Monday, August 29, 2011

The Good Kind of Lip Service

Imagine crawling into a warm bed, feeling the safety of the familiar, the security of being surrounded by the things you love, then waking up suddenly around 3 a.m. to a trickling sound. At first, you might write it off as a leaky faucet. But, even in your half-asleep state, you know the sound’s not quite right. You jump up, utter a shriek as your bare feet hit water, run as fast as you can through the slosh into the living room, and discover the storm outside has found a way in – a tree fell on the roof, a branch crashed through the window, a car broke down the front door – and water, wind, and debris are rapidly destroying everything you’ve worked for. You immediately worry about your kids, your spouse, your pets, your neighbors, but …what do you do when you realize there’s nothing you can do?

Not every natural disaster hits without warning. The aftermath, though, regardless of whether or not we’ve prepared for the worst, is almost always the same: Confusion, heartbreak, fear, helplessness, and an overwhelming sense of loss. The first few days are the hardest, taking inventory, taking it all in. When you’ve lost everything, you don’t know where to start. When you have no insurance, you don’t know HOW to start. There are local and federal aid programs out there, but many require long application processes and most aren’t immediately or easily accessible. It takes time to get help, get back on your feet, and rebuild. In those first days, all you really have is YOU – your resources, your know-how, and the network of family, neighbors, and friends the disaster allows you to reach out to. Wouldn’t it be a comfort to know there was someone within reach at that critical time?

I don’t give money to charity. Not often, anyway. For one thing, it’s impossible to know my money will go where it’s needed. I’d rather DO something, like donate hair for an oil spill, drop canned goods in the box at Thanksgiving, visit the French Quarter and spend more money than I should on Bourbon Street, or write a blog post heralding the efforts of groups like The Kid Rock Life Line. After reading a Facebook friend’s status that described how a single mom with two boys had lost their home and possessions in Hurricane Irene, Sonia Woolf and a few others launched a full assault. Within three days, The Kid Rock Life Line had more than 30 members, they’d raised nearly $200, and care packages were on their way to the single mom and her boys. Within a week, another Irene survivor was identified and added to the care package list, membership grew to over 60, and it became apparent there was more than simple Facebook group chatter going on.

Most of these people have never met in person. Some have known each other for years. All have one thing in common: an adoration for Kid Rock. Because of their dedication to both the artist and each other, folks who’d lost everything overnight found immediate moral support and encouragement, as well as food, toiletries, blankets, clothes, and toys, days before any other aid organization had a chance. I know all this because I was there. I saw the initial status post from the single mom of two. I noticed Sonia’s post and joined the group the first day, shortly after my neighbor became an Admin. It has been a pleasure and an honor to play even the smallest part of this. I’m in awe of their generosity.

To help them raise funds for the next go-round(s), I’m offering signed copies of CKR for $20. You’re welcome to skip over to Amazon right now and pick up a copy for $10.98, plus shipping and whatnot, if you like. I’ll make $.91 that way and The Kid Rock Life Line won’t make a thing. OR (if you wanna DO something) you can send your shipping address in an email to, say you want a signed copy to benefit KRLL (make sure you say who to sign it to), and I’ll send the group ten bucks. I’ll still make almost $.91, but you’ll have a copy of CHASING KID ROCK signed by yours truly, and a victim of the next hurricane or flash flood or earthquake or whatever the hell Mother Nature throws at us will be able to put enough gas in the tank to get to work before they lose their job or pick up enough ice to keep the contents of their refrigerator safe in the cooler for another day or two. Every little bit makes a difference. I hope you’ll consider pitching in. Any way you can.

Thank you.

~ Dawn

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Monogamy Sucks

There. I said it. Someone had to. I know it hurts – as the truth often does – but this denial bullshit we’re living in has to stop. I know not everyone will agree with me, and that’s fine. But I think we CAN agree there’s an epidemic of hypocrisy going on around here. Politicians, church leaders, sports figures, desperate housewives – they’re constantly being outed for one devious behavior or another. For the record, I don’t think they’re necessarily wrong. We just enjoy making a big fuss over it (because we’re relieved it’s them, not us).

Humans are not wired to be monogamous. Some of us can be and many try and eventually succeed, but, in the end, a lot of us simply aren’t any good at it. Call it a flaw or an addiction, a hobby or a gift. We know who we are (Bill? Tiger? JFK?). Our parents, friends, society, and God expect us to pair up, multiply, vote, and live happily ever after… until we die. Still, we’re on second or third (or more) marriages, and we keep walking into them with the same messed up thinking, the same hollow promises, the same need to hide what comes natural. There has to be a better way.

People want to connect, it’s why we’re attracted to one another. The instinct guarantees survival of the species. Some cultures embrace the attraction, others call it wrong or evil, a few consider infidelity a crime punishable by death. In America, “cheating” is the #1 cause of divorce. The root of the issue stems from the simple fact that, at our core as humans, all we really want is to love and be loved. And by love, I mean the verb, not the feeling. To love is to show someone they’re important, and that their life, their efforts, mean something to you. How many of us never get to feel that? How many times have we recognized the opportunity too late? Or knew what it was, but chose to ignore it because it was “wrong”? How many have missed out due simply to fear?

Hippies had it right a long time ago. Every minute on earth is precious, every experience offers a chance to learn and grow, and every person we come in contact with allows a new opportunity to love. It could be with a hug or a kiss, an understanding smile, a public affirmation, a makeout session behind the bleachers, a roll in the hay, or any number of other actions, whether written or verbal, physical, emotional, or spiritual. Denying any part of that is unnatural for a lot of us. Holding it in is painful (confusing, frustrating). Letting it out, however, can make things worse.

Why? If it’s a natural instinct to be attracted, why is “cheating” such a big deal? If we can’t be with the one we love, as the song goes, why does it have to be such a horror to love the one we’re with? Whether powerful or subtle, love doesn’t always last forever. Sometimes there’s only the moment. And, right or wrong, sometimes it’s just fucking. Why force anyone to deny the gift of love? Why let it ruin marriages and tear families apart?

In a perfect world, relationships would all begin with complete honesty. Given our divorce rate, it’s obvious we’re far from perfect. But why do we lie? Why hide parts of ourselves, especially from the people we’re supposed to love most? Is it fear? Of what? Being ridiculed? Being alone? There are no guarantees in life, no matter the path we take. We hope the ones we love will never leave us, but they do – they move away, they get sick, they die. We want every day to be free of pain and sorrow, heartache and misery, but they’re not. A perfect, carefree world is impossible. We can never attain the ideal we’re reaching for. What we CAN do is recognize our limitations and be honest with ourselves, THEN share that honesty with those closest to us. It might not be easy. It might even be the hardest thing you’ve ever done. But the alternative is a life of hiding, lying, and hypocrisy. Which is the better path?

If you’re into monogamy, good for you! I hope the person who accompanies you in this life is truthful when they tell you they’re into it, too. Finding out later is no picnic. The rest of us need to look hard and deep at ourselves, our values, and our behavior. Are we living honestly? Do our actions support our beliefs? Or do we keep secrets, even from ourselves? Where do we expect that to get us?

Someone told me once they wanted to live with “integrity.” It sounded honorable, and I was curious as to the exact definition, so I looked it up. It’s the adherence to a moral or ethical code. Seems to me that, if I’m living by the code I believe in, I could claim I live with integrity. On the other hand, if I said I valued one code while my behavior supported another, I’d not only be NOT living with integrity, I’d have one hell of a problem. That’s currently where too many of us are.

So, get real. And get over it. Monogamy sucks. You know it as well as I do. But I’m here to tell you it sucks less once you admit it and move forward. I should know, I wrote the book on it (sorta). And, after all, like so many of you, I am Ted… and he’ll be okay.  ;)

~ Dawn

Monday, August 15, 2011


If the Good Lord had meant for rednecks to read, He wouldn’t have created NASCAR. Or fishing. Or titties. Or Pabst Blue Ribbon. Rednecks are built for workin’ hard and playin’ harder, raisin’ families and raisin’ hell. They don’t spend a rainy afternoon curled up with a novel, they go four-wheelin’. They certainly don’t invite friends over for beer, BBQ, and book readin’. When they want to be entertained by a good story, they turn to Spike and TruTV – where the REAL stuff’s at…

(This is the part where you say, “Dawn, I think you’re stereotyping, and stereotyping is wrong,” to which I would then respond with, “You might be right, and I’ll admit I’m embellishing for comic effect, but – honestly – how many Dukes of Hazzard fans do YOU think ever picked up a book? … Huh? … I’m waiting …”)

A redneck gets up early, shows up on time, deals with assholes and idiots all day, does more than his share, and collects half what he’s worth. He struggles from one pay day to the next, does what he can to keep a roof over his head and what he has to for the health and safety of his family. He dreams of a life he’ll never have, but keeps going because he finds a kind of happiness in the dreaming. He is America’s working class, and – having learned in high school that Shakespeare sucks and reading is for nerds – he has neither the time, the money, nor the interest in picking up a novel.

For that guy, I present CKR.

It started as a fun, little story about a middle-aged Kid Rock fan who gets kicked out of his house then dragged to the Daytona 500. It became a quest to write a book that would bring the huge, untapped market of “men who don’t read” to its knees. I believe I’ve done that…and then some. But don’t take my word for it. Ask around. Or, better yet, pick up a copy. I guarantee you’ll be surprised.

The world might say redneck fiction doesn’t exist, but – to them – I say HA! We give too little credit and even less attention to the bedrock of our nation. Having come from the foothills, on a family farm nestled between the Olympics and Cascades, and as the daughter and eldest sister of the finest rednecks ever produced in the state of Washington, I believe it’s high time we gave them their due.


Dawn Scovill
Periodic blogger, whiskey drinker, proud redneck, and author of CKR

Saturday, August 6, 2011

CKR: August 2011 - THE FINAL POST

(continued from July 2011...)

“CKR” Diary Post No. 69,
or The Happy End…ing
Saturday, August 06, 2011

If, on February 16, 2006, you had suggested I write a book titled CHASING KID ROCK, I’d have told you to go fuck yourself. I’m a fan, yes, but not a groupie. Okay, not a BIG groupie. Whatever the case, Kid Rock didn’t need my help then any more than he needs it now. And, though I’ve bought ALL his albums (at least once), seen every South Florida concert (except one when I had to work and the boy used my ticket), and booked passage on his cruise (3 times!), HE hasn’t done a damn thing for ME lately. Or ever. What possible motivation could I have for spending FIVE YEARS at the keyboard, writing an homage to Kid Motherfuckin’ Rock?

Not only that, every step of the way has been a fight. First for my health. Later for my marriage. Even the final act of publishing gave me gray hair – I rejected the proof not once, not twice, but three times! AND squeezed in a vacation to the Pacific Northwest during the process. This book crushed me, physically, mentally, emotionally, and everywhere in between. I’m literally exhausted.

Why, then, did I write CKR? For money? Please. Check the previous Diary post – 90 cents a book. Cha-fuckin-ching. That might have brought in some coin for Mark Twain, but who the hell is Dawn Scovill? For notoriety, then? As if. Have you read the headlines? Seen the billboards? Caught the TV commercials? No? That’s because there aren’t any. I’m on my own here, promoting myself and my work on a blog and via Facebook and Twitter pages. Unless my trailer goes viral on YouTube, or I stuff my kid in a trunk, say she’s with a nanny, and get acquitted for her murder after she turns up dead, the TODAY show’s not going to call.

I wrote CKR because I want to see more men read, and because the book’s underlying message is important to me. Plus, I’m a writer, and the story – concept, theme, people, places – was too good to pass on. I don’t want to merely write books for the rest of my life, I want to SELL them. That means my stuff can’t be “just” good, it has to be interesting, topical, relevant, and entertaining enough to make you want to drop the TV remote. It’s a tall order. But I think I’ve hit the mark this time.

Regardless of my intentions, I expect a few haters. Someone’s going to complain about my using Kid Rock’s name. A few women will take issue with the threesomes (and foursome) thing. A husband or two will get bitched at for reading it – and liking it too much. Overall, though, I think it’ll do alright. I might even sell more books than Paris Hilton and her dog. Most importantly, it’ll get a few rednecks to read. Hopefully one in particular. I’ll be happy with that. Then again, I’m simply happy it’s finished. Where it goes from here is now in the hands of destiny.

To Kat, Emily, Chip and Deb, Don and Angie, Eman, Dr. C, Trysh, Joe Dogg, Snarls, Ben, Craig, Cindy, Elaine, Maggie and Jeff-or-Dave, Mark and Dwight (miss you, my love), and Scott (of course), and everyone I’m forgetting who’s been with me since the beginning: THANK YOU for reading, for riding, and for holding my hand. When I first stepped onto the MySpace stage, I never imagined The End would take five years. That so many of you stuck with me all this time is a testament to the Internet’s ability to bring people together. We’ve forged friendships that will last a lifetime. YOU, more than any other, are the reason I never gave up.

To Kathleen (Kat 2 ;)), Sherri, Katie, Rhett, Brandi, Dorothy, Diane, Annette, Kimmie, and all the rest who’ve jumped on this ride late in the game: Thank you for your faith. Our paths might have crossed at the end of this story, but you know as well as I do the ride’s not over yet. This is, in fact, only the beginning. CKR will be released any day (minute), and the world will see it for the first time. After that, whatever fortune – or misfortune – befalls me will trickle onto you. It’s a kind of law of physics for friends of writers. But don’t worry, it won’t hurt. My only suggestion is to pack a raincoat; I feel a storm coming on. ;)

Much, much love to ALL,

~ Dawn

The End