This week I’m pleased to welcome Deborah Raney and her adorable cat, Biscuit!
Le: Hi, Deborah! Thank you so much for stopping by today with Biscuit! What is your favorite kind of a pet? Dog, cat, guinea pig? And why?
DR: I love cats because they are so independent––like a well-behaved teenager, and because they add such warmth and personality to a home.
Le: How many pets do you have today?
DR: We have three cats in the yard: Frosty, Biscuit and Sundae.
Le: Have you ever rescued an animal?
DR: Yes, our cat Biscuit showed up on our doorstep about 4 years ago. She presented us with 9 kittens (2 litters) that summer and fall. We kept one of the kittens, Sundae, and the others all found good homes––thanks in part to author Kim Vogel Sawyer, who adopted Maizie herself and found homes for several other of the kittens.
Le: Oh, I love that! Do you ever incorporate animals into your novels?
DR: I try to put a cat or dog in almost every book. Sometimes it just doesn’t suit my characters, but usually a pet adds a wonderful spirit to a book.
Le: What was your favorite character animal?
DR: I loved the rabbits in Watership Down, especially Hazel. My newest book has two dogs that have been adopted by homeless shelter residents. Sparky and Boss end up bringing my hero and heroine together rather delightfully, I think.
Le: That’s terrific! Makes me want to read your book even more! Although, I always want to read your novels. Has one of your own pets been the inspiration for a pet/character in a novel?
DR: I tend to write cat characters more than dogs, mostly because we are currently cat people. I grew up with a wonderful series of dogs on the farm, but haven’t owned a dog since early in our marriage.
Le: What is the funniest thing you’ve seen one of your animals do?
DR: We have an old black cat named Frosty and when Biscuit showed up on our doorstep, he wasn’t exactly pleased. My husband had built a large “dog” house on the back deck, but Frosty refused to share with Biscuit. When Biscuit was about to give birth to her kittens, we set up a makeshift shelter for her (built from Styrofoam coolers). One day that March, I went out to the deck and discovered Frosty in the Styrofoam hut. Sure enough, Biscuit was in the doghouse with newborn kittens!! I have no idea how that all went down––either Frosty is more of a gentleman than we knew, or Biscuit put her foot down.
Le: Good for her! That’s hilarious! Is there a secret that only your pet knows?
DR: See above. ☺
Le: I like that. Maybe Biscuit will share later. ☺ What is your pet’s pet peeve about you?
DR: That we don’t let them in the house more often. They have all the comforts of home…a beautiful fenced garden, a cat door offering free reign of the house. But they prefer the kitchen.
Le: My cat likes the kitchen too. I think she wants to be near us. What is your pet peeve about your pet?
DR: They shed too much!
Le: I hear ya on that one! Thank you so much for taking the time to be with us! Now, I’d love to ask your Biscuit a few questions. Don’t forget to give your sweet pet a treat afterwards. ☺
Le: Hi, Biscuit! You are so pretty! Thanks for stopping by today. Tell us, what would be the title of your autobiography?
Biscuit: Three Cats in the Yard, Life Used to Be So Hard
Le: If you were to write a novel, would your friend inspire one of the characters?
Biscuit: The brave and beautiful heroine, of course.
Le: Deborah would make a wonderful heroine! What’s your favorite movie?
Biscuit: Homeward Bound
Le: I like that one too. What musical instrument would you like to play?
Biscuit: Actually, I DO play the piano. With four paws, I can play duets single-handedly!
Le: I love it! Do you play on Deborah’s computer keyboard? My cat Miracle likes to do that sometimes. What do you think about cats? Dogs?
Biscuit: Four words: cats rule, dogs drool (that’s actually a line from my master’s next book.)
Le: Very good! My cat would agree! Where do you sleep at night?
Biscuit: On a cushion in the garage. I take catnaps on the kitchen windowsill.
Le: What do you do when your friend is writing?
Biscuit: When I was a kitten, I slept on her lap while she wrote, or on top of her manuscript. The day I tried to help her with some typing and “accidentally” erased a chapter was the day I was banned from her office.
Le: Oooh! I can understand that. Sorry, my cat would be out then too. What is your idea of bliss?
Biscuit: Licking yogurt lids.
Le: Yum! What is your friend’s idea of bliss?
Biscuit: Watching my kittens play.
Le: Ahhh. I’d like that too. Thank you so much for being with us today! You take care of your friend now, ya hear?