The blog of D Kai Wilson-Viola

Author, advocate, designer, mental health advocate and parent. 

O for oracle (and tarot)

O for oracle (and tarot)

This entry is part 19 of 22 in the series AtoZ 2023 - The AtoZ of Me

I’ve got a really cool collection of Oracle and Tarot cards. I use them when writing, when considering what to do next, and just for comfort. Today, I thought I’d share some of my favorite oracle and tarot decks, and why I love them so much.
(I bought mine, mostly, from my friendly local gaming store, Etsy, or was gifted them – most of the links to purchases for these are either Etsy, or if I can’t find them there, Amazon, so some might be affiliate links).

This is just a small set of my decks.

How I use them…

I use my tarot decks and oracle decks for everything from asking a question about something I’m struggling with, to using them to plot stories or seek inspiration. I have even generated out random stories to just spread my wings or play.

I love my Oracle decks the best really – the Starseed one often shows me ‘wait’. Until recently anyway.

Pictured – Octopus Tarot (Kickstarter)
Elemental power Tarot
Supernatural Tarot (I also have a Stranger Things, Diablo, Skyrim deck, and a fairytales deck which is my absolute favorite tarot right now).
Urban Oracle Deck – from the creator
The enchanted Map Oracle cards
And the Starseed Deck, which I got on Etsy from a lovely store. (she doesn’t have that deck any more, but I get ALL of my stones from her that aren’t picked out in person, so if you are looking for lovely stones, check her out! I also have other tarot and oracle sets from her – she always goes above and beyond to ensure everything is perfect!)

What I’m doing going forward

Now that I’ve gotten set up in my own office, I’ll be offering three card oracle and tarot readings with the deck of people’s choice, and I’ll be sharing my oracle and tarot draws on a new page. If you’re interested in seeing the artwork or how I interpret my pulls, please sign up at my Facebook page (it’ll be a blog eventually ;)). And yup, it’s shared with my daughter, Artenapan :).
We’re also in the process of designing a tarot tracking book, for all spread types that we use, so that’s fun.

M is for music

M is for music

This entry is part 17 of 22 in the series AtoZ 2023 - The AtoZ of Me

Today, I’m setting up my office (it’s our walk in wardrobe with the cutest Edwardian (style?) writing desk, covered in plants, pens and books, having managed to luck into a free day of writing. Normally, we’d be at another friend’s, playing Gloomhaven, but plans fell through, and my partner and I decided to use that time to do other stuff. He’s off having coffee with another dear friend, and, as I have a horrible ear infection, I was going to stay in bed and generally feel sorry for myself. And then I thought I could just get the room sorted for the summer season writing projects, so I did.

Music is a big part of my life – before Spotify, I’d turn my computer on in the morning, and we’d listen to music getting ready. Before that it was a stereo and CD’s, or tapes, or Vinyl. I grew up in a household where music – many styles – were enjoyed, so I’ve got a pretty wide-ranging set of tastes for music, and enjoy playing instruments too.

From woodwind to string, percussive and piano

I was really lucky, growing up, that I was given the chance to enjoy learning multiple instruments. I played the recorder, the piano, the flute, the cello, the guitar, and eventually, the tuba, officially at school, then went on to play various instruments. I’ve still got my flute, but I also play the mandolin now, something I’m almost confident enough to film myself doing. Music though, has always been something I’m obsessed with – mirroring today’s post is a post on my writing blog about the music that influenced my books.

It’s easier now to enjoy music, in some ways – I have access to most of the songs I love via Amazon, Spotify, or my own collection, and I still enjoy live music. I still sing, and my friends even know me well enough to know that I can’t compete in games for identifying music, probably because I’d never duel to get the points, but also because I know most of the music they picked. (Ludobury, I get to keep score!)

Today, I thought I’d make it easy to get to know me by sharing some of the stuff Spotify knows about my music taste – my yearly favorites for the year, and my “happy” playlist.

Got any recommendations for me to look at?

(and if you’d like to add me on Spotify, I’m here)

L is for LudoSport #MondayBlogs #OneNameOneSky

L is for LudoSport #MondayBlogs #OneNameOneSky

This entry is part 16 of 22 in the series AtoZ 2023 - The AtoZ of Me

Just under a year and a half ago, I took part in a discovery class which changed my life. And I don’t mean that with any hyperbole. I mean it literally.

I have, as i’ve mentioned, CPTSD, anxiety and I’ll talk a little about psychosis later in the month. It’s also something I talk about in ‘Run Girl, Run’, which will be on my other blog later in the month.

How I joined…

(I’ve talked about LudoSport before a few times on my blog, so you may already know some of this)

Lockdown was, I guess, sort of the normal point of my life for the last five years, so 2020 wasn’t the shock it could have been to me. In fact, the only thing I really missed was going out for coffee with friends, and gaming with friends, which were not regular things. We stopped attending the cinema, but again, it was something I didn’t miss. My world was basically, Tempus, my kids, my cats, and I was even pulling away, I guess, online. I saw my family occasionally, when they visited us, and we visited them, but, I lived a very isolated life. I’d run Nanowrimo and Camp Nanowrimo, as I could, but I didn’t like to leave the house. At all. I’d go see my psych for treatment, and even then, by lockdown, all that happened was that I was living in a world where everyone in the UK was, basically, doing the same as me.

We both came out of lockdown looking to do something about our health. In my case, I went along to the discovery session to see what Tempus was talking about, because I fully expected not to enjoy it. But I did. A year and a half (nearly) later, and here I am, an Initiate, moving through Form 2, looking forward to the summer and more training, and then hopefully Form 3. I don’t duel often, but Thursday, unless I’m sick, is reserved, always for LudoSport. And if I’m sick and not contagious, I still often try to attend. Even if I can’t train, watching everyone lets me absorb so much.

We train, to our own needs, year round. We compete in the UK, and internationally (well, I mean ‘we’ as in the Academy. I rarely compete, because it’s not what I enjoy. And, honestly? That’s also ok. I don’t compete as much, but I go along and I provide help. If you know my role in the indie author community, sound familiar?) 🙂

That was October 2021. By December 2021, we both joined the Order of the Tempest, Clan Siren. We joined an amazing community, with so many wonderful people. Our Order, in Bristol, is the home of the current UK champion (our co-Rector and a good friend) and we’ve had several UK champions before him from our Order. More locally, there’s an academy in Cheltenham, Order or St Luke’s (who were not running when we started, and but we do join them for duelling when we’ve got time), and then there’s Birmingham, Liverpool and Manchester. There are more hopefully coming, as, there’s now a push to train people to open academies.

A special community

I wanted to be clear on this – LudoSport isn’t pretending – it’s a controlled, rules based, safety oriented contact sport. It’s an all over workout. It’s great fun. And yes, it does really involve lightsabers. But, I think what makes it for me, more than all of that, is all of the people I’ve met. From the team at Bristol and those that I train with, and out visitors, but beyond that, there’s so many nice people in the UK, and those that I’ve met from the international community. And I did say ‘they changed my life’.
There’s the easy stuff I can point to is that I’ve gone from 110lb, to 95lb. I’m a bit more confident and can do stuff that I’ve not been able to manage for years – I can go into shops and I can talk to people again. I can go off and grab my own little bits and pieces when others need to be somewhere. I can sometimes even leave the house to go for a walk, and frequently do go outside to the shared lawn near our house and practice with my saber. It might seem like small things to others, but… I even managed (mostly) to battle at Reignite the Light this year. For someone that, at one point, refused to leave my bed, and was told that I’d be untreatable, I think this is huge.

And while I know a lot of what appears (including in the Times, recently, for our international ‘Reignite the light 2.0’ tournament) is about the lightsabers, the thing I want to talk about in LudoSport isn’t just the fact that we get to duel, and are learning an interesting, engaging, FUN sport, but that they’re so good to us while doing it.

LudoSport is all inclusive. Doesn’t matter what you’re comfortable with, you can do everything that you can, and accomodations are made to support you. And just saying it like that isn’t…quite…enough, I guess. It doesn’t explain how caring and supportive everyone is. When I’ve had a bad night at training, whether it’s been because I’ve managed to ‘trigger’ myself (as in, something has made me unsettled, or I’m having a bad day because of my mental health and it hasn’t improved while training, the distraction hasn’t worked), or because I’ve just had an uncomfortable night in general (cause honestly? Any sport that you train in can just not be great, as in, it wasn’t a good, optimal day, you couldn’t feel good about what you did…all of that), and we all check in with one another. Our clan chats are hilarious, and as an Academy, we’ve been to a concert together. And, honestly, part of the ‘community’ is Porksides. Social events, sometimes after tournaments, where we all eat, meet, socialise together and hang out. There’s international tournaments, and a week of training in Italy, during the summer, for those that want intense practice, but…it really is all about what you want to get out of it. And, I guess, what you put in.

Would you like to join in?

I’d love to see LudoSport explode and give everyone a chance to enjoy it. I love the community and feel that there’s a lot that can come of it. I don’t know if it’d work as therapy the same was as it does for me, but I am talking to people about that. What I do know is that we’re a good community – the world over – and there are academies opening all the time. And the discovery sessions are a great way to get into it. If there’s not an Academy near you, keep an eye on LudoSport UK (for the UK) and LudoSport International for the rest of the world, because we’ve just had a batch of technicos train, to teach others to run an academy. The UK is running a class soon, while I’m sure there are others running elsewhere.

Let me know if you’ve got questions – if I can’t answer them, I’ll tag someone that can, and let me know what you think?


UK Academy social media

Bristol –
Cheltenham –
Birmingham –
Liverpool –
Manchester –

And LudoSport International –

Wanna see some EPIC combat? Check out the pages, watch out for when we announce tournaments, and have a look around. I’m only at the beginning of my journey with the sport, and I’m in my 40’s, so it’s not just for young people either. Give it a try! 

(With thanks, as ever, to my LudoSport community, who helped me put this post together, gave me the graphics, and the links to use. You guys rock!)

Rebooting… #Mondayblogs #rungirlrun

Rebooting… #Mondayblogs #rungirlrun

I kinda feel like I’m watching a flashing cursor sometimes right now. As I said in my last post though, Tempus is talking about giving me space to do something to make me happy.
And honestly? it’s been a bit of a shock. And a bit of a weird thing to start organizing.

And it’s a LOT like starting at a blinking cursor. A blank document.
But it’s full of hope, if I’m honest. Blank is scary, but blank also means endless – or nearly endless – possibilities.

First tentative steps

I’m not stepping away completely from my business – after all, I’ve run a hosting company and written before. I’m also not stopping formatting books, as it makes no sense to. But I am stopping the plans I had for coaching and teaching. I’ll be running a 30 day writing challenge from the 30th September, and I’m looking at what I can do to write and set myself up.

It’s not easy choices, if I’m honest – so this week really is about consolidating and working out what to do. Pivoting back to writing isn’t as easy as going ‘yus, writing time!’. I’ve still got commitments to clients, but I don’t think I’ll be taking on new ones for a while. I want to take this opportunity – it would be entirely ungrateful to do otherwise.


I do very much feel like I’m rebooting my computer inside my head though. And maybe even doing a little bit of a clean install – removing some of the stuff I don’t need right now. It isn’t the easiest of things, if I’m honest, but, I am really lucky. I’ve got this opportunity, and I don’t want to waste it.
I am, thinking hard, in short.

So…what do you guys think? What should I do? I’m looking at books and trying to decide what to write, but for now, I’ll be working on my backlist and thinking.

B is for Books #atozchallenge2022

B is for Books #atozchallenge2022

This entry is part 4 of 10 in the series Blogging From AtoZ 2022

I’m not entirely sure what I’m going to say in this post about books, because those people that know me also know it’s pretty much all I talk about outside of Ludosport and gaming and my family.
I was going to share a cornucopia of ‘coming soon’, but then I got Covid (next post) and that kinda got scrapped. I’ve been struggling really, and it’s not a pleasant feeling.

B for Books also links to N for Nanowrimo

At the core of my writing, whether it’s clear or not, is a project called Nanowrimo. I write a lot during the three months of Nanowrimo, and am…less disciplined the rest of the year, though, to be fair, I do write, every day. Just not always my books. And to be honest? That’s something that kinda bothers me.
I’m pretty sure that I’ve said this before, but I’ve always felt I was built for certain things. Writing, being a mother (though, honestly? That came less naturally. I was still different to what people expected, but I found – and still find it – very hard.). Beyond that, I live with some other roles that I am – an advocate, a friend, an artist, a student. I’m constantly, consistently all about words though.

I wanted to announce books today, so I think I shall 😉

Out among the Stars comes first and will be FREE. It’s a short story from an old anthology I was part of. DungeonBashers and Black Monday are part of the same universe. Teine, which is Gaelic for fire, is my latest collection of essays and stories.
Get news on them by signing up on my newsletter, and all the free books (Out among the stars, Footnotes to a Lesson, The Firemaids’ Temple, Vivarium, and finally, Funhouse. Want info on all of them? It’s coming really soon!)

And how does it relate to the theme I’m trying to write about? The duality of knowing I need to write books versus finding everything from the motivation to the time, I am often at war with myself.

The Covidcoaster – a week of ill #Mondayblogs #rungirlrun #kaiatus #Bloggingfromatoz

The Covidcoaster – a week of ill #Mondayblogs #rungirlrun #kaiatus #Bloggingfromatoz

Last Monday, I posted about how myself and my youngest tested positive for CV19. Monday/Tuesday, I started getting really sick. Monday, I’d been quite cheerful – after all, Artenapan, my daughter, had had three days of a cough and little else. That’s not how it played out for me (spoiler, it’s REALLY not how it played out for me).
The net result of last week was a week spent either in bed, sleeping, in a cool bath, or generally feeling like I was being slowly boiling alive. I mean it’s been great for story ideas (that make zero sense now that I’m thinking through them, but they worked when I was awake at three in the morning, staring at the roof), but it’s also been less than brilliant looking at what I’ve wanted to do over the last few months.

And heading towards #Kaiatus too…

The plan was that by this time now, we’d have several books out, I’d be tending towards various more announcements, but the truth is, I’ve struggled, a lot. I don’t have excuses, it’s just how it’s been the last few…it’s just how it is.
I’m planning on changing that as we move forward, but I’ve decided to go with the flow. We were going to offer a bundle for the rest of the year with various books, but I’ve got to be honest, I’m not sure I want to promise that. I’d like to say we’re doing something to move forward, but…I can’t say what we’re doing till we do it.
I’m working on my pages, I’m working on projects, I’m working on my happiness. I’m working on my writing. I’m working on myself mostly. But I’ll be moving forward as I can. We’ve got so much back end work to do but it’ll be ok once we get there. But I can’t say when it’ll be. I’m just pulling myself up for now and hoping that we’ll eventually just make everything click. 🙂
And then there’s Camp Nanowrimo too!

On the 1st, I’ll be starting the A to Z, and I’m hoping that I keep improving, but I’ve been so tired and sore and it’s just…. hard to think about what I’m doing moving forward, until I’m moving. But the thing is, I am moving. So, we’ll see.
I’m hoping too, to unveil a new look here, but that’s been delayed because I was sick.

Anyone else taking part in the A to Z? What are you doing?