Hi, Linda, thanks for the interview. I think what draws me to the ancient Celts is their mysterious nature and relationship with the faery realm. They are mysterious because we really do not know much about them except for some archaeological evidence. The ancient Celts were an oral society and some took this to mean that they were unintelligent or barbaric, but the archaeological evidence proves they were an advanced society, especially in metalworking. Another thing I really connect with is that Celtic women held a high place in society, and were described by Roman writers as fierce and terrifying to behold. Their myths speak of brave warriors, bold women and heroes who defy fearsome goddesses and beings from the faery realm. I like using my imagination and the knowledge I have of Dark Age time periods/myths to create stories filled with romance, conflict and magic.
How long does it take you to write a book? How much of that time is involved in research?
I am pretty slow when writing a full-length novel. T he research can take anywhere from a couple of months to six months. It can take me six months to a year to finish a novel.
Tell us about your crosses and what inspires you to create them.
I have always been drawn to crosses. The history behind this powerful symbol goes back long before the Christians used it as a holy symbol. It is believed that the ancient cross symbolized the earth's four directions and the divine center. Druids were believed to make their crosses out of a stem and two branches of the oak tree. The Thor's hammer cross is a well-known pre-Christian cross and several ancient Egyptian deities hold a cross in their hands. The ancient faery people of Ireland, the Tuatha de Danaan, had crosses adorned with snakes, birds and other animals. My crosses are made from Canadian driftwood and they have the rustic feel of the Southwest, Runes and Goddess symbols, which I burn into the wood. I add different types of crystals, stones, feathers, shells and whatever else I pick up on my shopping trips to swap meets and gem shows. I sell them on eBay under 'Wall Crosses.' My seller name is havasukelley.
In the past, you’ve told me that your biggest challenge with the process of writing is editing. Has that process gotten any easier as you’ve published more books? Why? Why not?
I think the editing process is always going to be a challenge for me because it is hard for me to see my own errors. I have a procedure now, so my editing process has been refined to make it a little easier. I created a list of words and weak verbs I tend to overuse; I run searches on them when I am ready to finish a manuscript, but things still slip by me. It helps to have someone else read through the manuscript.
What is the title of your upcoming release? Briefly tell us what it’s about and let us know where we can buy it.
My upcoming release is Night's Daughter, which is the prequel to Of Water and Dragons and Ravenwolf, but can be read separately. For those who are unfamiliar with Greek mythology, Night's Daughter is another name for the Greek Erinyes and Roman Furies, goddesses who exact punishment on wrongdoers. This book is the story of the past lives of my hero and heroine in Of Water and Dragons and Ravenwolf. It is set against the battle between the Titans and the Olympic gods. The series is based on reincarnation and enduring love. I didn't realize this at first, but I kind of use the idea of God and how Lucifer betrayed him, only I apply it to the old gods and Greek mythology. I also reveal my ideas on the origins of the Irish Tuatha de Danaan in this book. Hopefully I can stir up some controversy.
What are you working on now?
I finished a short contemporary Christmas/holiday story with paranormal elements. Now I am working on a short historical/paranormal romance with an Amazon heroine who finds love with an unlikely man. This may turn into something longer. And I am kicking around some ideas for another novel.
Are you a member of any writing groups? Why? Why not?
I am a member of EPIC because they support e-published writers. I am also a member of my local writer group. I also work with another writer on critiques. It is really helpful to have a critique partner.
What is the best Christmas gift you ever received?
The best Christmas gift I ever received came from my husband. He surprised me one year by buying me the DVD set of all the seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Since this is one of my all time favorite shows, I was elated. It shows that my husband really knows me well.
Here’s your opportunity to tell us anything else you care to share.
I have been getting some really nice reviews for Cat's Curse. Here is a snippet from the Coffee Time Romance review: "4 Cups! CAT’S CURSE is a wonderful story full of spells, trust, betrayal, and for the two, unconditional love. I love how the subplots built up the main story. Every character is developed. The dialogue and action keeps the book fast paced… The action blends into the story and love scenes are sensuous instead of graphic, along with being very compelling. This well thought-out story is a very easy to recommend historical. I look forward to more of this trilogy." - Anya , Reviewer for Coffee Time Romance & More - http://www.coffeetimeromance.com/BookReviews/catscursebookone.html
What are the addresses of your website(s) and blog(s):
Facebook fan page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Kelley-Heckart/111838455604