Mythical Monday: The Story of Art and Delvcaem

 

I’ve been incorporating some old Celtic stories and legends into the novel I’ve been working on, so I though I would do a little feature on them each Monday. Mythical Mondays has a nice ring, doesn’t it?

This story I’m featuring today is a summary of Becuma of the White Skin. It was written by James Stephens in a book called Irish Fairy Tales, published in 1920.

Art was the son of Irish High King named Conn of the Hundred Battles. He was a warrior like his father.

Conn was in mourning over the loss of his wife, and found himself walking along the shore. There, he met Becuma of the White Skin, who had just arrived in a small boat. Little did he know that she’d been ejected from the faery realm, nor did he realize what trouble she would bring.

Becuma bewitched him, compelling him to want to marry her. She was quite a trickster. She told him the fame of his son Art had made her fall in love with him and before long, she had Conn begging her to marry him instead.

Becuma insisted that Art leave Ireland for a year so she could come to love Conn instead of Art. The year that he was gone was a bad one for Ireland. There was a great famine. The High King was pressured to allow a human sacrifice, (at least until someone pointed out that Becuma was the cause of the famine).

Once Art returned to Ireland, she challenged him to a game of chess. Art won the first game, and her due was to eat no food in Ireland until she found the wand of Curoi, son of Dare. An impossible challenge, or so he thought.

It wasn’t long before she was back with the wand. Of course, she did have some help from her faery friends.

On her return, she challenged Art to another game of chess. This time, she won. His due was to eat no food in Ireland until he found Delvcaem of the Fair Shape, the daughter of Morgan. She was sure he would never return.

Delvcaem was a woman of Faerie who was being held captive by her parents on an island in the Many-Coloured Lands. It was said that her mother would die when Delvcaem was wooed, so she kept her daughter shut away in a tower, and every suitor that dared to come near their fortress was murdered by her and her husband, Morgan.

Art was faced with incredible challenges on his way to find Delvcaem. From turbulent oceans, sea monsters and evil hags that wanted to bury him in molten lead.

When he arrived at Delvcaem’s home, he noticed there were spikes all around the fortress, each one with the head of one of her potential suitors. There was one spike remaining with no head.

Delvcaem’s mother had the lovely name Dog Head. (I can only imagine why!) She came out dressed in full armour and challenged him to a duel. Art won, of course, and put her head on the one remaining spike. Then he defeated her husband Morgan.

Art rescued Delvcaem from her tiny room at the top of a 100 foot high pillar. The two returned to Ireland and since Delvcaem’s magical power was greater than Becuma’s, she forced her to leave Ireland. Becuma left without protest. Word was she left for Sasana and became queen in that country.

I loved the characters in this story, especially Becuma. There is so much more to her that I didn’t get into here. Maybe a future post? I did a little digging and found out that Sasana is Old Irish for England. And if you’re an Outlander fan, you’d be interested to know that it’s derived from Sasenach.

This story of Art and Delvcaem became the background for three of the characters in my novel, The Dragon Prophecy. Here’s a working synopsis of what the novel is about:

The Dragon Prophecy is a fast paced alternate history YA that infuses modern day characters with Celtic myths and legends from the time before the birth of King Arthur.

Two brothers are caught dead centre in a power struggle between two queens, both hell bent on stopping the Age of Pendragon and changing history as we know it.

The lines of reality become blurred. Thrown into an era of faeries, dragons and a sketchy druid, who can they trust? Will they ever be able to make it home?

What do you think so far? Does this genre interest you?

 

 

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ROW80 Week 3 Sunday

ROW80

I could say it was a terrible week for reaching my goals, but no matter which way you look at it, I still made progress on my novel, (which is awesome). I did a little bit of painting and though I did miss out on yoga, I did get some snowshoeing in. So there’s that. It’s exercise, right? And there is always next week.

Novel Writing:  

I am almost finished the next chapter in my story. I really thought it was going to be finished on Monday, Tuesday at the latest….sadly that didn’t happen.

Tuesday ended up being a complete write-off. School was cancelled because of the weather. I work much better when there are no distractions around. Trust me, everything is a distraction, but it’s worse when my boys are home. It’s not them…it’s me lol.

My mood was off, too. And that didn’t help. Headaches, depression and all over body pain made want to just curl up and have a nap.

 

My reference photo

Painting:

I got one afternoon of painting in instead of the three afternoons that I had planned.

The picture to the left is the reference photo that I was working from.

Below is my work in progress and I’m realizing now how bad the perspective is on that pool of water! Ooops! I do like the colours, though so there’s that.

Work in Progress

YogaYoga:

Yoga didn’t happen this week. I seem to be able to make the Tuesday class. It’s at a perfect time for me to be able to make it without running around like a crazy lady to get there. 

Tuesday, I felt miserable. Headache, all over body aches and depression. I had an angel on one shoulder telling me to stay home and relax. The angel on the other shoulder said, “Go! You will feel so much better if you do!”

I agreed with the stay home angel, but I later found out that the class was cancelled due to weather. So, I didn’t feel toooo bad about not going. The weather wasn’t great the rest of the week either, the roads were terrible for travelling on. 

I got extra exercise by shovelling the driveway twice this week. Yep, my muscles were feeling that!

I also got a bit of snowshoeing in! I posted some pics from that here. It was a gorgeous day for it, but boy oh boy were my legs burning! I only did about 2 km, a fairly short jaunt but it was enough for me. 

Last week, I mentioned doing some blog posts that relate to the novel I’m writing since it is interlaced with legends and historical stories that link and weave the characters together. I have a post ready to go for Monday, so I hope you’ll stop by and check it out.  It’s the story behind three of the characters, Art, Delvcaem and Becuma and is based on the Irish fairy tale Becuma of the White Skin by James Stephens. 

How about you? Did you reach your goals?

Have a wonderful week and thanks so much for stopping by!

Jo-Ann

ROW80 Week 2

ROW80

Monday wasn’t a too bad day for writing. I normally do my writing in the morning, but it didn’t quite happen that way.

Instead, Monday was a day for having lunch with the girls. It was so nice to get caught up with friends after the holidays! And they were writer friends, my inspiration! So that totally justifies it, right?

It was later in the evening when I got 460 words edited. I was happy with that, though I seemed to have added an incredible amount more story to the memory being recalled by the main character. I might be off on a tangent but I will go with it for now and cut it later if I have to.

Tuesday, I’ve edited 544 words and still going strong on the memory…only it’s way better. I think. We’ll see!

Painting:  I found a pack of small canvasses in my studio, around 5 x 5 inches. What to paint, though? I don’t normally work on landscapes, but I thought I’d do a painting from a picture that I took on my daily walk. If you’d like to see the original photo, it’s here, second one down.

Winter Reflections

I’m not really happy with the way the reflected trees on the right hand side look. They’re more like sticks than trees. Aaaand I might have overworked it a bit but overall I was reasonably happy with it. I might try to do something about the trees. I’m getting comments from family that the painting looks upside  down. Hmmmm….

Yoga

Yoga: Oh, I so did not want to go to yoga tonight. I was tired. It was busy, my son wanted to visit my mother. It was so tempting to skip it. But, I did not! I went to yoga and thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m so glad I went! Yay!

 

So that’s my update for this week! Did you have goals? 

Thanks so much for stopping by,

Jo-Ann

 

Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. 

This week started out with the opening of the Pierscape Art Festival.  I had entered four paintings and sold one!

Pierscape Art Festival

Some paintings in Pierscape. Mine is the dove (2nd from the left)

I have to admit, I’m feeling a bit bittersweet about this because the one I sold (Blue Bottles, to the right) was one of my favourites.

My paintings and I become like old friends.  I will miss it but I’m sure it will be going to a good home.

 

WordPress Woes

When I was researching the best way to go for blogging, a lot of information out there pointed to WordPress.  It’s a great blogging platform, so, naturally I went to WordPress.com and set up my very own account.  Step one.  Check!

I then learned that there are two different WordPresses, .com and .org. They both have their pros and cons, but that’s for another post!

So, I started a self hosted WordPress blog.  This one.  But, I did something wrong because traffic from other blogs was being diverted to my inactive account.  When I realized this, I deleted it.  Not a good idea!  I ended up losing all my followers up to that point, plus it created some weird quirky problems, for example, I lost my Comment box on my posts!

I was a little stressed and fixing this took a fair chunk of time.  I swear, I checked every box in my dashboard to get the comment box back.  A day and a half later, I finally found the answer, right on the WordPress.org troubleshooting site.  One check mark fixed the comment box issue.

Do you ever have problems with WordPress?

Reading

I finally finished reading Deadly Cargo by Hal Archer.  It’s a great sci-fi that I enjoyed, more on that and a review coming up this week!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Week:

Coming up This Week:

  • Book Review: Deadly Cargo
  • Movie Review:  King Arthur the Legend
  • Top Ten Tuesday
  • Book Beginnings and Friday 56