Monday, December 28, 2009

Do more than Hope this New Year – Achieve your dreams!

Every New Year, you hear about resolutions. I used to do them and never achieve them. One day my husband and I were talking and we came up with the idea of goal planning for the New Year.

Wouldn’t you know it – when we planned our goals – we achieved them (or most of them).


Sit down and set realistic possibilities for meeting your dreams. Write your dreams down, and map out how you plan on reaching them. Be realistic, and only plan for the year. Remember, anything you do consistently for 6 weeks you will achieve it.


Here are some ways to trick yourself into being successful at the most common goals for the New Year;

Trick Yourself into Saving Money
Okay, let’s say you want to save more money. Well trick yourself into meeting this goal by setting up an account or direct deposit to take the money directly from your paycheck. Don’t have an atm card for this account, or a check book. Make it really difficult to get the money.
Trick Yourself into Losing Weight
Get friends to join with you in your endeavor to lose weight (chose a friend who is already achieved the goal you desire to achieve). Then sign up for a walk a thon within four months of your goal. You can also join a gym. Make a promise to yourself that you can’t go to sleep without doing some exercise (even walking up the stairs 10 times will work).
Trick Yourself into finishing that novel you always wanted to write
Join a critique group. Yep, force yourself work with other authors who desire to finish their books by the end of the year. Accountability goes a long way.


What good is planning if you don’t give yourself a reward? I treat myself with a vacation. I book a cruise or an apple vacation that I can pay on monthly. Then when it’s paid off – I get my reward.

DON'T make a resolution

Make a Plan, and a promise to do something awesome for yourself!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

What do I think of when I think of Winter

Winter, I actually have a love and hate relationship with winter. I love taking my kids snowboarding, to ski resorts, and playing in the snow. I hate driving in ice and snow. Absolutely, hate it.

I love living in a state that has all of the seasons. However, winter causes me to cozy up and do hot cocoa every night. A secret treat I love to give myself every night before bed. I also tend to gain the most weight in the winter. If I lived in a cold and rainy state I would be a lot bigger than I am, and trust me I fight to stay the size I am now.

SLEEP, I do more of this in the winter

You ever notice that because it gets darker earlier, and lighter later that you tend to sleep more in the winter? Well I do. I am not much of a sleeper. Typically 6 hours is all I require, but in the summer time, I am up in 4 hours like I am excited to start my day. The winter time requires the entire 6 hours of sleep, and I even would like to take a nap here and there.

SWEETS, I definitely eat more of these in the winter

Okay, most people gain more weight in the winter time than summer. You know why? Comfort foods are the culprit. Firstly, I definitely up my warm drink from tea to cocoa. I desire more coffee, and exercise less. There is something about cozying up with a warm blanket and watching TV while drinking cocoa that seems to be the best winter treat possible.

EAT TIL U DROP, two holidays that require a lot of eating.

Thanksgiving followed by Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanza and parties. Okay, let’s be honest, how many of you gorge yourself for Thanksgiving? *slowly raised hand* Well, then in December, all the holiday parties where you eat and drink come along. I have four to go to this year alone. You have to dig into to cookies, cakes, drinks, pies, yummy meats and treats – why? Because they only come along one time of year.


For most people, the day after Thanksgiving marks, “BLACK FRIDAY” and the start of the marathon Christmas shopping spree of the year. I used to stand in line on the day after Thanksgiving in hopes of the great deals, but now I don’t do that. I will admit to getting a rush at having my pockets filled with money to spend (I would take cash so that I wouldn’t overspend – however, I always ended up pulling out my credit card in the end).

For the last six years though, I stopped doing the “BLACK FRIDAY” sales and the shopping marathons. Funny thing is, my kids ask for less now because we travel during the holidays. Usually, they are asking to go to the pool, snowboarding or do the family games we do when traveling. We only exchange a handful of presents, and as soon as they are opened the kids want to go to the pool. Go figure.


Some of the cold realities of winter where I live is snow, freezing rain, and accidents. I have had my share, and wouldn’t trade the change of seasons for anything. There is just something about winter that makes the waiting for spring and summer all the sweeter.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


I have always, always, always had a passion for karate flicks. I grew up when Bruce Lee was the hottest action star smoking. Everyone wanted to be in one of his movies. I even took martial arts because of my obsession with his movies. You would think I would have outgrown him and flicks like that, but I haven’t.

One of my hobbies or obsessions, is to go to the local flea market and purchase karate flicks. I talk the vendor down to 4 for $25 because I go so often.


I remember a beta reader, an older guy, telling me that he absolutely loved my fight scences. He commented on how real they seemed. He wasn’t the only one. Many of my beta’s said they loved my descriptions and the defensive moves my smaller characters made.

Well I get a lot of my material from all of those years watching those Karate movies and wishing I was in them. Hey, some of the moves I even tried out on my baby brother (shhhhh…. Don’t tell him I told you that).

NINJA ASSASINS – the most recent Karate movie I went to see

Now that you know all about my obsession, then you know why I went to see this movie. This movie had it all. Cool moves, blood, a little romance, and fighting. However, even for me – a gore queen – it was a bit over the top on the blood. I would have preferred more fighting without so much cutting or slicing. This movie made KILL BILL look like a walk in the park.

With that said, I still enjoyed it. I admit it, I have a tough stomach and I couldn’t stop watching it. I did notice though that some of the ladies in the theatre got out of there. When I did go to the bathroom, one lady asked me, “Oh my, it was too much for me! What about you?” and I looked at her and said, “Oh it’s violent, but I can handle it.” We both laughed and I went back to join my husband who has the same obsession.

My recommendations for this movie is, don’t expect it to win an award. If you like gore, fighting, skimpy romance with just a chaste kiss, then you just may enjoy this movie. If I was to rate it, I’d give it a 2 stars only because I’ve seen much better karate flicks than this one.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009


When I was growing up, I had many presents in excess for Christmas. My mother would start purchasing Christmas gifts as early as spring so that she could give my brother and me all the things she thought we wanted. As a teenaged mother, this was a great feat for her.

I totally took that for granted. I was never really a materialistic person, and the things she bought me I considered were a poor excuse for her not being around. As a single mother she usually was working all of the time and I spent my time taking care of my brother and our tiny apartment in the seedy part of town in which we lived.

However, every Christmas I would awaken to a living room full of more toys than I could have ever imagined.

You would have thought that I would have learned to be more conservative with my gift giving for my own children. Well, you are wrong. I started out doing the same thing. My husband didn’t help much both because he was adopted and felt as though he wanted to give his kids the Christmas that he never had.

After several years of this excessive gift giving, my son looked at me and said, “Mommy, it’s too much. I don’t know what I want to play with.” I was jolted back to my childhood and realized that I forgot the true meaning of the season.

Now, we travel for the holidays. We take a few small gifts that we exchange. We talk about what we are grateful for and what we hope for the New Year. Over the years I am more and more surprised when I ask my older kids what they want for Christmas and they say…”Oh, not much. I’ve got everything I need.” Wow, who’d a thunk it? Christmas, about us spending time together and appreciating the gift we have of a loving family.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thanksgiving, What does it really mean?

Thanksgiving, What does it really mean?

We all know the history about the Pilgrims who held the first fateful Thanksgiving celebration to give thanks for their harvest, survival and new life. A nearby Indian tribe was invited to celebrate with the settlers and that Thanksgiving day lasted three days.

However, Thanksgiving today has lost some of that meaning. Usually around this time of year the stores gloss over the Thanksgiving holiday and focus on Christmas. One of their biggest shopping seasons of the year, which out shadows the true beauty of Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving, a pre-cursor to Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanza is drowned out by the onslaught of Black Friday – the most fevered shopping day of the year.

For me Thanksgiving has been especially special. I have so much to be thankful for. Never in a million years as a girl who had teenaged parents, who lived in the littered streets of the city would I have dreamed this life up. After fighting through so many obstacles I would have never imagined being a wife, a mother, an engineer and an author. Through all of those difficult struggles I have become so strong, so assured and so determined that I wouldn’t have changed a thing about my life. It made me who I am, and I am still a little in awe of it all. My life is proof that good things can happen in spite of a difficult childhood and trials.

I hope you look at Thanksgiving as a time to be thankful to be alive, a time to renew a desire to reach for the stars, and a time when your realize that you can do or be anything thing.

Monday, November 9, 2009


When I sit down to write my novels from a teenaged perspective, I have a lot of material to pull from. I was called all sorts of names, teased, and jeered at. I wasn’t the lowest on the totem pole, but I was somewhere near the bottom middle of the middle school pecking order. Yet, through these experiences I learned something about myself. I was a survivor and I was never a follower.


The kids in my neighborhood would spend tons of time making up games. One we played was truth or dare. Usually I wasn’t invited to play because I was the youngest kid in the neighborhood. However, this particular time, they allowed me to play seemed like the best day of my life. I was going to play with the big kids, and no longer follow behind them. That day, nitaworm had arrived, and she was on top of her little world.


The game went on as usual. Dare’s were made, secrets were told and the bottle spin. Finally, it was my turn. My moment, my acceptance, and then it came. The kid that had made the last spin, looked at me with a sneaky grin, and I knew immediately that I was doomed.


“I dare you to eat this beetle!” the kid said. I gulped. Then I compared the penalty for not going through with a challenge. The penalty was to let every kid spit in your face. The decision was difficult, the choices were both gross. However, I refused to be made to eat something that I didn’t want.


At that moment of recognition, I felt strong and fierce. Ok, no really I was scared to death. However, I stood and said , “I renege on the dare!”. There were gasp, snickers, and whispers. I held my ground, stuck out my chest and licked my lips. “You know what that means don’t ya?” the kid with the dead fat beetle snickered.

“Yeah, and I don’t care!” I said, and swallowed as a tear ran from my eye. Man I was so angry. The other kids bustle to stand in line in front of me. Never before in our game of Truth or Dare had someone challenged their fate. I was the first, and they relished in the chance to demean me further.

There I stood, as each kid gathered as much saliva in their mouths as possible and spit in my face. My eyes closed as I felt the thick, cool, wet globs slide from my forehead, down my nose to my lips. I held back a gag.

Finally, it was over. My best-friend, who was last in line did a fake spitting sound that held little or no power. Then she took out a tissue and wiped my face.

“Why didn’t you just do the dare?" she asked.

“I opened my eyes and smiled at her then said, “Cause I didn’t want to.”

Friday, November 6, 2009

My Vampire Fetish

I have a confession to make. I love vampires. I have loved the idea of a gorgeous, strong, sexy creature such as a vampire every since I was a teenager. I used to read a lot of vampire books, but fell head over heels in love with the Vampire Louis. Then of course, Louis' whining got to me and I went for the bad boy, Lestat. Oh, as I prepared to watch Twilight with my daughter (who didn't like the books, but wanted to see the movie) I watched all the Vampire movies I could snag on cable. I started with Vampire in Brooklyn, Interview with a Vampire, Queen of the Damned, 30 days of Night, Underworld, From Dusk til Dawn, Brams Stoker's Dracula, Fright Night Van Helsing, Blood the last Vampire, Vamp, Blade, Bordello of Blood and ended with Twilight. Yes, I watched them all over a 2 week period.

Although they all were the same I was intrigued with them all. However, I must admit my favorites were 30 days of Night, Blade, Blood the Last Vampire, and Underworld. I just like the kick butt, violent yet intriguingly sexy vampires.

I can't wait to see the second Twilight movie New Moon.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Halloween…Why I love being scared

I have always been a horror buff. My first scary movie was at the tender age of eight, when I snuck into the living room while my mother was watching a show called Creature Feature ( . Unfortunately for me, they were playing Night of the Living Dead…eeek!

Needless to say, I had horrible nightmares. I even begged to sleep in my mother’s bed, to no avail. However, since then I was hooked on horror. I graduated to sneaking out of bed and watching Creature Feature to experience Frankenstein, Dracula and many more as possible before getting caught.

This thirst for the thrill of fear escalated to my reading various masters of horror to include Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Frank Peretti, John Saul to name a few. My obsession didn’t stop there. I became interested in true stories of mayhem and horror also and started to watch shows that told of ghostly tales, murder mysteries and serial killers.

How did this insatiable need to be thrilled by fear help in my writing?

Little did I realize that the digesting of all of these villainous materials rapt with evil men, women, real life killers and ghostly beings would assist me in the development and understanding of creating the villains for my novels.

More Halloween reflections

So for this Halloween, realize that the thrill of the fear for some is real. Don’t become so desensitized to horror or evil that you become unsympathetic when something horrific truly happens. However, when you are enjoying the excitement that a good scary movie brings, and something creepy and crawly slithers across your feet … enjoy Halloween, a time to be frightened.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

TEEN LOVE – “Does a teenager really fall in love?”

I was hunting around on my favorite writer’s hang out on AW (Absolute Write Forums) and the topic of teen love came up. The question alluded to, ‘Does a teenager really fall in love?’ My honest opinion, why couldn’t they?


I remember being in love as a teenager only about three times. Yep, three times. Each love was so fascinating, intense, exciting, all-consuming, and obsessive. I would write the boys name in my notebook over and over again. I would think about them every free moment of the day. When I kissed that boy, it felt as though he was the sun and the moon of my very life at that time.

If I could bottle that up and sell it, it would be called LOVE POTION #9.


For me, love as an adult, was a lot slower to burn than teenaged love. As an adult, I only allowed myself to fall in love with one person. The difference between my teen love and my adult love is drastic. As an adult, I was cautious, skeptical, held back a lot of myself until the guy proved that he was trustworthy, worth my time, interesting enough to hold my interest, and sexy enough to keep me attracted.

Did it have the intensity of teen love? No, not because I didn’t feel the things I felt for my love as a teenager. I was just too jaded, mistrustful, and too smart to let anyone consume me that didn’t show that they were truly interested. Not to mention, the end of those teenaged love affairs were just too darned painful.


Yes, teenagers can fall in love. All love starts out as an infatuation. It starts with attraction, hunger, excitement, the chase, and hopefully ends in true love. True love, which consists of trust, passion, comfort, attraction, bonding, and most of all friendship. Love is worth the ride whether it ends badly or last forever.

In my case, one of my teen love’s became my adult love, who is my best friend, my husband and so much more than I ever could have imagined. Yes, at times I do allow myself to feel all those things for him I did as a teenager, but my adult ways still makes me cautious to let it totally consume me.


My motto is and will always be, live your life and enjoy the adventure of it all. That means, that whenever love is lost or you stumble along the way. Get up, dust off, plaster a smile on your face and focus on the exhilaration of the experience of love, of life, of failures, of pain, of recovery, and the adventure and experience of being able to live, learn, and to have loved.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

TUESDAY TEASER - EXPLORER X – Alpha (comes out 2/2010)

This scene takes place during Aadi’s rescue of Eirena from a cruel race named Femoh, on the planet Shrenas where she and Aadi crash land.

Aadi thought of Eirena and called out to her mind again, “Eirena! Fight! Fight!”

Aadi went forward for a physical attack, and although he was still a bit shorter than the Femoh, the power he felt throughout him refused to let him feel weak or inferior. He went for the neck of the Femoh standing ahead of him and pushed the poison that he held deep within and the image of its painful, sharp burning through the veins of the Femoh he held in a strangle hold. The Femoh looked to be in deep pain, but it would not submit. It punched Aadi in his face, and another grabbed his arms from behind. Aadi was determined to destroy them and kicked the Femoh in front of him in the stomach. With power he barely held at bay, he jerked his arms free from the Femoh that held him. Then, he turned around and punched it in the neck. He jabbed his fingers into its eyes without mercy, and it fell to its knees. Aadi kneed up into his jaw. He didn’t wait to see it fall as he followed Jantik in the direction of the huge blast they heard down the hall.

Eirena heard Aadi’s voice yell through her mind, and she had pushed all the power that she had used to bury her pain out of her stomach and through her hands, feet, and eyes, which threw Finul and the Femohs standing between her and the door down to the ground. The power surged through her like a river of fire. It hurt, yet felt addictive. She would kill them all, and now! She broke her binds, pulled the power back within her, and jumped up to stand. Her pain was forgotten as revenge, anger, and hatred at her tormentors filled her soul. The Femohs that remained standing attempted to rush toward her. She pulled deep at that power source of her pain and forced it out through the palm of her hand, knocking her attackers back against bars of the cell that held her. She walked over to Finul, who had just recovered from her first blast, his head moving from side to side. He looked up at her and smiled.

“My turn, Finul!” she said clearly in the tongue of Shrenas. He looked surprised and terrified at the realization that she knew his name in his own language. She kneeled on his stomach while keeping his colleagues at bay with the power filled surge from her left hand. She took him by the neck and started to use the power within her to choke him.

“You love giving pain? Well, I am giving it back to you!” she said as she concentrated on the feeling of the knives and the acid that had burned her skin brought forth a red beam that caused Finul to cry out in a dying pain. He started to seep blood of silver into the granite floor of the cell as Eirena heard someone yell her name.

“Eirena, don’t kill it! Stop!” Aadi screamed. He jerked the cell door open, grabbing Eirena around the waist. With no time to think about what the change had done to her, he secured her over his shoulder. He had to get them out of there alive and without any of them being captured. The remaining Femoh ran off in terror, and Finul lay unconscious and bleeding from his ear, eyes, and nose.

“No! He will die now!” Eirena yelled breathing hard with her determination to finish the deed.

“Eirena, there are millions of them. We need to go! We are in danger here!” Aadi said as he pulled Eirena up, holding her waist, adjusted her on his shoulder, and grabbed a shocked Jantik as he ran in hyper-speed through the hallway, jumping up out of the sinkhole from which he came. Eirena was too stunned by Aadi’s speed and too relieved to see him to fight to go back and finish killing her tormentors. However, as she let him carry her over his shoulder, she promised herself she would kill a lot more Femoh before they left this miserable planet.

Thursday, October 8, 2009


HAVE YOU EVER WANTED TO BE A SUPER HERO? How would you become one in real life?

Alright, I admit it; I want to be a super hero. Never mind the fact that I am a grown woman with kids. I have always wanted to be one. From the first time I saw Wonder Woman, I wanted to be like her. I wanted to be beautiful, alluring, and strong enough to do any sized opponent some real damage.

I’ll even admit that at my five feet stature, I feel like a super hero inside. I believe that because of this desire, this fantasy, I started to make this a real possibility for me in my life.


There are lots of ways we humanoids can become super heroes in real life.

I have become one by being what today’s society deems as a ‘Super Woman’. I work full time and part-time while being a mom, a wife and kicking out a novel in four months in which I live my super hero fantasies out on paper. My friends tell me that I am not normal, however doing all of these things seem completely normal to me. It is who I have conditioned myself to be.

My husband became a ‘Super Man’ when he was driving home one night and saw an accident up ahead of him. He actually jumped down a hill and over a guard rail, to turn over a three hundred pound man to give him CPR. Although he didn’t save the man’s life, he was instrumental in doing so because he tried too.

My cousin Armor (yes that is his real name) became a ‘Super Boy’ when he and his brother were playing with friends in the woods behind their home. One of the boys put a fire cracker into a gas can. Well my younger cousin Aaron went to check on the impending explosion and it blew up in his face. My cousin Armor, although typically not a strong kid, picked up his brother and ran him all the way home. His parents weren’t home at the time, so he called 911, and put his screaming brother under cool running water until the ambulance got there.

Anyone can become a ‘Super Hero’ you just have to find your gift, your strength and realize that you too can make a difference, save a life, and enrich yours at the same time.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Character Pictures for EXPLORER X - Alpha! Click on Teasers on my website

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday Teaser EXPLORER X - ALPHA battle between Aadi and Tacitus

This is a teaser from EXPLORER X – ALPHA.

This teaser takes place during a training simulation where Aadi and his team are undergoing their final challenge. They are competing against each other to win the coveted spot of lead flyer at the first expedition to Mars. They were broken up into teams and Aadi and Eirena are being attacked.

“Eirena! Damien’s coming at you! Turn around! Now!” Aadi warned as he turned in her direction and started running out of the water to try to help her.

“Oh, no you don’t!” Aadi heard Tacitus calmly state before he felt the tight grip of a lasso yoke him and then jerking him back into the water.

He let out a grunt as the suffocating rope tightened on his throat. Aadi fought to think clearly. I have to get this rope off my neck. He let the metal box fall, and the chain was still wrapped around his wrist. He struggled to fight to keep his balance. Then, he wormed his fingers between the rope and his neck and started to stand up as Tacitus stood behind him. Tacitus jerked the rope to force him back down onto his back.

Frustration filled him, and Aadi suddenly got angry. He quickly stood, twisted around, grabbed, and then pulled the rope. It jerked Tacitus within punching distance. He swung the metal box up into his hands against Tacitus’s arm with all his might. Tacitus lost the tight grip he had on the rope and Aadi. Without thought beyond the anger and determination he felt, he pulled the rope out of Tacitus’s hand. Aadi wanted this off his neck.

He put his hands through the loop and yanked the rope from his neck while he held the other end of the lasso in order to use it on Tacitus. Tacitus quickly recovered, and before Aadi could swing the lasso at him, he punched Aadi in the chest. Aadi went into flight and fell on his back in the water.

Aadi felt the cold water splash around his form-fitting helmet, and the sharpness of the impact caused him to see light between his eyes. He fought through the sensation and quickly jumped up to a squat. Determination hit him as the tingling sensation of adrenaline pumped through his blood. He felt a surge of anger as he jumped up to a fighting stance with the metal box in one hand and the rope in another. Aadi thought, I’ve got to bring him down. He knew that Tacitus wouldn’t let up, but neither would he.

Aadi then whipped the rope around to land a smack to Tacitus’s face and ran to slide across the water to build momentum to land a blow to Tacitus’s nose with his hand holding the metal box. He didn’t think but felt the rush of adrenaline before he delivered a failing blow to Tacitus’s nose. Tacitus’s head jerked back with a sharp turn to the side, only to snap back in place as he landed a blow to Aadi’s chest. A large gust of air burst from Aadi’s lungs with the blow as he slid back a few feet from where Tacitus stood. He was too focused on winning to let the sharp, piercing pain of the blow falter him. He wrapped the rope securely around his hand and swung the lasso with precision.

The lasso flew at Tacitus and snaked around his neck. Aadi charged at Tacitus, and with his hand wrapped around the metal box, he punched Tacitus with all the strength that the adrenaline rush gave him. It bought Tacitus to his knees, and Aadi sighed relief as Tacitus was a hard fighter – much harder than he would have ever anticipated.

Tacitus slowly turned his face toward Aadi. Aadi started to prepare to land the fatal blow. Then, Tacitus lifted his hand to catch Aadi’s hand that held the metal supply pack and said “Fun is over… this is mine.”

Tacitus jerked the rope that Aadi held with his left hand and pulled the metal supply pack off Aadi’s other hand, holding it firmly in his hand and with the metal box firmly in place. Tacitus returned Aadi’s look of frustration with a grin and used the metal box to land the fatal blow to his jaw.

Aadi thought, Duck, duck! But it was too late, as he saw darkness and felt a piercing pain on the left side of his head.

Aadi woke up to someone calling his name. “Aadi! Aadi!” Scott said as he shook Aadi’s arm. “Aadi, wake up! Wake up!”

“Ugh, man, my head hurts… bad!” Aadi said. He sat up and bent his knees, then put his hand to his head.

“Uh, Aadi? You do know you are out of the simulation?” Scott said, then put a hand on Aadi’s shoulder.

“You’ve got to be kidding me! Who is Eirena in there fighting? Damien and Tacitus both? She’ll never survive. They’re fighting dirty,” Aadi said and rushed to stand, He took a moment to balance himself on Scott’s shoulder.

“Well, it looks like she only has Damien to deal with. Tacitus is moving toward the last supply pack. However, I think she is still in for quite a battle,” Scott said.

“Aw, man! Why did I come out first? I really wanted to bring Damien down,” Aadi said. He finally got his equilibrium back and could stand on his own.

“Because Tacitus just wants to get it over with. Damien, though, just loves to drag out a fight,” Scott said and patted Aadi on the back. They both left the simulation area to view the big screen to watch the rest of the simulation play out.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


Okay, I admit it. I am an undercover geek. I love science, and it’s one of the reasons I love writing science fiction. Here are the nerdy facts about myself: I am in the IT field, heck I even teach IT courses occasionally, I write young adult science fiction novels for fun, and I read science journals for fun. Ooops! I’ve been exposed.

It amazes me when I read scientific journals of the leaps and bounds made in technology. One of the teasers I torment my students with is that most techie types that go into the IT field do so with dreams of grandeur. They want to build the next cutting edge technology or other. I personally wanted to go into Artificial Intelligence. However, I never seemed lucky enough to land a job where I actually was involved in a great science challenge like that. In most cases, newbie engineers realize that creating technology of any kind is actually rather boring. It consists of a lot of research, writing, planning, writing, research (oh, am I repeating – well that’s what it requires) before you ever start to create anything useful. So, what did I do? I started to write books about the gadgets and widgets that I had hoped one day to create.


Prosthetics: Did you know that sciencetist have created prototype prosthetics that can actually FEEL?! They can also pick up something as small as a grape? Well, let’s kick it up a notch, and say that the user can control the prosthetic by brain waves. There are current technological advances that prove that this is possible.

Human thoughts can control technology: Did you know that technology exist, that allow human subjects to speak mentally (using brain waves) to computers? Amazing!

Animated Holograms: Did you know that an interactive ecosystem has been made, that allows children to create trees or other objects with their body. Also this technology was utilized to create a giant sea monster in the Tokyo Bay to promote the film, “The Water Horse.” These are forms of Heliodisplay technology that projects video onto the thin air.

Cloning: Let’s not forget this! Currently scientist are working on perfecting the cloning of human embryos for study of stem cells which could lead to curing infertility problems of hosts, and curing other known diseases.

The list goes on and on. Soon as a science fiction writer I will have to push myself further and further to come up with new ideas that can shape the minds of young scientist of the future.

Friday, September 18, 2009

MY GUILTY PLEASURES – Going to the movies

I have several guilty pleasures. Simple things that I just don’t think I would survive if for some reason they were taken away. Okay, here they are; chocolate, writing, traveling and going to the movies.

Before I started promoting my book, we went to the movies every Friday. My husband and I were the head critiques of the movies we viewed and would ask the kids (the time that they would accompany us) their opinions.

This week was the first time I have gone to the movies with my family in months, and I have been suffering because of it. So today, I took off of work, and after I ran all of my errands, I called my husband to play hooky from his job and join me to see the movie 9.

Now, just so you know, I am an easy going movie critic. I go to the movies simply to be entertained. My expectations on plot depend on my expectations of a movie. If it’s Horror, Sci-Fi, Action Adventure or Animated I don’t expect the plot to be strong. Quite frankly for those types of movies, I just want an awesome ride.

My Movie Review of 9

Truthfully I don’t really seek out Tim Burton’s twisted tales. I mistakenly took my scaredy-cat daughter to see Caroline and she was never the same (LOL). This time, I didn’t take her. I took my husband.

Of course it was dark, and there was a story line based on the twisted fate of humanity over machines and saving the human soul. Truth be told I enjoyed it, but I would only give it a lukewarm rating like 2.5 stars. I was disappointed in the ending, and the action was just okay. I really think that they had an opportunity to do so much more for the movie, but to be honest my expectations weren’t that high so I just simply enjoyed being enveloped in this tale.

After that movie, I went home and watched THE MATRIX to get my high action fix for the weekend.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

How I, a Sci-Fi Author Build Worlds – My perspective of World Building

World Building ... my way

I once participated in a Sci-Fi critique group, where one of the authors asked about World Building. Our leader never expanded on this topic. When this topic was bought up, I pondered what I did when I build the many worlds I create for my books.

I believe everyone has their own methods. However, here are some of mine that help me throughout the process.


I love to travel, as I have mentioned many times before. Traveling and exposing yourself to different wonders of our world can be a catalyst for the creation of your new world.


If traveling is not possible, or even if it is, take time to study and observe your surroundings. Things that may not seem interesting initially can become an integral part of the world you create. When you are walking, or touring areas take your time, allow your imagination to go beyond the obvious and ask yourself many questions. For example, when I am flying in an airplane, I ask myself, “What if the clouds were black, blue, grey?” What if the sun was white? Or lower to the ground? What if the plants had fingers? Push yourself to expand on the world around you.


I do a lot of research on the internet. Truth be told, I don’t do a lot of reading, I just look at pictures. I tend to look at pictures for a long time, and sit back and see if it fits into my world.

I note what extremes I want my world to have.

I note what rules my world should have.

I note what kind of species could live in that world.

How would a human sustain this environment?

Should I create something artificial in order to allow my humans to live here?


I draw out parts of my world or cut out pictures of places or things that fit in the world I am starting to create.


I tend to create this elaborate world, and then I take out a lot of the microscopic pieces that I believe the reader can fill in. However, I give the backdrop in the world the reader creates. I note the rules for that world, its species, animals and weaknesses.


Research other mythological worlds, and change them, pervert them or and enhance them to fit your characters needs.


Address the main guidepost of your world. How is it powered? Is it advanced? Is it rugged? What’s the climate? What does the land look like? Does it has a sun or moon? Are there animals there? What are the major species?


Note how your character fits into this world? Are they from here? Do they visit? How do they survive? Communicate with the species on this planet?

When I world build it comes natural to me, because I’ve always loved science and like to spend time pondering its wonders. However, taking notes, going exploring, drawing it out, and making DA RULES has helped me greatly in creating the worlds in my novels.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

A trip to Newport, RI and how it inspired my writing

I love to travel!!! It gives me so many great resources for my active imagination. Lots of times when we travel we do rode trips. Why? Because having four kids means living on somewhat of a budget. Let's face it, if I am going to bust my butt working a full-time job and teaching on the side, I am going to enjoy my life and eek out time to step away from it all. Now, I must admit, I am a little obsessive about traveling, and I try to go somewhere every month even if its just up the road. I've always had this obsession, but never really travelled until about seven years ago when my husband and I lost to cancer four close family members consecutively. My husband's cousin (upon realization of his impending deterioration of health) told us that if he had his life to do over again, he would have gone more places with his kids. He would have adventured places that he had never gone to before, and he would have made the time, taken the money to treat himself and his family first. Well after that talk with him, we decided we needed to re-focus our lives. Sure we both loved working hard, but now, we would make sure we played hard also.

Anyways, on my trip to Newport we stopped in New Jersey to Six Flags. It was packed and hot, but we are thrill seekers and sought out the coasters first hand, and waited no less than 45 minutes for each ride.

While my dear husband drives (because he doesn't trust my driving) I hook up my computer and write. I also read to them (hey a writer's dream is a captive audience) while we ride. My family is my first critique group and trust me, they don't hold back. There has been many of family arguments about the turn of events in my writing.

Newport for me was awesome. We arrived on a sunny day to look out of our room to a sea of boats. All kinds, big and small. I was awestruck, because I had never seen that many boats before. My kids, loved it, and we would sit out and eat while watching the boats.

The best, best, best and most interesting part of our trip was when we went to Brenton Point State Park, by way of ocean blvd. We went up on a bright sunny day, and viewed gorgeous historical mansions that we fantasized about living in. We made up stories of being royalty and waking up to see mermaids in the sea. WELL, let me tell you that all changed later...

We got to Brenton Point and the sky was filled with kytes -- ok let me take this moment to tell you that my dear husband is a big kid whose secret obsession is kyte flying -- we were in awe. So beautiful. We purchased a kyte while there, and launched it easily into the air. The breeze their was wonderful and before we knew we had been flying the kyte for hours.

Then it happened - THE FOG - ok, I have to admit, I didn't do as much research on this trip as I have done on many others. I was TOTALLY surprised at how quickly the fog came in, and how thick it was. Well we looked around and saw the vendors calmly pack up, as if to say, "The fog is not going anywhere, time to go". Well we were slow to get the message and we had lost our kite in the thick fog.

My dear son takes that opportunity to remind me that the fog is like in the movie, THE FOG. I am starting to get tingles from having a small freak out scared cat session, because I looked up and EVERYONE else that was at the park had left. Ugh....

Anyways, we packed up and left -- but was hooked, and made it a point to come back.
Remember, I mentioned that we wished we lived in the mansions that we passed on our way up to the park -- Well, those mansions turned REALLY spooky looking on the way back, and needless to say, we all said that we would never want to live in one of those mansions after the FOG sets in. Although, it was hauntingly beautiful, my imagination would get the best of me every single time the FOG rolled in.

This trip inspired the new world that I am building in EXPLORER X - Book 2, because it was so beautiful, yet frightening for this new explorer.

Our Trip Report, just in case you would like to explore this wonderful place, and write your own story about your adventure.

Sat – Easton's Beach. The playground, carousel and snack bar were all a hit. There is also an aquarium. The beach is well-maintained but you may experience a little algae. Gooseberry Beach is more ($20 a car vs. $10) but is also a good option for smaller bathers. Overall, the beach was definitely a disappointment to us spoiled beach goers. So we played in the sand instead and made it a great time.

- Scenic Drive on Ocean Drive to view the Mansions - I really enjoyed this. Lucky for us we went on a sunny day, because the next day we went the mansions were draped in fog. Very eerie and spooky looking, which was great to see also. The mansions were all very different and impressive, definitely worth the ride.

- Brenton Point State Park

- This was the best part of our trip. This place is gorgeous. We were able to fly kytes for hours here, while looking over at the water crashing against the rocks. Bring a picnic lunch and hang out here, walk on the rocks and take pictures. Most of all, bring a kite. If you do not there is a guy that sales them. The sky was filled with them the first day we went. We loved it so much we went to Walmart and got everyone kites. However we did buy a nice cloth kite from the guy for $30 and it was worth it. We were able to fly kites and enjoy the day until about 6pm when the fog rolled in and took over. You could barely see in front of you. It was a great experience for the kids because they had never seen any thing like this before and neither had we.

Sun – The Cliff Walk is a public access road running three and a half miles along the shore of Newport, and offers a breathtaking view of the mansions and the Atlantic Ocean, sometimes aspiring to heights as high as seventy feet! This was nice. Definitely a must do, although we did not do the whole 3 miles.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

My First Day As A Blogger...

Wow! I am now all set up with my first blog. My book EXPLORER X- Alpha is finshed the editing process and is on its way to press. This is extremely exciting for me. After many iterations, and holding my family hostage on long road trips to read this saga it is finally being birthed to the world.

Well just to share a little about me. I have four kids, and work full-time as a Engineer. I also teach IT related classes part-time at a university. You can definately say I am a Hyper Active person. Growing up in Washington, DC taught me to be a multi-tasker. When you live in a big city you love being active. My husband pulled me (kicking and screaming) to the Maryland and I finally moved into a single family home. You see he never realized that I personally had never lived in a single family home. Living in the city, where I grew up, you lived in a row home or an apartment. I had grown up living in both.

Now about my book. My main character's name is Aadi. You'll learn more about him if you like reading Young Adult Science Fiction. His adventure takes him from earth to a distant galaxy. He takes his life at home for granted. Never wanting to go to space, he didn't realize the true reason for his invite to Space Camp until it was too late. He and his team of cadets include Damien, Eirena, Scott, Dakota, Raiko, Tacitus, and Carter. You'll meet all of them during your adventure, and trust me you will love them all (well maybe not all of them).

If you are wondering how I came up with the idea of EXPLORER X - Alpha, I have to say my husband challenged me. We were riding in the car on one of our long driving trips and out of the blue he says, "You should write a book."

A little background on me: I used to write all the time when I was younger, and believe it or not I knew my husband then. We were good friends and spent hours talking about our dreams and aspirations on the phone.

My husband is and has always been a Science Fiction buff. I personally was always an adrenaline junkie who loved horror growing up. I read horror books, and watched horror movies all the time.

After he told me I should write a book, I replied, "I don't know, the last book I started I lost interest. The story bored me."

He responded by telling me that I should write Science Fiction. That way I would have nothing to hold back my imagination. Later that night I pondered on a story idea. Aadi came to me in a dream and told me his story. That's how many of my characters have come to me. The campfire of my mind during my sleep.

I told him my idea and he looked at me with shock and said, "You need to write that book!"

The rest is history.