Ericka Scott
Did you miss me?
Monday, August 9th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

No, I didn’t run away. I simply went on vacation unknowingly encountering event after event that left me without internet connectivity. I have to say that after the first week of withdrawal, I actually began to enjoy the break. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it enough to give it up altogether.

So, I’m back.

My entrance into cyberspace was greeted with a mass of e-mails, most of which weren’t very important. The ones that did need to be dealt with were the rejections from agents for Nevermore (sob) and the acceptance from L&L Dreamspell to publish it (Squee).

I’m also doing the happy dance as the kiddos went back to school today. Driving Teen is a junior this year and the boys are in first grade. According to The Husband, everyone was all smiles (even Driving Teen) and there appeared to be no first day jitters. For my part, the happy dance was tempered a bit by the fact that all this week is minimum days (sigh), but after having spent weeks on end, 24/7 with my offspring, I’m thrilled to have even a hour to myself. I took a walk, listened to a book, showered, and ate breakfast, all without interruptions. Now, if I could only get back into the swing of writing.

Before I left, I struggled to get a previous manuscript edited to the point where I could just pick it up and run with it. Or so I thought. This morning I opened the file, read the last chapter, and thought “Now what?”. Obviously my subconscious and muse were on vacation, too…I don’t think either of them have returned yet. So, I’m on my own with 100 words to write before 11:30 am. I think I can, I think I can….

Monday Madness
Tuesday, July 6th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Well, it’s 4 minutes until Tuesday, but I’m gonna ignore the clock and post this as Monday’s blog anyway. So there!

Had a great weekend. It was nice having the entire block show up for fireworks on the 4th. It’s times like yesterday when I think about my friend, Ellie. She was the glue that kept the neighborhood together for many years. It’s hard to believe that she’s been gone almost as long as I knew her. When I moved into the house in 1999, she was my first friend in the neighborhood and quickly became one of my best friends. She always had an open door and a shoulder to cry on. She was the first to celebrate successes and “everyone” knew her. Ellie lost her battle with diabetes. Hers wasn’t a sudden death, but instead was a slow insidious fight. She’s the reason I donate time, money, and passion to Brenda Novak’s auction each year. So, wherever you are, Ellie, know that I still think about you and miss you like crazy..

The kids had a topsy-turvy tired weekend, the high point of which was going to see The Last Airbender in 3D. I have to admit, I think it would have been just as good in 2D. Lets just hope I remember that when the next two movies come out.

Anyway…it’s now officially Tuesday and the boys are entering their last week of summer camp. So, I have lots of writing and editing to do. My goal is to salvage the scenes I can from my old manuscript before I take off with the kids to visit grandparents. That way, I can concentrate on only new words…which I can write on my Alphasmart or even long hand (and pay Driving Teen to type the pages in for me when we return from vacation).

Frenzied Friday Funny
Friday, July 2nd, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

Multitasking this morning to get the boys ready for day camp, myself ready for lunch with “the girls” to talk about our books, what we’ve gotten accomplished this week, and the like. And somewhere in today I’ve got to get my 500-1000 words written.

Besides, this week has been basically drama free… can you hear me cheering in the background?

So, here is your Friday funny. Enjoy — oh, and I’ll be looking for one about rejections to post up here soon. Seeing as I’ve been getting a lot of them lately. Sigh.

Too True Tuesday
Monday, June 28th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

Rejections suck.

That’s all — you may now return to your regularly scheduled life.

Friday, already?
Friday, June 25th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

Tell me it isn’t so!!!! Yet another week has flown by. I’ve been doing lots of busy work, packaging up partial manuscripts to ship off to agents (squee) and a publisher (double-squee), editing the existing words in my WIP to reflect the new direction for the story, and meeting with my writing buddy, Virginia (Amanda was AWOL this week because of her birthday). I came home with an armful of craft books (thanks, Virginia!) to work through as I continue to strive to improve my writing and my voice. However, even with all that ‘work’ accomplished, I didn’t get many “new” words written, as I am a painfully slow editor (and a sometimes slow writer, as well). However, as you can tell, there were lots of good news this week, along with the opportunity for an award!

The Covey Awards have been restarted. This email is to notify you that your entry has been posted on the site. The entry will go live on Thursday July 1st at midnight. Voting will open midday on July 2nd and will remain open until midnight on July 15th.

Title: Crisscross
Entry #: 20
Month: June

In case you’ve forgotten what the gorgeous cover looks like:

Cover for Crisscross designed by Emma Peterson

So, if you get a chance, please go vote!

I also got a spiffy new review for The Werewolf Whisperer from Sabine at Manic Readers!

Ms. Scott’s tale of werewolves in a strange town that isn’t even on the map is written in such a believable way that the reader indentifies (sic) and even has some empathy for what happens to the main characters—people who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. There were some hot scenes, but these didn’t overpower the telling of the story and added to its depth.

You can read the entire review HERE.

Oh, the family? They are doing fine. Drama Teen is almost officially Driving Teen. She passed her written test yesterday and goes for her first instructor-given driving lesson on Monday. Then, I’m sure all I’ll be hearing for the next few months is “Can I go driving?” as we have to get 50 hours of practice in over the next six months.

It was water slide day at Summer Day Camp. Love those days when all the boys have to wear is swim trunks, t-shirts, and sunscreen.

Inertia boy has had some difficulties listening and doing his RADalisious best to control all the kids/all the time (stealing game pieces so no one can play, acting up so no one can watch movies, etc.). He has today to turn it around. If not, he’ll be staying home one day next week playing “punish the parent.” Amazingly, he’s been doing better with rational thinking, so I’m trying to think positive.

And not to be left out, Scooter has picked up some really delightful vocabulary words at the camp (I’m blaming the older boys)…and has been threatened that if I hear any of them at home, there’s a bar of soap with his mouth’s name on it. He, of course, ran into the bathroom to see if it really did have his name on it (LOL).

The Husband has a programming contest kick-off tomorrow, so I’m not sure if I get a kid-free or a kid-full day… if it’s kidless, I’ll be writing, if not, I think we’ll be heading off to watch a movie and escape the heat.

Oh, how I long for for winter when the only thing “hot” was my writing….

A new week, a new schedule…
Monday, June 21st, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

I missed heading out for the boys’ swim lessons this morning. They provided a “goal” to getting out of the house on time. I did manage to get the boys to Summer Day Camp pretty much at the stroke of 10:30’ish. They missed tennis, so we’ll have to re-evaluate drop offs and pick ups for the rest of the week, so they don’t miss any of the “fun” stuff.

Also compounding this week’s monotony is that Drama Teen will become Driving Teen in a few hours (well, kind of). Her first class is tonight. She’s excited…she’s been doing her hair since the moment she woke up. Hopefully she’ll be ready to go by 4 o’clock– LOL.

I was supposed to deliver pages to my mentor (Debra Mullins, compliments of the Brenda Novak auction) this past weekend. But realized that since I’m targeting a different audience (Urban Fantasy), the word count for those books is huge (100,000 in many cases). So, I’m adding two scenes, and will have to edit a third, before I can get those pages to her. So, write, write, write is my motto for the next couple of days.

I’ve also racked up another request for a partial of Nevermore, outweighed by the number of rejections I’ve received. So, fingers crossed on hearing more positive than negative over the next few weeks ~

TGI Friday – Already?
Friday, June 18th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Well, this week has certainly marched on by. Lots happened, lots of writing, lots of inspiration, lots of rejections (yeah, I keep telling myself that they are part of the publication process, but it’s still an ouch).

Swim lessons are over. Amazingly, I’m going to miss them. The boys had a BLAST. One of them graduated to the Beginner class. I’ve never quite seen a boy take to water the way mine do, but for one, swimmers arms and kicking seemed to come natural. For the other, he was happy to huddle under a beach blanket on the cold days. I’ve decided I need new names for the boys…they graduated from kindergarten, and the #1 and #2 just isn’t as descriptive as I would like. Kinderboy#1 is our inertia boy. Whatever he is doing, he doesn’t like to stop doing until forced to…watching TV, putting on his clothes…it’s all a struggle against movement. Kinderboy#2 is my little Scooter…he scoots along, happy go lucky, never seeming to exert himself but making lots of great and steady progress. Drama Teen…well, she’s dropped much of the drama these days (Did I tell you she’s taking Driving Lessons next week! Yikes!), so she might be Driving Teen by next month (how do you spell heart failure?).

Had lunch with Amanda and Virginia from my IRL writing group. We’ll be having a standing brainstorming, writing, plotting, and eating meeting every Friday. I’m really looking forward to it. I’m a self-starter for the most part…I can bang out my word count without a reminder, but I need someone looking over my work to make sure I haven’t left the path for worlds unknown without a map and compass~!

This weekend is Father’s Day. My dad, as you may know, suffers from Alzheimer’s. Of all terminal diseases, this is one of the worst. It robs a person of family & friends, memories both new and old, and enjoyment of life. But I know that somewhere in all the lost darkness, he is still my biggest fan. Love you Daddy!

Overprotective Moms
Monday, June 14th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

My boys have to wear helmets and knee pads even if they are just riding their scooters up the sidewalk in front of the house. I don’t let me kids run up the street without walking them to the corner and eyeballing their progress to make sure they get to their destination. If they are going to a friend’s to play, I make sure there is a responsible adult at home to supervise, and I don’t let kids come over to play with my kids if only Drama Teen is home. Yes, I will stand tall and stand proud and tell you I am an overprotective mom. A myriad of reasons have shaped the way I am and how much freedom (or lack of it) I give my kids.

I may joke about being happier when my kids aren’t home (or are sleeping), but I don’t know what I would do without them… simply because once upon a time, I was a mom with no child. The ache and hurt of loss is something I have never forgotten and never want to experience again. Although Tiffany, my first baby, was lost to SIDS, my heart goes out to parents of missing children. To not know the fate of your child is heart-rending.

The statistics regarding missing children are staggering (source):

* 800,000 children younger than 18 are missing each year, or an average of 2,000 children reported missing each day.
* 200,000 children were were abducted by family members.
* 58,000 children were abducted by nonfamily members, and
* 115 children were the victims of “stereotypical” kidnapping. These crimes involve someone the child does not know, or knows only slightly, who holds the child overnight, transports the child 50 miles or more, kills the child, demands ransom, or intends to keep the child permanently.

Right now, I’ve been following the case of little Kyron Horman. His disappearance strikes a big chord with me. He’s the same age as one of my boys, and his parents are living a nightmare no parent wants to experience.

Here’s a recap of his case.

Ten days ago Kyron Horman did not come home from school. He was last seen by his stepmother after a science fair (held at the school) and approximately 150 feet from his classroom. Since then nobody has seen the boy. The Sheriff of Multnomah County now declared that the search has been classified as “a criminal investigation”.

I pray daily for him and his family and ask you to do the same.

Funderwhacking Friday Update
Friday, June 11th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Is it really Friday already?

The week has been dominated by swim lessons, summer day camp, and topped off by a visit from my best friend from college. We had a fantastic visit and vowed not to let so much time pass between visits this time. It’s a lovely intention…now, let’s just hope LIFE doesn’t interfere. LOL.

There was only one bump, rather a large one, in the middle of the week. For those of you who follow me on Twitter and Facebook, you’ve already heard about it. For those who haven’t, well, we’ll just say I’m a bit gobsmacked by a critique I received. Lots and lots and lots of comments. Some I can use, some I can’t without totally rewriting the book. On the one hand, I’m thrilled with the in-depth critique. I’ve gained a new perspective of what agents seem to be looking for and at. On the other hand, I’m dejected because this new perspective dumped this particular agent off the top of my agent wish list. I’m sure he’s a wonderful agent but not the agent for me…and as I was told earlier today. Getting an agent that fits needs as much consideration as getting a husband. If not, the working relationship/marriage is a mess.

So, I start again.

The husband has had a busy week picking boys up after day camp. It’s been nice not to have to make that last run out the door right when I’m trying to wrap up my writing and fix dinner. Unfortunately, he has to make a couple of unanticipated trips into work over the weekend. Sometime during the past week (probably right after I was eviscerated by the agent’s critique), I’ve realized that my online support isn’t quite enough for me these days. I do have a small IRL critique group, but when it comes to keeping my finger on the pulse of publishing/agents/etc. it just isn’t cutting it. So…I had a choice of two RWA chapters to visit this weekend. LARA RWA or OCC RWA. One meets Saturday, one meets Sunday. The husband’s schedule decided which one I’ll visit first~! LOL. So, LA here I come.

Too True Tuesday
Tuesday, June 8th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

Essie, The Accidental Mommy, has once again thrown out the gauntlet. Her challenge is to sing it loud, sing it proud, sing the truth about your Shameful Procrastinations.

This week’s topic is…. what do you leave until the last minute?

Um, nothing.

At which point, I’m ducking because I’m sure many of you are shouting and throwing things at your monitor.

What sort of person am I that I don’t procrastinate? I’ll hedge, and say that I may not hop right on some disdainful task (like sock folding), it may stew for a day or two, but then I write it on my to-do-list and ta-da, it gets done (I love lists).

I probably have it in my genes to procrastinate. I’d love to…however, my ex-husband was a procrastinator extraordinaire. His entire life, and by association mine during the duration of our marriage, was lived in a state of emergency. Everything from getting to work on time, getting home on time, paying bills, making appointments, everything was put off until the very last minute. Things that should have been done or done right the first time were just ignored until they had to be done RIGHT.THAT.VERY.MINUTE. And I’ve give you one guess who ended up doing almost all of those tasks for him? Yep. Yours truly. I hated it. Once we divorced, my life evened out, became, might I say it, boring.

I love boring.

After a few years, I met Mr. Wonderful…who is a bit of a procrastinator, as I’m sure most people are. However, he mans up and pays the consequences of procrastinating. Love you, honey!

I will say that not being a procrastinator has another downfall…I’m not what you might call spontaneous. I have a plan, a schedule, and darn it all, I love to keep it. Juggling three kids is not conducive to schedules, which means I have much more stress in my life than I’d like — but nothing, no way, no how, like it was with the ex-. Thank you God.