MAC Center for the Arts in Newport, VT opens the Fall 2014 Watercolor Exhibition tomorrow, 9/12/14, 5-7 p.m.
The MAC Center for the Arts, in Newport, VT, opens a fall watercolor exhibition tomorrow night, 9/12/14, 5-7 p.m., with a reception.
Music and refreshments will be provided, and I will be reading from my work at about 6:15 p.m. as part of the entertainment. I will have 10-15 minutes, so am not sure what I will read yet — perhaps a short excerpt from Voice Lessons, My Heart, and/or Driving with Cats. It’s all good. See you there! There’s a gallery full of beautiful artwork at the MAC, so come by if you’re in the area!
Those of you who know me know that I love people as much as cats. Really! There’s some editorial license taken here to make the article a little more fun. But seriously, I think my relationship with my pets actually helps me be a better human, and probably helps me deal with people for the better. Read the article at catster.com — Read it here:
I am a member of the Cat Writers’ Association, a group of professionals of all kinds who do cat-related writing and visual art. The organization has an annual contest. The Great Purr has won a certificate of excellence in that contest for 2014. This means that it scored at least 90 out of 100 in the category for fiction novels, and is eligible for a Muse Medallion. The top score in each category (and there are many categories of writing and art in this contest) wins the Muse Medallion — awarded in November.
Congratulations to ALL the winners!
My cats are all loving, and generally they get along. But one cat has started bullying the only female. It’s subtle, and I think it’s on the way to improving. Here’s what I am trying.
I have a few appearances and events coming up soon. These should be varied and fun. If you’re in the Vermont/New England/Quebec area, please come and check these out!
- MAC Center for the Arts, Newport, VT, Friday, September 12, 2014, as part of the “It Happens in Vermont,” exhibition and sale, sponsored by the Vermont Watercolor Society, reception from 5 – 7 PM. I will be reading at 6:15 pm.
- First Universalist Parish of Derby Line (VT), Sunday, October 5, 10 a.m.; I will speak about my relationship with animals and how it has shaped my path in life and as an author, as part of the Blessing of the Animals Service.
- Cat Writers’ Association annual conference, Saturday, November 1, time TBA; book signing and autograph party at the Westin Buckhead Hotel, Atlanta, GA.
- Galaxy Bookshop, Hardwick, VT, Tuesday, November 18, at 6 p.m.
My cats do lots of cute things. Some of these mannerisms are sweet and unforgettable. Read about these, here:
Karma and Norton snuggle in an almost too-tight cat bed.
When the student is ready, the teacher will appear. Many of my teachers have been cats. I’ve always believed that our animal companions have much to teach us. Here’s how mine have shaped who I am, hopefully for the better. Read it here.
Selfie with Jamie Bluebell, a young teacher.
It’s a big deal to lose a pet, and every one processes this differently. Here are some tips to help your friends get through this time.
Here’s where I make the case for why six cats are more fun than none. We (mostly, I believe) thrive on loving and nurturing others. This is one way in which I do it. Read about it here:
I never thought cats could be mircomanagers — until I met the unforgettable Leo, black cat of a friend of mine. Leo has micromanagement down to a science and he’s impressive! Is your cat a micromanager? Find out more here:
The beautiful Leo and his sister Katy.
I’m beginning to get giddy. I love fall. Fall is not here yet, but I am assured it will be spectacular. But…I am feeling the nudging beginnings of this transition.
A few leaves are starting to turn
Crickets are singing day and night
It’s a little too cool to swim in a pond
Veggies are being harvested
Wood is put up
Aster is blooming in the woods and in the garden
The blackberries might actually make it
The raspberries are almost past
I’m excited. Later, i might be sad because winter will be coming. Right now, I LOVE IT.
It’s humor, but it’s true. I found similarities between my cats and my mom. Does your mom have eyes in the back of her head? So do your cats. Read on, here!
My Velcro cat, Zorro, is probably like some mothers.
I had this experience the other day where I gave into Corona’s (our dog’s) desire to get on the porch, and had a scare…it made me think about why dogs love porches and cats love beds. Read it here at http://www.catster.com/lifestyle/cat-dog-behavior-care-deny-things-love-porches-beds-bedroom
Everything is new! Usually, that is thrilling. Sometimes it is edgy. Once in a great while, it’s almost too much. But really, it’s mostly amazing and fun.
And there was a sense, the other day, of bringing in the “old” to the new. My husband and I stacked wood together for the first time in the new place. I think things had been feeling way too easy and soft! It was so good to be working outside together. Not that we haven’t been working our butts off, but this was a familiar kind of “homestead” work that carried over from the other place. It felt good. And then I processed a bunch of peas and beans, and that felt good, too. For a garden that was put in Very Fast and pretty late, it is yielding some nice veggies. I am happy.
Not my garden, but all gardens are interesting and beautiful. From Flickr.
I amused myself walking down the mountain today. Where we lived previously, we had to fight like heck to get carpenters to come help us. Here, there are carpenters fighting to help us. #eastcoasthustlehustle
I like to focus on the positive. Yes, there are things I can’t do at home because of cats (leave dangerous things out, leave doors open, etc. etc.) but there are many things I CAN do. It’s more for humor than anything (and hopefully, there’s some informative value) that I wrote this article on cats — read it here — 8 Things I Can Never Do Because I Have Cats.
Some animals have a quality that’s hard to nail done. They seem a little more aware, in tune, mature than others. I write about this Old Soul quality in some of my cats, and how it shows up.
I am easily entertained, and I love watching my cats playfight. Certain moves are universal, and seem to be part of the cat canon, much like archetypes. I’ve seen these moves over and over and over again. They amuse me. For your entertainment, here’s a primer on cat playfighting, at Catster.com.
Zorro and Norton have at it — hours of play and exercise fun.
I’ve been remiss and forgetting to post my Catster.com articles here. No real reason — simply life busyness. Ahh…the power of habit. Maybe I can establish a new one here.
Anyway, a friend of mine once told me that she felt sheepish attending a grief support group after the death of her cat. it inspired me to think about the nature of this kind of grieving, and why some accept it or understand it better than others.
I’m in super-love with my new landscape. After spending most of my life (except for the first 10 years that were in hilly country; foothills of Appalachia) in flat-flat-flat lands, I am back in mountains. I can’t get enough of them.
I think (???) the honeymoon period for this move is over…but I still love the mountains. I can’t get enough of seeing a clear ridge line on a clear day, the difference in the sky and the air (it’s hard to explain), the way streams rush down the mountains after it rains, the way light plays over the mountains and the various shades of greens. I feel as if my body is celebrating in tune with the mountains. I constantly see a mountainous horizon. This makes me very happy.
Why are we drawn to certain landscapes? This fascinates me to no end.
I have mixed feelings about Facebook, and social media in general.
I mention Facebook here, because I have not gotten into the habit of using Linkedin (on a regular basis) or Twitter (at all).
On the one hand, I love knowing what my friends are doing.
On the other hand, I’d really prefer sitting down to a cup of coffee with my friends, or at least having a phone conversation.
One the one hand, I love reading status updates (usually).
On the other hand, I never know what to write. I’m a fairly private person and I open up to those I know and love — in person (preferred), on the phone, or even via email. But Facebook — I don’t know.
On the one hand, it’s writing, and I love to communicate in writing.
On the other hand, it’s not really the writing I want to be making time for.
On the one hand, I’m required to use social media to share my Catster articles, and I’m expected (by my publishers) to promote my books in any way possible, including using social media.
On the other hand, it’s a turn off (supposedly) when people only promote.
I’m also aware that sometimes, Facebook gives me a strange feeling of sadness or discontent. I’m not actively looking for opportunities to be sad or discontent! So I pay attention.
Not sure what this all means, but it’s probably why I don’t bare my heart and soul on Facebook. I have a journey enough doing that via my books.
I know it’s supposed to be smart and savvy and the [next, or ongoing,] great thing, but to me it just feels like another thing to do. Being honest here.
Please know that I don’t judge anyone that loves FB and has had great success with it or other social media — more power to you! I’m just reassessing.
You’ll likely still see me on Facebook, but if you’re a friend or follower, and you’ve ever wondered why I don’t “say” more — well perhaps there’s a little insight here.
If you’re a close friend, call or send an email! You’re likely to find out more
I DO love to share cute cat pics, and don’t plan to stop anytime soon.
Setting up a new home in a new place has been soooo much fun. It has also been extremely edgy. But I’d expect that of any big change. Isn’t moving one of those “greatest transitions of life” — up there with death, birth, marriage, divorce, break up, etc.?
Here are random thoughts in no order:
Sometimes it’s hard to describe a new place. There are no words. It’s a little like describing another culture, or country. You have an understanding, or part of one…but trying to compare it to where you came from is very difficult or impossible.
Even the dumbest little things can feel edgy when everything is new, and even the dumbest little things can feel amazingly adventurous when they’re new. This is part of the emotional residue that comes along with moving.
I’m keeping in better touch with some of my friends now that I’m a longer distance from them.
I’ve gotten lots better about decision making, simply because there have been So Many decisions to make – often needing speed in the decision making.
Landscapes feel different. They have different personalities. This fascinates me.
People have been very very kind.
Getting in edgy new places feeds my desire for more adventure — hmmmm!
My new cat fantasy novel THE GREAT PURR is now available for order on my website! Get your personalized, autographed copy!
Here’s the description:
In a northern Minnesota mining town, cats have always maintained the Great Purr, a force that holds the Real World, the UnderEarth, and the Spirit World together. But when the Great Purr becomes corrupted and threatens to destroy the world, the magical cats of Ironton must work together to prevent disaster. Can Karma use her exquisite sensitivity without it destroying her? Will Target harness his gift of focus at the right time? And will sensual Kali be able to resist the temptation of the Evil that threatens to unravel The Great Purr?
A book for young adults and adults of all ages. Order your copy now!
I ponder whether Place can affect cats as well as people. Read my Catster.com article here:
I wonder if Zorro remembers Minnesota at this point — he’s pretty happy here.
Usually, I write about cats. But these two Corgis have made such an impression in my life that I had to devote an article to them. Read about the indomitable Walli and GusGus here at Dogster, today.