Writing other things today:
The cat is not helping:
In a perfect world, each writer has at least one intelligent, thoughtful, straightforward friend with lots of free time on her hands, which she happily uses to read every little thing Writer writes so she can give helpful feedback.
But it’s not a perfect world, is it. And so you find substitutes.
Like the cat.
Again, another person (someone who can read and speak) is ideal. But if you can’t get ideal, get creative instead.
A long time ago, long enough ago that I can’t place what age or school year or season this was in, I told a story I don’t remember anymore. I want to say it was a humorous retelling of Rapunzel, with falling towers and plucky sidekicks and an evil tabby that plotted against the heroes. Her name was Priscilla and she was based on my cat Flower:
The story’s details are lost now. How did it start? How did it end? Did I even finish it? Did the other characters have names? Is that bit about the falling tower true? How did it fall? Why?
I don’t know.
Priscilla, though, I haven’t forgotten, and, years later, I’m still telling stories. And sometimes, stories need villains.
Hello, Priscilla. We meet again at last.
~ No, you can’t reach that, no matter how strangely you contort and/or stretch your hairy little body.
~ That is going to fall on your head if you don’t stop tugging on it.
~ I need my skin.
~ That’s my spot.
~ That’s my pen.
~ That’s my letter to my out-of-state friend AND YOU CAN’T EAT IT!
~ And you can’t eat my food: you have so much of your own food.
~ You won’t like carrot peeling, no matter how much you think you should climb up on the counter to try some.
~ The great outdoors is full of death.
~ You can sleep on that sofa, or that sofa, or this chair, or one of the seven other chairs, or the Star Wars blanket under the tree, or the upstairs hallway carpet, or the box in the Husband’s office, or my lap, or my desk, or the dining room table, or the cat bed made specifically for cats, BUT NOT ON MY BOOK WHEN I’M TRYING TO WRITE!
The Husband and I adopted a young cat last week, after the sudden loss of Tricks/Bellatrix/Boris.
There is nothing good about losing a pet, but I’ve found the best way to deal with this is to find another creature that needs a home and take it in. It’s a recommendation I first heard while reading James Herriot, and a recommendation I fully endorse.
For me, fuzzy things make a home, and this cat (officially named after The Dark One from Wheel of Time), is very much a fuzzy thing. Now, to keep her from clawing the sofa into oblivion…
The Husband is allergic, however. Surely this may come in handy, someday . . .
Writer sits in home, happily drinking coffee and going over old story-notes for renewed contemplation.
Cat meows at back door.
Writer ignores cat. Cat has been fed. Cat has been stroked. Cat cannot come inside until the allergic Husband has left for work.
Cat continues to meow from back stoop.
Writer continues to ignore cat. Sips more coffee
Cat rises up on hind legs to peer through screen. Meows louder. In case Writer didn’t hear her the first several times.
Writer continues to drink coffee.
Cat begins to yowl as if in pain.
Writer sighs. Gathers papers, pen, and leaves coffee on the table. Goes outside. Sits on back stoop with cat. Begins to write.
Cat sniffs pen, sits on paper, starts to purr.
Cat gets bored.
Writer keeps writing.
Cat begins to chew on Writer.
Writer has thumbs and wins at playtime. Continues writing. Looks up a couple minutes later. Cat has vanished. Writer waits. Cat remains vanished.
Writer sighs, gathers things again, and goes back inside to a now-cold cup of coffee. Arranges things on table. Starts to brew another cup.
Cat appears at back door. Meows.