Please welcome Jeny Heckman! She’s here to tell us how her lifelong interest in Greek mythology inspired her latest release, Dee’s Cornucopia. Take it away, Jeny!
Reading Ancient Greek Mythology in my childhood developed a deep interest in reading which prompted me to read many other books over the years. I love the ancient soap opera-like cast of Greek gods and goddesses. I was fascinated by tales of gods and goddesses, especially heart-breaking tragedies. Books on Greek mythology or containing an element of Greek mythology are one of my favorite reads. They inspired me to create my own stories about Greek gods and goddesses.
Dee’s Cornucopia is book 2.5 of my Heaven and Earth series, which is a fantastic series about the descendants of the Greek gods in modern times. The heroine of Dee’s Cornucopia is Dee (Walker) Taylor, a feisty grandmother from the Heaven & Earth series. She is a fan favorite. She doesn’t tolerate nonsense. Dee is a spark plug that makes everyone jump around her.
Dee’s Cornucopia tells the story of Dee’s life, from meeting her beloved husband to experiencing a personal tragedy and communing with Demeter, the Greek goddess of abundance. … So, entitling her book, Dee’s Cornucopia was a no brainer for me! Dee creates abundance! Dee is a breeder! She can grow anything! The Cornucopia is also the name of Dee’s nursery in Hawaii.
In classical antiquity, the cornucopia (/ ˌkɔːrnjəˈkoʊpiə, ˌkɔːrnə-, ˌkɔːrnu-, ˌkɔːrnju- /), from the Latin cornu (horn) and copia (abundance), also called the cornucopia. The corn of abundance was a symbol of plenty and food, usually it’s large horn-shaped container filled with produce, flowers, or nuts. Baskets or panniers in this form have traditionally been used in Western Asia and Europe to store and carry newly harvested food items. The horn-shaped basket was carried on the back or wrapped around the torso, leaving the harvester’s hands free to gather. Many ancient Greek statues depict one or the other God holding a cornucopia full of riches.
Its origins began with the story of the birth and the feeding of baby Zeus (the god of the Greeks and the god of thunder).
Zeus was the youngest son of the Titans, Cronus and Rhea. Cronus ate Zeus’s siblings: Poseidon, Hades, Hestia, Demeter, and Hera. However, Rhea, his mother, had a plan. She gave Cronus a rock swaddled like a baby to eat instead, and hid baby Zeus in a cave on the Island of Crete.
In the cave Zeus was raised in secret with the help of nymphs and a goat named Amalthea. Her milk helped young Zeus grow strong. One day, when Zeus was playing with Amalthea, he accidentally broke one of her horns with his superpower. But Zeus being Zeus, he also had an unusual ability. The broken horn was touched by his divine power, providing endless nourishment.
Soon came the day when Zeus was mature enough to claim the Kingdom of the World. However, Amalthea had two parting gifts for Zeus – her skin and one of her horns. She was then placed among the stars in Capra, the constellation surrounding Capella.
Her hide was used to create Zeus’s mighty thunder shield, Aegis. When the constellation Capra rises, it marks the start of the stormy season on the coasts of Greece. In ancient Greek, the word “aigis” means both “stormy weather” and “goat skin”.
As I mentioned earlier Amalthea’s horn had a special ability. It would give the owner whatever they wanted. Did you want food? No problem! Did you want more money? No problem again! As a special thanks to Melisseus, the king of Crete who helped hide young Zeus, the horn was given as a gift to his daughters.
Zeus went on to liberate his brothers and sisters by giving Cronus an herb that made him vomit them up. They then battled Cronus and the other Titans in the underworld, Tartarus. After overthrowing Cronus, Zeus was confronted with giants and the monster, Typhon, which he both defeated successfully.
The time had come for Zeus and his siblings to rule. According to Greek Mythology, Zeus drew lots with his brothers Poseidon and Hades to let luck determine who would be king of the gods. Zeus won the draw and became the ruler of the Earth and Sky. He was also considered the Lord of Mount Olympus, the highest mountain in Greece. Read more about Prophecy that started my Heaven & Earth Series in the Sea Archer the first book of my Heaven & Earth Saga and get the Quest, my interactive FREE book, to learn more about Zeus and some of the other gods.
Another Greek myth tells the story of Heracles (also known as the Roman demigod Hercules). He bestowed strength against the horned river god Achilles and brought it out of the horns to create a cornucopia.
The cornucopia is also associated with various Greek and Roman gods that represent harvest, prosperity, or spiritual abundance. Some of these deities are the incarnations of the earth, named Gaia or Terra. Other incarnations depict the children of Plutus, the sons of Demeter, the god of wealth, and the goddess of grain.
Even Hades, the god of the underworld, gives mortals agriculture, minerals, and spiritual wealth. In art, he is often depicted as holding a cornucopia.
Modern-day marketing is using many Greek mythology symbols. 21st Century has carried the symbolism of the horn of plenty. Large, flared bowls filled with fruits and vegetables are common in autumn decorations. The modern-day cornucopia is made of various materials, such as metal, wood, ceramics, stone, and the most common basket wicker. It can contain fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, and bread, or leaves, flowers, or even cattails.
A little more about Dee’s Cornucopia:
Dee Walker can kick your ass. At least she thinks so and isn’t afraid to say it. A no-nonsense spark plug, Dee keeps everyone around her hopping. She meets fellow field hand, Arthur Taylor, and her colorful world becomes even brighter when she makes him an offer he can’t turn down.
However, this story of a bright explosion of color in a monochromatic world isn’t what you might imagine, as Dee’s life doesn’t exactly turn out like she thinks it will.
This novella is the life story of Dee Taylor, the feisty and eccentric grandmother of Finn in the Heaven & Earth series. Her bright colorful muumuu’s and big floppy hat are her trademarks and this story will tell you how it all began. She also has this little ability to see future developments. Oh, and commune with the greatest Greek family in history, but she just doesn’t know it… yet.
A peek between the pages:
“My God, it’s hotter than a billy goat’s ass in a pepper patch out there,” Dee announced as she entered the office furnished with the rich fragrance of leather, old wood, coffee, and tobacco smoke.
Her boss, Bert Norton, sat hunched at his desk, puffing on his ancient pipe. His gaze snapped to hers, and he gave the merest hint of a smile before frowning at her crass expression. The two fellows, also occupying the room, stood a little straighter at her appearance, but gave each other surreptitious glares. They wore identical uniforms of scarred leather boots, dusty work trousers and damp cotton shirts, right down to the sweat-stained field-hand hats squeezed together in their enormous fists.
“Ah, sorry?” Dee phrased it almost like a question and raised her eyebrows at all the testosterone in the small space.
“Deidre, please, take a seat.” Bert gestured to one of the broad wing-back chairs occupying the area in front of his desk.
The two imposing men shifted their weight from foot to foot in apparent agitation. If I sit in that chair, I’ll look weak. Possessing a vagina created enough of a disadvantage chasm already.
“Thanks, Mr. Norton, I’ll stand. No sense in giving anyone the upper hand, right?” she quipped and slapped her hands on her hips, shifting her own weight from side to side. The corner of her boss’s lips twitched, but he sighed, and they both looked over at the two workers.
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More about Jeny:
Jeny Heckman is the award-winning Paranormal and Fantasy Romance author of the Heaven & Earth series. Since her series debut in 2018, Jeny has captured the imagination and inspired the journey of readers worldwide.
Volume One, the Sea Archer, received the esteemed, “Best in Category” award from the 2018 Chanticleer International Book Awards for Paranormal Romance. Two years later, the Warrior’s Progeny also won “Best in Category” from the Chanticleer International Book Awards for the Fantasy Romance genre, as well as earned the Crown Heart of Excellence from InD’Tale Magazine. Her standalone Women’s Fiction novel, entitled Releasing the Catch, was a finalist in the Feathered Quill awards, likewise received in 2020.
Jeny loves working with her charities, which include Hospice of the Northwest, the Michael J. Fox Parkinson’s Foundation, the Seattle Children’s Hospital, and the American Cancer Society.
Jeny lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband of over twenty-eight years.
Where to find her:
Thanks for joining us today, Jeny. Wishing you all the best with Dee’s Cornucopia!