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Writing means different things to me. I'm a storyteller, a book editor, and a songwriter. For me, it's like breathing.

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  ca·val·la  \kə-ˈva-lə\
Definition of cavalla
Popularity: Bottom 10% of words
plural ca·val·la or ca·val·las
also ca·val·ly
\-ˈva-lē\ :  any of various carangid fishes
:  king mackerel

Origin of cavalla

Spanish caballa, a fish, from Late Latin, mare, feminine of Latin caballus First Known Use: 1624

Beauty may be the real beast.

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  cav·al·cade  \ˌka-vəl-ˈkād, ˈka-vəl-ˌ\
Simple Definition of cavalcade
Popularity: Bottom 50% of words
: a line of riders, vehicles, etc., moving along in the same direction
: a series of related things

Full Definition of cavalcade
a :  a procession of riders or carriages
b :  a procession of vehicles or ships
:  a dramatic sequence or procession :  series

Examples of cavalcade
The cavalcade arrived at the hotel.
a cavalcade of antique cars
a cavalcade of natural disasters

Origin of cavalcade
French, ride on horseback, from Old Italian cavalcata, from cavalcare to go on horseback, from Late Latin caballicare, from Latin caballus horse; akin to Greek kaballeion horse, Middle Irish capall workhorse

First Known Use: 1644

Beauty may be the real beast.

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

My Story, My Way ~ An Indie Adventure: Take Five With Author Kelley Heckart

My Story, My Way ~ An Indie Adventure: Take Five With Author Kelley Heckart:   Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Kelley Heckart. And be still my heart, she follows a passion of mine...read the fir...

Weird Word Wednesday

adverb  cau·dad  \ˈkȯ-ˌdad\
Definition of caudad
Popularity: Bottom 40% of words
:  toward the tail or posterior end

Origin of caudad
Latin cauda

First Known Use: 1888

Beauty may be the real beast.

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  ca·tab·o·lism  \kə-ˈta-bə-ˌli-zəm\
Definition of catabolism
Popularity: Bottom 40% of words
:  degradative metabolism involving the release of energy and resulting in the breakdown of complex materials (as proteins or lipids) within the organism — compare anabolism
cat·a·bol·ic play \ˌka-tə-ˈbä-lik\ adjective
cat·a·bol·i·cal·ly play \-li-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

Origin of catabolism
Greek katabolē throwing down, from kataballein to throw down, from kata- + ballein to throw — more at devil

First Known Use: 1876

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Monday Musing: Aging and hiding who you really are

What is it about being an aging woman and feeling forced to hide who you really are? Why should women feel like they have to color their graying hair? Or cut it so they “look their age.” What kind of bulls**t is that? Men aren’t pressured to hide their gray.

I hate these stupid unwritten rules. There are plenty of attractive older women with long gray hair. Lately I’ve been recalling a memory of my maternal grandmother who has been gone a long time. It’s one I haven’t thought much about until now, but it’s a powerful memory. I remember my grandmother undoing her bun and brushing her beautiful long, gray hair. Yeah, she didn’t conform and cut or color her hair.

As my long hair started turning gray, I went through a phase where I tried coloring it and cutting it short, but I always ended up letting it grow out. I turned to my grandmother for inspiration and decided I wasn’t going to conform anymore either. I never did before so why should I start now? I don’t care what anyone thinks of my long, graying hair. My hair has never been healthier since I stopped damaging it with color. Some cultures believe that having long hair gives you power. I believe it now too.

I think of my grandma now when I let my hair down and brush it, the gray streaks gleaming with defiance to anyone who thinks older women should color and cut their hair.

I smile.

Yeah, I’m pretty sure it’s because of my grandma that I do what I want and not what others want me to do. It’s because of her example that I don’t feel I have to hide who I really am.

Beauty may be the real beast.

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  cas·bah  \ˈkaz-ˌbä, ˈkäz-\
Definition of casbah
Popularity: Bottom 30% of words
:  a North African castle or fortress
:  the native section of a North African city

Variants of casbah
also kas·bah \ˈkaz-ˌbä, ˈkäz-\
Origin of casbah
French, from Arabic dialect qaṣba

First Known Use: 1844

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Tabby's Nocturnal Nights: Setting the scene for readers

Tabby's Nocturnal Nights: Setting the scene for readers: There are many techniques that are essential for writing a good novel. One of them is setting the scene at each new chapter and scene break...

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  ca·sa·ba  \kə-ˈsä-bə\
Definition of casaba
Popularity: Bottom 10% of words
:  any of several winter melons with usually yellow rind and sweet white, yellow, or orange flesh

Origin of casaba
Kasaba (now Turgutlu), Turkey

First Known Use: 1887

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  car·a·bi·neer  \ˌker-ə-bə-ˈnir, ˌka-rə-\
Definition of carabineer
Popularity: Bottom 30% of words
:  a cavalry soldier armed with a carbine

Variants of carabineer
or car·a·bi·nier play \ˌker-ə-bə-ˈnir, ˌka-rə-\
Origin of carabineer
French carabinier, from carabine carbine

First Known Use: 1672

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  ca·ra·bi·ne·ro  \ˌker-ə-bə-ˈner-(ˌ)ō, ˌkär-, ˌka-rə-\
Definition of carabinero
Popularity: Bottom 20% of words
plural ca·ra·bi·ne·ros
:  a member of a Spanish national police force serving especially as frontier guards
:  a customs or coast guard officer in the Philippines

Origin of carabinero

Spanish, from carabina carbine, from French carabine

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Weird Word Wednesday

noun  car·a·bi·ner  \ˌker-ə-ˈbē-nər, ˌka-rə-\
Definition of carabiner
Popularity: Bottom 30% of words
:  an oblong metal ring with one spring-hinged side that is used especially in mountain climbing as a connector and to hold a freely running rope

Variants of carabiner
also kar·a·bi·ner \ˌker-ə-ˈbē-nər, ˌka-rə-\
Origin of carabiner

German Karabiner, short for Karabinerhaken, literally, carabineer's hook

Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Monday Musings: A Beltaine's Song excerpt in honor of Beltaine

“I give you the branch (of victory),
Said the crow to the old woman;
You are as old as the old grandmother,
Long ago, who ate the apples.”
‘From Legends of Saints and Sinners’

Eireann, AD 559

The word rang through her mind like a beautiful melody. It was all she remembered.
Under cloudy skies, she stood inside a circle of stone giants, the earth vibrating beneath her feet. Touching the weathered stones sparked a familiar sensation inside her, and she knew this place meant something special to her once. Light mist swirled around the powerful stones like restless serpents. In her mind’s eye, she saw cloaked figures moving and chanting inside the circle. Their rich, joyful voices were lost to her now, the once sacred stones abandoned.
Sighing, she moved on, wandering the countryside. The clouds parted and summer skies greeted her with a smile. In the distance, puffy white and gray clouds floated against a bright blue sky the color of a robin’s egg. A gentle breeze tousled her hair and the fresh scent of summer, of things fresh and new, brightened her spirits. Swallowed by rolling green hills clothed in a light mist, she walked without knowing her destination, pausing when she came to a break in the hills.
Below her sat clusters of roundhouses and fields surrounded by raths. The earthen walls surrounded the homes in a protective embrace. Farther away, a jumble of forest and pasture land rolled to the horizon. Beyond this stretched mixed landscapes of low mountains, vast bogs, and dense woodlands. She descended the hills, passing families moving their cows and sheep to the summer pastures high in the mountains.
All around her, the earth sang of life. Milk and honey flowed freely in the summer months. Shimmering fields of wheat sprouted from the well-tended earth, its green grass-like stalks gradually changing to a ripe golden color.
It was all familiar and yet foreign to her.
She watched all of this taking place around her, the men, women, and children going about their summer chores, smiling, grateful for the blessed time of rebirth. They passed by her with nary a glance in her direction.
It was as if she did not exist at all.

While everyone around her exuded happiness, sorrow filled her heart, and she wandered the countryside without purpose, lost and alone.

Beltaine's Song is the second book in my Dark Goddess trilogy, set in Dark Age Scotland. A mix of history and mythology, it is filled with spring themes of new beginnings and loss.

For each of them, spring's song has a different meaning.

Now king and queen of the powerful kingdom of Dal Riata, Aedan and Domelch have more than just Cailleach's wrath to contend with. Aedan struggles with being a king and being a husband. Domelch struggles with her beliefs, trying to be the Christian woman Aedan wed, but her heart still thrums with the voices of old gods. They must battle earthly foes—enemy kings and traitorous allies. For the first time, the arrival of spring heralds the sound of a harsh battle horn as their foes close in. Through all this turmoil, can their love survive?  

Gartnait, the first-born son of Aedan and Domelch, has lived in secrecy most of his young life to escape Cailleach's wrath. Fostered in Fortriu, he has earned his first mark of manhood and on his way to becoming a formidable warrior. He grapples with the awakening of his true destiny and the meaning of the appearance of a beautiful maiden in spring only he can see. Does she mean to harm him? For him, spring brings with it the promise of new love and the thrilling sound of the battle horn, putting those he cares about in danger.
“Even those who can see the future cannot be certain that the future they see will not change. One small ripple can change the future.” –from Beltaine’s Song
The story of Cardea (now called Domelch) and Aedan mac Gabrain continues…Reading this book makes me ask, again, why humans inflict such suffering on each other, and why we cannot stop fighting each other. Why is it so difficult to truly forgive someone? The ending of Beltaine’s Song is a tear-jerker (my mind decided to play the theme song from Braveheart). And I wonder: can one really find peace in death?
I’m looking forward to Book 3, Winter’s Requiem. Review by Jane Li

Multi-published author Kelley Heckart lives in Arizona with her musician husband, dog and a number of backyard “pets.” Her stories reflect her passion for ancient and medieval time periods, storytelling and the supernatural. Inspired by the ancient Celts, her tales are filled with fierce warriors, bold women, otherworldly creatures, magic, and romance. When not writing, she works as a freelance editor and practices target archery. She can be found online at http://www.kelleyheckart.com/

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Kelley Heckart
Otherworldly tales steeped in myth & magic.
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