When my mother-in-law found out I was writing a book called Dog Nanny, she suggested I write a story about the cat quarantined in my garage. (see actual cat at left)
It all started when my two ferocious miniature poodles began a barking tirade, causing the cat to climb me like a scratching post. But that’s a whole other blog. Suffice it to say that after ten days--and several photos of the cat’s hindquarters (an attempt to have friends help me determine its sex)--the stray cat I’d been referring to as Ted Nugent was returned to his owner. (In case you’re wondering, the real Ted Nugent lives nearby. “The Nuge,” as he’s called around here, is best known for his song, “Cat Scratch Fever,” from the late ’70s.)
But as is my wont, I digress.
Hmm. "Cat Nanny." Not sure. You see, I’m really a dog person at heart.
When I mentioned writing the cat sequel, my Maryland friend Lynn Reynolds (Thirty-Nine Again and blog #11 below), responded in her characteristically witty way.
“It could be a theme for you,” she said. “Your tagline could be ‘Animal Passion!’ I mean, if Janet Evanovich can milk Stephanie Plum for 14 books, what's to stop you???”
She even expanded on the idea for me:
Dog Nanny - young Texan chick must train feisty poodles and even feistier pilot
(OK, done that)
Cat Nanny - young Arizona chick must housesit for handsome and mysterious cat owner
Iguana Nanny - young New Mexico chick must care for her sick sister's Iguana, but what happens when she's trapped in a cabin with the Iguana's cold-blooded vet?
Coming soon - Ferret Nanny.
Also look for Elephant Nanny - when handsome vet Clint Hardiman travels to India as part of the new Vets Without Borders charity, his life is turned upside-down by a sacred cow and its beautiful owner.
"And I haven't even touched the Cruzan yet," she said, as I considered her offerings and pondered whether Bovine Nanny might be more appropriate for an Indian setting.
I’m not sure what Cruzan is, but it must be something alcoholic. As you can see, Lynn loves brainstorming and is into this fowl thing, though for some reason she didn't suggest I write a Chick Nanny.
Another Texas writer and member of my critique group, Sue L, had this suggestion: Rat Nanny—Bracing herself to play hostess to a feral predator, a young midwestern chick finds herself looking forward to spending time with her generous and compassionate charge.
This starts me thinking about Cowboy Nanny, since western and cowboy romances are hot right now. City chick tries to tame wild cowboy by offering him her custom-made saddle. From California, my more practical friend, Sarah, weighed in with a different suggestion. “Couldn't Dog Nanny have a sequel—perhaps a younger sister who ends up with a near rabid cat that belongs to a handsome reporter who'd love to have a dog, but his weird hours prevent it?"
It’s great having such creative friends. But for now, I'm going to content myself with finishing my work-in-progress, in which Carl, a 190-pound mastiff, plays a minor character. If anything about a 190-pound dog can be considered minor.
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