Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Happy New Year!

I bet you're just sitting there wondering, "What the heck happened to Scarlett? Haven't heard from her in a while. I heard a volcano erupted in Ecuador, did she fall in?"

No, no, no, of course not! I just got wrapped up in my own little world!  After all, I live in Cuenca, far far away from the volcanoes. Having been in Cuenca now for 3 years, just celebrating my 4th Christmas and New Year here, I have to say, I'm still in love with it. We get the occassional shake, and maybe a roll from time to time, but no rattle or shatter or lava or tornadoes, hurricanes, or snow storms. Most every day is clima perfecto- perfect weather. Note: I just completed my first phone call 100% in Espanol- I feel smart.

So here's what's going on in my wonderful glorious world. I typed "The End" in The Charm of Paisley Cove, during Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing Month) in November. Then I read it. My Alpha read it. And it's not where I want it to be. It needs more work, so that's on my plate to finish this month. The Paisley Cove series will be published under the name S.J. Braden, because it's a little bit woo woo ish and I don't want to upset my hard core suspense folks. Of course, there is suspense in Paisley Cove, I'm just not sure I can tell a story without it. I won't release this until I get book 3 in the series started, so when you fall in love with these characters like I have, you won't have to wait long to get the next book!

I have a new idea for a Psychological Thriller series I will be writing in tandem this year with the Paisley Cove series. It will be called the And Then They Preyed series. It's about bad women who target men, serially. More on that later. But my fabulous cover designer, Susan Herron, has already made the first three covers for me. Aren't they great? It makes me want to write them faster!

Poetry. I am the poetry hater. Always have been. I only read poetry on social media memes with cute puppies or ocean sunsets behind them. Usually by Rumi or some other great poetic philosopher. But I have discovered, through challenges from my poet friends, that I LOVE writing poetry.  Three Sisters:Mystic, Priestess, Wild Woman is published as S.J. Braden- again a little bit woo woo ish. It was fun writing it with my poet sisters Joss Burnel and Barbara Snow. So my 3rd book of poetry (since August) will be coming out in January. As soon as the edits are done. Susan has finished the cover for this too. It's a book of love poems, called Lyrics of A Transcendental Love.

In other news, I have taken my author assistant duties up a notch or two and started a company called Signature Author Services, or SAS for short. I have help! And am offering more services, new services, and having fun. We are building the website now, (which we can also do for our author friends). When it's ready in a couple of days it will be available at In the meantime you can see our preliminary site at

I'm working on the steering committee for the Cuenca International Writer's Conference. It will be May 28th-June 1st and it's going to be amazing. If you might be interested, you can get more info and register here Cuenca International Writer's Conference.

I have a new website too. Same address, prettier site. Let me know what you think. I'm going back to writing, and working on the best writer's conference ever. May 2018 bring you all you ever hoped for! See ya soon!

Loving life in Cuenca!

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Love, from the Ocean

As most of you probably know, I live in Ecuador. The ancient language of the indigenous here is Quechua, pronounced Key ch wah. I'm really charmed by the language which influences the Spanish here and works its way into most it should.

In the Quechua language, the sun is referred to as Papa Inti, the moon is Mama Killa, the earth is Pachamama, and the ocean is Mama Kucha.  Last month I spent 19 days on the shore of Ecuador's Pacific coast. Having not been to the beach in 31 years, I fell totally and madly in love with Mama Kucha. And I think she liked me too. I had some amazing medicine from her, she sent me 31 years worth of Christmas and birthday gifts.

This is a post about how Mama Kucha showed me her love. From the very first day, I found amazing treasures walking on the beach. The first day I found this amazing sand dollar, the first one I've ever found in my life. I later found two more. Among beautiful shells, rocks, crystals and feathers, all washed up on the sand. Left for me to pick up, photograph, or just marvel over.

I was traveling by bus and though my hostess told me to bring another suitcase for shells and rocks, I just couldn't imagine I would need it. I mean I've never picked up more than a ziploc full of shells. But I had never been to an Ecuadorian beach. And from that first day, I kept finding shells and rocks that were heart shaped. At first, I thought, "how cute."

And as the days went by, when I would see a heart laying in the sand, I found myself smiling, and offering a "Thank you," to Mama Kucha. Sometimes the thanks was offered silently as a prayer, other days, I looked to the horizon and offered it aloud. I had a distinct feeling of warmth and that I was wrapped in something purely holy.

It started me wondering, wait a minute. How did it come to be, that the heart shape signifies love? I mean, it's one of those things that's universal, recognized the world over. So how did it happen. How did the Ocean know to wear away rocks into the shape of a heart, and to place them on a beach. Whether she was truly sending them to me as love from her, or placed them there for honeymooning lovers to pick up as a momento, it was something that sent this writer and researcher to Google.

Here's what I learned. No one really knows for sure. There is pottery dating back to 3000BC in a heart shape. There are theories that it's the shape of the seed of a plant that was used as birth control, but my favorite is that it's what resulted when people tried to draw from the written words of Aristotle when he wrote his description of the human heart. That was enough to satisfy my curiosity as to where the shape came from, but how did it come to symbolize love?

Of course, "back in the day" as young people like to say, the heart was considered the center of all emotion. In fact, at one time they believed the brain had no purpose at all. So, now I have an answer to how the heart shape came to be, and how it came to symbolize love. But who told the ocean? She's mighty smart to not have a brain.

Yes, Mama Kuchu, I love you too. I showed my love by carrying a garbage bag with me each day on my walks and picking up trash. It's so sad, so many people, think she is an acceptable dumping ground.

If you would like to see more pictures from my trip on the coast, whale watching, the gentleman who emerged from the surf walking toward me and my birthday party weekend with 8 of my favorite people follow me on Instagram or Facebook. I'm still uploading the pics, it's not a fast process. And if you ever get the chance to visit an Ecuadorian beach...bring an extra suitcase.

 Loving life in Cuenca!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

W is for WIN!

Good Morning,

As many of you know, I'm pretty much failing at the A-Z challenge. The posts have been there up to now, but I haven't had the time to post the links or visit other blogs.

 Life got too hectic. But I can't miss the opportunity to pass on a chance to win a $120 Amazon Gift Certificate to you!

12 Authors banded together to offer you this chance. All you have to do is sign up for ONE of the participating author's newsletters (email list) and you are entered to win!  For each one you sign up for, you get another entry. There are only 3 more days to enter- please share with your friends too.

Here is my brief description of each of the authors, pick one or two or all of us you would like to get to know better! the link to enter is at the bottom of the page. There is Sci-Fy, Paranormal, ROmance, Poetry, Mystery, Suspense, Women's Fiction and Travel represented in this group- so something for everyone.

Andra Watkins: Do you know NYT Bestselling author Andra Watkins? I do. She is zany, energetic, inspirational and she writes the weirdest stuff. Historical fiction full of ghosts and sex! 

Barbara Snow: Do you know Barbara Snow? I do. She's soulful, a bit rebellious, loving and as much fun as horseback riding. Want to get to know her too? Sign up for her newsletter. She writes, Poetry, creative non-fiction, and her newest series- well maybe it'll be called Shaman Suspense or Magical Realism.

Cameron Lowe: Do you know Cameron Lowe? I do. He writes ghost stories. But they are NOT your camp ghost stories. Sign up for his newsletter and get to know Cameron, too. Maybe he will share some of his "The Life of Cam & Yoda" stories with you about his life with a talking pug. They'll leave you in stitches! 

Carolyn Hamilton: Do you know Carolyn Hamilton? Or as an artist, she's known as Caro. I do. She can wear scarves and turbans and earrings like no one else I know and is an amazing artist. She writes mysteries and adult coloring books, and an autobiography about being a Playboy bunny and working in Vegas. She also has Adventuress Travel Ezine.  

George Wier: Do you know George Wier? I do. He's called the Titan of Texas Fiction, he's an artist, a musician, and he loves to tell a good joke. He loves to write song lyrics, just to incorporate into his novels almost as much as he loves his new granddaughter. He writes Mystery, Steampunk, and Sci-Fi. If you want to get to know George too, sign up for his email list and you might win that Amazon gift certificate! George lives in Texas- if you get to know him, you might even get to meet him someday.

J. Michael Herron: Do you know J. Michael Herron? I do. This is a man who loves to read Sci-Fi and Thrillers and when he sat down to write a book it turned out to be a Romance with mythological influences. He has a wonderfully lucky wife because his everyday responses in conversation will make a lady swoon. But he's also a deep thinker.

Joss Burnel: Do you know Joss Burnel? I do. She walks the sweetest spiritual walk, with a tune in her head. She's been a poet for -oh she'll kill me if I say how many years- since she was 14- yeah, that's safe. And now she is writing unique women's fiction due out this year. 

Kirsten Delaney: Do you know Kirsten Delaney? Me either! So I signed up for his newsletter to learn more about him. You can too.  Please share with your friends- Maybe THEY know Kirsten.    

Paul Anlee: Do you know Paul Anlee? I do. Paul Anlee is the pen-name for a husband and wife writing and editing team. He is a scientist and she approaches writing and editing scientifically. Together they have a new series coming out that is galaxies beyond pop Sci-fy. And these kids (just a hair older than me) do Tai Chi 3-4 days a week!  

Summer Prescott: Do you know Summer Prescott? I do. Well sort of. Turns out Summer Prescott is a pen name too. I was talking with a lady in an online writer's group. Naturally, I googled her. Nothing. So I asked for a link to her book(s). Sly- right? When she sent me the link and I clicked it, I almost fell out of my chair. I've been reading her cozy mysteries (with a food theme) for YEARS.  

T.R. Harris: Do you know T.R. Harris?  I do. Well, again- I know him virtually. Through mutual writer friends and a couple of online groups for writers. He used to live in Mexico, but he's back in the U.S. now..something about a government agency..the CIA? NSA? I can't remember. Anyway, he's a prolific writer of Sci-fi and cranks out a book about every 6 weeks. He co-writes a series with George Wier too.

So those, along with myself are our authors. Click below and win the money for a cart full of books, or a fitbit even. 

Click Here to Enter. 

 Have a great day, everybody!

 Loving life in Cuenca!

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

V is for Vibration

Welcome to Frankly Scarlett's April A to Z Blog Challenge.

This year my theme is A Goddess' Glossary and we are looking at terms utilized by Goddesses, Priestesses, Shamans and Witches. These are terms that might occur in my new fantasy series, Paisley Cove.

 V is for Vibration

Everything is made up of energy and energy vibrates. The more positive the energy the higher the vibration. 
Pagans believe you can change situations by changing the energy surrounding the person or objects involved. 
As you learn to meditate or focus your attention internally you will begin to feel the vibrations within you and then can feel the vibrations of the world around you.

I hope that you and your life are full of positive vibrations.

 Star, Particles, Heart, Love

Join me tomorrow as I write about W is for Witch.
 Loving life in Cuenca!
Visit my website at

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

U is for Uncrossing

Welcome to Frankly Scarlett's April A to Z Blog Challenge.

This year my theme is A Goddess' Glossary and we are looking at terms utilized by Goddesses, Priestesses, Shamans and Witches. These are terms that might occur in my new fantasy series, Paisley Cove.


 U is for Uncrossing

If you feel like you are cursed, or jinxed, you might need an Uncrossing. This practice, believed to originate from Hoodoo, is designed to reverse bad energy whether it's a curse from another witch or if you feel things just aren't right in your world or health.

An Uncrossing is considered to be a cleansing of you or your home. If you want to try it out for yourself, here is a link with easy to follow instructions.

Woman, Girl, Movement, Stripping, Undress, Erotic, Sexy

 We are almost to the end of the alphabet, are you feeling ready to step into the world of Goddess', Shamans, Priestesses and Witches?  Tomorrow we talk about the basic concept of Vibration.

 Loving life in Cuenca!
Visit my webpage at