Ericka Scott
Tuesday, September 21st, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Mondays are usually the day of the week I love the best. A fresh beginning, a chance to start anew.

The Veterans Administration must share that view. On Friday, my mother got a call regarding my father’s application for long-term care. The contract had gone through, the only downfall, she would have to move him to a new nursing home — on MONDAY. Not just any old Monday, but the upcoming one. Now mind you, this call came in at 4 pm on Friday! Yikes! (For those of you who don’t know, Dad is suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease).

Mom is a person who doesn’t like change…especially not abrupt, without too much warning, change. Unfortunately, it’s a trait she’s passed along to me, although I am doing my damnedest to overcome and embrace those schedule changes that sometimes lead to bigger and better things. However, Mom, despite her nearly 80 years, still lets a little change rock her boat. Yesterday was one of those days. I fielded calls from her all day long, calm calls, desperate calls, calls that made me cry. Thankfully, today is a new day and, for her, a better one. I’ve only had one call this morning, a calm and slightly optimistically tinged call. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the trend continues.

Despite all of the turmoil, I did manage to get 1800 words plugged into my manuscript and am hoping to at least make my 500 word goal today. Wish me luck.

Don’t forget to stop by Written in Ink for Write With Me Wednesdays and on Friday, I’ll be posting a review of a Nocturne Bite, Shadow Lover, by Lydia Parks.

See you then!


Blah de blah, blah
Friday, September 17th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

It’s been one of “those” weeks. I’ve done lots and lots…couldn’t tell you any one thing in particular, and don’t feel as if I’ve gotten a darn thing accomplished. Except make a knock-off of Claim Jumper’s Apple-Whiskey Glazed Chicken. Ultra yummy, not terribly hard, and I managed to make most of it in the crock-pot. Yay, me!

Ran the boys to lots of soccer practices. The powers that be put them on the same team. I’m still not sure if that’s a good thing or a bad thing, but we’ll just live with the thing. Drama Teen has been driving to and from school…mostly a good thing except during rush hour traffic. Then it was a Mom-almost-having-a-heart-attack thing.

Also this was the year that I vowed I’d give myself better health….yeah, it’s September, and I’m finally getting around to that, but at least I didn’t wait until December. sheesh. So, I’ve had lots of little appointments, the physical, the yearly indignity that I put off for three years, the lab work, follow ups on the lab work, etc. Boy, bad health, like bad eating, sure is easier!

And I’m finding that it’s Friday and I’m already wishing it were Monday. Hello weekend, could I take a raincheck? No? Well, in that case, I’d better go find my writing mojo, because the kids will be home before I know it.


Happy Birthday Dear Daughter!
Monday, September 13th, 2010

Today marks the 17th anniversary of “The Bravest Thing I’ve Ever Done.” For those of you who know the story, prepare yourselves to be bored, yet again, by the rendition of my daughter’s birth story. In January of 1992 I gave birth to a lovely baby girl, Tiffany. Nine months later, tragedy struck in the form of SIDS, and my beautiful baby fell asleep forever. The months that followed were horrific, especially when my then-husband went into the Air Force. A little back story. The marriage was not an especially happy one. When he’d joined the Air Force, that was pretty much the last straw for me. I knew he wouldn’t be successful or happy with people yelling at him and giving him orders. And when he wasn’t happy…no one was. At the time of Tiffany’s death, I was contemplating divorce, but the state where we lived required the baby to be 1 year old before I could proceed. Then, she died and he left. Wow. I cannot even begin to express my grief, sorrow, loneliness, etc.

As he and I parted, he begged me to reconsider the divorce. To let the time in training be like a trial separation, etc. I agreed to consider it. With us apart, things got better. Our relationship improved and he honestly did seem happy in the Air Force. I convinced myself that I’d been wrong and that our marriage deserved a second chance. I visited him several times during the next few months and was startled to find out that those few visits had resulted in pregnancy. Now, I was not only sad, I was terrified, and truthfully thrilled to bits.

In the early 1990’s, SIDS was still thought to be hereditary. The pregnancy was a breeze, no morning sickness to speak off, since my husband was gone, I could eat and sleep on my own schedule. I quit my stressful job and settled in to prepare to be a married serviceman’s wife (read in June Cleaver). Several months before Ashley’s birth, I drove with my parents to California to begin my new life.

The first nine months of my daughter’s life was hell for me. I could barely sleep for worrying that I would put her down for a nap or for the night and lose her, too. Needless to say, that didn’t happen (Thank God!) and now all I have to worry about is the drama, driving, and dating.

And yes, she’s still the bravest thing I’ve ever done.

Happy Birthday Drama Teen!

Finessing a Friday
Friday, September 10th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Wow, where did the week go? I know I was already behind, as Monday was a holiday, but still…

The boys both had a visit from the tooth fairy this week. Scooter lost his tooth on Wednesday at school…not only did it fall out of his mouth on Wednesday, but he lost the tooth at school. LOL. Not to be left out of the fun, Inertia Boy came home with a tooth missing today. He, too, lost the tooth at school. So glad that tooth fairy takes IOUs!

Drama Teen is coming up on her birthday. She asked for a tortoise for a present. Sure! Here I was thinking it would be a simple pet… mucho bucks later we are the proud owners of Rosy along with all of her “stuff” — terrarium, lights (UVA and UVB), food, substrate, silk leaves to decorate her resting spot to look like the jungle, various thermometers, and food dishes. Heck…it’s like having another child.

As for me…I bought a leafy green plastic plant for the goldfish bowl,

The Husband has been spending more and more time with The Other Woman, our nickname for the programming contest held yearly. It’s like the Olympics for nerds. For years, The Husband was a judge, just recently he was promoted to contest director for the SoCal Region. I put up with The Other Woman for one reason, and one reason only….every year, the international contest is held somewhere exotic. I honeymooned in Canada during one, we went to Sweden another year. We had to miss going to China :sad: This year, the contest is going to be held somewhere I NEVER in a million years thought I would ever visit in person. EGYPT!!! We’ll be settling on dates to go and getting airline tickets this weekend. I’m still pinching myself and dreaming of pyramids, mummies, and falafel.

Oh, and I think I’ll set my next few WIPs in Egypt…do you think the IRS would consider the trip a business expense?? :lol: Okay, okay…a girl can dream, can’t she?

Have a great weekend! Until Monday….


Book Review of Son of the Sea by Nancy Holder
Saturday, September 4th, 2010
Filed under What I'm Reading

I’ve been doing some research lately for a line I’m hoping to write for. As a result, I purchased a handful of Nocturne Bites to snack on over the next few weeks. I thought it would be fun to review them as I went. This week’s offering is Son of the Sea by Nancy Holder. You can read the review over at the Written In Ink blog.

Hope to see you there!


Where Oh Where Did the Weekend Go?
Monday, August 30th, 2010
Filed under A Writer's Life

Yep, missed blogging on Friday — I was busy reading, writing, and playing around to make a new book trailer. Unfortunately, although I absolutely love it, I won’t be able to use it. I’d designed my own cover for an upcoming book (Wild Ghost Chase, releasing in 2011) but wasn’t able to obtain my publisher’s approval to use my design. I wasn’t really surprised, although I think it’s the best cover I’ve ever put together. The time wasn’t all wasted, for I got to learn how to use a new software (Photo Story 3 for Windows). Originally designed for digital scrapbooking, it works purty good for book trailers too.

The weekend flew by…we did a little of something and a lot of nothing. We did, however, have a time travel glitch. Although I had thought Drama Teen had matured 1.5 years since the “troubling times” of 2008…we had an incident rear it’s ugly head and bring it all back. Same boy, same drama, same broken trust issues. Man, oh, man… Sadly, I can’t say I was any wiser in dealing with it than I was 1.5 years ago.

Just a reminder here…I’m going to be giving up Too True Tuesdays…I just don’t have all that much to share about myself, I guess….

Instead, I’m going to be blogging over at Written In Ink with Misty Wright. She’s an unpublished author who will be blogging on Mondays about her writing journey. Won’t it be great when we can all say “we knew her when?”. As for me, I’ll be doing a Write With Me Wednesdays workshop. Then there will be free-for-all on Fridays — book reviews, guests, and contests. Lots of fun! So, if you don’t find me here, you’ll find me there…or at Myspace, where I’ll re-post all of my blogs.

Here’s to a great week!


The Tale of Three Goldfish
Monday, August 23rd, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

No, this isn’t the title of my latest work in progress. LOL. The Fair is in town and we topped off our weekend by riding the rides, eating far too much fair food, and playing a few games. Now, the boys are still young enough that games of skill are beyond them. So, we opted for the game that no matter what you hit or didn’t hit, you still won. Thus, we carried home three slightly seasick goldfish. The boys were concerned that their new pets would starve to death, so my first errand of the week was to pick up food for the fish.

Recently in our neighborhood, a small pet store opened up. Not in a strip mall, but in one of the old houses along the main drag that is zoned for both residence and business. They opened at 11 Monday morning, so I thought I’d save myself a drive into WalMart (20 minutes) and patronize this little shop instead. Oh my.

First of all, the shop was dimly lit and crowded. Not with customers, but with the oddest assortment of men I’ve run into outside a biker bar. I never did figure out which one was the owner… perhaps the young guy who booted up the computer so I could pay for my purchase, or was it the large tattooed hulk who searched the back for a large goldfish bowl? There was also a giant with biceps bigger than my thighs who was conversing with an owl (yes, a real-live whoo-ing one) sitting on a perch and eyeing me with abject curiosity. Probably because I was the only customer it had ever seen come into the store! The owner could have even been the older gentleman sporting a plaid bowler hat and chewing on an unlit cigar looking more like an old-time Vegas pit boss than an animal lover. Your guess is as good as mine. The entire shop had an unused feel to it. Oh, there were aquariums, and a few snakes in glass tanks, even a scorpion in a plastic box similar to what I’ve seen house spiders on animal documentaries. However, for a new shop, it was exceedingly dusty and dark and “different”. I had the distinct impression that if I’d known the password, I would have been invited into a back room to play poker or perhaps bet on a cock fight or two. This shop will definitely go into one of my books, although I will probably never venture back.

I’ve got water prepping for a fish transfer tomorrow…unfortunately, one of the poor things has already died and will have to be replaced. The Husband gave the nameless one a proper burial at sea (whoosh) and Inertia boy is already talking about going with me to the store to get a new fish. The big box store in the big neighboring town.

But enough about the fish, although my WIP does deal with aquatic issues, although I’m hesitant to share any details yet. Just know that I’ve tackled the new plot line for my book and am much happier with where the story is going to go and how it’s going to get to THE END. I have character worksheets to accomplish tomorrow and hope that by Wednesday, I’ll be well on my way to my heroine finding love and adventure in the South Pacific.

What about you? Any tall fish tales to share? I’d love to hear them.


The Friday Fandango
Friday, August 20th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

No, I’m not especially happy that it’s Friday; although Friday does mean that if the ice cream truck meanders by, we’ll get us some. If…

Driving Teen has been improving her driving performance by leaps and bounds: at starting, stopping, and pretty much all points between. I no longer have to take an antacid prior to and promptly after riding with her. Hurraye!

Inertia Boy has sticky, sticky, sticky fingers. He’s seven years old…yes, he should know its wrong to steal. Operative word there was should. Does he? It’s sometimes hard to tell… Last Friday, he got off the bus clutching money. I don’t allow my kids to take money to school. Where did he get it? S’s friend bought his water bottle. Huh? The little 7 oz disposable water bottle? He insists he had three of them… I sent ONE to school with him. After a round of twenty questions and elusive answers, I gave up, called the teacher (who had fled the school grounds six minutes after school let out, big sigh), left a message, put $ in envelope, and had hubby return it when he dropped off kids on Monday morning. I have yet to learn the story about the money… Then, there’s the mysterious video games that turn up at our house. “Where’d this game come from?” I found it” “Where did you find it? You were over at Z’s. Is it Z’s game ” “I found it (said over and over, more insistently each time it is repeated). For whatever reason, the fact that it was on the floor AT Z’S HOUSE when Inertia Boy “found” it doesn’t equate to the game being Z’s??? Makes me want to scream. Instead, I find myself limiting his visits to other people’s houses AND resorting to searching his pockets when he returns.

Scooter is loving school and enjoys talking to his friends. Unfortunately, his talking is sometimes conducted during class while the teacher is talking. The school gives out a color-code for behavior every day. Green, Yellow, and Red. Needless to say, Scooter has gotten a couple of yellow blocks this week. For talking out of turn. Surprise, surprise.

But what about your writing, you ask. Well, the story was stalled before I left for vacation and I think the battery died…or perhaps the whole engine dropped out. Instead of forcing the story, I’m tossing out the 80 pages I saved (sob) from the old, faded WIP and am starting over at the beginning. But to summarize the words of Richard Anderson (in character as Oscar Goldman on the Six Million Dollar Man) — Gentle Reader, I can rebuild the story. I have the technology. The story will be better than before. Better plotted with stronger characters and and wittier dialogue. A six million dollar story? I can only hope!


Too True Tuesday
Tuesday, August 17th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

A long time ago, and it seems like in a lifetime far, far away….I wrote short stories, had a few published and was looking for a “challenge”, something to “push the envelope”, “get me out of my rut”, “start me thinking out of the box” and all those other old tired cliches.

During a Google search for contests, I discovered Avon FanLit. As fate or luck would have it, I discovered it during the “voting” phase… Then, nearly tossed in my cards when I discovered the winning genre was Regency (scratching my head…what in the world is REGENCY Romance?). Well, a bit of research and I found out. Could I dare to write in a genre I’d never read or written in before? Dang tootin’ I could.

It was weeks of madness…writing two chapters, entering them, voting, monitoring votes, cursing the zero bandit, and blessing the 5-star faerie. Amazingly, I placed in the top ten for two of my chapters, giving me hope that there was a successful author lurking inside me after all. The most important part of the journey was meeting a fantastic group of women writers: Jackie Barbosa, Tessa Dare, Beverly Kendall, Sara Lindsey, well, I shouldn’t have started naming them, because now I’m going to end up leaving some out and it isn’t because I don’t know, love, and read them, it’s because I have Momnesia most days and can’t remember things like where I left my grocery list (in the laundry basket) or other important things — like names of my friends and children. Anywhoooo….

Tessa Dare has a fantastic new series out…and I stumbled upon her book trailer this morning. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Fragile Friday Update (which is why it’s on Saturday)
Saturday, August 14th, 2010
Filed under Uncategorized

Wow…what a awful, horrible, terrible week.

I feel so childish to write that, yet, it sums up everything so well. Monday started off well…all the kiddos jumped out of bed, anxious for the first day of school. They got home at noon, and the bickering started minutes later. By five p.m., the oven roaster of my patience was DONE, DONE, DONE. Stuffed kids into bed late as they went school supply shopping and hoped for a better Tuesday.

Didn’t happen.

Tuesday, Driving Teen woke up with a 101.5 degree fever. Okay, day 2 and she’s already staying home sick. Not a great way to start the school year. Then, the boys got home at noon and Scooter, my easy-going lad, was doing the SpongeBob crying thing…you know, tears spurting everywhere, rolling on the ground, etc. I called The Husband. After I hung up, slightly calmer as he’d promised to come home early to rescue me (or the kids, I’m not sure)…I took temperatures. Scooter, 101.2, and Inertia Boy, normal. Tylenol dispensed, homework tackled, and once The Husband got home, long nap taken by emotionally wrought mom.

Driving Teen’s fever not responding well to medicine at all…in fact, at 6 pm, she spiked out at 103.4. Cold bath and a trip to urgent care. By 9 pm, we had our diagnosis. Strep throat for sure, and a test ordered for Lyme Disease due to a funky looking bug bite on her leg. Okay….got her home at 10’ish, medicated her, and loaded up Scooter for his trip to Urgent Care as I was certain he, too, had strep. I’d only gotten as far as the on-ramp to the freeway when The Husband called. Remember the Lyme disease test? Well, they’d forgotten to draw the blood. Grrr. Turned around, picked up Driving Teen, and drove both kids to Urgent Care.

Scooter’s diagnosis. Strep Throat. Another trip to 24-hour pharmacy to pick up yet another antibiotic, medicine dispensed, and we all crawled into bed at 1 am. I can hardly believe it’s only TUESDAY (well, Wednesday, but wow, what a day)….

Wednesday and Thursday I put on my pseudo-CNA hat…dispensing medicine, fluffing pillows, taking temperatures, refilling drinks, sanitizing all flat surfaces… two more long days, let me tell you. The worst part was when The Husband, in an attempt to be sympathetic, told me “in twenty years, you’re going to miss these days. Try to enjoy the journey.” WTF? Now, I love The Husband. I know that those words were spoken out of love…but boy did they rankle. Enjoy the journey?!? From what planet did that dear man spring?

Friday, all kiddos supposedly healthy, were sent to school. I breathed a sigh of relief and tried to write a little – to no avail. Instead, I entered one of my 2009 releases into the Epic Book Awards Contest…mostly so I could say I did something career-oriented this week. Driving Teen has some very weird bug-bitey things going on and we’re anxious to get that Lyme disease test back… she also has some mongo tonsil swelling, which we’re not sure is totally due to the strep throat. Is she allergic to yet another antibiotic? Lord, I hope not!

Today, is Saturday and I’m finally feeling a bit brighter. The sun is starting to peek through all those heavy black clouds. As a reward, my muse visited me this morning….I’ve been a bit stuck as to where to go with the initial hero/heroine first meeting. My writing tends to the serious side…and I’ll freely admit to lovin’-me some plot…however, this next scene is all emotion with a little humor on the side. I’m excited to see how it turns out.

On Monday, I’ll be over at Jeannie Ruesch’s Happy Endings Blog talking about my most recent agent search. I sure hope that posting about it on the “Happy Endings” blog will ensure that the next time around, I, too, have a happy ending to that story.

Till then….may your weekend (and mine) be Strep-free.