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Thoughty Thursday: Get Into Something Good!

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Okay, what are YOU into? Something good, I hope.

What else makes you smile? I’m working on the thriller today, yee-haw! And the cat is helping. Dang, I’ve got my dog, my cat, my writing, my music–I am REALLY into something good.

If you need a smile just take a look at this fun-tastic video. My thanks to Terry Albert for sending me the link.


Monday Mentions: Absinthe of Malice & Ghostly Muses

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My colleague and mystery author Pat Browning has had great success recently with Kindle. The reviews of her latest mystery, ABSINTHE OF MALICE have been glowing. You should check out her blogs because she’s a poster child for being a chameleon and reinventing your career. 

I submit it has a lot to do with once living with a gorgeous orange tabby cat. Nope, the above is a kitty stand-in, but Pat shared with me how “George” the cat inspires her work even today.

Pat writes, “This is a true story. I don’t have a picture of my big orange striped cat because he’s long gone , but he lives in my fondest memories and in my book, ABSINTHE OF MALICE, a study in small town secrets.

In my book, under the fictitious name of Homer, he doesn’t solve crimes or do tricks, he just does cat things. He stalks birds in the back yard and when it’s time to eat he comes into the kitchen through the cat door. He’s a great judge of people though. He doesn’t like one of my main characters, a chief of police, and he leaves the room when that character shows up. When the man manages to redeem himself, Homer cozies up to him and goes to sleep on his new friend’s feet.

This cat’s real name was George and I loved him dearly from the day he was born. The time came when he could no longer manage and it was time to take him to the vet and put an end to his misery. I cried my eyes out until finally my best friend took him to the vet for me and then buried him on the old home place where George spent so many good years.

A few days later I was sitting at my kitchen counter, drinking coffee, feeling down and  staring out the window at my little patio when suddenly George walked onto the deck. He stopped in the middle of the deck, did a long, leisurely stretch and walked on.

I dashed outside, calling him, looking everywhere, but he was nowhere to be found. He had simply disappeared and I never saw him again. Of course, he had never been there at all except for that brief moment when he stepped through whatever veil separates us from another world. I got his message. He was fit and fine, the same old George. I wanted to hug him, but the need was mine, not his, and this time it was a little easier to let him go. Pat Browning”

So, do you have a furry muse–ghostly or otherwise–who inspires you each day? Please share!

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Thoughty Thursday: Feets, Don’t Fail Me Now!

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Show your dog-matic purr-sonality with Tobi Levi designer shoes.

 A colleague sent me a link to the shoes above  and now I lust after these designer dawg togs. Those who see me at public appearances know I love the unusual, the sparkly, the stand-out-from-the-crowd-icity and choose my attire accordingly. I get some kidding over it–and have also been accused of being gaudy and garish.

Get over it. I’d rather be garish and noticed, warts and all, than safely “appropriate” and fade into the background. I had enough of that as a kid. A colleague of mine, Kristen Lamb, I admire very much. She blogged yesterday that many of us “need more cowbell.”  Guess I’ve been a-bangin’ that bell for quite a while, and it’s paid off. I seem to be known for the sparkles and bling–and I pray that translates into the writing as well.

No, you don’t have to literally bang a gong (or cowbell), or wear designer shoes to get noticed. But by all that is hairy, your writing–your causes for animals, for kids, for your I MUST DO THIS (fill-in-the-blank)–had better have intrinsic “sparkle-icity” or it won’t matter what you do. You’ll be that wall-flower faded into the background, unnoticed and undervalued.

What’s your MUST DO THIS cause? And how do you shine a light on that effort? Do you wear sparkly socks? (guilty!) Known for hats? or for puns? (guilty again!) Or are you known as a listener, gentle critic, helpful mentor? What is your gift–and how do you express that gift?

The snow boots (above) keep my feet dry and warm when I trudge around keeping up with the Magical-dawg, and certainly could be muddy brown and do the job. But the colors make me smile, remind me about MY cause, and help me focus. No matter what I do–blogging, fictioning, singing, playing with the fur-kids–I must honor the effort with all-of-me so the passion and joy shine through. I LOVE what I do–can you tell?

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions–and to stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter with pet book give-aways!