And I’m NOT talking about your spouse who forgot to shave!
|Pay no attention to the writer behind the dog!|
Pet snakes, iguanas, goldfish, and tarantulas do NOT count as warm, snuggly creatures. If you’re one of those types of pet lovers . . . I got nothin’ for you.
So today we celebrate the pets in our lives, the writing companions who doze quietly while we peck away at the keyboard and don’t mind at all when we talk to ourselves, make faces in the mirror, or absently weave our fingers through their fur while we ponder our next scene.
I have two dogs in my life right now. Shadow is a rescue dog estimated to be about 12-13 years old. We call him a border collie mix, but honestly, we have no idea! Read Shadow’s rescue story here.
|Poppy & Shadow|
Our cherished pets are more than just companions. They teach us a lot, too—lessons that can carry over into our writing lives.
With Shadow, I learned patience. He was so fearful at first that it took me days to finally catch him. Writers need patience, because in this business everything takes time. We wait for editors or agents to respond to our queries. We wait for that first contract to be offered. We wait for the advance check to arrive. We wait . . . and wait . . . and wait for the book to finally come out in print!
|Gracie, our beloved doggy who passed away last year.|
Poppy, still so much a puppy, reminds me every day of the importance of play. When she gets bored with napping beside me, she’ll bring over a toy and pester me until I toss it for her. Or she’ll get right up in my face and lick my nose until I give her some attention. Poppy’s a great reminder to get out from behind the computer screen for a while and change my outlook (not to mention my position!).
I also asked the pet-loving Seekers to share what their pets mean to them.
Tina Radcliffe: Charlie (female) is my writing companion and of course she nominated me for the ACFW Mentor of the Year. That's what friends do. They have your back. She's taught me the importance of taking naps. I've had Charlie for 14 years, and have perfected the fine art of napping. As you can see in this photo, Charlie also adds to my organizational system.
|Tina's cat Charlie|
Ruth Logan Herne: Libby is my writing buddy. Her son Jeter would like to be my writing buddy, but at 12 months old, he's too crazed... I would no more than get a sentence written and he'd be like "Oh, so, that's good, I think you should pet me now!" And if I put him off, he gives me five seconds and a long-slow-look (don't scoff at the impossibility of that, he's a puppy and they can make really good use of time because they're so stinkin' desperate for attention!) and then nudges his big, shaggy head under my arm, fairly certain that I should be petting him despite my refusal.
But Libby will just sit there, or curl up and she doesn't demand a thing. If I move, she follows me. If I ask her a question, her return look says she has the utmost confidence in my choices!!! I love her to pieces! She developed cancer last year and we had it removed, and so far so good. She's been fine! But knowing she's had it makes me appreciate my furry brown companion that much more. I love her peaceful, loving personality and she's great company for my middle-of-the-night writing stints.
|Ruthy's dog Libby|
Missy Tippens: My sweet black and white dog keeps my feet warm while I write. I also have my adorable grand-dog who comes to visit sometimes when we dog-sit. Here's a photo of the two of them beside me on the couch, where I work on my laptop. Often, though, the grand-dog isn't quite so cooperative! He tends to fall asleep with his head on my keyboard (snoring--listen here!). But who can resist a face like that?
|Missy's doggy and grand-doggy|
(Missy, continued) I can't say that my pets have taught me anything about writing, although I have written some stories with pets in them. But ever since I was a child, I've enjoyed the unconditional love that pets give, that total-acceptance, "I adore you" love. My dogs (and grand-dog) have given me a taste of God's love!
|Missy's grand-dog snoring on her computer|
Pam Hillman: I don't have indoor pets, although my dog Dakota does her best to become one every time I open the door. And right now her three puppies really, really want to live inside, too! But we have lots of outdoor animals, dogs, cats, cows, and horses.
We had puppies in the barn on September 11, 2001. I spent several weeks playing with those puppies. They were the best therapy I could think of to get away from everything going on in the world. So, even though I don't have indoor pets, I use a lot of life experiences with our farm animals in my writing. The true story of Taming Yellow is woven in Claiming Mariah, and even though I've never assisted with the birth of a foal, I've helped plenty with calves, so used that experience for the birth of the foal in Claiming Mariah.
|Pam's puppies! Aren't they adorable?|
Mary Connealy is the anti-pet contributor to this post: I don't like house pets and when our last outdoor dog died we didn't replace him. Also we have semi-feral barn cats.
[Mary asked me not to post photos, but she does occasionally capture snakes and rodents on glue traps. I don’t think those count as writing companions. However, she does have all those cows and calves roaming outside her door.]
Do you have a furry (or not so furry) friend that keeps you company while you write? What makes your pet special? How has your pet inspired you or taught you important lessons about life that have translated over into your writing?
Tell us about your pet here in the comments section, and then pop over to the Seekerville Facebook page and upload a photo!
I’ll be giving away a $15 gift certificate to Drs. Foster & Smith, my favorite online pet supplies retailer. They also carry a variety of backyard specialty products, so if you don’t have a house pet, you can probably find something else to pique your interest. Even if you’re not a pet person, you can still enter the drawing. Just type “ENTER ME” at the end of your comment on today’s post.
AND here are two ways to increase your chances of winning! For one additional entry, jump over to my website and subscribe to my e-News mailing list, then mention in your comment that you subscribed! Add one more entry by “liking” my Facebook Page! (If you’re already a subscriber or have liked my page, mention that, too.)
Look for Myra's latest releases:
Whisper Goodbye (Till We Meet Again: book 2), from Abindgon Press
4 1/2 STARS FROM RT REVIEWS!!!
Pearl of Great Price, a Kindle Select publication