Hearts Aren’t Crystal: A Reminder

By Catherine Hedge

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERA One of my children has had a rough day.  Though I wish I could wipe it all away, the best I can do is tell her to put one foot in front of the other.  She’ll make it, my strong and persistent one.  But it reminds me that sometimes, that path forward seems impassable.  I am re-posting this old piece to remind myself that tomorrow will be brighter


Kansas is beautiful today.  The sun is brilliant. After a week of brutal cold and icy winds, the warmth penetrates the icicles hanging off my deck.  It seems they weep as they disappear.

Heartbreak is much like a winter freeze.  Some of my friends are suffering the cold of heartbreak.  I hope the thaw of healing comes soon.  This repost is for you.


Hearts Aren’t Crystal

Posted on April 22, 2012 by Catherine Hedge

By Catherine Hedge

I once read a old fairy tale about an innocent girl who met with tragedy.  The Ice Queen broke a magic crystal.  A shard flew through the air, piercing the child’s heart.  Originally sweet and loving, she became increasingly cruel and rigid while her brother tried to save her.  I wonder if that’s what happens when our hearts are broken. Sharp fragments bury themselves into our psyches  and dare us to pry them out.

I’ve never met anyone over fifteen who hasn’t had a broken heart at least once.   Sadly, most of us experience it multiple times and know all the platitudes people use to make us feel better:

“Just keep yourself busy.  You’ll get over him/her soon enough!”

“No one ever died of a broken heart.” (Are they so sure?)

“If it were real love, none of this would have ever happened.”

“Just wait.  Someone better will come along.”

You know they mean well, but all you really need is someone to wrap both arms around you, to say, “I am so very sorry….”, and to listen. Sometimes it seems you’re asking them to listen forever.  You tell the same story so often your sister, brother, mother, friend could say the next line, but still the spinning of it is healing.

You need someone to say, “It really wasn’t your fault.” Even if it was.  You need to talk about little moments, insignificant before the break-up, that become magnified into monumental foretellings.  (Why didn’t I see it coming?  How could I have been so naive?  Why wouldn’t he/she change when he/she knew I needed him/her so much?) Characteristics that were once endearing when you loved the person become traits that drive you crazy.   Places you adored, holidays you cherished,  friends you shared, you avoid in the aching, dulling  aftermath of a soured romance. That shard of heartbreak can keep digging deeper, shredding your spirit until it seems there is nothing left.

Some creatures really are made to love only once.  My daughter told me a story of a friend who used to hunt wild geese.  He was very proud of bagging a large goose until he saw the gander circling, landing, and calling out for hours for his lost love.  The sound was so mournful, he never hunted geese again.  That goose may have returned to search for years.  They mate for life.

But humans are lucky.  We do have the capacity to love again, if given the chance.  Perhaps a dear friend, a new lover, or our child reaches inside us and finds that old injury.  Somehow, with patience and hope, they tweeze out the slivers of glass.   That makes us love them even more.

©2o12 Catherine Hedge

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Interview with Award-Winning Author Helena P. Schrader

Thank you for sharing this view into the inspiration and freedom that history can give writers!

Charlene Newcomb

d88c8ede6f85d9322d24a68312a35b73Helena P. Schrader’s recent works have been awarded Readers’ Favorite Gold, a Feathered Quill, a Pinnacle Book Achievement Award, Chaucer Awards, and indieBRAG Medallions. Helena’s newest novel is The Last Crusader Kingdom: Dawn of a Dynasty in Twelfth-Century Cyprus, and I invited her to talk to me today. Readers, you are in for a treat – Helena brought pictures!

Welcome to my blog, Helena!

Thanks for having me, Char!

51+lbPa+jRLYour new novel, The Last Crusader Kingdom: Dawn of a Dynasty in Twelfth-Century Cyprus, begins after the events of Third Crusade, which you wrote about in your excellent Balian d’Ibelin series. This novel has ties to the earlier series, but it can stand on its own. What is this book about?

In a sentence: the establishment of a Latin (crusader) kingdom on the previously Byzantine island of Cyprus in the late 12th century.

Since that probably sounds fairly boring to…

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Repost: #ChillWithABookAward Winning author, Charlene Newcomb talks all things bookish with #ETLBW @charnewcomb @ChillWithABook

Congratulations, Char!  Here is a lovely interview with our Pen in Hand writer, Charlene Newcomb.


…I am delighted to welcome author Charlene Newcomb to the blog this afternoon … Huge congratulations on winning your Chill Award! You must be so happy that your work has been recognised in thi…

Source: #ChillWithABookAward Winning author, Charlene Newcomb talks all things bookish with #ETLBW @charnewcomb @ChillWithABook

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A Discovered Diamond – Book Review of For King and Country

This is great, Char! Congratulations!

Charlene Newcomb


There is a new site in town – rather, on the web – for reviews of historical fiction: Discovering Diamonds. You should definitely bookmark or follow this site if you are looking for good historical fiction.

And I am thrilled to report that For King and Country, Book II of Battle Scars, has been selected as a ‘highly recommended’ diamond. Read the great review.

“Ms Newcomb has stepped outside the normal restrictions imposed on novels set in these times in that her Henry and Stephan are not only comrades in arms, they are lovers. In a sequence of beautiful scenes, she breathes careful life into their passion, moments of tenderness and love that make it abundantly clear theirs is not a short-term relationship, theirs is the love of a lifetime.”

If you haven’t read the book, I hope the review might sway you! Give it a chance. Get…

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A Glimpse of the Caribbean

file-12-18-16-10-10-51-pmImagine getting this picture through your car window! You might enjoy reading about my Epicurean Traveler trip to Aruba!


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Writing Medieval Lincoln – Lincoln Castle

This gallery contains 6 photos.

Originally posted on Charlene Newcomb:
The Observatory Tower I wish I lived closer to Lincoln or could have the Enterprise transporter take me the 4000+ miles in a few seconds. While I am wishing for the transporter, I might as…

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GRL Retreat in Kansas City

Thank you for sharing your author’s insight, Char! I really like that phrase, “supporting author.” I am glad they support you and your strong stories, well told.

Charlene Newcomb

GRL 2016 Supporting Author

Broadening my horizons, stretching my wings. GRL is the Gay Romance Literature Retreat. According to their website, GRL is “for people who create and celebrate LGBT romance.” My Battle Scars series is historical fiction with a gay romance – it made me smile when I signed up to be a Supporting Author and organizer Teresa E. emailed and asked, “You do know this is for LGBT romance correct?” It was great to laugh with Teresa when she introduced herself at the Supporting Authors book signing. This retreat has been happening for 6 years and I am so thrilled to have finally discovered it.

I’ve been to a number of Star Wars and other SciFi conventions where the joy of sharing your love of a particular fandom with thousands of other people gives you the warm fuzzies inside. While the Internet allows us to gush online in forums, chat rooms, and Facebook, and to…

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Slight Obsession with Knights? A Fun Interview at Maria Grace’s Random Bits of Fascination

(From Cathy) Here is a delightful interview of our fiercely dedicated writer, Char. Yes…she has a great writer’s lair and an exciting start to Book III.

Charlene Newcomb

Novelist Maria Grace invited me by her blog today.

Obsessed with Star Wars, her costume is a Jedi Knight. Read on and find out more…”

2016.07 home office my home office

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Review: Men of the Cross (Battle Scars, #1) by Charlene Newcomb

And the great reviews keep coming! Char just read the first draft of opening Book Three. It’s going to be a good one!


Today I have the 21878750pleasure of sharing my review of Men of the Cross (Battle Scars, #1)
by Charlene Newcomb, a 2014 B.R.A.G Medallion Honoree

“War, political intrigue and passion… heroes… friends and lovers… and the seeds for a new Robin Hood legend await you…”

The tag line doesn’t promise too much. A historical romance with a difference, this very well researched and historically competent story illustrates events taking place between 1190 and 1193, namely parts of King Richard’s Crusade to the holy land.
It revolves around two very different knights: Henry de Grey, strong in his faith and passionate about the mission to take Jerusalem back from Saladin’s army. Stephan l’Aigle’s is more worldy a warrior.During their journey and through their adventures the two develop their attraction to each other. This includes a m/m relationship with a heat level of 2 (out of 5), which means there is some erotic content but nothing too graphic. Unlike more gratuitous…

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Of writing, Star Wars and home-coming Crusader knights

Congratulations,Char! So pleased you are getting the word out about this heartfelt and enjoyable book. We are proud to be with you in the critique group. Best of Luck!


CS me1smallToday I welcome yet another fellow writer to my blog. Char Newcomb is a Star Wars fan who writes excellent books set in medieval times – maybe not so much of a contradiction as one might think, seeing as swords play a major part in both these settings. Anyway, having recently read Char’s latest release For King and Country, I felt it appropriate to sit her down, serve her tea and cake, and throw her some questions. Plus, she has been kind enough to offer a giveaway – further details at the end of the post 🙂

First of all, congratulations on your new book. Me, I am always a bit ambivalent when I publish a book – there’s a great sense of pride and achievement, but there’s also a substantial amount of separation angst. Is it the same for you?
Thank you for inviting me to chat with you…

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