Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Tuesday, March 19

It appears that my book is now distributed to most of Smashwords book companies that they work with. Amazon still does not have my book yet though, and that is a little disappointing, but hopefully soon. Until then, I have caught a couple errors in The Fire Fox that I will be updating.

I hope you will take some time and look at my personal blog. At the moment it is much more established than this blog, but I do intend to keep up with both.

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Well, as of today my book has been distributed to a few companies such as Apple, but they are still revising at Smashwords for several other companies in their distribution network. Amazon and Barnes & Noble are two still waiting on their revised copy to distribute.

Up until now, I have only sold ten copies, but that is okay. I am not giving up, and I know this can be a slow process. I am next focusing on some marketing and that should help get my name out there. But even if I don't sell many more books, I am content because I did this for myself and writing this book alone is a huge accomplishment!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Contact me!

The best way to contact me is through email


I would love to hear from you!

About Zaidey

I have lived in southern Indiana my whole life.  My husband and I live in a rural community with our budding family in a hundred year old farmhouse. We own a small business that offers small scale home repairs/remodels. We also do occasional "cleanouts" of abandoned property that allows us to come across items which we sell from time to time on eBay under the name "alwaysbluestudio". I take care of the accounting and eBay aspect of our business and also our two kids and six pets. I am involved in a local MOPs group, enjoy gardening and art, and attend a small church with my family. And somehow between all that I am also trying my hand at writing books on the side. I started this blog as a way for you to connect with my books.

I attended Purdue University and graduated with a degree in fine art.  I designed the cover of the Fire Fox book myself!  I love art, but have always had a passion to write as well.  Right now, I am focused on being a mother and a wife, but writing gives me that creative outlet I need to feel like myself again outside of the daily demands of real life.  I am sure many of you out there can relate : )

Thank you for taking part in this journey with me.


Thank you for visiting my blog!  I am glad you have taken the time to find out a little bit more about me and who I am as an author. 

First of all, my book The Fire Fox Tablet and any others that I write will be clean (free of profanity, sexual scenes, gore, etc.).  So, you can feel safe reading my stories to your children or allowing your older children to read them on their own!  That is not to say that there is no adventure or love - on the contrary.  I feel my books are something you will enjoy as an adult, and that your child can follow along with you and understand as well. 

Second, I am a Christian.  There are definite faith undertones to my style of writing.  Whether you are a believer or not, I hope it will give you something to think on and ponder.

And lastly, I hope you become a fan and come back for more.  I intend to turn the Firefox into a series.  If you like what you have read, be sure to leave me a review and share that with others.  It would be an encouragement to me if you also started to follow my blog and subscribed to the posts via email.   

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Firefox Tablets: Chapter 1 Excerpt

Part I: Chapter 1

The Fire Fox

            “Look here!” yelled Tierce to his friends.

           “You better watch it.  You’ll break your neck, and then we’ll have to carry you all the way back home,” said Valkyrie who was definitely not up to the task.

“I’m not going to break my neck.  I know what I’m doing.”

“I don’t know how you are even moving after the twelve egg sandwiches you ate this morning for breakfast,” teased Valkyrie.

“It was five, just for the record,” Tierce puffed under his breath.

“Yeah, you better watch it Tierce.  In fact, I am surprised you do not already have a pot-belly like Val’s pig Reno, and then your balance will be all sorts out of whack,” chortled Matty, sounding a bit like the snorting pig he was just referring to.

Tierce was with two of his closest friends, Valkyrie and Matthew, in the woods not far from a large castle and the city of Mura they called home.  The three had been thrown together into a tightly knit bond through their school classes, especially in recent years, which was actually the reason for their visit to the woods today.  To them it was a double accomplishment, because they were not only getting some homework out of the way but they were also able to enjoy time away from the daily expectations others placed on them.  At sixteen years old, their childhood was quickly vanishing and passing by with greater speed every day. 

In the city of Mura, school was very structured, as was the life afterwards.  Children were educated in general studies until the seventh grade, at which time they had to choose a focus path.  Anyone who did not complete a path or dropped out of school ended up a member of the common workforce, most typically resulting in employment by the local mines – a profession many youths denounced but later reluctantly fell into because they could not find another way to make a living.

Tierce, Val, and Matty all three chose botany in their seventh year, one of the less popular paths, as their course of study.  This caused most of their classes to be scheduled together until they graduated from school at the age of eighteen, which was still a couple of years away yet for Tierce and his friends but was looming ahead in the distance nevertheless. 

Tierce was a quiet boy among groups of people and felt botany would suit him more with the smaller class sizes rather than the material, but he felt it was something he could learn to appreciate and excel in as he gained more knowledge.  At least, that is what his parents had suggested when he told them he was scared to death to begin a focus path that could possibly determine the course of the rest of his life.  Valkyrie had also chosen botany, not for the class size but because it was her passion.  She loved plants and ate up the information in her textbooks like pieces of candy.  Matty just liked being outside, so he chose botany as well.  He would never have chosen magic, the most popular path, where he would have been inside a dark, smoky lab all day whispering chants and manipulating objects.  It simply did not appeal to his sensibilities. 

So as a result, they had all three began to see much more of each other and a fast friendship was formed.  One of their favorite pastimes was exploring the Great Forest just outside of Mura’s city limits, journaling about the local plant species and collecting samples for their botany labs, but mostly enjoying camaraderie and freedoms the vast woods afforded.  On this particular day, they were doing just that.    

There was a touch of spring in the air, but winter had yet to release its tight grasp on the world, reminding all who ventured outside that the cold season was not yet dead as it softly bit the delicate skin of ungloved hands and kissed a rosy flush into pale cheeks.  Tierce and his friends were in a small valley covered in wild ferns, the bottom of which was home to a crystal clear stream that snaked through the ravine and paused emptying into a short pool perfect for swimming on hot afternoons.  Of course, it was too cold to swim today, but Tierce, Val, and Matty had instead been appeasing their selves by simply climbing over the roots of old trees and scaling the sides of the ravine in search of new plant hybrids they may have previously missed which would certainly give them extra credits with Professor Clove’s accelerated Rare Plants and Their Intriguing Uses class. 

But the lure of a boost in academic performance was quickly waning as they all found other outlets for their curiosities.  Dusk was beginning to near and the reddening sky should have sent a warning to them that it was about time to return home, but they were all enjoying themselves too much and no one as of yet was willing broach the subject. 

Tierce in particular was fixated with swinging out on a grapevine he had discovered further up the creek while trailing a unique bluebell trail that he remembered journaling about during his ninth year of school.  When the trail went cold and his hopes of finding a new variation of the unique sapphire plant, he was not disappointed when an ancient and gnarled grapevine had caught his eye. 

He was up high on the western slope, at times momentarily swinging out from the tree testing his weight on the vine by holding on for a few breathless moments as he lifted his feet off the ground causing the overhead branches to bow beneath his experimental pulls.  It made him feel like he was five years old again, when he would shadow his father, Asher, on his routine pleasure hikes with nothing ahead of them except what they allowed to occupy their time.  Nowadays, Tierce’s time was hardly anything of his own with the demands of school and family hanging daily on his shoulders. 

Matty, who had long since given up on getting anything productive done, was on the eastern slope, looking for some delicious mushrooms he could perhaps take home for his mother to fry up as a dinner treat that night.  He normally would have been right up there with Tierce investigating the strength of the grapevine, but he had an almost barbaric craving for Giant White Morel, native to the Great Forest, and it had been haunting him for weeks since the weather had began turning warmer.  Matty was determined to find them if it was the last thing he did.  So far, however, he had only been successful in picking a few common clovers that he wove deftly in his careful hands as his search continued.

Still daydreaming of his father's hikes and old stories about the Great Woods, Tierce decided to share an anecdote he had stumbled upon in his thoughts.  “My dad says the best sort of grapevine is the kind with a fork in the top.  The only problem is usually one of the sides are no good.  You could swing out only to fall back into the tree and get the life knocked out of ya,” he hollered as he smacked his hands together to demonstrate what getting the life knocked out of you might sound like.

“Does that one have a fork?” asked Valkyrie.

            Tierce knew the answer, but he looked up anyways still clasping the grapevine in his hands.  He squinted until his eyes were nothing but slits, hoping that with every effort maybe the vine would somehow turn out to have a fork in it after all. 

“No, this one is normal,” he said, disappointment dripping from his words.

“Unlike you,” mumbled Matty as he braided together a new bunch of clover he’d picked into a quickly forming circlet.

“When my dad was a kid, he found the tallest, strongest grapevine he’d ever seen right here in these woods.  And it had a fork in it to boot!  The vine was so thick around, he could hold it in both hands, and his fingers wouldn’t touch on either side.  He told me he’s never seen another like it.  We’ve tried to look for it, but never had any luck,” said Tierce.

Valkyrie and Matty nodded silently in acknowledgement of Tierce’s statement, accepting the information but most likely not retaining anything of what he had said.  While the boys did their investigating, Valkyrie quietly observed the pool of water which was home to a wonderful array of aquatic life and luscious mosses that had initially caught her eye.  She bent over and dipped a finger into the mirrored water as a bright orange and white speckled fish swam up to investigate the intrusion and then quickly skipped back to the safe shadows of an algae bed once it realized her finger was not a wriggling meal worm.  She, too, would have joined Tierce on the vine but knew if anyone was going to rally this group homeward it would have to be her.

Matty, still looking for mushrooms, glanced up the hill, scanning any area he may have missed for his elusive treat.  In the distance he suddenly heard a crunching of dead underbrush, and as he looked up he saw what he would have sworn in that very moment to be a grey hooded figure that swiftly departed from the top of the slope back into the dense trees beyond.  He blinked checking to make sure his vision wasn’t playing tricks on him. 

“Hey, did you guys see that?” Matty asked.

“See what?” questioned Valkyrie.  They all stopped to look. 

“I swear I just saw someone watching us.  Up there on top of the hill, I heard something crunch and when I looked up they ran away,” Matty said.

“You’re just making it up.  Stop trying to scare us,” stated Tierce.

“I’m not!” Matty protested, but after a few moments when no other sounds were heard, he resigned himself that maybe he had imagined what he saw after all.  “It must have been the shadows of the trees.  I guess it was nothing,” he mumbled, and went back to braiding clovers.  But suddenly out of the brush a small figure appeared and ventured into the valley.

“Zenith!  What are you doing here?  Mom is going to kill me!” Tierce groaned. 

The little girl, Tierce’s younger sister by three years, looked sheepishly at the friends.  “You were gone so long, I wanted to come and look for you.  It is so boring at home, and besides momma was getting worried.  So I conjured up a tracing spell, and it led me here to you.”

Zenith was a first year magic student.  Obviously she was already putting her schooling to use in quite practical ways.

“Shew, you had me scared, Zenith.  I thought I saw someone watching us but I guess it was just you,” Matty said clearly relieved.

“You shouldn’t be here.  Mom is going to kill me when she finds out!”
            “No she’s not!  I came here on my own, it's no one’s fault but mine.  Besides, you wander around the woods all the time, why can’t I do the same?”

“Well for one, it is practically nightfall, and for another you are thirteen years old!”

“Oh my word, you have been walking around these woods since you were practically a baby, so don’t give me that ‘you are too young’ stuff.  And the fact that it is almost nightfall is only more reason for you to take me home with you now,” Zenith stated with a hand on her hip.

Matty and Valkyrie smirked to themselves, both knowing there was no way Tierce was going to win against the fiery Zenith.  She may have been a young girl, but she was already a feisty opponent that could give just about anyone a run for their money.  Val rose and stretched out her back, opening her mouth to yell at Tierce to stop bickering and start walking but suddenly was cut short by a strange cry that echoed through the forest.

The sound met their ears and shivered down to their toes.  It was eerie and frightening, and sounded like some ancient beast scrambling out of its den and awakening for the night’s work ahead.  It traveled from deep within the forest, most likely farther than any of them had ventured before.   

“Someone please tell me you heard that, and I’m not the only one hearing or seeing things out here,” whispered Matty, almost too frightened to speak.

“No,” said Valkyrie in a hushed tone, “I definitely heard that.”

In the distance, they began to hear a soft quick trample of dried leaves and the breaking of frail branches, followed by another terrifying wail.

 “What. . . . do you suppose it could be?” asked Tierce shakily, his pale face revealing more than the tremors in his voice.  “Zenith get over here, now!”

The cry resounded again.  The crunching of dried underbrush was quicker now, with every second growing louder as the noise approached their location.

“We need to get out of here,” said Valkyrie.  When the boys still remained glued in fear to their current locations Val tried a more forceful command.  “Let’s go!”

Valkyrie ran around the pool to a narrow point and leaped across the water from one rocky embankment to the next, praying that she found a suitable foothold in the approaching twilight.  Zenith followed in Val’s footsteps, adrenaline keeping her close to the others.  Val quickly regretted how perilously close they were to sunset, and choked at the thought that they really should have headed home before the sun began to wane.  Now, they would be trapped against the impending nightfall with a beast hot on their heels. 

Matty rushed to the bottom of the valley, sliding down the hill feet first.  He caught up to Valkyrie and Zenith near the pool since the ridge was not as steep there, and they began to climb uphill towards Tierce, grabbing roots, tree trunks, and whatever else they could find that might help them scale the hill faster.  The horrible cry rang out again, this time closer than ever before.  It no longer sounded like merely small branches being broken, but instead large limbs and small trees could be heard shattering in a constant chaos that was rushing forward.  The three finally reached the top and caught up with Tierce who had not been running at full speed so that his friends and sister could rally to his side.  He grabbed for Zenith’s hand as they came upon him.

“Don’t stop, don’t stop!  Keep running!” said Valkyrie frantically as they all four picked up steam and headed in a westerly direction towards home.  “What should we do, climb a tree?  Hide under some brush?”

“I don’t know, I can’t even think!  Are we going to die?” wailed Zenith.

 “We will be trapped if we climb up a tree.  We can’t risk it.  Whatever that thing is, I’m betting it has a great sense of smell,” said Matty.

“Maybe it’s not coming after us,” said Valkyrie desperately.

“Well, let’s not find out.  But it certainly seems to be headed straight in our direction.”

Another howl sounded in the quickly passing twilight.

Matty thought feverishly for a solution.  “Up ahead, a little to the north, there’s a shallow cave we found awhile back.  It has a narrow opening, but I’m betting that whatever is tracking us is too big to grab us from the outside.  I’d say our chances are better in there than up a tree or under brush,” he said over the sounds of their trampling through the woods.

“Our chances of what: survival?  So, we are going to die!” moaned Zenith.  “It’s probably hungry and wants to eat us for dinner!”

“Zenith, stop it!” hissed Tierce.

They ran as fast as they were able, accelerating through clearings located at random throughout the woods, and slowing down through brambles and monstrous bushes which seemed to pop up out of nowhere.  Whatever was chasing the three friends was almost upon them now.  The sounds of it running through the woods echoed in their ears, and they could now even hear the heavy breaths and snorts coming from the monstrous presence chasing them down.

“Is the cave close?” cried Valkyrie.

“It’s right up here.  Just ahead in the next clearing, I’m sure of it.” 

If it had been an oasis in the middle of a desert, they could not have been more thankful that Matty had been right on the location of the cave.  They came upon the entrance and Tierce slid in without hesitation after his sister was safely inside, Zenith being his primary concern over his friends.  Matty paused, looking at Valkyrie waiting for her to go next. 

“Get in Matty, I’ll go after you.”

Matty waivered, and then reluctantly ducked inside the cave.  He knew he should have insisted she go first, but did as he was told knowing there was no time to argue.  As soon as he was inside he heard the loudest, most ear piercing howl directly in front of the entrance.

“Valkyrie!” Matty shouted reaching a fraught arm towards her.

Valkyrie turned, her fists clenched at her side, and with her chin lowered, she looked up through hooded eyelashes.  Maybe she would have had enough time to escape, but a force took over her as she turned to face the creature behind her.  She instinctively took in a breath as she laid her eyes upon the beast for the first time, horrified at the thing that for a moment stood unmoving before her.