Tea leaf reading, also known as tasseography, involves interpreting patterns made by tea leaves in the teacup (People also look for symbols in coffee grounds, and wine sediments in their goblets). Divination by scrutinizing sediment in the bottom of drinking vessels is an ancient practice that’s not limited to Gypsy fortunetellers. History has it popping up all over the world from Ancient Greece and all along the Silk Road, and across all of Europe.
Why? For the same reason people read horoscopes. I suppose humans always want to know what’s around the bend. Will life get better or worse? Will they find love? Etc. I did it for fun, and still do on occasion if my friends ask or if I happen to think of it. I have a small collection of vintage fortune-telling china teacups to make the mood.
When I hosted those costumed colonial teas back then, I used a special tea called
Lapsang souchong — the first black tea in history. But I know people who just cut open regular old black tea teabags and brew their tea as usual. You need fine bits to form images in the dregs. l also have a very old book that I learned from. I did teas so often back then I used to be able to read without the book. As the old adage goes — if you don’t use it, you do lose it. Still, it’s fun to do even with the book as a reference.
Here are two nice sites with pattern info if you’d like to give tasseography a try.
Tomorrow ~ More!
Here’s one for today:
Maleolent (adjective 1657-1727)
having an ill odor
Today guest author Vicki Batman.
All through January the RB4U authors are doing interviews. The thoughtful questions are a great way to get to know us. Commenting that day gives you a chance to win a collectable t-shirt. Come see!
Last days in the COLD SNOW, HOT ROMANCE CONTEST! Three winners will each receive a $25 gift card for Amazon/Barnes & Noble, and split the other prizes randomly picked from prize list. Be sure to check all our pages for news about authors and their books, publishers and their books, and industry representatives. http://www.romancebooks4us.com/
Several promotional opportunities for romance authors can be found on my Exquisite Quills group blogs. Meet the founding authors and our guests.
Exquisite Quills Yahoo Group
Wash Line Monday ~ share your descriptions of clothing in your novel.
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 a Book ~ share the spark that ignited your novel
Author Interviews ~ We’re booking late spring now.
Coming soon on the EQ ~ Tempt Us Tuesday
Today’s author: Suz DeMello
A new place for your old stars to shine 😀
Love Waits in Unexpected Places – Scorching Samplings of Unusual Love Stories
Sample my love stories for free!