Wednesday, August 1, 2012


We wrote the last chapter, the last paragraph, the last line to GOING HOME WITH A CAT AND A GHOST. We’re done! …if a book is ever – Done.
I am excited. Judy spent hours today showing me possible photos for the book cover. She admitted she never anticipated the job of publishing and marketing when she sat down to write those first words of her first book,COAST TO COAST WITH A CAT AND A GHOST. Since then we discovered that writing a “great American novel” is the easy part, the fun part. Judy laughed, “If I had only known.”
When no one is around Judy complains a lot. I’ll bet you didn’t know that about her. I don’t think she’s really complaining, it’s her way of sorting out all the commitments she makes, the book signings, workshops, conferences, and panels. 

Me, I loved it when we went on the road with our book tour last summer. How many states did we cover? Let’s see, Nevada, Utah, Wyoming. We were in Idaho for thirty minutes, just passing through, then South Dakota, Colorado, and New Mexico. What a summer.

The first week at Ruby’s Campground in Bryce National Park, Utah, Judy flipped out when she looked up from her chaise lounge. She was resting after a horseback ride through the park. I remember she told me about the couple she’s met from Sherwood Forest. Really? I always thought that was a fictional place. Not so. I did not go with Judy on the horse adventure. I would not have gone even if she invited me. I’ll stick with keeping company with Shitzus, and Min Pins. (My friend Tika is a Min Pin- short for Miniature Pincher: a little dog with a big attitude - kinda like me.)

So that day I slept the hours away. The high altitude made me more laid back than usual. When Judy returned, I smelled the scents she brought home and I have to say, they made me shiver and my hair spike on my spine. The odors of the strange creatures that had rubbed onto Judy took me back to Tombstone, Arizona. Do you remember the scene in our first book, COAST TO COAST WITH A CAT AND A GHOST? (The cat is me.) Page 29 in the second edition, check it out. I’ll never forget those horses pulling the stagecoach.

After sniffing every inch of her clothing, I proceeded to tell Judy I missed her. Since I am without words I use action. (You do the same with writing, don’t tell, show.) I rubbed against her and followed her from the couch, to the kitchen, to the bedroom, the bathroom and back again to the living room...all not even a hop, skip and a jump. In a motor home its only one jump from place to place.

Judy collected her brochures and coffee and we went outside to relax in the pine scented air. I get excited when its my turn to do the tourist thing. After a few sniffs here and there, I plopped down and rolled on my back, on my side, my other side, feeling totally in touch with nature.
. “SPORTSTER!” I was jarred from my ecstasy.

Judy grabbed me so quickly I didn’t know what was happening
“What have you done? Just look at yourself.”  

Before I could twist or turn in protest, she whisked me to the bathroom, past the full length mirror on the closet door.
I didn’t recognize the reflection. 

The cat I usually saw in the glass was quite a handsome cat. A beautiful white strip between his eyes leads to his pink nose that is also a furry pure white. His left leg, the color of cotton does not match his right which is grey with black rings of fur. Observing this cat in the mirror, I was alarmed. It was not the same cat. There had never been another cat in our home, except the prideful one I mentioned.  I tolerated that cat since he seemed to know his place. He never ventured further than the closet door.

This cat was red, dirty red – the same color as the ground with which I had just communed. He must have been a stray. Believe me my heart goes out to the homeless, but still. The glimpse of this poor creature was just a split second  before Judy threw me in the shower and began to hose me down. “What?” How am I supposed to commune with nature when I smell like lavender? “Hey!” I yelled louder. It was obvious Judy didn’t understand. These are the times I long to be articulate.
It seems I digressed. I never saw that cat again. I hope he found a nice, loving home despite his disarray. But what I started to say is I love going on the book tours in the motor home. Judy loves it too. I hope now we get to do another with this book, GOING HOME WITH A CAT AND A GHOST. I love my public.


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