Question- “Your first published book, “The Boomer Years, Reflections” was about baby boomers. Is your upcoming novel,”Cat Ranch” mainly about cats?”
Answer- “Cats are essential to the story, but the basic premise is along the lines of, “No good deed goes unpunished.” I believe the originator of that quote was Clare Booth Luce, but others have claimed it. My story derives from two moms who take on nine indoor cats to watch overnight in a remote country setting, as a favour to the one mom’s daughter and son in law. What should be a rather ho hum situation, turns into absolute chaos with the addition of unexpected characters, events and ultimate disaster.
Q- “Is there an actual cat ranch?”
A- “Not officially. The title comes from an observation one of the characters makes upon encountering a number of cat inhabitants laying all over the country kitchen counters when he enters the house. The novel was inspired by my daughter and son in law’s cat sanctuary, as I call it. They are not in the story, but it is a real location and I borrowed their nine cats for the “crew.” I used their real names and photos — no lawsuit risks there!”
Q- “So the story wasn’t based upon actual events?”
A- “Thankfully no. I simply gave my imagination free reign.”
Q- “What attracted you to writing a story with different generations?
A- “I like to throw characters together and see what funny stuff shakes out. There is so much grist for comedy with kids, young adults, middle agers and older people together trying to survive life in their particular ways. I find that people are more open about their feelings nowadays. This story made it possible for me to explore relationships between family and strangers. There were opportunities for great dialogue and hilarious situations.
Q- “With such an age range and strange circumstances, what were some of your emotions while pulling it all together?”
A- “Good question. Well, I experienced a lot of feelings that I hope readers can identify with; excitement, fear, nostalgia, anger, hope, anxiety, love. It’s cliche I know, but there is something for everyone. Ironically, when I think about it, those emotions fueled my first book.”
Q- “Would you call yourself an emotional writer then?”
A- “Not entirely. I’ve been told that I’m a natural writer. I do use a lot of my own feelings in my work, particularly when it comes to nostalgia.”
Q- “Have you started a new writing project?”
A- “I’m working on a variety of stories at this time. One could become a novel. I like to try new ideas. If I can make this one happen, it will be a definite change from my humorous style.”
Q- “When can we expect to see “Cat Ranch” available for purchase?”
A- “Like so many things these days, Covid-19 has thrown a spanner into my best laid plans. Optimistically, I am hoping by the end of 2020. There are marketing strategies to consider and I am challenged to do my best homework in these uncertain times.