Saturday, December 22, 2012

Highly rated series...

FATAL ERROR Book II of BackTracker series: "Riveting psychological drama," says one Amazon reviewers of this thriller...and others agree.

This second book in my BackTracker series deals with the legal, emotional, and social consequences of the year young Katrina spent with The Traz biker gang, as well as the fallout from the undercover police operation that brought down one of North America's most notorious gangs.

Who's to blame for the torture and gang murder of young Lukas? Who should bear the guilt and who should pay the price? The answers play out as the court room battles heat up, as the media catches wind of the stories, as dark secrets become revealed.

"It's about guilt and blame, and ultimately, forgiveness," one reviewer notes. "Emotions run high in this book," says another.

FATAL ERROR was written before I wrote The Traz,  and therefore reads very well on its own. But be warned--when you finish FATAL ERROR, you'll likely feel compelled to read The Traz --to find out for yourself just who is REALLY to blame for all that went wrong.

This well-done video trailer takes you into the heat of the action and gives you an accurate taste of the intense drama in FATAL ERROR.

Eileen Schuh, Author

Schrödinger's Cat

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Writing therapy for depressed teens

In THE TRAZ, young Katrina's grieving and depression sends her into a downward and dangerous spiral. Depression is common among adolescents as they struggle with the physical and emotional changes that come with puberty as well as ever more complicated life situations. Depression makes youngsters not only vulnerable to the results of their own poor decisions, but also to nefarious adults--who are always on the watch for ways to exploit others' weaknesses.

There are very effective treatments available depression and if you suspect your child may be suffering from it, seek professional help quickly. You will find a list of international resources in the back of THE TRAZ to assist you in finding the help and information you need. (For an excerpt of that list, check out my blog Who do you call when you're down and out? ) 

Agnes Jimenez, a partner with, a resource agency/parent advocacy group, shares with us information on how keeping a written journal can help teens deal with their troubles.

Journal Writing As a Therapeutic Activity for  Depressed Teenagers
Life can be overwhelming, especially for teenagers. Social pressures, raging hormones, and everyday situations can be difficult. Teens do not yet have the life experience behind them to work through many of these issues. As a parent or mentor, you have the insight and responsibility to do your best to help them. Consider suggesting that they keep a journal.


Helping a Depressed Teen

It is important to get help for troubled teens.  Teens, who are feeling depressed may appear withdrawn, lose interest in things they once loved, and they may feel tired all the time. If you suspect a teen of being depressed, do what you can to get a professional involved. He or she will be able to help develop a plan of treatment. If this is not possible, being a positive role model can help. Journaling is an excellent suggestion for many reasons.

The Science of Journaling

Keeping a journal isn't quack medicine, there is science behind it. According to University of Texas psychologist and researcher James Pennebaker, writing about events that are stressful helps you come to term with them. This in turn reduces their impact on your physical health. His research also suggests that keeping a journal helps to boost the immune system. In addition to keeping physically healthy, there are mental benefits as well.

Clarification of Thoughts

Teens especially can feel lost, torn, and uncertain of themselves. They may feel one way, but will act in a totally different way to fit in. Writing these inner thoughts down without worrying about how they sound can help teens get in touch with their innermost selves. A journal acts as a judgment-free sounding board.

Discovery of Self

Writing in a journal can help teens get to know themselves better. They will enjoy greater self-confidence and happiness. The process also helps them identify people or situations that are toxic.  

Stress Reduction

Teens feel a range of intense emotions like anger and sadness. Writing about them is a form of expression. Vividly writing about how they feel will release some of those feelings. This lets them move on and deal with the situation without the pent up emotions.

Problem Solving

Writing down problems is a great way of working through them. Teens will be able to analyze and be more creative about their conflicts. When looking at them in this way, solutions might become easier to identify.

Depression is a serious issue for teens. If you know a teen that needs help, do what you can to involve a professional. Offer insight and suggestions, like keeping a journal. There are many proven benefits, and it can truly help them. 
 _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Agnes Jimenez is a professional blogger and writer. She writes for many online establishments and currently partners with in spreading awareness about troubled and depressed teenagers (and how to deal with them).  Help Your Teen Now aims to increase awareness on the current psychological and societal stresses of today's teens and how these factors affect the future of our society.


THE TRAZ is available in paperback and ebook formats and in a special School Edition that includes a Teaching Guide. Click on the following links to purchase or sample THE TRAZ


Eileen Schuh, Author

Schrödinger's Cat

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Memorable moments...

Click to Purchase

There are moments that ‘make it all worthwhile’ and one of those moments that I’ll never forget was the one that transpired after I received that phone call.

It was December 2011 and I was visiting my daughter up in Yellowknife, celebrating my grandson’s second birthday and still basking in the glow of seeing my first-ever novel in print. THE TRAZ had come out just a few months before. It was a self-published edition, but made me proud. It looked good and read good and the pages of the paperback made a nice whispering, tickle sound when riffled.

Prior to flying to Yellowknife, I’d corresponded with the Yellowknife library, and The Book Cellar bookstore, and the Side Door Youth Centre. I’d emailed press releases to the local media.

Yellowknife welcomed me with open arms. It’s a warm community despite being just this side of the Arctic Circle.  There were actually many memorable moments during that visit. Not the least of which was watching the two-year old open his gifts and blow out his candles.  But aside from that—
The library hosted an author presentation and advertised it. The town included the library visit in the community events calendar. The local newspaper attended my presentation and published a story on it. The radio station phoned me and I did my first-ever in-studio live radio interview.  

But the moment I remember most vividly is when I was wrapping up my presentation to the after-school kids at the Side Door Youth Centre. I had invited a few of the youngsters to pass out trinkets to their school mates while I helped others enter their names in my draw for a Kindle. My daughter was dressing up the two-year old (this takes a while when it’s -40C (or F) outside and pitch black by 3 pm) when a staff member came to tell me that there was a phone call for me and would I like to take it in the office?

I was pretty sure there was a mistake, either that or a telemarketer had tracked me down. After all, I lived a thousand or so miles to the south. The only people I knew in Yellowknife were my daughter and her family and a few of her friends. My daughter and child were with me, her husband was at work, and her friends would likely call her, not me. Right?

As you might imagine, my heart did a little flip-flop when I picked up the receiver and the caller identified herself as being with Corrections Canada. 

My memorable moment, one of those things that makes it all worthwhile, was when I finished reading from THE TRAZ and looked up at the nine youngsters  in that classroom at the North Slave Young Offenders Facility (NSYOF)—and they looked back and we began to talk. We talked about the story, about making life-altering decisions, about the danger of gangs. We talked about writing books and about making our dreams come true.
North Slave Young Offenders Facility

THE TRAZ is now in the libraries of facilities such as the NSYOF across Canada’s north, and that makes me very happy. I recently got in touch with the official that had arranged my last visit to notify her that book 2 in the series, FATAL ERROR, was now out and to ask if it would be possible to do another presentation?

She informed me all the kids I’d met with are now back in their communities and none had re-offended. 

Come spring, I just might once more be walking into the classroom in Yellowknife, prepared to discuss FATAL ERROR. Shame and blame and betrayal. Guilt and accepting responsibility. The art of forgiveness. Our sense of justice.

 I may once more experience a life-changing, fulfilling, memorable moment.

Eileen Schuh

Schrödinger's Cat


Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Thank you to Joe Marich of Marich Media Inc. for this timely information:  
Many people do not know how simple it is to give an eBook, so help your followers discover just how easy it is to give an eBook! 
Here's all they need to do:

First know that you do NOT need a Kindle device to send or receive Kindle book gifts.  The recipient can read their gift on a registered Kindle device or any free Kindle reading application.
To gift a Kindle book, click the "Give as a Gift" button located under the Buy button on Kindle Store product detail pages. It's that easy!
Then simply:
Enter the personal e-mail address for your gift recipient. You can also choose to send the gift to your own e-mail address, and forward the e-mail directly to your recipient or print the e-mail and personally deliver it to your recipient.

Enter a delivery date. If you don't select a delivery date, the e-mail will be delivered immediately.

Enter an optional gift message.

Click the "Place your order" button to finish your gift purchase using your Kindle 1-Click payment method.
The lucky gift recipient will be notified of their gift at the e-mail address you provide.
 Joe Marich
Marich Media Inc.
7304 Beverly Blvd. #260
Los Angeles, CA  90036

Eileen Schuh, Canadian writer

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

I had a dream....

I was awaken from a deep sleep this morning, and the remnants of a powerful dream thereafter shadowed my day.

In my dream I was hiking in the mountains and as I rounded a curve in the trail the land under my feet began slipping down the steep mountain side. I jumped with all my ability and agility and managed to grasp the branch of a tree and pull myself up into it. When I turned to look, the land between me and the tree was gone.

Rescuers came, an entire crew, with heavy machinery and they began building up the land that had disappeared into the valley, even pouring concrete. Tamping.

I was comfortable in the tree and as I waited for the rescuers to reach me, it struck me that I shouldn't have grabbed that tree to save myself. If I had just slid down the hill, it would have been a much easier and less costly for the rescuers to reach me. It was not with any type of misgiving that I thought was more just a rational view of things, an interesting contemplation of events as I waited with little else to do but to muse.
Then, my husband woke me up.  I was troubled by the dream, thinking it meant that for the sake of others, I should let myself fail, fall, go downhill...give up. That some how my efforts to keep myself safe, were a burden to others, that life wasn't worth struggling for.  However, none of that fit with my philosophy.  Yes, I was coming off a very sad summer and was still grieving the loss of my mom, and only slowly coming out of depression. But I still felt myself worthy of surviving.

As I began writing out this dream, it struck me I had misinterpreted it. What the dream images were telling me was that I was hanging onto something I shouldn't. I ought to let go of something comforting and secure because life would proceed quicker and easier if I did. People would be able to get closer to me, help would be nearer...if only I were to let go.

Eileen Schuh, Author

Schrödinger's Cat