Friends Forever – Ben Eielson High School, Alaska

It gives me joy to see my children make lasting friendships with those they attend school and church with.  Having someone at your side while you walk the path you were given in this life, bonding with these individuals to form a circle of love to surpass all other things, is comforting.  To know that you have these “forever” friends to rely on, helps when things are rough and tough in your life.

My boyfriend and I went to the same high school together in Alaska.  Ben Eielson AFB is situated in the middle of the state near Fairbanks.  While it was fun seeing places not many people get to visit in their lifetime, one of the unfortunate things of being an “Air Force brat” is that you are constantly on the move, and making “forever” friends is not something easily done. Kevin and I were discussing how we could not recall many people we met along these travels until we got to Ben Eielson High School.  There is something special about that school and those who went there with us.  Even after 25+ years we are still talking to each other, and reconnecting through social media, and our crazy reunions in Las Vegas.  Kevin and I were fortunate enough to meet again to form a wonderful loving bond for each other.  (He actually dated one of my best friends Darcy in high school.  All the girls had a crush on him because he looked like Scott Baio)

What is so wonderful about the alumni of Ben Eielson High is that they are so supportive of the fellow classmates who attended the school, before and after their own time of wandering the halls.  (They definitely have been open to my new adventures in writing and it makes me feel wonderful when I get their pat on the back.)  Ben Eielson High created for us “AF Brats,” our “forever” friends.  I asked Kevin the other day “What if when I graduated, I found a teaching job there?”  He just smiled and said, “then it would be full circle.”   I find comfort in that. :)

Sneak Peek at Book Two in Legends of Green Isle – “The Mirror Sliver” Chapter Eleven

“Let them come,” the husky voice whispered in the dark confines of the cavern.  “Send the brollachan after those who survived the first attack.  Splinter them further.”

“Yes, my lord, as you wish,” the witch hissed.

The form on the other side of the mirror dissipated, leaving the glass clear, reflecting only the bent and withered outline of an old hag.

Leaving the underground cave, the witch crept up the hidden staircase in the lower level of the castle.  With each step, her body changed, until she emerged from the panel door beside a large fireplace, no longer old but youthful.  Stepping into the grand hallway, her eyes quickly studied the shadows, assuring none saw the secret door before she closed it.

Gracefully, her body glided the length of the long hall.  She glanced briefly at her reflection in one of the towering mirrors which fitted the walls.

Smiling, she allowed herself a moment to gaze upon the pale beauty which stared back.
Black eyes, the lashes long, peered out as islands within a milk white face.  Her blond hair fell in ringlets down her back, cascading like a frozen waterfall.

She liked this body.  Being this way made her feel powerful.  Too bad Uthal would not let her keep it.  It was only useful to control the mass of thugs he assembled through the mirror portals from ApHar Mountains.

Sighing she turned from the reflection.  Hopefully the Princess of Murias Donn would arrive soon from her task at Half Moon Lake.  Innocence was needed to begin the spell.  The small five souls they acquired from Earth would start the process of freeing her master from the mirror, but the horn would complete it.  How long had he been there?  It was thousands of years, long
enough for him to know revenge, and what they must do.

Chuckling, she envisioned the defeat of the Elf Kingdom at Ellyllon.  Erulisse and Angus would be the first to pay for their treachery, and then the rest of Green Isle would feel the sting of the forgotten spell, as the essence of those who rebelled against their rule, would be taken from their bodies and fed to the growing power of the Black Warlock.  Then, it would be time to re-conquer Earth and take back what belonged to them, ending the rule of the humans.  Magic had taken hold again there, even if they could not see it.

A sound caught her ears, the dragging of a foot against the worn rock floor.  “Show
yourself bodach,” she demanded, knowing in an instance what shuffled in the dark corner.

A still form hesitated in the shadows behind the massive hall door.  An edge of a wool cloak hinted the figure assumed the likeness of a creature from Green Isle, its usual black form gone.

“Our plan must be readied. Master wants you to divide the group, separate them,” she instructed firmly.

“Yesssss, Missssstresssss. Payment?”

“How dare you ask me that? Finish the job, then you are paid, and change your speech, otherwise they will know what you are.”

“Yesssss.”

The witch shook her head. Imbeciles, all of them, she fumed quietly.  Mercenaries who
had no alliance except to the highest bidder, and she did not like any of them, they were unreliable.  She watched the bodach melt back to the shadows disappearing from the hall.

“Make sure your do what master orders, or you will be dealt with,” she called after the creature.

“They must be broken further so he can lure the chosen one closer, and the power of the sword claimed.”

Legends of Green Isle – Book One “The Forgotten Spell” – Teaser!

Legends of Green Isle - The Forgotten Spell

Agitated, the river water bubbled and swirled under the
fog. The onlookers stepped back in shock as arms and a head rose from the murky depths. The body moved quietly upwards, breaking the ripples, until the dry figure of a middle-aged gentleman sporting curly black hair and a long black and gray beard floated above the cascading liquid. His feet, barely touching the shimmering surface, hung mid air above the flowing water, as his eyes remained closed against the sunset. Miranda screamed slightly when the lids opened unexpectedly, and pale blue eyes looked directly at her.

Keltrain, dressed in a large blue wool robe and pants, with a white shirt and leather boots which laced up to his knees, glided to the shore. Tentatively he stretched out a leg touching the grass with a toe. Unsure of his footing, he pushed several times at the vegetation, until he grew satisfied, placing his full weight upon the soft turf.

“It’s been awhile since I’ve had legs! Didn’t know if I
would still remember how to use them.”

He bounced up and down, bending and moving in an
exaggerated dance. Arranging his spectacles on his nose, he glanced down at himself.

“Can’t say too much has changed in all those years!”

“You’ve been a fish, Keltrain. There’s not much to change
when you’re a fish,” DaGon advised shaking his head.

“Well, yes, I guess you’re right my friend.”

Digging in oversized pockets on his right side, he rummaged
through their contents.

“I know I stored it in here somewhere,” he remarked under
his breath.

Plunging his arm deeper into the pocket on the interior of
his cloak, his eyes lit up.

“Here it is,” he said with a grin, as he extracted his
find.

Pulling forth a plain, black hat, with an oversized brim,
he promptly placed it on his head. Stroking his beard, he regarded the
individuals staring at him.

“Is it flat?” he asked touching the top of it with his
fingers as he saw the bewildered looks of the group.

“It’s fine Keltrain!” Lily assured charmingly.

She buzzed around his head checking its condition. “How
nice to see the real you. I couldn’t image being a fish for thousands of years! We certainly appreciate the sacrifice you made for Green Isle, being a salmon these long years.”

“Well I’ve got to tell you, honestly, being a fish isn’t
that great. I always had this irresistible urge to swim upstream and the
bugs…ugh! I’ve eaten my fill of them!”

“It definitely isn’t pork chops and mashed potatoes,” Ned interjected.

“No, dear boy, it isn’t pork chops and mashed potatoes,” Keltrain chuckled.

He brushed blades of river grass from his blue garments.

“Yet, I had to transform! The Green Isle and the world
beyond the portals were in danger. Without the vision of the White Salmon of Prophecy, I wouldn’t be able to see who would rescue us!”

“What kind of spell is that? The White Salmon of Prophecy?”
Matt asked as he fell into step with the wizard.

“One I learned from a certain druid in the old land! He
apparently used it on himself once upon a time. Although come to think of it, I believe he’s still is in the form of a fish.”

“It’s very interesting that the spell would choose the form
of a salmon,” Miranda commented.

“Well, I believe it was an ancient creature of wisdom in
this particular druid’s culture. The form of the fish came with the
incantation. I couldn’t change it.”

“I would’ve picked something with more pizzazz,” Thomas said.

“Aye, but then ye wouldn’t be havin’ the fun of eatin’ flies!” Lamfada laughed.

Keltrain sat down at the table and motioned to Matt to come nearer.

“Where’s Quert?” the wizard asked the boy.

“He’s back at the stables, sir! DaGon placed him in the pack on my horse.”

Matt turned towards the hill they had exited from, intent on retrieving the owl.

The wizard caught him by the arm and winked, his voice jolly, “Oh I think not! I believe he’s right here!”

He pointed to his other hand, which lay flat on the table.
Mumbling a phrase in the eerie language he used before, the box grew under his palm.

“It’s Quert’s box!” Miranda exclaimed, clapping her hands
in amazement.

Sci-Fi Short Story – A Long Winter

It had been half a day of trudging through snow and ice at a pace any normal person would have already succumbed to.  This was my purgatory, I was sure of it.  I wondered who I pissed off in my other life to be detailed so far away from the green and blue of home.  All I could see was white and more white on this forsakened planet, and the far distance speck of the demon that pursued me.

I really could not understand why he was so upset.  It was not like she meant
anything to either one of us.  She was just something to hold on to when this endless winter chilled you to the very marrow of your bones.  Her death was trivial compared to what we had to endure here.  No warmth, no comfort, no one but us until the supply ship comes in six months.  It was hell so far away from Earth, and I really did not care about her passing.

The speck was gaining distance, and I was not making much headway in the wind.
The gap was closing quickly, and even though I mustered a reserve of energy, the brute still caught me.

“How could you do it mate?” he thundered above the gale, shaking me until my teeth rattled.  “She was me one and only.”

“She was nothing!” I screamed, as I clawed at his fist.

“She was like me bride,” he countered roughly drawing back his hand as he prepared to strike.  “Now what am I supposed to do the nights when I be off watch?”

I glanced down at the electrical cord  tightly gripped within my grasp.  “For God’s sake man! She was just an electric blanket!  I’ll buy you a bloomin’ new one!”

Enjoying Your Life – Knowing when to take a break from writing.

Tire swing in the back yard at the little yellow cabin.

Usually summertime is writing time for me as I take a break from school and studies.  The past couple of years it seems that my summer is progressing to being one of the busiest times of the year, making me wish for school to be back in session.  LOL! But I would not trade it for anything in the world.

My wonderful boyfriend’s two children come over from Oklahoma to visit as well as my daughter, Kelsey, from Texas.  Not only are we excited to have them, but since our little cabin is situated in the mountains of North Georgia, and we have a lake right down the road only ten minutes away, we are always doing something on the water, or at the ranch.  Our place has become a sanctuary for others in our family too.  We have had visitors since March this year, coming to enjoy the peaceful quality of Hiawassee, and to see us.

I remember when my children were younger, how stressful I would get when I knew I had much to accomplish, and never seemed to get anywhere during the day.  It would “freak me out” if I could not seem to get anything done on a timely basis.  I know my children thought I was very controlling about my schedule, and even told me so.  It was not until a few years ago when I had a mild heart attack that I realized they were correct, and I was not enjoying this life the way that it should be.  I always worked and never took the time to visit the simpler things in life.

I have always been the firm believer that the supreme being places us here on this earth to learn valuable lessons before we are graduated to higher plane.  This lifetime has taught me that I need to slow down and listen, look and ponder.  While my writing is very important, especially since I would like to finish Legends of Green Isle Series before I leave this existence, there are more important things that need my attention during the summer, and that is the children.  They are little only one time, and once they grow up, they will “freak out” about their lives and their children, and not have time for me then, until they need a babysitter.  :) And I am pretty cool about that.

Writing is very important to me, but now I look at it in a different way.  I write for my children, instead of wishing to be as famous.  I write to enjoy words like an artist enjoys painting colors on a canvas.  I write to give of myself, so that the future generation may see something of who I was.

Part of being a great writer is knowing when to shift your perspective, and taking a step back from the stress of everyday, to allow your soul to recharge.

Give someone a hug today just for the heck of it, and take a break just to hear the birds sing, the wind talk, and the insect call to each other.  It will do wonders for your mind, and your body, and give you a chance to be a little less stressed.

Social Networking For Writers, Authors and Artists

Watch me Blossom!

I can honestly say that about 3 months ago I did not visit Facebook all that often.  While school, my research for several papers and a history conference took a large amount of my time, the remaining sparse hours was centered around the release of “The Forgotten Spell” in Legends of Green Isle series.  After the release, I sat in amazement as I held my paperback in my hand and could not stop smiling, ooohing and awwwing.

Then after the glow wore off, I found I was a little lost on what to do next.  It was by chance that I happened to stumble upon an article about social networking and marketing yourself.  It suggested that in today’s world, many authors need to rely on themselves to get the word out about their works. I decided then that I needed to delve further into other forms of social networking after reading this article, because I realized that according to the author’s format, I am basically anti-social in the internet social networking realm.  By concentrating a little more on Linkin, a professional website which host groups for writers, and then opening a Twitter account, I found a whole new world out there that I never realized existed.    While I have tried not to be the social butterfly by staying on at all hours, I have enjoyed talking to new friends.  It is a necessity for those who want to promote and market their books to make some connections with other like-minded individuals.  Not only that, but it is a way to find other outlets for promoting yourself by way of seeing what other writers, authors and artists have tapped into and following their leads.

I have learned a great deal from Twitter by reading articles and blogs posted by those who I am following.  This has led to other fun adventures of short story submissions and a collaborative venture  that I hope will turn out well.  So my recommendations to newbies just like me - is never be afraid of social networking.  It will offer lots, but most importantly it offers new friends.

Happy Writing All!

The Morrigana – Feminine Aspect of Green Isle’s Deity

Morrigan

As I created the complex history of Be’thasileth, the parallel world in another dimension to Earth, I knew as I compiled the history of the characters that there should be a Deity, an individual who cares for those residing in this land, that looks down at the events happening in this world and knows what the outcome should be, but only intervenes should it further the agenda of what must come to past.

But who should this person be?

It was a daunting task.  As a history major, I have researched many aspects of current and ancient religious beliefs.  I find it very interesting that our world before the influence of the Roman empire, steered towards a feminine view of creation.  Looking at the ancient people who populated the areas of Ireland, Britain and Scotland, the major deities were all female.  Morrigan was Irish, Beira was Scottish, Arianrhod was Welsh.  It was only after the male dominated society of Rome conquered the land, did this view disappear from the cultures.

In Irish folklore, Morrigan is the goddess of death and guardian of the dead.  In early Celtic depictions of her, she is crafted in pottery form with large breasts and the head of either a Raven or Crow.  Her representation thus is divided as a goddess of fertility and the goddess of the dead.  She is also associated with the symbol three (3) as a triple energy force.  The duality as a sustainer of life and guardian of the dead helped me to use her as the protector of Green Isle, but also as the destructor.

In Green Isle’s story, The Morrigana is structured after the Irish goddess, but her personality is split into two, Good and Evil.  Morrigana is not only the concerned matronly figure who cares about Green Isle’s destiny, but also the deity who would not hesitate to destroy, if it carried her desired path for the Island further.  She is the persona of how we view our own creator, a giver and taker of life.

Most people in the story see her as a grey wolf, shape shifting into an old woman, but she can be anything to anyone.  No one knows if she is present among them unless she wants them to know.

In Book One – “The Forgotten Spell” she has secluded herself in the Elathe Bogs and comes out of the mist and shadows to the main characters to read their palms.  While only a parlor trick for their benefit, The Morrigana already knows the path they travel.  She warns two of them, that to stray from their destiny will carry consequences that would be devastating to them, Green Isle and Earth.

Book Two – “The Mirror Sliver” the reader will see more of The Morrigana, as she helps those who gather to battle the Black Warlock Uthal. (See Character’s Page).  Her desire to rid both worlds of this type of evil evident in her intervention for one of the characters.

 

 

 

 

 

Independence – Holiday and Way of Life

Years ago, and I mean many years ago, my dad (career air force) was transferred to McGuire AFB in New Jersey.  Always a southern child, moving up north was a pretty scary event.  For anyone who has lived in the south, the abrupt change from the slow south to the “all business” north can be a little disarming.  As we moved onto base housing, one of the first things that happened to me and my siblings was a trip that the base hosted for us dependents.   Chartering a bus, the higher ups shuttled many of us over to Philadelphia for a view of Ben Franklin’s home and business, and the Liberty Bell.  Nationalism was high on the list at this particular time, as the Liberty Train was still on the circuit ticket as an attraction from a few years back, so we were excited about seeing a place we studied devotedly in History class in middle school.  Up close and personal brought on a whole different meaning for me, as I touched the actual Liberty Bell.

The other day I found those pictures from thirty or so years ago, and was amazed at the difference and feel Fourth of July has come to mean for me personally.  My brothers, Scott and Tim, both enlisted in the military when they grew up.  Scott, the oldest of the two, became a Marine, and Tim, the Navy.  Scott saw much heartache during his service as he was sent to Africa in the 1990s to take a tour during the crisis in Somalia.  He manned supply caravans to those who were starving within the country.  He wrote me often about his experiences, citing the grisly details of how they fought to get food past rebels, and many times coming to drop off points only to find hundreds dead because they could not get there in time.  Burying the dead tortured his spirit, as he felt helpless, unable to save those who needed supplies desperately.

This memory made me realize that I take for granted the grocery store.  We gripe because ‘such and such’ went up a few cents, but we rarely see past our blinders to the rest of the world, and how grocery stores are pretty much a given freedom for us as voting.  Being able to get in your car, drive down the road, walk into air conditioning, wander the aisles of food products aimlessly, picking brands, throwing the product in your cart, paying for it with a piece of plastic and then taking it home to sometimes be forgotten in the back of your fridge, alas, and a science experiment, contributing to waste, is an act we take for granted.  I wonder how those Somalian people would fare if they had our freedom of grocery stores?  Would they surplus buy? Would they throw away about twenty dollars of product every week because they over brought? Would their fridges be host to many fungi experiments in pieces of Tupperware?

Independence is not only a holiday for us, but a way of life.  Americans should be the leader in this world, showing others how to become independent, not wasteful.  Our way of life should be an example, and yet, I can say with disappointment, our example consist of overindulgence, materialism and excess.

My boyfriend made a very poignant statement to me a couple of days ago as I was semi-complaining about the condition of our little Honda.  While its inner workings (motor and so forth) are in great condition, the exterior looks a little rough.  He looked at me and said, “I consider this vehicle a tool.”  His meaning - it did not matter what the outside looked liked, it got him to work and back with little gas use, and that was all that was necessary.  To be honest, I felt like a heel after that, because he was right.  I settled into that beast of materialism for just a moment.

Kevin and I are simple people.  We live simply, because in my opinion, the excess of money only adds new headaches.  We have what we need in our little yellow cabin in the mountains.  I have a garden which produces food.  We just planted more fruit trees, and the land has supplied numerous blackberry vines.  Independence to us means we can live just that way, simply, next to the land, with jobs and schooling, the ability to get to point A from point B, to share good times with our children, being rich in love, and the satisfaction that our bills are paid on time every month.

I am very proud of my family.  My son, Chase, is now enlisted in the Army and my nephew, Chris, is soon to be in the Air Force.  My daughter Kelsey is contemplating doing the same.  And what is so special about this, is that they have the independence and freedom to make this decision for themselves.