Blog

Hiking in the Valley of Death

Every outdoor enthusiast has their favorite National Park, and Death Valley is definitely high on my list. I’ve been there more than any other park, a total of eight times. Unless you love the desert Death Valley probably isn’t on your Bucket List, but you’re missing  a great park.

This is me on Wildrose Peak in 2011, the last time I was there. It’s been too long, but I’m busy doing other parks! Also in the area are some of the best ghost towns in the country. The desert is a compelling place.

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Inspiring Images: Em’rald

Em’rald debuts in Girls Gone Groupie, plays a bigger role in Gunning for Groupie Gold, then gets her own book in Live Vicariously Through Me, my next release. She was tough to find an inspiring image for. Em’rald had to be gorgeous, of course, but she had to be more than that: she had to be of the era I write about. The person I chose to represent her is Rachel Williams, a famous model of the 90s:

Em

I just remember thinking this woman was stunning when I saw her in high fashion magazines when I was a twenty-something. She was perfect inspiration for a character I dreamed up many years ago and updated for my Girls of Glam Rock Series.

Meet Em’rald and many other great characters by clicking my Books link.

My First National Park

You might say that I’m obsessed with National Parks. Yosemite was my first, way back in 1987! Since then, I’ve visited more than forty of them, mostly with my dearly departed mom. Then I decided that it was my hiking goal to see them all on foot. Once again, Yosemite was one of my first.

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Here I am relaxing on Cloud’s Rest, otherwise known as “heaven”. This shot is from 2012. I’ve done twenty-two other parks since then and am trying to do three a year, but some of them are just so darn great I keep going back! Think I’m going to renew my parks card before the fees go up to $70…

Peak Foliage Weekend, New England

Folks from other parts of the country (and the world) pay big money to see what a lot of New Englanders take for granted:

Foliage 1

In fact, a lot of New Englanders act like fall foliage in no big deal, and more of a bother than anything else. Well, I’m not one of them!

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Usually around the third weekend in October I launch into high gear. Oh wait, I’m always in high gear! Let’s call it “higher gear.” This year, thirty-five miles in five days, all for the sake of foliage.

Foliage 2

But just look at this! What a season it has turned out to be, the finest in years!

Foliage 3

 

Live Vicariously Through Me

An Excerpt From My New Book,

Releasing December 2017

If there’s one question I get asked all the time it’s, “Em’rald, how did you get such an incredible life?”

Then there’s the true burning inquiry that bolder fans will ask me and reporters always start off with: “What made you marry Nikk Saffire when you had Sweet Sammy Gunn waiting for you at the altar?”

The answers to these questions are so closely intertwined that they’re basically the same story.  It’s a saga I’ve hidden for years, but is coming to light in small bits and pieces.  Rather than let the untruths that come from interfering people digging into my past be the only thing out there, I’ve thought long and hard about my options, and have come to the conclusion it’s best to tell my own story—complete with all its un-pretty facts.

“I live vicariously through you,” young women say to me when they meet me backstage, after I’ve torn it up in front of twenty-five thousand sweat-soaked fanatics in the man’s world of heavy metal. I have to smile.  Because sometimes I live vicariously through me, too.  Those days when I just can’t quite shake the feeling of being Homeless Emily Jane Darlington, the girl I used to be, Em’rald, the Goddess of Heavy Metal, is just a mask I force on.  She’s only real to me sometimes.  But that’s what keeps me sane.

I’ve been to heaven, and I’ve lived through hell.  I prefer it somewhere in between, because heaven doesn’t stick around, and there’s only so long you can be in hell before you have to force yourself to bounce back and clear out.  True heaven only comes to me in the form of Niko Saffros, better known as Nikk Saffire, who knows everything I know, and has seen everything I’ve seen.  Hell doesn’t come anymore because of Nikk Saffire.  I guess the burning question has been answered that easily, for some.  But there’s so much more to tell.

I may have skipped part of high school and all of college to be a fashion model, but I’m smart enough to know that my meteoric rise from living in a car in the South Bronx to becoming the female jewel of heavy metal has everything to do with the charm of wanting to be me.  The world loves a good Cinderella story. Mine is one of the greats, especially if it didn’t happen to you. The verdict is still out on whether I’ll get my fairy tale ending, but the odds are looking pretty good from my vantage point.

If that’s what the world thrives on, that’s what the world can have.  Give the people what they want.  I offer up the Ballad of Emily Jane on a platinum record, one of the many we have hanging on the walls of our estate in upstate New York, far away from the South Bronx.  At my urging, live how I’ve lived. Feel my joy, my pain, and everything in between.  Experience what l’ve been through.  Ascend into my heaven, and descend into my hell.  Roll my rock and rock my roll. Survive this.  Walk a mile in my spike-heeled emerald-spangled shoes, and never complain about blisters, because no one gives a shit.

Suck it up. Take a deep breath. And live vicariously through me.

 

Inspiring Images: Carolina Clampett

Everyone who reads my Girls of Glam Rock books tells me that their favorite of the three  groupie girls is Southern Belle Carolina Clampett. Okay, she thinks that Elly May Clampett is her long lost sister, and she’s supposed to be more than a little dingy. But the truth is that she’s shrewd, business minded, and focused. Being cute doesn’t hurt a thing. And Carolina wouldn’t think of hurting a flea. Here’s what she looks like in my mind:

Carolina

Meet Carolina and her wild friends in Girls Gone Groupie and Gunning for Groupie Gold, available on my books page.