Posted in author news

Mid-September Author News: Stories, Books, and Cats

I hope you’re all doing well. During this pandemic, the focus is on health which reminds us how important it is to our well-being. I recently took a fall and received a minor if not aggravating injury to my rib cage. I have to limit my lifting and modify some of my other activities including my exercise and household tasks. I’m lucky that my accident wasn’t worse, but it made me realize how easy it is to become hurt or ill and that every day of health shouldn’t be taken for granted.

While I had some bad luck this past week, I’ve also received some good news. I’ve been elected an officer on the Cat Writers’ Association’s council. As a long-time member of this organization that supports and promotes all cat-related media, I am honored to have been elected.

STORY NEWS

Another piece of good news that I’m happy to report is that my two rescue cats, Harry and Hermione, are featured in the new release, Second-Chance Cats: True Stories of the Cats we Rescue and The Cats Who Rescue Us, that will be published on September 15. This book also includes rescue stories by several other Cat Writers’ Association members and is available in hardcover, paperback, audio, and eBook.My story about Harry and Hermione and other fateful experiences are included in Chapter 13 of Why People Believe in God: True Stories of  Encountering God by Reverend John H. Krahn. All 3 of my cats, Harry, Hermione, and Stripey appear in fellow CWA member Sandra Toney’s article about bedtime routines which can be read here.Most of my writing involves cats, sometimes mine and sometimes fictional ones based on mine. Although I write mostly mysteries, I recently submitted a science fiction tale featuring alien cats to the new Red Penguin Collection’s What Lies Beyond, a science fiction anthology. They are accepting submissions through September 15 for this anthology and will publish future anthologies featuring different themes. Check the website for more details and, while you’re there, check out the other exciting opportunities with Red Penguin Books including their author podcasts and new literary journal. https://redpenguinbooks.com/the-red-penguin-collection/BOOK NEWS

I’ve submitted my 5th Cobble Cove cozy mystery to Solstice Publishing and hope to have some updates about it in the October Author News. In the meantime, here’s a tentative blurb for No Gravestone Unturned.

It’s October in Cobble Cove, and Alicia is busy preparing for the library’s Halloween party when she learns that John’s aunt from Florida has died and that John’s cousins and their spouses are coming to town to bury their mother. The day after the funeral, the caretaker’s son is found dead by John’s grandfather’s gravestone, from a blow on the head. The only witness seems to be Sneaky the library cat, who, having left the library, turned up at Alicia’s door with blood and dirt on him.

As Alicia, Gilly, and Sheriff Ramsay investigate, a generation of family secrets is uncovered. Are one of the guests staying at the inn a killer? Will the humans solve the crime, and can Sneaky, Kittykai, and Salem, the inn’s guest cat, team up to help?

In October, I should also have more updates about Pet Posts: The Cat Chats, the non-fiction cat book that I’m self-publishing.Lastly, I would like to ask two favors. My new standalone mystery, Memory Makers, is in the running for the AllAuthor September cover-of-the-month contest. It has made it to the second round. To get into the third round it needs to be in the top 50 books. The last day to vote for Round 2 is September 14. If Memory Makers gets into the third round, you can vote again for it starting on September 15. If you like the cover, please vote for it here.

The blog tour for Memory Makers ends on September 21. Follow it here for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card.

The second favor is to vote for Harry and Hermione in the Remember Me Thursday contest. If you vote for my story, I could win a prize and the Golden Paw Society, Inc., the rescue from which I adopted them, would receive some money to support their organization. This contest ends on September 30. Vote here to support Harry and Hermione and the Golden Paw Society Rescue.

Posted in Cats, Kittens

Remembering Harry and Hermione’s Adoption on Remember Me Thursday

Since today, September 26, is Remember Me Thursday, I thought I’d share the story of my one-year-old cats, Harry and Hermione, who we adopted last October when they were three-month-old kittens. My 14-year-old daughter had never had a kitten. We had an older cat who passed away when she was four. Then we adopted our present cat, Stripey. He was almost a year old and full-grown. He didn’t hit it off well with Holly because she was a typical noisy toddler. When Oliver came along, the senior cat I took in after my mother could no longer care for him, Holly began to bond with him, but he attached himself to me. My husband promised Holly that she could have her own cat when Oliver passed away. Five years later, that happened. It was a heartbreak for all of us. We didn’t rush to get another cat, and Stripey seemed content to be an only cat again.

As the one-year mark approached that Oliver took his trip to Rainbow Bridge, a cat cafe opened up on Long Island called The Shabby Tabby Cat Cafe. I thought it would be fun to visit and see the cats. We took a trip there, and Holly fell in love with a kitten named Ringo. Unfortunately, someone else had already laid claim to him. Holly was upset, but her dad assured her that we would get a cat for her eventually, and I explained that Ringo was just not the one meant for her.

We took another trip to the cat cafe on October 21, three days before my daughter’s 14th birthday. There was a fall fair going on in town that day, and I thought we’d just drop into Shabby Tabby and see if they had any new cats. It turned out that they had several new kittens. My daughter spotted a black one right away and began playing with him. Although Ringo had been white and orange, she’d always said she wanted a black cat, but the main thing was one that connected with her.

All the cats at the cafe are named. I found out they come from the Golden Paws Society rescue in Huntington. After playing with Harry for a while, Holly told me she was in love with him. I could see why. He was a playful fellow who seemed affectionate and bright. When I asked if he was available, I was told he was but that he couldn’t be separated from his sister, Hermione, a calico kitten. I knew my husband wouldn’t like the idea of our taking two kittens when we already had another cat, but when I laid eye on Hermione, I was sold. It was like fate because I’d always wanted a calico cat after having so many other types of cats all my life. I also thought it would be great for the two kittens to be together as playmates. Eventually, I could introduce our older cat to them.

I completed the adoption forms that had to be approved by Golden Paws and set a pickup date for that Wednesday night, October 24, which was the best day for us because I had the next two days off to watch the kittens while Holly was in school. It also happened to be her birthday. My husband wasn’t thrilled when we broke the news, but he finally agreed. To prepare for the new arrivals, I picked up some supplies including a similar pet playpen in which the kittens could stay when we weren’t around. We set it up in my daughter’s room because we wanted her to learn the responsibility of caring for her cats. She was able to fit a food and water bowl inside, a few safe toys, and a litter box. She also cleaned her room and made it cat friendly.

On October 24, we picked the kittens up from Golden Paws. When we got them home, they seemed to do fine in Holly’s room. They were accustomed to the playpen from the cat cafe, although my daughter kept them out after school while she was doing her homework. At night, Harry curled up and slept on her chest. We learned Hermione, despite being tinier and lighter than Harry, was a big jumper, so we had to be careful to keep the room closed when we entered and left. Stripey peeked in the “nursery,” and eyed the kittens. When they were old enough to be introduced to him, there was some hissing all around, but eventually they became accustomed to one another.

Harry and Hermione have grown into beautiful and loving cats. I’m convinced that they were meant for us, and we were meant for them.To help other pets find their forever homes and maybe win a prize for yourself and a rescue or shelter, visit the Remember Me Thursday website (https://remembermethursday.org/contest/) and share your rescue pet’s photo and story.

Posted in Kittens

The Story of Harry and Hermione, a National Cat Day Tale

Since today, October 29, is National Cat Day, I thought I’d share the story of my new kittens, Harry and Hermione. My 14-year old daughter had never had a kitten. When she was born, we had an older cat who passed away when she was still young. Then we adopted our present cat, Stripey, he was almost a year old and a full-grown cat. He didn’t hit it off well with Holly because she was a typical noisy toddler. When Oliver came along, the senior cat I took in after my mother could no longer care for him, Holly began to bond with him, but he attached himself to me. My husband promised Holly that she could have her own cat when Oliver passed away. Five years later, that happened. It was a heartbreak for both of us. We didn’t rush to get another cat, and Stripey seemed content to be an only cat again.

As the one-year mark approached that Oliver took his trip to Rainbow Bridge, a cat cafe opened up on Long Island called The Shabby Tabby Cat Cafe. I thought it would be fun to visit and see the cats. We took a trip there, and Holly fell in love with a kitten named Ringo. Unfortunately, another person had already laid claim to him. Holly was upset, but her dad assured her that we would get a cat for her eventually, and I explained that Ringo was just not the one meant for her.

We took another trip to the cat cafe on October 21, three days before my daughter’s 14th birthday. There was a fall fair going on in town that day, and I thought we’d just drop into Shabby Tabby and see if they had any new cats. It turned out that they had several new kittens. My daughter spotted a black one right away and began playing with him. Although Ringo had been white and orange, she’d always said she wanted a black cat, but the main thing was one that connected with her.

All the cats at the cafe are named. I found out they come from the Golden Paws Society shelter in Huntington Station. After playing with Harry for a while, Holly told me she was in love with him. I could see why. He was a playful fellow who seemed affectionate and bright. When I asked if he was available, I was told he was but that he couldn’t be separated from his sister, Hermione, a calico kitten. I knew my husband wouldn’t like the idea of our taking two kittens when we already had another cat, but when I laid eye on Hermione, I was sold. It was like fate because not only had I always wanted a calico cat after having so many other types of cats all my life, but I’d just written my fourth Cobble Cove mystery that introduced a calico kitten into the town. I also thought it would be great for the two kittens to be together as playmates. Eventually, I could introduce our older cat to them.

My new Cobble Cove mystery, Love on the Rocks, featuring a calico kitten

 Kindle Unlimited and eBook: mybook.to/cc4

paperback: mybook.to/cc4pap

I completed the adoption forms that had to be approved by Golden Paws and set a pickup date for that Wednesday night, October 24, which was the best day for us because I had the next two days off to watch the kittens while Holly was in school. It also happened to be her birthday. My husband wasn’t thrilled when we broke the news, but he finally agreed. To prepare for the new arrivals, I picked up some supplies including a similar pet playpen in which the kittens could stay when we weren’t around. We set it up in my daughter’s room because we wanted her to learn the responsibility of caring for her cats. She was able to fit a food and water bowl inside, a few safe toys, and a litter box. She also cleaned her room and made it cat friendly.

On October 24, we picked the kittens up from Golden Paws in Huntington Station. When we got them home, they seemed to do fine in Holly’s room. They were accustomed to the playpen from the cat cafe, although my daughter kept them out after school while she was doing her homework. At night, Harry curled up and slept on her chest. We learned Hermione, despite being tinier and lighter than Harry, was a big jumper, so we had to be careful to keep the room closed when we entered and left. Holly scoops their litter box and feeds them. It’s nice to see that she’s  learning how to care for her pets. Stripey has peeked in the “nursery,” and eyed the kittens. His tail hasn’t inflated, and he hasn’t hissed or growled. His only reaction, so far, has been curiosity, so I’m taking that as a good sign that he will become friends with his younger brother and sister when they’re formally introduced.

Harry and Hermione are playful and beautiful kittens. I’m convinced that they were meant for us, and we were meant for them.

Happy National Cat Day!