Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Old Yearbooks...

make for fun reading! When I went to high school we had limited funds and a yearbook expense was usually out of the question. Thanks to babysitting money, I was able to purchase my Freshman and Senior high school yearbooks. A couple of days ago, I brought them out of storage to look for pictures of a couple friends (story on that follows). Oh, the wealth of reading material I found inside. Like this one:

Remember the boy in the country,
Remember the boy in the town,
Remember the boy who spoiled your book
By writing upside down.

And this one from one of the friends whose picture I had looked up:

A very sweet, generous, cute, loveable, adorable,
kind, considerate, ambitious, studious,
smart, understanding, wise,
small little girl.

Those were signatures in my Freshman book. These are gems from my senior book:

Lots of luck to a nice girl who doesn't drink,
but goes out with too many boys.
(And this one wasn't signed!)

How about:

Remember our Government class, and lots
of luck in the future.
(Now I don't know about you, but I don't
remember one thing about that government class!)

And this one:

To the smartest girl in our Calculus class!

Oh, I have had so much fun! Why did I look up pictures? Over the Memorial Day holiday weekend, we drove to southern Illinois to visit my mother. When I heard that one of my old friends was the pastor at the church I attended way back when...and that he was married to another of my friends, I had to look up their pictures to see what they looked like back then. If I had looked at them before the trip, I still wouldn't have recognized the bearded man who greeted us as we entered the church, nor his wife, my friend also. She and her cousin and I were baptized at the same time on Mother's Day, May 12 (a long time ago). LOL

It was fun meeting them again, and we now have email addresses so we can get caught up and keep in touch.

Now I'll go pack the yearbooks up for a few more years. This has inspired a story that is spinning in my head

Oh, and I'm still on goal with Joshua's Hope. Only 76 pages to go! I've been averaging 10 or more pages a day.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Reviews and More

Today, The Romance Studio posted a review for Hit and Run giving it four and a half hearts!! I had decided they weren't going to review my book since I'd sent it to them last September. One never knows when a review might pop up.

Read the Review

If you are a writer and spend lots of time googling your name to see if there are any new reviews, have you checked out the new alert function? All you need to do is put in your search words and give them your email and you'll receive email alerts whenever new stuff is posted.

Link is Here

Tomorrow morning we're heading off to southern Illinois to visit with my mother. It's a very long and boring drive. I'm hoping hubby will drive at least to Indianapolis so I can get some writing done. The only thing is, he loves to talk and that distracts me. Or, when he isn't talking, he's playing CD's very LOUDLY that grate on my nerves. I'm on the home stretch for Joshua's Hope and have a very good feeling that I should be finished before June17th. That's my personal goal date.

See you all next week! For those in the U.S., have a very safe and happy Memorial Day weekend.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Television Inspires This Writer

I'm depressed because Survivor has ended. It's one of the shows I love to watch. If you've never seen it, I suggest you tune in next time. Why do I love it?

It's a wonderful source of writing material. The characters I've watched have given me inspiration for characters in my novels. It's fun to see how these survivors personalities evolve and sometimes clash. Greed, depression, homesickness, hunger, and survival take their toll. The scenery is breathtaking. All previous series have taken place somewhere in tropical island settings like Fiji. The next suvivor series will take place in China. I can't wait! Maybe my next novel will take place in China.

Do you have a television show that inspires your writing in some way? I'd love to hear about it.

Thought I'd share an excerpt from romantic suspense novel HIT AND RUN.

Setup: Beth and Ryan return from dinner unaware that Keith has broken into the house and is hiding in Beth's closet.

Keith heard them walking through the rooms downstairs, talking and laughing. He wished the cop would leave. He really needed to get out of the closet. The dark brought too many unpleasant memories. His hands sweated inside the gloves.

He wiped the perspiration dripping into his eyes with the sleeve of his shirt. He began to shake. Monsters lived in here, deep in the corners, waiting to grab him.

He took a deep breath. The key to dispelling the nightmare was to keep breathing. In. Out. There were no monsters. They had no power over him. Not any longer.

He leaned forward and slid the dooropen a crack and took a breath of fresh air. He wasn't trapped. He could get out of the closet whenever he wanted. It wasn't like before.

Beth said goodbye to Ryan at the front door.

He pulled her close and kissed her, then stepped back and gazed deeply into her eyes. "Good night, Beth."

"Good night," she whispered.

"Set the alarm after I leave."

"Yes, sir."

He ran his finger across her bottom lip, smiled into her eyes, and left.

Beth locked the door and set the alarm.

She called, but Charlie wouldn't follow her upstairs. She'd hoped the cat would sleep with her, but Charlie seemed to have her own agenda.

Beth went into the bathroom and left the door ajar. Reaching into the tub, she turned on the water and adjusted the settings to a comfortable temperature. Steam rose around her as she soaped her body and massaged her scalp with the lightly scented shampoo.

Keith slid the closet door open. Light poured into the room from the hallway. He grinned when he heard the shower running. He stepped out and peered throughthe bathroom door, which she'd left ajar. Her body moved behind the shower curtain, and he grew hard thinking how he would soon be touching her soft, scented warmth.

He stepped into her bedroom and looked around. He picked up her bra and ran the silk and lace through his fingers, feeling his body respond.

The water shut off.

He dropped the bra back on the bed and eased down to the floor. He slithered under the bed, adjusting the dust ruffle to hide his presence.

He throbbed with anticipation. She'd be frightened, she might try to scream, but he'd close off her mouth with his. He'd plunge his tongue deep into her throat, and then bury himself in her womanly folds. When he was through with her, he'd make her beg for mercy. Make her apologize for taking Jilly from him. She'd pay. This was the night he'd been waiting for.

Hurry, Bethie, I'm waiting for you.


HIT AND RUN: ISBN 1-60154-010-8
Available at The Wild Rose Press and Amazon.
Read the first chapters of Hit and Run and Foxfire on my website.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Prescription for Writers

Prescription for Writers
© Carol Ann Erhardt, 5-16-2007

Doctor, I have a problem
With words I have a way,
But more and more I find myself
Not writing every day.

Can you prescribe a magic pill
To cure this writer's pain?
Something that will free my mind
And help me write again?

The doctor scribbled on a pad
Then handed this to me,
"If you choose to be a writer
Then that is what you'll be."

"Sit your butt upon a chair
And grab a writing pad,
Place the pen upon its page
Write something, good or bad."

"Follow an ageless author's rule
Write one word at a time."
And soon my words were flowing
In this silly little rhyme.

I've always loved writing silly poems. Here's one I wrote a few years ago in response to a challenge to write an "uplifting" poem...

Betty Baker's Bra
© Carol Ann Erhardt

Betty Baker at eighty-one,
Bought a Wonder Bra, just for fun.

She pushed and pulled to stuff them in,
Mounds of cleavage, oh joyous sin!

She pranced and posed in nervous glee,
Alone in her room at half past three.

To show her stuff at dinner time,
A low cut blouse would let her shine.

She scissored and sewed a sensuous top,
Had a shot of Tequila, then combed her mop.

She weaved her way through the dining hall,
Of the old folks home. Oh, what a ball!

Freddie Foster fell out of his chair,
Benjamin Johnson lost his hair.

Harriet Jones turned an envious green,
Bobby Tucker choked on a bean.

Then lo and behold that bra let go,
And poor Betty's cleavage dropped so low.

She toppled over in a dish of stew,
Where she lay until her face turned blue.

Adam Cook lost his feeding tube,
When Homer Trout ran over her boob.

Now they say that place hasn't been the same
Since Betty Baker had her moment of fame.

My mind seems to run in strange directions sometimes. Like tonight when I didn't receive the responses from the author who was supposed to be interviewed on my blog tomorrow. **sigh** Sometimes I wonder if my email address is falling into everyone's spam folder.

Have a wonderful Thursday!

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Teapot or Peepot

I just had to share this hilarious "Mom" story with you all. Some time ago I bought my granddaughter a Disney Princess Tea Set. The teapot plays music when you tip it to pour.

My daughter has four children, two boys and two girls. Ciara, six, was playing with Haleigh, 2. They were playing tea party, and Shea the 3-year old kept taking the teapot away from them. After repeated warnings, Shea didn't stop. Amid little girl screams, he snatched the teapot and ran upstairs. Traci, daughter, yelled at him to bring it back, but he ignored her. Finally, she went after him and found him in the bathroom, with his pants down, and pouring some liquid into the toilet. Yep, he'd peed in the teapot!

Now Shea is this rotten and way too cute kid with white blond hair and big blue eyes, and the most incredible dimples you ever saw. Ciara is skinny as a rail and tall with long blonde hair.

Picture this:

Ciara ran upstairs, saw what happened and raised both arms in the air exclaiming, "Yuck! I am not playing with that anymore!" Her little slinky neck began to go back and forth as she spun on her heels and marched downstairs. "Nope. I am not touching it! She was so disgusted.

Traci, trying to suppress her laughter, looked at Shea and said, "You are rotten." With dimpled stinkerish grin, he agreed, "Yeah, sometimes."

I haven't stopped laughing yet. Here are pics of the kids. This was taken two years ago, when Haleigh was a baby and little Aidan (now ten months) wasn't born.

Do you have any Mom stories you'd like to share?

Monday, May 14, 2007

Eye of the Storm

Just sent off my short story in response to a request for the manuscript. Eye of the Storm is the story of Abigail Delaney Massey, a woman combatting the fear of cancer after undergoing a mastectomy. She's left her husband, her family, and her faith, and is hiding from her feelings in a house that's belonged to the Delaney women for generations. Deathly afraid of storms, she is about to face one of paramount force. But the storm is not only raging outside, but also within her. As the battle rages, she reaches out to God and receives an answer to her prayer.

Also had a productive writing day. It felt good to finish eight pages of my novel, Joshua's Hope. I'm really anxious to finish. If I can continue at this pace it should be complete in another four weeks or so.

Wish me luck for Eye of the Storm!

Saturday, May 12, 2007


Last year I accomplished all my writing goals and it felt so great! This year I set my goals as:

Write two full length manuscripts, write four short stories. Read entire Bible. Exercise and get healthy.

Mid-year checkup:

Finished two short stories. One is published, the second has been requested by editor. (on track)
1/3 way through first full-length. (Need to step up work on this)
On track with Bible reading.
Exercise - no good. Every time I try to start a regime, I have a major health setback. Looks like this is the one goal that may not pan out this year.

So, do any of you set goals? Have you stopped to do a check-up?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Special Offer...Read a Good E-Book Lately?

In celebration of the warm weather here in Central Ohio, I have a great opportunity for you. Currently I have two full length novels and three short stories published, along with a short story in an anthology with The Wild Rose Press. All of this was accomplished in less than one year. I'm so happy and proud, and feeling chipper with the warmth of the sun, so I'm feeling generous.

I'd love to get new readers to try an e-book. I've been reading e-books for several years now and I love them. My house was becoming overcrowded with print books and I honestly couldn't find another spot to store another one when I decided to try the e-book route. What a wonderful treat! I could carry a book on a very small device in my pocket and read it whenever I wanted. At lunch, waiting in doctor and dentist offices, waiting for a long copy job to finish, in bed, and in all the same places I'd read a print book. The ereader takes up very little room and can store up to 80 books! I always have something new to choose from and can carry as many books as I want without loading down a suitcase when I travel. Yes, I love e-books.

I want you to love them, too. If you are reading this, you have a computer. If you have a computer, you can read an ebook. The most common download is in a .pdf (Adobe Acrobat) format. The ebook looks like a standard book, with all the same copyright pages, etc. The difference click a mouse to turn the page. You can bookmark your place at any time, too. And you don't have to purchase any device to read an ebook (unless you want the portability like I have).

Ebooks are less expensive than print books. For instance, you can purchase a full length novel from my publisher, The Wild Rose Press, for $5.00. That is a considerable savings over the print version. Short stories can be downloaded from as low as $1.50.

Go now to and look at all the choices. There are multiple lines to choose from, though all are romance. You can choose inspirational, contemporary, suspense, paranormal, western, vintage, historical...and much, much more.

Here's the deal. If you purchase one of my full length novels in the suspense line: Foxfire or Hit and Run and show me proof of purchase, I will send you free of charge any short story of your choice (any author) FREE!!!

How can you go wrong? It's my way of asking you to join in the wonderful evolution of books. E-books are the perfect choice of reading material and are going to continue sweeping the nation.

Don't delay. Head over the The Wild Rose Press now and make your choice. Send your proof to me via email. You will find a form to contact me here. Just click the Email Me link.

Looking forward to hearing from all of you!

Apology: Was supposed to have two author interviews besides the one for Sarita Leone this week, but neither author responded to my emails, so I apologize to the blog audience who might have been looking for them.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Author Interview with Sarita Leone

Good morning, Blog Studio Friends! I believe that spring and warm weather is finally here to stay! Woo hoo!! I love the sunshine. It has perked me up sooooo much and I actually slept last night pain free. Today I walked much better as well. I'm definitely on the mend.

This is going to be a special week with extra interviews to compensate for my being out ill. Today we have a very special guest. She is a fellow author with my publisher, THE WILD ROSE PRESS. Several months ago, a new series was launched...the Celtic Brooch series. But I won't spoil the interview. Instead, if you'll put your hands together to welcome Sarita Leone, I'll let her tell you all about it!

**audience claps and hollers**

**Sarita steps out from between the maroon curtains wearing a beautiful navy blue dress with rhinestones around the plunging neckline. **

CAROL ANN: Sarita, welcome! You look stunning today as always.

SARITA: Thank you! I'm so happy to be here.

CAROL ANN: And I see you brought a copy of your book. Audience, isn't it beautiful?

**Camera pans in**

CAROL ANN: Please tell me about your book.

SARITA: Freedom's Touch is the second book in the Legacy of the Celtic Brooch series, the American Rose title. My book picks up a few hundred years after the first story, The Pendulum by Tarah Scott, leaves off.

By 1863, the brooch has made its way to Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. Kay Lane wears the treasured brooch pinned above her heart and uses it to exchange messages with others who are also involved in the Underground Railroad. Although Kay is determined to be strong during the war and to keep the homefires burning, she misses her beloved Marsh. Now that he's gone, Kay wishes she and Marsh had married before he'd left for the war. With soldiers marching through their town, all seemingly intent on reaching the tiny spot called Gettysburg, she wonders if she and Marsh will ever have a chance to experience the type of love that wedded bliss can bring.

Freedom's Touch is a tale of endurance, sacrifice and endless love. It is a story that is true to the period, highlighting many of the hardships that were endured during the Civil War. Still, it is a tale of love -- love that neither war nor sacrifice can ever diminish.

CAROL ANN: Where did you come up with the idea for this book?

SARITA: The idea for my part of the brooch series came about while I was researching the battles of the war. I love to read about history, love to learn how those who came before us lived, laughed and loved. So I wanted Freedom's Touch to have an actual connection to a battle in the war. Gettysburg is such a pivotal battle that it seemed perfect for the story. And once I had the setting, the story came easily.

CAROL ANN: I envy you having a love of history. I hated reading history when I was in school. It all seemed so boring, but now it really interests me. I know that sometimes stories come to me from a scene or setting. Putting that aside, for you which comes first: plot or characters?

SARITA: Ah, that's a hard one. Honestly, it varies. Sometimes I'll have a character in my head so completely that I'll wonder, What would so-and-so do? What happens to her? And that will start the whole thing off! Other times I'll get the idea for a story, a loose plot and "find" characters in my mind to come into the story and play. So really, for me either comes first. And I never know which it will be with each new story!

CAROL ANN: I believe that's true for all writers. We never know what might trigger a new story. I think the hardest thing for me has been selecting a title. How do you decide on titles?

SARITA: They just happen. A random thought, most often. And frequently the title comes before the story. Way before.

CAROL ANN: That's interesting! I guess a title could conjure up a certain picture which would spark a story. I may have to try brainstorming titles and see what happens. **laugh** Sarita, we both write for a romance publisher. What does the word romance mean to you?

SARITA: Hmm...I think romance is a feeling. That wonderful, shivery feeling of early love. The deep, satisfying warmth that comes with secure, solid, soul-shaking, committed love. Romance is the way your knees wobble when you think of that special someone. It's also the sigh that comes when the laundry is folded--and you haven't folded it. Romance is the feeling of being loved, and the warmth of loving. That's romance for me.

CAROL ANN: That paints a lovely warm picture for me. Let's say that your life is about to become a movie. What will the title be?

SARITA: I think the most accurate title for a movie about my life would be "Mission: Nothing's Impossible." A little action, some adventure, lots of kissing, and in the end nothing is impossible. I believe that if you want something enough and are willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish your goal, nothing is impossible. Nothing. All opportunities are open, all mountains can be climbed.

CAROL ANN: I love your optimism! Sometimes I like to delve into a writer's more personal life to let the audience know that we are just ordinary people, too. Care to share what a normal day is in your life?

SARITA: Most days I get up while it's still dark and write for a few hours. Then, there is no normal. My husband is retired, which is great, so we spend our days together. Every day is different, every day is wonderful. We love the outdoors so we spend a great deal of time gardening or hiking. In the winter we hike and play in the snow. Once I've got my daily writing done, every day is open to whatever new experience comes our way.

CAROL ANN: Oh, that sounds so perfect. I envy you, truly I do. So, do you ever get to feeling a bit depressed, and if so, who can make you laugh?

SARITA: I'm never really down. I'm very content with my life, very happy and thankful to be who I am and where I am. I couldn't ask for anything more than what I've got. I'm truly blessed. An amazing husband, wonderful family and friends...what more could I ask for? And how could I possibly be unhappy when I've got such great people in my life? But I'll admit, my husband is a funny, funny man. He makes me laugh every day and I'm sure he could make the Sphinx giggle. If I ever were down, I'd look for him. He's the one.

CAROL ANN: You are a very lucky woman! **audience claps** Sarita, do you collect anything?

SARITA: I collect Fiestaware, the old, colorful china made by Homer Laughlin. They still make it, but I collect the old stuff, the stuff our grannies used. I have always loved the colorful pieces. When my husband and I were first married we were on vacation in Pennsylvania, poking around an old barn sale. I spotted a chipped red fruit bowl and we bought it. That was my first piece of Fiesta, and although it isn't the most valuable piece it is still my favorite one.

CAROL ANN: And, finally, I have one more question. This is one I pose to all my guests. Do you believe the pen is mightier than the sword? Why?

SARITA: Ah, you've saved the truly challenging question for the end! The pen? The sword? Hmm... I think Bulwer-Lytton was right nearly two hundred years ago when he wrote that line. The pen can do what swords cannot. It can open minds, fill hearts and change opinions--and all without shedding a single drop of blood. So yes, I do believe the pen is mightier than the sword. And I'm very glad to be part of the pen-wielding mob!

CAROL ANN: Sarita, thank you so much for stopping by today. It has been my pleasure, my friend to have you here.

SARITA: Thanks so much, Carol Ann, for interviewing me. I read your blog often and have enjoyed listening to these author interviews. I am so pleased that I've gotten the opportunity to be a guest! I've loved spending this time with you!

CAROL ANN: Audience, here is the link to purchase FREEDOM'S TOUCH.

Sunday, May 06, 2007


Writing for me is always a very solitary occupation. The time I manage to grab for writing is very minimal with having a full time job, a home, a church, and family. All these things fulfill me, and nurture me, so I strive to keep a balance that allows me to feel "balanced."

So, when I get stuck 1/3 of the way through a novel, I struggle with what to do. Should I toss the whole thing? Other ideas come to mind, but that would mean starting over, and then when I reach the same spot will I once again come to a grinding halt?

With this current project, I felt very inspired. It's something I want to write. I just reached a point and I didn't know where to go from here. I needed more plot. Something out of the ordinary that would drive the book, make the reader want to continue reading, create a page-turner.

There is always one person who manages to offer suggestions that excite me and open new daughter. Tonight we were speaking on the telephone when I told her I just didn't know whether I could write my story. I filled her in on what I was writing and where I stalled. Immediately she grasped a point that created a wonderful subplot! My head is filled with creative ideas now on how to move forward.

Sometimes life gets so busy that I tend to pull inward with my writing instead of reaching out for help. Bless you, my daughter, for your inspiration.

Do you have points where you turn to yourself looking for the answers? Do you doubt yourself and wonder if you should quit? If you should start over? I'd love to hear your stories and how you overcome the obstacles.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Winner of Necklace and Earrings is...

Congratulations to Alissa!

Alissa if you will contact me off the contact link on my website at and send me your snail mail address, I'll send your prize! Congratulations!!

And the winner of Stacy's fun-filled envelope is Sonja!

Congratulations to you both, and thanks everyone who read and posted comments on Stacy's Author Interview.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Have You Ever Lost a Day of Your Life...

vaguely remembered events happening, but losing the clarity due to pain? That's what happened to me. Well, actually, I've lost a few days now due to an acute flare-up of bursitis in my left hip.

Woke up Sunday morning and couldn't bear the pain of walking more than one or two steps. Didn't have a clue what could be wrong. I popped four Ibuprofen and waited for the pain to ease, but it didn't. Over the next few hours it increased to the point of bringing me to tears. Tears of frustration and pain. Finally gave up and went to Urgent Care. Diagnosis-hip bursitis. No treatment. Pain shot, pain pills. At that point, good enough for me. I just wanted some relief from the pain so I could sleep. I had taken twelve Ibuprofen by that time.

Called off work on Monday. Pain didn't cease.

Called off work on Tuesday and hubby took me to see my regular doctor. X-rays. More pain. Diagnosis. Same. Doctor prescribed a treatment with steroid anti-inflammatory drugs plus the Naprosyn I already take. Took me off work for the week. (Another story with the new laws which means I won't get paid for several weeks).

Took my first dosage last night and two hits of pain pills during the night. This morning I was able to walk much better, but the pain pills are wearing off now. Don't want to take them because all they do is make me sleep.

Unfortunately, I've opted not to put together the author interviews scheduled for this week. I promise to squeeze them in during the next few weeks though. Just wanted everyone to know what was happening in my life so you wouldn't think I'd just disappeared.

Have any of you suffered with this condition? I hear it never goes away completely and there will continue to be flare-ups. Not looking forward to that.