Wednesday, December 8, 2010

More Animal Tales

A few days ago we had a great discussion on animals in stories. Recent events in my life have prompted me to once again discuss animals, not necessarily in our stories but how they affect our lives and thus our writing.

Living in the country as we do, we’ve had our share of throw away dogs and cats. The latest is a cutie. Small. Black and white. Mixed something or other, though I’m not sure what since I can't find a picture of a dog resembling him. He’s polite and friendly. Doesn’t bark. The only sound I’ve heard him make was last night when the cat attacked him. He let out a yelp. Who could blame him? It seems Patches doesn’t want to share her home with a stray even though I reminded her she once was a stray.

Anyway, the little dog, smaller than the cat, looks at me as if I’m supposed to do something. What? Find his owner? I wish I could. Call him by his name? I haven’t a clue. Give him a home? We can do that. However, he was here once before, a couple weeks ago, and the minute I let him in the backyard, he squeezed through the gate and was gone. He slept in the house last night because the temperature was in the 20s. He cuddled up on the sofa. He ate anything we gave him. And he’s very polite.

Right now he’s outside. Whether he’ll decide to explore the country or stay close is anybody’s guess. As I’ve been thinking about this little stray, wondering what to do with him, some of my characters in my current work in progress came to mind. When I first met the four teens, I knew nothing about them. Their backgrounds were a mystery. As we worked our way through the story, slowly they began to reveal tidbits about their lives, their families, their troubles, their hopes and their dreams. Why are they in my story? Will they stay, or will they wander off, into a world, not necessarily of their own making, but a world that they have little control over, a world that is sometimes cruel and unforgiving, but that also can be beautiful.

What is the future of each of them? Will they reach their goals, find what they’re looking for. Or will the world be too much for them?

Will the little dog that I’m trying to decide what to call him see that we will provide him with a good home (ignoring the cat’s dislike of him)? Or will he go in search of the home that he obviously loved and people that must have loved him at one time? I cannot know their circumstances, so I’m not blaming anyone for his situation. I’ll simply do what I can to take care of him.

Name suggestions would be appreciated. In case he grants us the honor of being his parents.

Happy Reading and Writing.


  1. I think "Hobo" would be a perfect name.
    Don't you love not knowing what's going to happen to your characters? It's amazing how story people seem to have a life of their own.

  2. Have no idea what to call a dog but I did have a cat named Robespierre who my girls when they were small called Rose Prairie.

  3. I like Henry, Darby. It reminds me of royalty, the Kings of England, omitting Henry VIII. :)

    Hobo fits him, Wanda, since he does like to wander and his home is unknown.

    LOl. I like that, JL.

    Thanks for the suggestions. I hate to keep calling him "dog."

  4. Ooh, I like Henry. I'm crazy though. I once named my cat Prince Charles the first of Sacramento!

  5. What a cute dog. Don't know what I would name him, but he is cute. Come to think of it, I like the name Sparky.