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Monday Mentions: Cat Art, Dog Sperm Detectors & PhD Sheep

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Bernadette captures the essence of cat-ness in her illustrated calendar.

Monday Mentions is the mash-up-day of all the neato-torpedo links and blogs and writer-icity crappiocca collected over the past week. To start off the blog right (or is that write?), I’ve two books to feature of the pet persuasion.

My colleague Bernadette Kazmarski has published her first book Great Rescues Calendar that sings the praises of the many cats she’s met over the years. As an artist specializing in cats, Bernadette certainly has a purr-fect eye for feline beauty. She writes, “It falls under the category of things created via feline muses. I’d hardly have published this, or done all those portraits that are in it, or done any artwork at all in fact–who knows what I’d be doing–if it weren’t for my cats and their guiding, inspiring presences in my life.” Each picture includes the cat’s rescue story, year the portrait was done, artistic medium and size of the finished portrait. For instance:

Christie's happy ending story.

Bernadette continues to do feline portraits so AFTER you purchase her gorgeous calendar, see about contacting her for a portrait of your special feline friend (maybe it’ll be included in a future book!).

I met Robert Scott–virtually met him–over at KindleBoards and Smashwords while bringing my backlist pet care books back to life as Ebooks and POD. Folks, pets touch us all in many marvelous ways and the legacy they leave behind can be powerful indeed. You can read about Robert’s journey that lead him to write about losing his beloved canine companion and perhaps his book will help others going through the same experience.

Today’s list of Mentions covers all kinds of furry, weird and writerly topics, so browse and enjoy. And remember, those who have a new book, blog, article, fill-in-the-blank that might be a fit, please email me (amy AT shojai.com) with the particulars of your book/work and I’d love to feature you on a future blog. Hey, it’s all about helping each other out, right?

I suspect thriller writers (including those with an artistic or spiritual bent) appreciate some of the biting tidbits in today’s blog. Enjoy and share.

CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS

My colleague Sara Basore has been named Editor-In-Chief of G.IS.G Heavenly Publications. She writes, “We are taking submissions for an anthology called Spiritual Awakening: Stories of Praise and Redemption. We want a variety of stories from all genres, from Young Adult to Nostalgia to Horror to Romance and all in between.” She also says her cat Ginger will help by walking across the laptop keyboard.

WEIRD & KEWL CRAP

Will an Antibody Profile replace DNA identification? Great blog post from my fav forensics expert D.P. Lyle (who writes great thrillers, by the way…)

Rapist caught by sperm-sniffing K9 officer–folks, you can’t make this stuff up!

New study reveals sheep are smarter than monkeys! That’s to baaa-aaa-aaaad.


FANTASTIC FURRY CONTENT

Another of my favorite artists, Kim Santini, offers portraits of dogs, cats, horses, cows–you name it–and even has a newsletter Painting A Dog A Day, check it out.

The myth of the “hypoallergenic dog”  What do YOU think? One of the email lists I’m on has had quite a spirited discussion about the topic.

Cat Wisdom 101 blog from my colleague Layla Morgan Wilde covers all-things-cats, from book reviews and SQUEEEE! lovely kitty pictures, to interviews with experts, rescue matters, and a variety of fun to serious subjects. Check it out–tell her I sent you!

Like kitty TV? Sally Bahner’s awesome Exclusively Cats blog kibbles about the good, the bad and the so-so meowy programming.

What exactly does “human grade” mean in pet food? Excellent explanation from my colleague Kim Thornton over at Pet Connection.

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!

Monday Mentions: Plague, Spam & Writers

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I wrote these!

Welcome to all the new followers! After last week’s Monday Mentions after the amazing Thrillerfest weekend, lots of folks “discovered” the blog. Turns out that folks who read (and write) thrillers often have a furry muse in the background–and also may be considering the pros and cons of continuing the traditional pub route vs “going rogue.” *ahem* I mean, ‘indy.’

More on specific writer-icity tomorrow as the weekly Tuesday Tips Kindle-lization Journey continues with tips on self promotion. This blog focuses on furry stuff usually on Woof Wednesday and Feline Friday. Monday Mentions–hey, that’s today!–offers a mash up of awesomeness, some of the great blogs, articles and other assorted WOW schtuff that makes me sit up and take notice. So I figure it’ll wag some other writerly tails, too.

To that end, those who have a new book, blog, article, fill-in-the-blank that might be a fit, please email me (amy AT shojai.com) with the particulars of your book/work and I’d love to feature you on a future blog. Hey, it’s all about helping each other out, right?

I suspect thriller writers (including those with a fantastical bent) appreciate some of the biting tidbits in today’s blog. Enjoy and share.

MINI BOOK REVIEW

Got a copy of “the Things That Keep Us Here” by Carla Buckley (Bantam) as a freebie at the Thrillerfest banquet. Started reading on the plane flight home. Couldn’t put it down, read straight through and finished it late that night. OUTSTANDING!

It’s what I’d call a “quiet” thriller, one with such internal tension and driving characterization that you nearly explode waiting to see what happens next. It’s “Hot Zone” meets “Ordinary People” and is awful and heartrending and scary-bad in just the way a thriller should be–with brilliant writing. Oh, and a dog appears in the story with a pivotal role.

WRITER CRAPPIOCCA NEWS

Rejections-R-Us: 30 Famous Authors’ Rejections–plus some more Well Known Self-Pub’d Authors and now they’re thumbing their collective noses, doncha think?

Spam Hits Kindle  Okay, this is old news to self published folks, but others may not be aware of the latest get-rich-quick scheme to “aggregate” content (legally? illegally?), roll it into a ball and self-pub for big bucks. Uh…nope. IMO readers are smarter than that. But it does create lots of crappiocca.


CANINE CURIOSITIES

AMAZING pictures and story that purports to be the dog SEAL that cornered Osama Ben Laden

Seeing Eye-To-Eye: How Dogs REALLY See the World, a fascinating look at eye structure and debunking past ideas about canine sight.

New AKC Therapy Dog Title — it’s about time! Dogs that have met the criteria can be awarded the AKC Therapy Dog title (THD)

FANTASTIC FELINE FACTS

Should You Get Your Cat From A Pet Store? My colleague and outstanding cat writer Christine Church has an excellent examiner.com column you’ll want to check out

Where Does Kitty Roam? A study of free-ranging ferals and housecats, covers some amazing ground. All you folks writing about were-cats and suchlike might want to take a look at how real cats do it.

SCARY SCH*T & LOL!

Bubonic Plague Affects Pets–And People!  It affects cats most often because they hunt critters infested with disease-carrying fleas, but dogs also can catch the disease. That “cat fight abscess” might instead be a bubo! (Anyone else thinking “medical thriller plot?”)

Learn To Pick Your Battles–A Tale of a Metal Chicken a hilarious blog my friend Judy Gharis sent me, enjoy!

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!

Tuesday Tips #8: Kindle-ization at Thrillerfest

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Traditional publishing vs alternate--can't we just get along???

Welcome to my series with tips based on my DIY Kindle-ization Journey. For those who just found this blog, you can take a look back at the Installment #1 Helpful Links,  followed by #2 Why Do It? and #3 The Challenges.   Tuesday Tips #4 covered the various platform options and what’s required for each.  #5 Formatting For Kindle was followed by #6 Picture This! a how-to primer on including photos, tables and illustrations in your Ebook. If you’re like me and write nonfiction, chances are you have photos, illustrations or boxed/tabled information included in your format. And last week covered–well, the cover in #7 The Cover Story. Today’s installment covers the upload of your book to create your Kindle edition.

Before I get to that, just a few thoughts. I’m just back from Thrillerfest--probably the single most amazing writer conference event available today. More than 800 established, best-selling, and aspiring authors gathered in New York for nearly a week’s worth of seminars on craft, and panels on technique as well as industry information. Wherever I roamed–seminars, signing events, panel discussions, the bar, in the hallways–the E-lephant in the room was present.

The Ebook.

The topic came up everywhere. My pet colleagues know that if there are 3 dog trainers in a room, you’ll get 5 opinions on the good/bad/ideal on training and the same applies to opinions on Ebooks. The first thing Friday morning, I attended the only panel that addressed the issue directly: “What’s First, The Chicken or the Egg? Alternatives to Traditional Publishing”

David Hewson was the Panel Master, and started off the session by “banning” the term legacy publishers from the discussion. He also seemed to dislike the term social networking but that was harder to avoid–all this said with good humor, of course.

A.J. Hartley described the unheard of turn-around process of going from “idea” to “published” in less than a year with his book co-authored with David Hewson of “Macbeth, A Novel.” Alternative publishing makes that possible.

Daniel Slater oversees Author and Vendor Relations for Amazon Kindle. He said that Ebooks offered great opportunities for authors, and has “given power to the audience/reader.”

Lou Aronica also was on the panel–click on his name for more on his insights, as he’s a best selling author, former publisher of Avon and Berkley Books and now is president/publisher of The Fiction Studio. On the panel he said, “Virtually all the profits now exist on the digital side,” but that traditional publishers must keep a print presence, and that “they’re very confused.” Traditional publishing has built in constraints that dictate a different pricing model which can tie publisher’s hands in the market. He noted that readers will pay $13 or more for digital bestsellers–BUT that the next crop of bestsellers that come from somewhere else (outside the traditional model) will emerge with different pricing.

He also said, “There’s always been bad books. There’s more now. But in the digital space, that mess is not as visible. Customers figure out how to distinguish the good ones. The whole job has become more holistic than in the past. And authors must dedicate significant amount of time to marketing . . .” to be successful.

Steve Feldberg is Senior Director, Editorial Business Development, for Audible.com and prior to that spent more than 25 years in network TV news. ITW has worked with Audible on The Chopin Manuscript and the Copper Bracelet among other projects. He said, “It used to be the question was can I get published? That’s gone away.” He noted that the marketplace doesn’t make a distinction on how it’s consumed–it’s ALL published.

Joel Fishman is a former Doubleday editor, literary agent and ghostwriter and recently founded an authors’ consortium that will publish his thriller PRIMACY this September. In answer to questions about judging quality of self-published books he said that people have always read what others recommend. Self publishing has opened up opportunities for authors, but also forces authors to do more themselves. He said that you can self publish almost as well as traditional, but it costs [if you want to do it right], noting that a professionally designed book cover easily runs $1000-2000.

So–are you ready to DIY? Traditional publishing takes longer and sales/returns are expected almost immediately–if that doesn’t happen, the book goes away. Ebooks publish very quickly and initially sell few with sales that grow over the lifetime of the book. In both cases, author marketing must happen or the book dies.

A book is a book is a book . . .

KINDLE-IZATION

Amazon has made the process nearly dummy-proof. Here are the basic steps.

  • Input title, author(s), publisher, edition, rights–YOU can be the publisher or create your own name/publishing entity. If this is a revision of a backlist title, include that you’re publishing a 2nd edition.
  • Book description (back cover copy/reviews/etc.). This is the information that appears on your book page on Amazon, so get it right–think flap copy, back cover info, what sells books.
  • Choose territory distribution & royalty rate.
  • Assert your ownership/permission to pub content; if this is a backlist book, you’ll likely get a message requiring proof of rights reversion (PDF of the letter, etc).
  • Price the book—depends on book size, and the price dictates the royalty. Remember that Amazon will LOWER your book price if it finds another copy priced lower.
  • Click “publish”—visible on amazon.com in 2-5 days
  • Can revise/update anything anytime (price, description, royalty) but takes 2-3 days to update
  • Contact KDP Forum for technical help

Next week we’ll tie everything together with marketing tips specific to Ebooks in the last DIY Kindle-ization installment.

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!

Thoughty Thursday: Feeding The Muse

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Does your creativity eat you for lunch--or feed you with love? (copr. Tonya Jensen)

Due to the magic of WordPress, I get to write this EARLY and have it posted tomorrow morning while I’m flying to New York. Can you see my arms a-flappin’ (insert “twack-thwackity-thwack” sound effects)?

I don’t have a lot to say today other than–I’m excited, exhausted, anxious, and thrilled all rolled up in one. Excited because Thrillerfest is the absolutely BESTEST-FUNNEST-INSPIRING-EST conference I attend. Exhausted because I’ve managed to cram a week’s worth of work into two days so I wouldn’t be distracted with (ack) work while there. Anxious because flying ain’t near the adventure it used to be and crappiocca always–ALWAYS–happens (wonder if I”ll be profiled this time?).

And thrilled because I get to see my favorite authors, reconnect with friends and make new acquaintances.

For writers, nothing gives us a goose in the ass-terick like a writer’s conference. We get to schmooze and express our jealousy admiration for all those successful folks; steal all learn the secrets of their success; hang out with cool people in the bar during seminars  and find out–

They’re people, too. And they have some of the same angst-icity and writerly challenges that face the rest of us. Oh, and some of ’em worked for DAYS and WEEKS and sometimes MONTHS before they had an overnight success (I kid…more like years or decades in many cases).

So what’s the most inspiring part of being among people who really understand us–why we bang our heads on the virtual door of publication forever. It’s not that we’re born masochists. Okay, well, some folks are. And it’s not that we’re totally clueless about our lack of talent. Wait–maybe that fellow waa-a-aay over there might be a wee bit . . . never mind. For sure it’s not because we enjoy rejection.

Creative types do it because–it’s who we are, not just what we do. And gathering at a writer conference like Thrillerfest, or at a music festival or Harley Davidson convention, dog or cat show, quilt exhibition, or ComicCon or whatever floats your creative boat FUELS THE MUSE.

I’m already feeling all inspired-like.

What feeds your muse? How do you energize your creative side? When do you feel most in need of a pick-me-up, and where do you find the necessary go-get-’em juice to press on?

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? I’m nearly ready to record a bunch of new ones, so be sure to get your requests in the comments. 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!

Monday Mentions: Bitchy Bling, FIP & Linky Laughs

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It's mine, ALL MINE!

Happy Independence Day! The 4th of July brings lots of sky-high sparkles with fireworks, but here in Texas with the drought and burn-ban, such celebrations will be rare. And I figure, most of y’all are out picnicking with family and friends, or otherwise doing FUN stuff rather than reading (or writing) blogs.

Did I mention that I have no life?

Anyway, since few folks will be around to read, today’s Monday Mentions is short. I’m nearly packed for Thursday’s trek to Thrillerfest in New York. So these are MY July 4th sparkles. Ain’t they purty? Hey, I’m easily distracted by shiny objects, what can I say? The “BLING, BITCHES & BLOOD” tag line ain’t just for show, guys.

My colleague and friend Wendy Christensen not only writes beautiful prose, she’s a cat artist–and now also makes fantastic BLING! I’ve been drooling over this piece and finally broke down and got it–since it’ll be the purrrrrr-fect accessory when I travel to Thrillerfest this weekend. A girl can’t have too much sparkles, ya know!

You don’t know? Well, check out some of my Ask Amy videos for furry advice and the “bling parade.” Most folks wouldn’t recognize me without my rhinestone #1-Bitch pin and appropriate glitter. Ahem.

Cat Fur Jewelry might tempt you, too. Nope, it’s not petrified kitty URKS, which was what I feared. The necklaces actually are kinda cool–if you’re not allergic, that is. I’m sticking to the shiny stuff.

Luxury Paw helps you travel in style to 3-star (or better) hotels with your fur-kids. Travel woes over the howl-lidays got you down?  If you suffer from separation anxiety when away from Fluffy-kins, this site could really get your tail wagging.

FIP in the news–potentially GOOD news this time from my colleague Steve Dale and the Winn Feline Foundation.

DP Lyle’s Forensic Blog has a neat tribute to Hemmingway–you know, the guy with the many-toed cats? Oh yeah, he wrote pretty good stories, too.

Opinionator has a totally cool blog on “Google’s War on Nonsense” and I’ve been personally impacted by this crappiocca with my Puppies Site which–no brag, just fact–has some quality info compared to the crappiocca stinking up much of the Internet. I applaud everyone’s effort at dialing down stink-icity but I’ve pounded a second head-shape dent in my office wall as a result of the “sexy fallout.”

Writers (readers too) will love Chuck Wendig’s Terrible Minds blog, an irreverent and sometimes blue blog on all-things-writing-and-publishing (and off topic now and then). I like it so much, just added it to my blogroll.

And The Wuc offers a hilarious review? (sorta-kinda-in-a-way) of the latest Mary Poppins incarnation–this is NOT for kids!

Finally, for folks out there wondering about the whole blog-platform question, a nicely succinct recap of some of the more popular ones offered by author  C.C.James.

Have a safe, fun, and restful holiday! Oh, and if you’re in a drought-free zone with fireworks in the offing–I HATE YOU!–and be sure your pets stay angst-free with these tips.

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!

Monday Mentions: Writer-icity, Dog Surfing & PeePee Dance

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Those who read the last Thoughty Thursday blog know I’ve been struggling with my back. I’m not supposed to sit for long periods of time and over the weekend had to focus on creating more puppy-licious behavior content. So I plan to keep the blogs pretty short-and-sweet this week. That doesn’t mean they won’t be chock-full of content, though!

I’ve collected some of my fav blog, article and video posts for today’s shout out. Enjoy! And please post your own suggestions for future Monday Mentions in the comments section.

WRITING SCHTUFF

Horror author Thom Reese on Growing Pains in Publishing

Author and terrific blogger Jenny Hansen asks Are Writers Now A Company of One?

David Gaughran’s outstanding blog covers writing and self publishing, and today asks Have Publishers Lost the Backlist Battle?

Kristen Lamb’s latest killer blog on Mastering Plot by Getting Primal

Ellie Ann Soderstrom puts writing, life and humanity in perspective in her PeePee Dance Blog

PET SCHTUFF

Dog Walker 8 has an excellent blog post on Pet Poisoning Dangers, check it out!

Curfew for Cats in Australia–say WHAT?

It’s not just dogs and cats that need rescue. Get your tissues ready–happy ending and AMAZING photos in this horse cruelty case detailed in Sarah K. Andrew’s Zodiac Blog

Let’s end on a happy furry–and WET note with these fun videos, enjoy! Do your cats or dogs love or hate the water?


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! By the way, I just updated the sidebar (on the right) with direct links to all the pet books–check ‘em out!

Feline Friday: Scaredy-Cats, Ask Amy & Why Cats Groom

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Does your new kitten hide under the bed? Do your adult cats disappear when visitors ring the doorbell? Does the new puppy send your kitty into hiss-terics? Learning why cats act scared helps you know how to avoid fear triggers.

Scaredy cats react with fear to unfamiliar people, places or situations, because if they haven’t had a good experience, they assume the worst. Many kittens are clueless, but as the cat matures, this “stranger danger” behavior protects them so they don’t walk up to hungry critters, dogs or people. Find out more about kitty fear and what to do about it in this Paw Nation article about understanding scaredy cats. In fact, some cats that get upset simply groom a bunch and lick-lick-lick themselves bald.

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Most cats are neatniks, and spend up to 50 percent of their awake time indulging in some form of cat grooming. However, grooming is learned by copy-cat behavior during kittenhood. So if the mom-cat is a slob, chances are Junior may get a bit dingy and care less about his appearance. Kittens learn to lick themselves by two weeks of age and are washing by the time they’re weaned. Learn how cats groom–and why–in this article about understanding cat grooming.

Do your cats have unique grooming habits? What about licking you–yep, that’s a cat’s way of sharing the joy of mutual grooming with a beloved human! Just as long as the kitty doesn’t snatch you bald, it can be quite a pleasant sensation. Are your cats neat freaks or do they get dingy and need baths? Have you ever bathed your cat…and lived to tell of it? Of course, there’s lots more cat-centric info in my best selling books Complete Kitten Care and Complete Care for Your Aging Cat….but what did I miss in the Ask Amy video, below? Please share!


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!

Feline Friday: Ask Amy, Cat Smiles & Book Love

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What's not to love?

How does your cat show affection? There are so many ways–and many times folks just assume the kitty purr says it all. There’s no doubt that cats love us as much as we love them. People who haven’t been blessed with furry feline love have a difficult time believing this, though, because kitties show affection very differently than people do. In fact, some cat behaviors that puzzle, aggravate or even offend people are a cat’s way of expressing undying affection.

My kitty Seren often indulges in what I call “flipping” behavior, where she THROWS herself on the ground in front of me and rolls back and forth while meowing. She also cheek-rubs and head-bonks us–and yes, she purrs. Here are 14 unexpected ways cats show love. What are some other ways your cats demonstrate their affection for you? Please share!

In fact, in honor of Adopt A Cat Month, I will draw a name from the comments posted on today’s blog for your choice of one of the books, below, but there’s a catch:

There must be at least 10 comments to do the drawing–and I’ll choose a winner by Sunday night so maybe the autographed book gets to a Father’s Day recipient on time. Forward the link and encourage your friends to comment so somebody can get some free kitty-book-love. Yes, I’m purrrr-fectly evil! Which brings me to the most recent Ask Amy video, below–enjoy!

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!

Feline Friday: Ask Amy, Cute Kittens & That BITES!

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Gimme the FEATHER!

It’s Adopt-A-Cat Month! Are you in the market for a new kitten? There’s sure a bumper crop this year. In fact, my friend and colleague Lynette George hosts a kitten adoption event tomorrow at Sherman Petco, starting at 10 am. I plan to visit for some SQUEEEEE! kitten photo ops, and hope to see you there. Likely my Seren-kitty will make me sign in blood that I won’t bring home an “interloper” but the Magical-Dawg would welcome a new furry friend.

(WARNING: blatant self promo…) You can find all must knows on adopting and raising kittens in the award-winning book, Complete Kitten Care, updated and available in all Ebook and print formats. Or if an older furry friend strikes your fancy (gosh, I hope so!) discover the rewards and special issues of these golden oldies in Complete Care for Your Aging Cat, also updated and in all Ebook and print formats.

Of course, it doesn’t have to be a special month for y’all to adopt a cat. Shelters and rescue organizations do the work of the angels every day, all year long, and some go the extra mile.

CWA colleague Mary Anne Miller routinely takes in furry waifs and finds them homes, but the expense both in $$ and emotional trauma can be an issue when not all have happy endings. She’d taken in 10 needy cats from a colony, and despite above-and-beyond medical effort, most died. *sigh* To recoup the expenses so other cats can be helped, Mary Anne hosts a one-week-long fund raising auction of donated items (BLING ALERT!) so visit and if you’re of a mind, support with a bid.

Should you adopt a kitten, try to adopt an older baby–one 12 weeks old or more so s/he’s already been taught how to inhibit claws and teeth. Or adopt a pair, so they can use each other as kitten punching bags! Otherwise, you’ll run into problems like the owner in the Ask Amy question!

Did you plan your kitten/cat adoption? or did your cat find you? Seren showed up on the back porch of a friend. Have your “free” found pets cost you more than expected (like Mary Ann?). But weren’t they worth it! Please share.

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!

Thoughty Thursday: Procrastination, Backups & Thpbpbpbpb

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Some days ya just don't want to get out of bed!

I missed posting Tuesday Tips, the next in the Kindle-ization series, and I’m HISSED OFF! You see, I have most all of that series done, and ready to go. They’re all on my laptop.

The laptop that DIED this week. Thpbpbpbpbpbpb! (that’s a virtual raspberry)

Actually, we suspect the battery ran dry–and it won’t run on just the plug. I’ve ordered a new battery, and hope for the best–but prepare for the worst.  I guess the old laptop served well–letters on the keyboard had worn off and a couple of books were written on it including all the updates to the newly Kindle-ized titles. Come to think of it, that’s where I kept the final versions of the updated manuscripts.

THPBPBPBPBPB!!!

I’m the person who always arrives early for meetings and circles the block until it’s not embarrassing to show up. With few exceptions, I meet or beat deadlines. And I angst and grow gray hairs and sprout crow’s feet lines when I can’t cross off each item as finished.  These days, though, with 5-10 blogs a week plus two weekly columns and the puppies.About.com stuff–oh, and a co-written musical play to produce, fiction WIP, acting gigs– keeping all the eggs in the air without scrambling them on impact takes a toll.

seren scratching 1

Scratch THIS!

So my blog schedule and backing up files fell to the bottom of the to-do list. Often I can get a few done early on weekends, but–well, over Memorial Day I actually shut off work and played with the Magical-Dawg and Seren-kitty! So I planned to post Tuesday’s blog on Tuesday morning (instead of days or at least the night before). Fortunately I had edited and uploaded the Ask Amy youtube videos for this week so yesterday’s Woof Wednesday and tomorrow’s Feline Friday are ready.

Just a week or so ago, one of my colleagues lamented the crash of her entire computer and loss of files. That was a wake-up call. I nearly subscribed to an online backup service but was instead convinced by my tech-guy husband to use thumb drives. So nearly all of the work on the !@#$%^&! laptop had been saved just a few days ago–but not the Ebooks and not the blog notes and content.

kitty snackage

Strawberries with the whine...er, wine would help.

I can re-created it but at the moment the pity-party-whine-fest is much more satisfying. Oh, I quick-like-a-bunny bought a new laptop with higher speed, larger storage, and updated software.  And I’ll get a few more of those thumb-drives and put it on my schedule for backups with more religious fervor.

How do you procrastinate? Has it ever bitten you in the ass-ets? What are your top reasons to THPBPBPB? Don’t be shy–vent away. And bookmark this blog to remind you what crappiocca can happen to derail even A-type go-go-go plan-ahead people like you and me!

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!