I can’t think of a better time to launch this ebook, Shifting Dreams: A Cambio Springs Mystery than under this week’s very Pisces sky. It is perfect timing for a story about shape shifters with a touch of romance. Pisces loves fantasy and the idea if we take only a small step sideways we can visit a place filled with mysteries and wonder. This week’s Mercury-Venus conjunction in Pisces is ideal for taking a break from our ordinary lives to enjoy a mini-vacation from reality by visiting Elizabeth’s world where a grieving young mother transforms into a hawk to enjoy the freedom of flight and takes her first steps on the journey to healing with the possibility of new love.
This book has much to offer – engaging smart characters, a nice little murder mystery, romance and a happy ending! It is a wonderful read for a temporary escape from the hassles of our day to day lives. Yes . . . perfect for Pisces season, a time to withdraw and rest up before the whirlwind of Aries begins on the equinox.
If you are like me and like to start at the beginning, please read Long Ride Home: A Cambio Springs Short Storyfirst.
Somedays Jena Crowe just can’t get a break. Work at the diner never ends, her two boys are bundles of energy, and she’s pretty sure her oldest is about to shift into something furry or feathery. Added to that, changes seem to be coming to the tiny town of Cambio Springs, big changes that not everyone in the isolated town of shapeshifters is thrilled about.
Caleb Gilbert was looking for change, and the quiet desert town seemed just the ticket for a more peaceful life. He never counted on violence finding him, nor could he have predicted just how crazy his new life would become.
When murder rocks their small community, Caleb and Jena will have to work together. And when the new Chief of Police isn’t put off by any of her usual defenses, Jena may be faced with the most frightening change of all: lowering the defenses around her carefully guarded heart.
Shifting Dreams is the first novel in Cambio Springs, the new paranormal romance series from Elizabeth Hunter, author of the best-selling Elemental Mysteries.
Jena frowned when she heard the pounding on the door. She looked at the clock. The boys weren’t due home for another hour and the diner had been slow, so her dad had told her to go home and catch up on the housework she’d been griping about. She was drying dishes and frowning at the clock when the hard knock came again.
“Who is it?” she called as she walked to the door.
Well, didn’t he sound like he was in a fine mood? Jena curled her lip. She’d been avoiding him since the awkward—okay, it was kind of hot—night by his trailer. She should have been mad at him, and the fact that she wasn’t mad bothered her more than his stolen kisses did.
She threw open the door. “Why are you pounding on my door?”
He looked ready to punch something. “I am exhausted. And frustrated. And that damn air conditioner is broken again, and all I want to do is take a goddamn nap without my face melting, is that too much to ask?”
She narrowed her eyes. “Get off my porch if you’re going to talk to me that way, Caleb Gilbert. You’re out of line.”
He took three steps back, pulled at the back of his neck, then let out a frustrated “Argh!”
Jena nodded at the old shed she and her dad had been meaning to tear down. If was infested with spiders, and the boards were half rotted out. “See that shed?”
Caleb glanced over his shoulder, then back at her. “Yeah.”
“Go kick the shit out of it, then come back and talk to me like a human.”
His eyes lit up. “Really?”
“Gonna tear it down anyway.”
He strode over the shed and drove a fist straight through the siding. Jena blinked. He was even madder than she’d thought. Then he started kicking. Caleb punched and kicked the side of that shed until half of it was laying in a heap. Then he pulled off his sweat-soaked shirt and went at it again. Jena was going to look away in disgust at his blatant display of temper.
Any minute now…
You can pick up this book on Smashwords, Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It is available in mobi, epub, pdf formats.
About the Author
Elizabeth Hunter is a contemporary fantasy, paranormal romance, and contemporary romance author. She is a graduate of the University of Houston Honors College in the Department of English (Linguistics) and a former English teacher. She once substitute taught a kindergarten class, but decided that middle school was far less frightening.
She currently lives in Central California with a seven-year-old ninja who claims to be her child. She enjoys music, writing, travel, and bowling (despite the fact that she’s not very good at it.) Someday, she plans to learn how to scuba dive. And maybe hang glide… but that looks like a lot of running.
She is the author of the Elemental Mysteries and Elemental World series, the Cambio Springs series, and other works of fiction.
Giveaway per blog: (1) eBook copy of SHIFTING DREAMS. Mobi, epub, and pdf formats available. Open International.
Please contact me with the following info: name, email, preferred format (mobi, epub, pdf), and URL to your post. Thanks!
The winner can expect to receive their book by March 23rd.
As a change of pace, here is a guest post by Dawn Fairchild on Mayan-Aztec Horoscopes. An interest in these exotic astrological systems is fitting for an Aquarius Sun with a Sagittarius Rising.
By the way, I couldn’t resist checking out my day sign and found out I’m a Deer according to the Aztec system and an Owl under the Mayan. No wonder dusk is my favorite time of day!
Most people have come to associate Aztec or Mayan with the end of the world. Interestingly enough the two cultures and calendars are not too different from each other since much of the Aztec civilization was built on what was left of the Mayan. This also means much of the Aztec calendar is derived from the Mayan calendar as well. You can find much of what you need to know about the Aztec calendar below as well as the basics for understanding how your Aztec horoscope works.
The Day Signs
The calendar is broken up into eighteen groups of twenty days each for a total of 360 days within a full Aztec year (this does not include an extra five days that are always outside of this cycle). Each of the twenty days is usually represented by an animal, similar to the sun signs that are used in Western astrology. Now a traditional Aztec year is usually 260 days using thirteen groups of twenty days but they did recognize the solar year of 360 days too.
The Day Signs are known as: Cipactli (Crocodile), Ehecatl (Wind), Calli (House), Cuetzpalin (Lizard), Coatl (Snake), Miquiztli (Death), Mazatl (Deer), Tochtli (Rabbit), Atl (Water), Itzcuintli (Dog), Ozomahtli (Monkey), Malinalli (Grass), Acatl (Reed), Ocelotl (Jaguar), Cuauhtli (Eagle), Cozcacuauhtli (Vulture), Ollin (Earthquake), Tecpatl (Knife), Quiahuitl (Rain), and Xochitl (Flower).
If you would like to know the correlation between these signs and your own birthday the best method is to use an online site that will translate and provide your day sign based on your birthday. Or you can figure it out yourself based on the calendar and a little research.
The Night Signs
The second way in which the Aztec calendar is broken up is similar to our moon cycles that do not match up with our months either. The night signs are broken into thirteen signs, each assigned to a group of twenty days with 360 days in total. These signs are just like the moon signs of western astrology and they reveal a deeper level of your personality when combined with your day sign.
The Night signs are: Atlacauallo (Departure of Water), Tlacaxipehualiztli (Flaying of Men), Tozoztontli (Little Vigil), Hueytozoztli (Great Vigil), Toxcatl (Dryness), Etzalcualiztli (Meal of Corn and Beans), Tecuilhuitontli (Small Feast of the Lords), Tlaxochimaco (Birth of Flowers), Hueymiccailhuitl (Great Feast of the Dead), Ochpaniztli (Sweeping of the Roads), Teoleco (Return of the Gods), Tepeihuitl (Feast of the Gods), Quecholli (Precious Feather), Panquetzaliztli (Raising of the Banners), Atemoztli (Lowering of Water), Tititl (Stretching), Izcalli (Resurrection).
Due to the complexity of day and night signs with little information about many of the other Aztec calendar names, often you will only come across full astrological information for your Aztec day sign. In many cases the Aztec signs are brought down to just twelve to match our own current twelve month year design. Of course there are still plenty of people that follow the original Aztec system, which includes the Lords of Night and the cycle of Venus in addition to supplying the birth week information and the mapping of the directions in correlation with your birth. Doing all of these gives an in-depth analysis, but finding someone who can combine all these elements properly can be difficult.
The Lords of Night
This is an additional nine day cycle tied into the 360 days plus five year, in which each of the nine days are ruled by a different deity. There is little information on the Mayan Lords of Night, but luckily we still have the information about the Aztec Lords of Night.
They are: Xiuhtecuhtli (Turquoise lord), Itztli (Obsidian lord), Pilzintecuhtli (Prince Lord), Centeotl (Maize lord), Mictlantecuhtli (Lord of the Underworld), Chalchiuhtlicue (Jade *female* lord), Tlazoteotl (Filth Lord), Tepeyollotl (Mountain Heart Lord), Tlaloc (Rain Lord).
These lords were each in control of one of the nine levels of the underworld and each one is meant to represent the darker aspects of your personality, such as the primal instincts that might govern you.
The Venus cycle in your Aztec horoscope can be thought of as something like the Chinese yin and yang. It often represents the duality of nature and that includes your own nature. This means it can alter your day sign based solely on whether Venus was a morning star or an evening star during the week of your birth.
You can always find further information about Maya-Aztec mythology and astrology on a variety of online sites, including Oranum.com and Astrology.com, which both include sections devoted to Aztec horoscopes.
Dawn Fairchild has been practicing holistic medicine and spiritual healing for 14 years. She is a devotee of the Sacred Feminine and a seasoned aromatherapy and Ayurveda practitioner. She also enjoys horoscope writing , and has been featured on Oranum.
Waking up this morning to Venus back in Libra and an email from a reader asking about sextiles and trines in synastry, it seems like an excellent time to take a look at the difference between these two harmonious aspects in synastry vs. in the natal chart.
We find trines between signs in the same element and sextiles between friendly elements, i.e., air signs Gemini and Libra are trine and air sign Gemini is sextile fire sign Leo. In essence this makes a dialogue between those signs pleasant and the ability to find common ground easy.
In a natal chart dominated by these two aspects, the native can tend towards complacency and have little need to be assertive because most of his/her needs are easily met. It is our squares, oppositions and quincunxes that irritate us into action. Of course, if one has plenty of cardinal signs (Aries, Cancer, Libra and Capricorn) in their natal chart, those will help prod the native to get going too. Ideally we will have both tension producing and harmonious aspects . . . a balance, says Libra. *grin*
However, when looking at the synastry between charts, those same two aspects often make it possible for two individuals to enjoy each others company. I know one of the first things I look at when comparing charts is the relationship between the Sun in one chart and the Moon in the other. If the luminaries are conjunct, sextile or trine by sign, I feel those provide a solid foundation of common ground and mutual appreciation.
For example, a Leo Sun person will find a Sagittarius Moon person far more enjoyable to be around than a Scorpio Moon. The Moon in Sagittarius is happy to laugh at Leo’s jokes and both fire signs enjoy an active social life with the volume turned up high. A Scorpio Moon is far more reclusive and is very sensitive to boisterous behavior especially in their home.
It is a rare individual who thrives on a steady diet of challenge and strife. Most of us prefer to at least some down time and often seek that with our significant other. That is where the ease of harmonious aspects in synastry is very important. If we have a stressful day at work and come home to a very challenging relationship, sooner or later something will give . . . usually the relationship.
Saturn in Libra transits are “encouraging” all of us to review our relationships now. Are we compromising too much for the sake of peace? Or, conversely, are we not willing to compromise at all. Those trines and sextiles give us an avenue to approach our partners and discuss sensitive issues. The challenging aspects can make for excitement but are not much help for finding points of compromise.
In a VERY general sense, an individual with plenty of cardinal signs and a strong Mars are more tolerant of tension in their relationships while those with fixed signs and a prominent Venus go for more harmony. Lots of Neptune aspects to the personal planets increases sensitivity and Uranus aspects promote a “me first” attitude and a liking for excitement. The mutables can go either way . . . LOL.
Astrology is a very useful tool for determining whether or not we look for challenging relationships or harmonious ones. I know with a Sun and Moon in Libra, Venus in the first house and Neptune conjoining my Moon, I need those trines and sextiles in the synastry with my significant other.
How about you? Any idea of how you roll when it comes to relationships? Do you need peace or excitement?
Scorpio is a sign unusually effective at working behind the scenes and setting the stage for presenting the fait accompli. This New Moon at 13° 40″ Scorpio on November 5, 2010, 9:52 PM PDT (November 6, 2010, 12:52 AM EDT) is a very good time to get to work in this manner.
Between this lunation and the Full Moon in Taurus on November 21, three planets will station direct starting with Neptune on November 6 immediately after the New Moon. Venus and Jupiter both go direct on November 18 (a date to circle on your calendar) and as they get up to speed, we will start to see some serious forward momentum. Yay!
The Sabian symbol for 14 Scorpio offers us a good suggestion on where to focus our efforts at this time. It is “Telephone linemen at work installing new connections”. All forms of communication are highlighted and making sure those communications are reaching their intended audience in a clear, effective manner is very important. However, it is also necessary to listen for the real truth in those messages which leads us to a discussion about Mercury.
Mercury in Scorpio is noted for the ability to penetrate to the heart of the matter but in this chart it is exactly square to Neptune in Aquarius. Will this square make it easier to confuse and delude or will the edginess bring clarity? We will find out one way or another after Neptune starts picking up speed going forward. I have a vested interest in this aspect because Mercury is conjoining my Ascendant with Neptune in my third house . . .
Another aspect to Mercury is a trine from Jupiter and Uranus in Pisces, very exciting and potentially creative. How well we can take this energy and use it to good purpose depends on our willingness to be open-minded and think outside the box, otherwise with Neptune whispering in our ear, we could fall prey to our pet delusions. All I can say is double and triple check the facts and make sure your information is coming from as unbiased a source as is humanly possible. The snake oil salesmen are going to be out in force and some of what they have to say will appeal to our most cherished hopes and dreams but have little to no basis in reality.
Another planet making a significant shift is retrograde Venus in Scorpio. She will return to her home sign of Libra on November 7 with a huge sigh of relief, and remain there until she goes direct. When Venus does return to Scorpio on November 29 at least she will be direct, making her somewhat more comfortable.
Do keep in mind Venus is capable of making quite ruthless decisions, especially in Scorpio, about what’s of value and what isn’t. Don’t be too surprised if you look back and realize you have surgically incised some people from your life during this retrograde that REALLY needed to go. A sextile from Pluto, Scorpio’s ruler, to Venus in Scorpio forcibly underlines this.
Scorpio’s co-rulers, Mars and Pluto, are in Sagittarius and Capricorn respectively and consequently make an awkward semi-sextile. Mars in Sagittarius is focused on moving and moving fast, living in the moment after escaping from controlled Scorpio. Pluto in Capricorn’s cool, calm, no nonsense approach frustrates this Mars no end. The message here is to accept your limitations with grace and work within them.
It is worth noting the only close aspect to the New Moon itself is a semi-sextile from Saturn in Libra. If you are contemplating taking a new direction then Saturn is there to remind you of the importance of careful planning and preparation.
All in all, I recommend holding off on going public with your new projects until after November 18 when Jupiter and Venus go direct. Nourish those tender ideas in private and establish your connections so you can take full advantage of the positive rush of the two beneficents moving forward once more. Remember the Sun will be entering enthusiastic Sagittarius on November 22!
Image: Great shot of the New Moon behind leafless trees but I am embarrassed to say I haven’t the foggiest idea whose it is and where it came from . . .
We are approaching the thirteenth month in the Celtic calendar, the three day period from October 31 to November 2, also known as Samhain, both the ending and beginning of their year. This is a surprisingly good fit with the Pluto ruled astrological sign of Scorpio with its emphasis on clearing away the old to make way for rebirth and renewal.
The ancient Celts lived much closer to the natural world and where they lived in the northern latitudes, the days grew shorter and nights longer very quickly as Samhain approached. As part of their preparations for surviving the winter months, they culled the herds to provide food for the people leaving only the healthiest animals to feed during the deep cold. Today we have many, many barriers between us and the deep, dark cold – all the mod cons we run with electricity for starters – making it easy to forget the need to conserve the basics for survival.
It is also the time of year when my thoughts turn to mortality in part due to watching nature’s preparation for the coming winter and in part because I’m in the autumn of my own life. Last week we got a sharp reminder of this when my son-in-law’s father was diagnosed with stage four bone cancer and he is four years younger than me. The thing is no one lives forever, absolutely no one . . . though the Pluto in Leo generation as a group is trying harder than most to deny that reality. **snort**
The pace of modern life does not make introspection easy nor does it encourage us to stop and take inventory. However, with four planets in Scorpio right now and the Sun sextile Pluto in Capricorn, this is a perfect time to slow down and think about reducing the sheer amount of “stuff” most of us accumulate. We also need to discard careworn ideas and influences to make room for new ones to come into our lives.
What makes the most sense to me about starting the new year going into winter is knowing there is time to properly prepare for one’s next move once the days start to grow longer once more. Here again our fast paced lives give us little time to consider all the ramifications before leaping into something. (I know, I know, my Libra is showing . . . )
Perhaps this Halloween, we can take a few moments to acknowledge Samhain by writing down what we want to let go of on slips of paper and burning them, before heading out to celebrate this favorite Scorpio holiday!
Image: I love watching the leaves turn color then gradually start to fall, leaving fewer and fewer on the trees and shrubs as each day passes. © Diane Lang