Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Kitty companions – by Kandy Shepherd

 Some writers work in cafes or noisy parts of the house where they feel part of the world. Not me. I need to be by myself to write—away from noise and distraction so I can draw deep from my imagination and escape into the creative zone where the words start to flow. I like a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the closed door. And none of that music that other writers find so inspiring.

Alfie helps keep the printouts of my drafts from blowing away (actually he just likes the box!)

 That solitary, writerly existence could get lonely. Not so with cats for company.

Ivy supervises from a stack of books waiting to be filed

 There’s nothing three of my cats like better than to be with me—on my lap, on my desk, on a chair or floor nearby. As I write—often very late into the night—I’m never short of feline company.

Tabitha prefers to be on my lap as I type, but a nearby chair will do as second choice

 Of course my kitties can become a distraction. Like when the one who always wants to sit on my lap squeals in protest when my back starts aching and I lift her off. Or when two of them start to argue in escalatingly loud cat voices for possession of a prized cardboard box.

Ivy tucks herself neatly nearby behind my computer, sometimes I don't know she's there 

And my fourth cat? She’s primarily an outdoor cat who loves to go for walks with us around our farm and into the surrounding bushland. Sometimes during the day she appears at my window sill as if to urge me outside for some much-needed exercise. Being a natural-born procrastinator, that's often just the excuse I need to down tools!

Cindy makes sure I get off my chair and get some well-needed exercise

 What about you? Do you have a pet that keeps you company when you’re at home? When you're concentrating on a task do you need quiet or thrive on music or chatter?  Please make a comment, I’d love to hear about it!

I have one copy of my debut book for Harlequin Romance The Summer They Never Forgot to give away—either a mass market paperback or via an Amazon gift voucher for an e-book

Please include your email address in your comment if you want to be included in the draw (and let me know if you prefer print or e-book.)

Kandy Shepherd writes fun, feel-good fiction.  The Summer They Never Forgot is Kandy’s first release from Harlequin Romance in the US, the UK and Australia. Watch out for The Tycoon and the Wedding Planner in July 14.

Visit Kandy at her website


Mary Preston said...

I'm without pets at the moment. I like quiet at all times. I find it more restful. There are enough incidental noises, no need to add more.

Kandy Shepherd said...

I couldn't agree more Mary, there's so much noise going on in this world it's rare to get quiet time. When I go for a walk I do so without being plugged into music for the same reason.

Anna Campbell said...

Kandy, what a lovely post. LOVE the photos. I'm so jealous. I grew up with pets but for various life reasons I haven't had a pet in years. Your cats are so gorgeous. When I write, I need to be alone but I have classical music playing. Anything with lyrics distracts me from the voices in my head - which I know makes me sound completely crazy! No need to put me into the draw for your wonderful THE SUMMER THEY NEVER FORGOT. Whoever wins is a lucky duck - it's such a fabulous story!

Kandy Shepherd said...

Anna, I'm so glad you enjoyed the post -- and thank you for your kind words about THE SUMMER THEY NEVER FORGOT. I adore my kitties and feel privileged they want to be with me in my study when there are comfy beds elsewhere in the house.
If you think you sound completely crazy about not wanting lyrics in your head as you write then count me in as crazy too! I can only have the words of my story inhabiting my head.

Efthalia Pegios said...

Hi Kandy, I totally get wanting that silence but some days I do like a little bit of a distraction. With music I'm like Anna it has to be classical or instrumental...words get in the way.

I think it's lovely that you have your cats to keep you company. They look cute too.

Big Smiles,

Kandy Shepherd said...

Classical or instrumental doesn't seem to get in the way does it Effie and I believe is meant to have a positive impact on creativity. Yet I know lots of writers who aren't bothered in the slightest by songs with lyrics. Each to his own! Glad you liked the kitties, they really are such good company for me!

Janine said...

I have a cat named Miss Waikiki who keeps me company and entertains me at the same time.

Pat Cochran said...

No pets at this time, we lost the family cat (Gerald) years ago
and never replaced him. It's just me and my electronic "buddies,"
the computer and the television, I find I don't enjoy a quiet house
when I'm " home alone."

Kandy Shepherd said...

Miss Waikiki sounds very cute Janine and I love her name!

Kandy Shepherd said...

I agree Pat, when I'm alone in the house and not writing I find it creepy not to have some electronic company - but when I'm deep into my writing I tune out so much I don't mind. Until I hear thud, thud, thud coming down the hallway, feel sick with terror until I realise it is Alfie who is growing into a very big and heavy cat!

Efthalia Pegios said...

Alife rules! But I love the way Ivy is just lounging over the books. It's almost a "what, what, what did I do?" look.

Mary Anne Landers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Anne Landers said...

Thank you, Kandy. I too have three cats. Spartacus, my golden tabby, likes to get into my food when I'm cooking or eating. But we have a rule around here. People don't eat kitty food and kitties don't eat people food!

About avoidng distractions, I once read that Nora Roberts had what she called the "blood and fire rule" for her children: don't bother mom when she's working unless the problem involves blood or fire.

If I were to implement this, I'd have to call it the "blood, fire, and wind rule". I live in the American Mid-South, and I'd sure as heck want to know if a tornado is coming!

I already have your book, so no need to enter me in the giveaway. Keep up the good work!