The shoes didn't fit. It was an omen.

Monday, April 30, 2012


Just wanted you all to know, I'll be posting here on Wednesdays. My attempt for this month will be about mothers. The good, the bad, and the ugly(mostly the bad and ugly ones). Not all mothers are fairy and angelic like. Some are more like demons and shouldn't be celebrated. I'll even start my first post on me as a mother. To be honest, I wasn't always the brightest crayon in the box about how to rear my daughters. Especially with my first child. I look back and think 'what a friggin moron'. So I'll see you all on Wednesday.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 22 and 23: Y for You and Z for Zany

Today, I’m combining both letters because I haven’t been able to hop around to some of the blogs I follow or, any new ones this week. Shamefully I admit to getting around to only 200 this month. It’s been one thing after another. ZANY to be correct. It’s like the Universe has been fighting me for some reason.

Anyway,  tell me about yourself in the comment box.

Before you do that I‘ll share a little about me.

1. I’m a wife.

2. A mother of 5 grown daughters.

3. I’m a grandma, too. Got three grandsons, My five month old came to live with us this past Monday. So life has really changed.

4. When I was a kid I carried a tablet and pencil with me every where. I loved writing monster stories then. And my favorite intro to every sentence was “and then”. And I love Boris Karloff, Vincent Price,and Christopher Reeves. They are the Kings of Creepy.

5. My favorite, favorite authors are Dean Koontz, Lorelei Bell, Beth Muscat, and Norma Bieshir.

6. I love hot tea and drink lots of H20.

7. I make peoples’ hair beautiful for a living and once worked for lawyers.

Okay. That’s all for now. I’ve got some legal documents to draw up. Also, if you like, you can visit my other blog Life of a Novice Writer . Today, Sir Poops and Hair Ball tell about our new house guest.

Have a great day all.

Friday, April 27, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 21: X is for X Marks the Spot

We’re almost there, folks. Y and Z are the only two letters left. My challenge were the curve balls life kept throwing at me during this time. The death of my editor and taking on the responsibility of my 5 month old grandson. But I’ve been making this challenge work. How about you guys?

Also, today I leave you a scene where the main character, Lila’s best friend, Cynthia teaches her to shoot a gun.

Cynthia made a bunch of clunking noises in the trunk.

I walked toward the trunk, and stood beside her.

She slapped a pistol into my hand. Heavy thing. “This is a forty-four Magnum,” she said “It’s a Dirty Harry gun. Cool. Don’t you think?”

I shrugged. Didn’t have a clue what she was talking about. Never liked Clint Eastwood’s movies.

“You hold it like this.” She extended both arms and clasped her hands together making a finger gun. “Hang onto it with both hands. Put your index finger in the trigger hole.”

I did.

She grabbed a spray paint can and ran ahead of me stopping about six feet away in front of a giant oak. There she painted a big black X in the middle of its trunk. When she finished, she ran back to me.

“Aim it at the X and shoot.”

“It can’t possibly be that easy.” I put the gun down at my side.

She shrugged and smirked at the same time. “You’ve got to learn.”

“That’s right,” Gram whispered from somewhere.

“Oh, man,” I said.

“If your husband owns guns and he’s trafficking cocaine…and you took off with the cash and the car…that tells me you need to learn.”

I let out a loud sigh.

 DISCLAIMER: No one may use any of this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 20: W is for Woods


Hi everybody!

My Hanny’s been letting me help post her blogs. It’s fun.

Today, we’re posting about the Florida woods. They can be dangerous. There’s lots of bad critters in them. Okay. Hanny. Your turn. I’m getting sleepy. ***he stretches and yawns***

Thank you, Glowstick. Ababababa…You’re sooo cute. I just want to eat your chubby-chunkness.

Hanny. You’re supposed to be blogging not tickling me. I really want to go to sleep. ***he fusses but smiles***

Okay. Sorry. Hi everyone! ****Cheeks are hot**** He’s just so cute. I can’t help myself.

Anyway, today I give you the Florida woods. In the southeastern part its full of swamps, gators, and water moccasins. Most times you have to navigate these parts with airboats.

Now in the northern part of Florida, you still have swamps, gators, and water moccasins but you also have land and low growing vegetation. The soil is sandy, and if you stand in it long enough you will sink. And if you don’t sink you may trip over rows and rows of crab grass.


And I can’t forget the mosquitos, horseflies, and wasps. One of these or, all will be buzzing around you when you enter. They all leave nasty bites.


Lila, the main character, finds herself several times in the woods. She either uses them as an escape route or, a place to hide in.


Imagine trying to walk through that. Especially in three inch heels. YIKES!  I always wondered how Charlie’s Angels did it.

Before Glowstick and I go, here’s a diddy.

I walked for at least a half hour. When Max and I left the wedding it must’ve been in the sixties. It warmed up since then. That’s a Florida November for you. Humid, I was sweating, my bodice soaked. The money inside my bra stuck to the skin of my breasts. It itched. The lace on my arms and back itched more. I smelled no better than Max did when he got home from work and every winged creature buzzed about me. I smacked at mosquitoes. A big, black horsefly followed me. It wouldn’t go away. I thought of Max.

My blisters and toes screamed pre, mid, and post-step. The balls of my feet, too. These three inchers got caught up in vines, branches, and mole holes. It took a lot to stay upright, in the dirt and deep leaves. I considered taking my shoes off, but there might be hook worms or some jungle ameba waiting to feast on some unsuspecting human. I didn’t want some parasite working its way into my leg muscles. I needed my legs down there to get me out of this mess. Mom put the fear of going shoeless in me when I was little. Never in my life had I ever gone barefoot except in my own clean house with clean carpets and disinfected floors. I wore shoes or slippers at Cynthia’s. Her mother didn’t vacuum everyday. Nor did I taste Pine Sol in the back of my throat at her house.

DISCLAIMER: No one may use any of the pictures or written content in this blog post. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 19: V is for Vinny

Before I introduce you to Vinny, I wanted to apologize for not being able to hop around a lot since Monday. I have a new house guest, my five month old grandson. He’ll be with me until my daughter gets her life together. PLEASE PRAY FOR US. Thank you.


Okay. Onto Vinny.

Ever meet a guy who was drop-dead-gorgeous but dripped with a creepy-jerk-aurora.

If you haven’t, allow me to introduce you to, Vinny.

“Hey,” a man’s voice said.

My heart jumped in my chest. The rest of me did, too, and I turned. Vinny.

“You startled me,” I said. “I didn’t see you there.”

“I know.” He smiled and studied me with his eyes. It reminded me of a neighbor, we used to have. He’d stare at young girls, and his eyes salivated.

I looked over his shoulder. Red roses trailed up a trellis, and the whole garden smelled like Gram.

He came toward me, walking with confidence, and his posture relaxed. “May I kiss the bride?” He loosened his black bow tie.

“Um.” My cheeks went hot and I looked down. He had the bluest eyes I ever saw, and from what I knew, every girl he knew had been crazy about him.

He put a hand out toward me and closed the space between us. I felt like a bunny facing a pretty fox.

His fingers caught one of my curls, and he played with it. “Too bad it couldn’t have been me.”

I trembled and the air grew warm.

His finger slid along my cheek to under my chin, and lifted it. “Can’t figure why a beautiful girl like you married a loser like Max.”

I kept my eyes down and swallowed billions of tiny lumps.

“Maybe you’re all beauty and no brains,” he said, and his voice went to a whisper. “Look at me.”

I did. His jaw clenched, making it look square and well defined. His dark blond hair was pulled into a pony tail. He looked like GQ material in his jacket open, black tuxedo. Dreamy, but dangerous. Maybe it’s an Italian thing.

“Um,” I said. “Um…I think…um….”

“Max owes me, you know?”

DISCLAIMER: No on may use this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 19: U is for Underwear

Several, several months ago Lila and Max were given an underwear challenge to do but Lila’s been busy running and hiding out from Max. And well, Max has been busy looking for her.

Today, Max finally caught up with Lila for the umpteenth time.

Max: Yeah. Baby Doll. ***he grabs his crotch like Michael Jackson*** This is about underwear. I sure would like to see more than your frilly thangs. Like your other thang.

  ***Lila cringes.***He’s really disgusting. When I see that Shelly Arkon, I’m going to tell her---

Max: Tell her what? ***He slinks toward her.***

***Lila steps back.*** I’m only answering the questions and then I’m leaving.

***Max snakes his arms around her waist and squeezes her against him.*** Feel that?

Lila: Eww. Grody. She pushes at his chest and squirms.*** Gram! Where are you?!

Max: You talking to your dead grammy again? Ma says witches do that. You one of them witches?

Lila: Let’s answer the questions. ***She shoves at Max’s chest some more.***

Max: Okay. Baby doll. I’ll answer them questions and then after, I can get some luvins. Right?

Lila: Gram!

What do you call your underwear/undergarments? Do you have any nicknames for them?

Max: What numb nuts calls their underwear undergarments? That’s my question.

Lila: Someone with intelligence and dignity. I call mine strictly panties.

Max: You’re such a prissy little thang.

Lila sticks her nose in the air.

Have you ever had that supposedly common dream of being in a crowded place in only your underwear?

Max: I never dream unless it’s a wet one.

Lila: ***rolls her eyes*** Oh. My. God.

Max: Answer the question, baby doll.

Lila: I only dream about zombies. Lucky me. ***she squirms again****

What is the worst thing you can think of to make underwear out of?

Max: Hmmm….

Lila: Nothing can be as bad as this moment with you.

Max: You know you want me, baby doll. Girls that fight always do.

Lila: ***gasps*** Let’s go onto the next question.

If you were a pair of panties what color would you be?

Max: I know if I were a pair of panties I’d be clinging to Lila not caring what color I was. ***he shoves his lower half into hers***

Lila lets out a squeal.

Max: You know you want it.

Lila: Can we go to the next question? Please. ***She scoots her bottom half away.

Max: But you didn’t answer the question.

Lila: I have no comment.

Max: Well, I can see you all white and lacey-like. **He waggles his brows***

Lila: Gram!

Have you ever thrown your underwear at a rock celebrity? If so, which ones?

Max: I once ran around naked at a Jimmy Buffet concert. I was smoking some really good shit.

Lila: I hope you were arrested.

Max: That night was a little foggy. How about you, baby doll?

Lila: Never in my life.

You’re out of underwear what do you do?

Max: Air them out. ***He grabs Lila hands and shoves them onto his crotch***

***Lila yanks her hand away.**** I always make sure mine are clean.

****Max nuzzles his nose into Lila’s hair.*** You keeping your thang squeaky clean for me. Oooo, you’re turning me on.

Lila: Oh. My. God.***with fisted hands she pounds his chest***

Max gives a wicked laugh.

Lila: Next question. Please.

Are you old enough to remember Underoos? If so,  did you have any? Which ones?

Max: Underoos who? ***he scratches his head****

***Lila breaks half of herself free from him. *** I haven’t a clue about what you’re talking about. Beats me. *** She wiggles more and sniffs the air. Rosewater.

Gram: You need to knee him in the balls. Makes sure you do it right. Knee not kick like you tried with that Vinny character.

LiLa: ***pulls her knee back***

Max: What are you doing, baby doll? We’ve got two more questions to answer. You promised.

Lila: I never promised anything.

If you could have any message printed on your underwear, what would it be?

Lila: STAY THE HELL AWAY FROM ME MAX BUTZ! ***Her hand goes to her mouth. She never talks like that.***

Max: You know you want it, baby doll.

Gram: He seems to think he’s got something special. A man with a little padding on his bum usually doesn’t have a well endowed one. It’s probably small.

Lila: Gram. Shhh…

Max: You talkin to your grammy again. You’re gonna have to stop that. Ma ain’t going to like that.

Lila: Are we on the last question yet? ***she relaxes her raised knee***

Max: There’s one more.

Lila: Let me go first and then I’ll answer it .

Max: It’s a trick. ***he holds her loosely now***

Lila: No. It’s not. I promise. ***she crosses her fingers behind her back***

Max: As long as you promise then. ***he let’s her go***

Lila takes two steps back.

Gram pushes something hard into Lila’s back. “Take this dear. You’re going to need it.

Lila: A gun. Okay. Next question then.

How many bloggers does it take to put panties on a goat?

Max: I’m not sure me and my friends ever did that but we did dress up Brandy once. She tore that outfit to shreds. She likes to do that to cats, too. ***he lets out a chuckle***

Lila: I’m not stupid enough to even get near a goat. Don’t they have some terrible germ they can pass onto humans?

Max: Okay. Baby doll. I want my luvins. All them questions are answered now.

Lilla pulls the gun around in front of her. Locking her elbows, she points the gun at Max.

Gram: Knock his knee caps out!

Max: Don’t you love me, baby doll.

Gram: Knock them out! Now!

Lila: I hate being called baby doll, and I hate you Max Butz.*** She pulls the trigger and the gun explodes***

Through gun smoke, Max runs off into the Florida woods.

Lila: I missed him again, Gram.

Gram: You’ll get another shot at it.

DISCLAIMER: No one may use the written content. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 18: T is for Tissue Snippet

Before I deliver the snippet, I wanted to let you all know I’ll be gone for the day. Loppity-lop-lopping instead of hoppity-hop-hopping. And later, I’ve got my live critique group. But I’ll be back tomorrow to join the fun.

She looked down at the bedspread. “Well,” she said. “He’s died a couple times but the doctors brought him back.”

“Why didn’t you tell me? How could you keep that from me?”

Shhh,” she said. “Hate it when you cry.” She jumped up and ran to the bathroom, coming back with a cheap, small no-named box of tissue. She pulled. It made a whoosh sound. She handed a wad of them. “Here, blow.”

I did.

“You know,” Cynthia said. Whoosh, whoosh, she handed me two more.

I took the tissue and blew my nose again.

“He and I had plans to sneak you onto a plane to Venezuela. But you derailed me every time, or should I say, your mother’s plans derailed me.”

“Okay. But why didn’t you tell me he died a couple times?” I asked, tossing my gob of used tissues into a wire wastebasket beside the bed.

“I didn’t think that part would matter.” Whoosh, whoosh. She tugged out two more tissues and dabbed at her eyes.

“Is there anything else you haven’t told me?”

She shrugged and looked at the tissue box.

“Cynthia,” I said, grabbing her shoulders, new tears falling on my face.

Her whole body frowned, and she slumped. “There’s water on his brain.” Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh. This time she yanked tissues out of the box and handed me one.

“Oh my God,” I sobbed.

She swabbed at her own tears with the other tissues. “The doctors are keeping him in a coma.”


Cynthia ran her hand under her runny nose. “Because they needed to drill a hole into his skull to relieve pressure.” She took my hand off her shoulder, squeezed it, and sniffled. “I’m sorry, Lila. I should’ve told you sooner but I was afraid you’d—”

DISCLAIMER: No one may use any of this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 17: S is for Snake



Mr. Water Moccasin  or Cottonmouth

Today, my dear friends, I thought I’d talk about creepy, slithering Florida snakes. Well, just a little.You see, Lila, the main character, in Secondhand Shoes, has many fears. Mother induced, of course.

So many chapters in, we learn of her horrific fear of snakes. In fact, it could’ve been the catalyst to her taking a different path than the one she chose in the novel.



Ms. Copperhead

Snakes come in many shapes and sizes. They can also be symbols in dreams. Usually when this occurs it means you can’t trust some one. For me, it also meant that my mother-in-law was coming to town. Really. I’d see snakes and dream of snakes three days before I’d hear she’d be coming. Just to let you know, she’s now my ex-mother-in-law. So don’t worry, I’m always in trouble no matter what I say or do, even when I was married to her toad-boy.

Anyway, my point today is fear can keep us from climbing through any window of opportunity if we let it. Even the fear of snakes.

And before I give you a little diddy allow me to give you a website on Florida’s poisonous snakes. Just in case you all decide to visit and go hiking in the Florida woods or, you happen to open your car door and are greeted by one of these creatures when you get here. You need to be able to identify one correctly. Click on the link below for more information.

Florida's Poisonous Snakes

Time for the diddy.

Woods spread beyond the diner’s dumpsters. Trees all the way to the interstate’s on-ramp to my left and on down behind the gas station to my right and beyond.

A light wind blew my hair across my face. I looked at the sky. Dark clouds coming up I-75. I looked back at the woods. Snakes came to mind.

“Don’t be afraid, Lila,” Gram said.

DISCLAIMER: This written content may not be used by anyone. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Friday, April 20, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 16: R is for Research

About four years ago, I attended a mini writing conference. And one of the speakers was a used-to-be- lawyer-turned-bodice-ripper-writer-to-suspense-bodice- ripper-thriller-writer who is a NYC best seller. She gave some really bad advice. And no, I’m not mentioning her name. Like I said she used to be a lawyer.

Anyway, one of her tidbits of advice was ‘just bullshit your way through a scene or a description. You don’t need to research for details. Most readers don’t know any better’. Smack me in the forehead, yes, we do need to research. And yes, the reader knows better.

My critter’s found scenes I had wrong. They were gun related. I learned that a gun is not just a gun but that there are different ones. They even shoot and hold differently. And they don’t all require the same kind of ammo.

When I sent my MS to beta readers, one found (Lorelie Bell, author of Vampire Ascending and Vampire’s Trill), that I had lots of things wrong with driving a semi. So she enlightened me. To this day, I’m so grateful for her suggestions and knowledge on the subject.

And since I’m a hairdresser by trade, I always have opportunities to discuss how my clients feel about reading books.

One of my questions I posed was this, ‘How would you feel if an author bullshitted their way through a scene?”

Their answer was always the same. “We’d put the book down and never finish it because it would make us mad. People aren’t stupid.”

So, yeah, researching topics on how to do something or historical facts is vitally important.

Before I leave, I leave you with a diddy. Maybe two:

It’s not stopping!” The dash looked daunting. There were at least twelve gages and ten switches. “What’s all this stuff for?!”

“I don’t know but you need to find the clutch. It’s somewhere near the brake,” Cynthia said. “I sure hope you remember not to do anything your mother suggests ever again.”

I shifted my foot left and slammed it onto the clutch, grabbing the gear shift. My little hand could barely hang onto the softball-sized shift. “How many gears is on this thing?” I wiggled it front, then to the right, and then left. The engine made a grinding noise.

“Ten forward ones and two reverse.”

DISCLAIMER: No one may use this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 15: Q is for Question

Today, I wish to ask two questions. One, how do you personally feel about words in a novel? You know, like ‘was’ and ‘that’, ‘just’, and ‘then’. How about too many adverbs and too many dangling participles? Improper tags? Do you feel if we get caught up in what’s right according to the status quo, will it distract you from being creative?

Some authors feel that yes it will ruin the moment of their creative bursts. Mostly the Indies. Since the world of publishing has new options for the self-published we’re seeing the rules broken. ***air quotes here*** Indies are the non-conformists of the publishing world.

Last year, I promised only to read Indie authors’ works and there is some GREAT stuff out there. And yes, there is some mediocre stuff, and some really bad stuff. But I’ve read some really boring and awful famous author stuff, too. They also break the rules. Or, is it their editors screwed up, passing crap through the key hole, thinking no one will notice because they can market the author’s name anyway? ***shrugs***

And I ‘ve read posts and comments about the Indies. Mostly negative.You know, how self-publishing doesn’t filter out the crap. What is crap to you? I believe its something personal.

Personally, I don’t care about the word game-even though when I beta read for someone, I’ll mark up their MS, pointing out the no-no’s. Really though, for me, its all about the plot and character development. If someone can tell a story, who cares about the words? If you can’t tell or write a story coherently, you’ve got a problem. That’s my thought.

Indie author, Elizabeth J. Kolodizier rants exactly about this issue on her blog. Please check it out. Just click on her name below.

Elizabeth J. Kolodizier

My second question is this, do you ever ask yourself why am I writing? Why do I torment myself? Whether its one rejection letter after the other or you’ve got a small following. What’s the point? That’s what Aaron Sawyer asked a couple days ago on his blog. Just click on his name below.

Aaron Sawyer

So what are your feelings on both topics?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 14: P is for Pit Bull

pit bull

Pit Bulls get a bad wrap in the media. But do they really deserve it? I say not. It should be their careless and cruel owners who should get mucked all over the news.

Teach a dog to fight. He will. Teach a dog to chase and abuse a smaller animal. He will. Dogs are just little fur children. They do what they know.

Brandy is a Pit Bull who has a special place in Secondhand Shoes. Not only does Lila blossom into a strong and worthy character but so does Brandy.

Here are some lines starring Brandy, the Pit Bull:

Coon sat behind the wheel, chewing his tobacco gunk, looking in my direction, and I slowed to a walk when I saw his Pit Bull, Brandy, (she’s known to chase cats up trees and eat them, and terrorize children on their bikes) sitting next to him.

The dog walked toward a corner across from me, plopped down, facing us. She watched the drama in the room, ripping my last Keds to pieces.

We inched closer to the car. Brandy pulled a chain from behind her, trying to jump out of the truck bed. It jerked her back, making her squeal. She caught her breath, letting out a series of vicious barks and growls. Her lips curled back, baring her teeth at us. Gram appeared behind her, and kneeled beside her. She leaned her head toward her ear. Her lips moved, and she stroked the top of Brandy’s head, calming her down.

DISCLAIMER: No one may use the written content. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 13: O is for Oh My…Owie, Owie, Owie

Sunday, yesterday, and today I woke with hives. Sweetman washed our bed sheets in Tide. I’m terribly allergic and he knows better. His excuse, ‘it smells better then my organic detergent’. Oh my…

But my main character, Lila, well she’s got other problems and it isn’t an allergy rash. Below is a little diddy:

“Ow ow ow,” I said, dropping the handgun and grabbing my foot. My foot landed on something prickly.

“What?” Cynthia said.

I leaned against a tree and examined my foot. A tiny hairy-looking-barbed thing stuck into the fleshy part of my heel. “It’s a sand spur.”

“Pick it out,” Cynthia said.

“Aw,ow,ow, owie, I’m trying. It’s not coming out.”

“Sit and give me your foot. I’ll do it,” Cynthia said, putting the rifle on the ground.

DISCLAIMER: No one my use this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Monday, April 16, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 12: N is for Nuisance

It’s not my style to whine or complain but Blogger has been a royal pain in me arse. And of all times, too, while I happily hoppity-hop through the blogiddy-blog field spreading and looking for good cheer. Oh dear!

Over the last two weeks I’ve received several 503 error messages when navigating to other blogs or leaving comments. It’s almost as bad as the feeling you get when something hard is hanging in your nose. What a nuisance!

A nuisance conspiracy trying to keep me from my blogiddy-blog-blog-fun. Some one in another blog dimension is trying to steal my fun room and possibly yours, too. It’s sounding all to Matrix-familiar to me.

matrix pic

On day 10 of the challenge it wouldn’t post my ‘L’ post for the life of me. When it finally did, it looked like a word dump. It literally ignored my paragraph commands. I couldn’t tell you how many times I tried to fix it. Oy vey! I thought I had entered the Twilight Zone.

twilight zone

So I have a new name for Blogger. Blooger. Blogger plus booger equals Blooger. Does this make us all Bloogers now? Blooger pickers, perhaps?

nose picker

Anyone else having issues?

Before I go to work, here’s a diddy from my novel:

A slow and methodical smile stretched across her face. “I hope the two of you can negotiate something,” she said, cupping her hand under my chin. “We’d like to welcome you to the family business. Right boys?” She looked over her shoulder at the three idiots. “She’ll make a nice decoy while we export our goods. Praise Jesus!”


DISCLAIMER: No one my use this written content. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Repost of A to Z Challenge, Day 11: M is for Max Butz

I hope this posts correctly today. Yesterday, Blogger was being touchy. It took me four times to post Day 10’s post and then it ignored my paragraph commands. It looked like I dumped a bunch of words on the page.

Anyway, happy weekend all!

When I get my hands on that woman, there’s no telling what I’ll do to her, beat her into submission or make wild passionate love to her. I’ll cross that bridge when I get to it. Right now, I need to find her.

The thought came to mind she might be playing hard to get. A game of foreplay before we commence the marriage. Maybe. But she did take off with the wedding cash. I needed it to take care of some business with Vinny. He purchased the load I’m supposed to deliver. Anyway, if she’s playing hard to get, would she have sprayed me with mace? (He scratches his chin) Possibly. Some girls like it rough. They like pain with pleasure. Hmm….

Nah…maybe she’s really running from me because she did steal my car. No one messes with Max Butz’s car. My ma bought it for me-it’s still in her name. Hmmm…I don’t know, though.  Why would she marry me? The woman confuses me.

Maybe she’s  on her way to the police. But ma says wives can’t testify against their husbands in a court of law. If I go down, she goes down. That’s what she says. Ma’s always right about things.

Ma says Lila’d be good for the family business. That’s why I married her…well…kind of. I mean, she’s real pretty. Innocent-like, you know. I get a hard-on thinking about her. Guess that means I love her. Ma says it was God’s will to marry her.

Well, when I find her I’ll give her a good whooping and make love to her all in the same round. You know, let her know who’s boss and who loves her. Women need love with a firm hand to keep’em in line.

I’m hoping I don’t have to kill her though. Ma says I might have to. Ma says if we can’t get Lila to repent and come to our side I’ll have to.

Me and my friends, Coon, Cockroach, and Vinny are on the lookout for her. Lila shouldn’t be too hard to spot…I mean she seems to believe her dead Gram is with her. ***He laughs*** And Ma says if I have to kill her people’ll think she did herself off. Crazy bitch.

DISCLAIMER: No one may use this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Blogger is Being a Bummer

I'm really pissed at this Blog right now. Day 10 and todays post looks like a word dump. This D@#!% thing is ignoring my paragraph commands. Sorry guys! I do know better. Shelly

Friday, April 13, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 10: L is for Lila

Dear Diary: Today is November 14, 1983. One day ago I married, Max Butz . My mom’s choice, including the wedding dress and secondhand bridal shoes (the shoes are a half-size too small). A bargain for her and a total throat-gagging experience for me. My wedding day should’ve been with Julio Velasquez. Mom made sure I broke up with him at the beginning of summer, and hooked me up with Max right away through one of her Tupperware parties. I should’ve taken Cynthia’s advise ( she’s my best friend). Run away the night before the wedding, and hide in her parents’ beach house, stay there for a couple weeks. You know, wait until mom cooled off ---she’s rather frightening when she doesn’t get her way. Too late now. Mom thinks I’m crazy because I can see dead people and have conversations with them. She doesn’t believe I’ve got a gift. Sometimes I’m not sure myself but Gram believes me. Speaking of Gram, thank God, she’s with me. In spirit, that is. She died right before Julio and I broke up. She understood our love. Still does. Anyway, Gram convinced me to grab the wedding cash Max and me got in gifts at the reception---stuffed it into my bra. She helped me escape out a diner’s bathroom window---off I 75, somewhere a little south of Orlando. Can’t believe I did that still in my wedding dress and these awful bridal shoes, three inch stilts, I swear. I followed her bird friend, a hawk, (she loves all birds and they listen to her, too) into the woods but Max caught up with me. Good thing I had mace in my evening bag. Sprayed him a good one, right into his eyeballs. Boy! He’s mad now, and more so because I’ve stolen his car from a McDonald’s parking lot and stuffed nails in his creepy friend, Coon’s monster trucks tires. And then there’s Max’s friend Vinny. He wants payment for something and seems to think he can get it from me…anyway he can… if you know what I mean. Oh, and I can’t forget Cockroach. He’s just totally grody. I really think he’s part bug. He likes he’d like to torture me or something. And at this very moment, I’m at a Motel 6 trying to figure out my next move. You see, I discovered cocaine and guns in the trunk of Max’s car. So I know they’ll be looking for me. I mean, they did chase me until the trucks tires blew out. Like I said, it’s a good thing Gram’s with me. Until tomorrow. If I actually make it to see tomorrow. Lila

Thursday, April 12, 2012

A To Z Challenge, Day 9: K is for Kaye Coppersmith, A Tribute to my Departed Editor

It was last Thursday, My dear friend and editor passed away. Before going to bed Wednesday evening, she told me and others she wasn’t feeling well. Nausea and fatigue. Well, she never woke up.

This past Monday, for ‘H’ I posted about her sudden death and asked how was I going to replace her as a friend and editor. I know I can really never ever replace either….well, only with a new one who’ll have a different way of looking at things. That’s okay.

And on Monday’s blog comments, my friend from, Texas Playwright Chick , suggested I do a tribute to her for ‘K’ day.

Funny, too, that night Kaye came and visited me in a dream. We met at a park somewhere. We sat at a picnic table across from each other. She wore a bright orange t-shirt. Her usual two pair of glasses hung on a chain around her neck. The same black fanny-pack she always wore hugged her waist, and she pulled out the same chap stick she used on earth and smeared it around her lips.

After, she capped it and shoved it back into her fanny-pack, fluffed up her already disheveled hair, and then handed me my MS she’d been working on. “I’m really sorry I couldn’t finish it, kid.” She smiled.

I shuffled through my MS. Coffee stains tipped its edges. Tiny morsels of her favorite crumb bun speckled a  few pages. I even found a page from a magazine article stuck inside it.

“Sorry about that, too,” she said. “And its probably out of order as well.” She frowned.

I thumbed through it some more. Yep. Out of sequential order. But her penciled notes were there. A few ‘Acks’ and ‘Yaks’ stood out at me. Those were her favorite expressions when I did the abominable writing sin.

I met Kaye in 2008 at a Critique meeting she over saw. I can remember thinking to myself, there’s no way this gal is a professional editor. How could she be with a green hue to her hair? It was a lime-jello-green.

But she proved never to judge a book by its cover. I felt pretty lucky to have a professional editor over seeing my work because I had no clue about  A LOT. She taught me everything I know even though there are times I’m not so sure I grasped it all. Her passion for books and writing beamed from her. She really got excited over some great reads or great lines. Even the ones  the group had written in their work. It showed all rosy in her cheeks. She would just glow over it. And she kept a journal of all her favorite lines from every book she ever read.

She was also a very giving person, volunteering the majority of her time to Florida Writer’s Association. Always at every event giving her time. She also collected coupons for the military families and was an advocate for animals. And best of all, she was my friend.

I’m going to miss you Kayster (that’s what I called her). I already do. I’m so glad I was able to tell you ‘I loved you’ and was able to get one of your bear-hugs before we parted.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 8: J is for Jump and Jerk

This morning, well almost everyday when writing a scene, I find myself pondering and sometimes inking other ways to show someone being startled or moving abruptly. And whenever I’d turned my work into my editor, she’d write a big, fat ‘Ack!’ or ‘Yak!’.

“Sweetie,” she said many, many times. “You don’t have to try so hard. Things like this only need to be said simply. Remember, keep it simple.”

And my poor brain still believes there has to a fancier way of showing these words.  What do you think?

Below are a couple lines from my novel.

I jumped, turning to face the doorway, almost jabbing my wrist. “Oh my, goodness,” I gasped, yanking at the scissors stuck in the lace. “You scared me.”

I jerked my hand back. “Max, there are people right outside who can see in.”


Disclaimer: No one may use this written content. It belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 7: I is for Ick Factor!

Have you ever met a guy that just gave you the creepy-crawlies all over? Well, here are three that give Lila the total ick factor. When I thought about Max’s sidekicks, I thought Texas Chain Saw Massacre.  ***shrugs*** Remember those creepy peeps?


My eyes went from Max to his best man, Jasper Gips, nicknamed Coon, and his shiny balding head. It gleamed under the lights. Long, stringy strands of hair touched his collar. All ten of them. I flared my nostrils in disgust and hoped no one noticed. You should’ve kept your Buccaneers ball cap on.

Thank God, the usual tobacco wad that poked out of his cheek was gone. No Slurpee cup at his side to spit in. He smiled and showed off a black hole. Dressing up didn’t help him at all.


Coon spit tobacco into a Slurpee cup. Jimmy Hurley stood next to him, gawking. Max and his pals called him Cockroach. The nickname suited him. The rims of his eyes were always red and so were his nose holes. He was skinny and sick-looking, and he twitched a lot. The only thing missing were his bug feelers.

Vinnie stood on the other side of Cockroach and puckered his lips into a kiss at me.

Grody. DISCLAIMER: No one may use any the written content. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Monday, April 9, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 7: H is for How Am I Going to Get Through my Edits Now?

This morning as I write this post, my eyes are dry. But that’s not how it’s been all weekend. Friday evening I received horrible news.

While at work and in between heads of hair, I checked my messages and voice mail. One of those messages was from one of my co-critiquers from my writing group.

I waited to return the call when I got on the road. The moon hung in the night sky bright and full. People drove a bit crazy on the way home, riding tail lights and weaving in and out of traffic.  I had no clue my life would change after I pressed the number on my phone.

Ms. H answered the phone, “Shelly.”

“Yes,” I said.

“Kaye died.”

“Kaye?” The only Kay I knew was my dear friend and editor. She’s had my MS since the middle of last month.

“Yes. Kaye.”

“You mean, our Kaye. Kaye Coppersmith?'” Tears welled up in my eyes while someone passed and maneuvered their big car in front of mine.

“Yes,” she said. “She passed on Thursday.”

My heart hit the bottom of my stomach. The last I saw my Kaye was Monday. Her concerns were with my own health issues. That’s what we discussed. Little did I know, she’d be the one departing the earth in a couple days.

Right now, I’m feeling lost. I’m not one to get too close to people. It takes me a long time to really warm up to anyone. If anything most people would say I’m pretty aloof and keep people at an arm’s length. Trust is a big thing with me, and I trusted her. She wasn’t just my editor. She was my friend, and I loved her dearly. No one will ever be able to replace her. She was a quality friend. A quality editor.

Whenever I’ve doubted myself, she believed in me. She was famous for the word ‘Ack!’ when I used the wrong tag. She loved canned peaches and crumb buns. She carried her loose change in a prescription bottle. She kept a journal of favorite lines from books she read. She was quirky and unique. Oh my God, I miss her already.

Who’s going to be my Kaye-quality friend and editor now? How am I going to get my edits complete without her?

Right now everyone, I’m a mess. I’m hoping some how she’s still here as an angel and that she’ll whisper what I’m doing right and wrong.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

A to Z Blog Challenge, Day 6: G is for Grandchildren and Gram

Today, I’m heading down south to see my grandsons, Glowstick and Ho-Ho. So I’ll be around later to hoppity-hop in the blog field like the Easter Bunny, leaving non-caloric comments. Sorry. No chocolate or jelly beans.






But before I leave, Lila’s Gram asked me to post a message right here on my blog from her. Happy reading! Happy Passover! Happy Easter!


I remember the night I died from a UTI…my, my….of all things to die from, too. Now where was I? Oh, yeah… right before summer began, the cards tried to warn my Lila about that bad fella, Max, and his scallywag friends. Not only did the Tarot try to warn her, but her own intuition flooded in that night. Too bad the cards or, her intuition, didn’t name these bad boys. Unfortunately, that’s how it works sometimes. The fates leave it up to a person to figure certain things out.

In my better days, we practiced the gift of sight on Sunday afternoons. I found it special to mentor her but the child doubts herself no matter what. Very frustrating…(sighs) my, my.

The poor thing endured constant insults from the time she was small by her mother, Babs. That woman’s such a pooh. I’m amazed that she didn’t keep my granddaughter away from me because she sure kept her away from my son, her dad, Rick Bowman. What a shame, too. Because her stepfather, Howie, is no help. He’s a beaten, down wimp.

I can’t believe the woman allowed her to marry Max Butz. They only new each other three months. The fella’s bad news. He looks at my granddaughter like she’s something to eat. What kind of person drives around with drugs and guns in their car?  And, what mother would allow such a nice girl to marry someone she barely knows? (Sigh)

Oh, and then there’s his mother, Edna. Dear God. The woman’s not what she appears to be. Praise the Lord…my white-granny- bottom! That’s all the woman seems to be able to say. And, she wants my Lila to be a part of the family business…it’s all criminal activity. Over my dead body…(chuckles) I’m already dead.

Oh, my!! (sigh) What’s a grandmother to do?

Some how, even though I’m in spirit, I’ve got to get this child to understand that she’s got a real gift and a voice of her own. I’m thankful God didn’t take me to the light yet. I’ve got a mission. It’s to help my poor, Lila. She’s got herself in a real fix. Sad thing is, I can’t always manifest to help her or, send out my birds. Maybe it’s a good thing. She’ll find her own strength that way. Can’t be there to fight all her battles. But, I’ll do my best. Especially, when it comes to getting her to Julio. I like that boy.

Pooh, on what her mother thinks!

DISCLAIMER: No one may use any of this content. Pictures or written words. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.

Friday, April 6, 2012

A to Z Challenge, Day 5: F is for Freaky Friday

freak fridayRemember this movie? Where mom and daughter wish they could trade places out of frustration.

What if this were true? What if two people have an agreement to trade bodies? Is it true?

Some astral projectors suggest it is. All two peeps have to do is agree to trade bodies before they go on their astral journey. Theory says its possible. How freaky is that?

Here’s a diddy from my novel:

“I’m borrowing B.J.’s body so I can help you. Gram said because I’m in a coma, it’d be a piece of cake to astral project into a willing body. B.J.’s willing, so we’ve been switching,” he said, putting his hands on my shoulders. “You believe me?”

DISCLAIMER: No one my use anything on this page except the borrowed pictures. Everything else here, belongs to Shelly Arkon.


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Day Five, A to Z Challenge: E is for Elvira

th_Elvira-CassandraPeterson  Today, I thought I’d share an iddy-biddy about my insy-winsy mention of Elvira in my novel.


Well, because I absolutely loved her show, Movie Macrabe. Loved her sexy outfits and how she would insult a poorly made horror film. She was a total ghoulie-girl. And I have a fascination with the dark side of comedy. I can’t help myself. Really.

I thought it would be cool to share her humor in an unwanted sex scene between Lila, the main character, and her creepy groom, Max.

But before I share a diddy from the novel, I thought I’d give you some facts about Miss E.

Real name: Cassandra Peterson

Born: September 17, 1951

Began her show, Movie Macabre: In late spring, 1981

Ta-Tas: I couldn’t find any info on them. Real? Not real? ***shrugs*** Anything is possible.

Here’s the diddy from the novel:

The room spun while my back pressed into the mattress from Max’s dead weight. The voice of Elvira came on the television. She said something about sexy Freddy Krueger and Nightmare on Elm Street.

I held my breath and laid trapped beneath his body.

Okay. I’m off to hoppity-hop in the A to Z blog field before I have to go loppity-lop-lopping later.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Day Four, A to Z Blog Challenge: D is for Delete

Today I promised you all a deleted scene. It’s back story. Something I seem to have talent for but no one wants in the middle of some moving scene. So I save every piece because …well…because I just do. I can’t help it. Does this constitute hoarding in anyway?

So enjoy this little scrap that’s been scrapped while I loppity-lop hair today. I’ll be hoppity-hop-hopping in the blog field later this evening.


Mom lugged her Tupperware cases into the living room.

A man who had to weigh three-hundred pounds lay on the living room floor, his head propped up on an elbow. He looked at me and said, “You must be the Southern dumbbell your mom’s been talking about.” He laughed and ignored that mom could have used his help with her cases.

“Now Jim, don’t scare her off like that.” Mrs. Butz said. “Max is going to be thrilled when he sees her.”

Mr. Butz rolled into a sitting position to face us. “Where is that peckerhead, anyway?”

“He’ll be home soon. He promised. Halleluiah.”

Mom busied herself with setting up her Tupperware, oblivious to Mr. Butz. Complaining about his language would be no use. She’d make light of it or say I made it all up.

Mrs. Butz’s friends trickled in. They all shared the same vocabulary “Praise the Lord”, “Halleluiah,” “The Lord told me such and such.” Weird, but I smiled and acted like everything was normal.

The pick-up truck driver arrived halfway through mom’s demonstration and grabbed a straight chair to sit across from me. He wore black corduroy pants, a blue tee shirt, and a dark red ball cap. Dark brown curls falling out from under it. Gray pointy cowboy boots on his feet. He smelled of English Leather, motor oil, and cigarettes, even from eight feet away. Black grease in his cuticles and under his fingernails. My nose wrinkled of its own accord.

Mrs. Butz shot up and interrupting mom’s four-dozenth lift-lid-and-press demonstration and pointed at me. “Max, that’s Lila, the girl across the street.” Max grinned. “Her Mother, Babs is giving our Tupperware party. That’s her over there.” She pointed at mom, but Max neither turned his head nor refocused his grin.

Something in me lurched, I stood. “Mom, I can’t stay. I have something to do and need to go.” I did have something to do. My room needed cleaning, and my laundry needed folded and put away. Cynthia and I could go to the movies.

Mom put down the green lettuce keeper she’d been burping and frowned. “What are you talking about?”

The Tupperware passing among the women stopped, everyone’s eyes on me.


The women waited. Mom glared. Max grinned.

“Um…uh.” What I wanted to say hovered in my voice box.

Mom slammed down the lettuce keeper and walked toward me. Whatever hovered in my voice box took cover. “I’m waiting,” she said, her left brow cocked. That thing was on alert at all times, ready to rise when I crossed the line.

The women, Tupperware in their laps, looked at each other.

Max smirked. I wanted to stick my finger down my throat and gag.

Mom glowered.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Day Three to the A to Z Challenge: C is Cliffhanger

Ooops! Sorry. No one-liners today. Gotcha.

Today, I’ll briefly write about Cliffhanger. One, I love them. The television versions leave you hanging until the next show. Books keep you turning their pages.

What is a Cliffhanger? It is a melodramatic adventure serial in which each installment ends in suspense in order to interest the reader or viewer in the next installment.

And I love to watch and learn. So below is a Cliffhanger from The Vampire Diaries, Season 2 Finale.

It is my personal belief that each chapter I write should proceed as such. A Cliffhanger. And in Secondhand Shoes there’s lots of action and surprises. I actually surprised myself, or should I say my characters caught me off guard. Since I’m basically a Fart-Writer a/k/a Pantster, I let my characters do what they want.

So how do you write and end each chapter? Subtly? With excitement? Is it mysterious? Action packed? Let me know in the comment box.

Okay. That’s all for now. Since I gave no one-liners today, tomorrow I’ll give you a deleted scene from Secondhand Shoes. D is for Deleted.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Day Two A to Z Blog Challenge: B is for Babbling Babs

Just wanted you all to know right now I’m lopping hair. So tonight I’ll be able to make rounds to other blogs. You all have fun and great day!

Below is a line from Lila’s mother, Babs.

Mom squeezed herself through the gap between him and the door. “You really worry me.” She pushed herself into the room, racing toward me. “Were you talking to another imaginary person?” Her eyes shot to the scissors. “What are you doing? Are you cutting up your wrists?” She squinted her gray eyes at me, cocking her heavily painted left brow. “You’ll do anything to stop this wedding. Won’t you?”

DISCLAIMER:  No one may copy this blog for their own use. This belongs to Shelly Arkon.