Furbaby Friday with Author K. J. Pierce


I am happy to welcome my good friend and fellow Wild Rose Press author, K. J. Pierce. She brings a wonderful blend of wit, wisdom, and a deep love of her animals friends and mentors. And her contemporary romantic comedy, Yours Truly, is hilarious and cleverly written.

(Mr. Dorian Gray)

K. J. Pierce. Growing up in an Army family, you’d think having pets would be a virtual impossibility, given the frequent moves. We averaged a move every two-three years, but aside from a five-year stretch in Germany when I was a pre-teen and teenager, I don’t remember a time when we didn’t have some sort of animal roaming the household (or for the four years we lived in the Louisiana country just outside of Ft. Polk, rabbits and chickens taking up yard space).

I’m a firm believer about many things animal-related, but looking back, I’m amazed at how much they teach us, even when we’re not paying close attention.

My first cat KC (stood for Kitty Cat…I was a brilliant child…Ha!) taught me that if you stay active and keep yourself in shape, you are, at least for a little while, invincible to things that hurt.

Case in point—we lived in the county, and KC was an indoor/outdoor cat. Whenever we’d take him to the vet, they had to try multiple times to administer his shots. KC was so solid from his roaming-tom ways, the needles would bend whenever they got anywhere near his meaty parts.

(KC)

He also taught me to not make assumptions. See, KC was a fluffy, pure white cat with the most brilliant blue eyes. Every single vet we took him to was shocked he wasn’t deaf – apparently pure white cats with blue eyes are 3-5 more times likely to be deaf than a pure white cat with non-blue eyes.

Sadly, the last thing he taught me was that mistaken identity could kill—he abruptly disappeared one day, and my family and I are fairly certain he was taken for a rabbit and shot for someone’s dinner.

Daisy the beagle, with her multiple litters taught me about birth, but it was Laddie, our Border Collie, who taught me the concept of karma.

Laddie liked to lounge by our roadside mailbox, when he wasn’t herding my brother and me. This, unfortunately, led to his being hit by a horse trailer towed behind a car. The drivers lied about where Laddie had been and how he came to be hit. After Laddie succumbed to his injuries a month or so later, the jerks’ house burnt down. I have vague memories of watching the smoke rise in the distance and thinking they got exactly what they deserved.

(Laddie with K J Pierce and her brother)

It was Shamrock the cat who gave me comfort when I needed it, having been uprooted from Frankfurt, Germany to Fort Knox, Kentucky, as a sixteen-year-old. Bam-Bam, Shammie’s second-in-command, taught me how to grieve when she died of chylothorax. H.O. Templeton, the first of my two pet rats, taught me it was okay to freak everyone out. That was the funniest bit of all. 🙂 Rats actually make great pets, though they don’t live very long. And you don’t ever want to startle them when they’re asleep. I have a scar on my thumb knuckle from where he bit me once. That happened the same weekend I found out about the death of a friend, but that’s an entirely different story.

(Bam-Bam left and Shamrock on the right)

Mr. Dorian Gray is my latest cat boss. He looks remarkably like Shamrock, but has a completely different temperament. Where nothing fazed Shams, Dorian Gray is a fraidy cat. He startles when the toaster pops up, slinks under a bed when it thunders, and is a horrible bed hog. He yells at me for even the most minor infraction: if I step out of the house for any length of time (a one minute trip to the mailbox or a 3 hour writing session at a café, it doesn’t matter); if I’m not in bed on time; if I move while he’s lying on my feet; if he has less than a half a bowl of food; if there’s a closed door.

He’s the cat equivalent of an old man—he’ll tattle when someone’s in his yard, and just the other day, he scared the bejeezus out of a termite inspector who had the audacity to interrupt his closet quiet time. Thankfully, he’s more of a hider than an attack cat.

Unless you’re a lizard. Then you’re pretty well screwed.

I’m not a reptile, though Dorie might tell you I have a lizard brain and I’m as jumpy as he is sometimes. Regardless, Dorian Gray keeps me accountable, and no matter how much I goof up, he still loves me. And knowing you’re deserving of unconditional love, no matter what human hang ups we hold on to, is without parallel.

~~~~~

I wanted the heroine in my first novel, Yours Truly, to have an animal who was on her side, no matter what, and that could do things Izzie would never get away with, which is how she ended up with her demanding Maine Coon, Edgar. Edgar has his own agenda, as most cats do, but despite this, he never steers Izzie wrong. Even she admits Edgar has a knack for knowing who’s good people, though her admission isn’t without self-incrimination. As it goes…

“Life was even worse when I realized my castrated, housebound cat was a better judge of character than I was.”

Ahh…love, sweet love.

Excerpt:

No sooner had I saved the draft and logged offline than Ritchie barreled through the front door, slamming it shut. Edgar bolted from his spot next to me where he served as Editor-in-Chief to my lowly Writer, off to parts unknown.

Ritchie, without so much as a “hello,” stalked off to the bedroom. The squeak from his wet shoes took the sting out. Unfortunately, the mild humor only made room for the K.O. Ritchie was a big, old drama queen.

Edgar was an exceptional judge of character, and I should have listened to him. He hated Ritchie. And when I say he hated Ritchie, I mean Edgar’s mission in life revolved around terrorizing him. The first time Ritchie spent time at the house, Edgar cornered him in the bathroom and threatened him for the twenty minutes I was gone on a store run. When Ritchie moved in six months later, he became prey, and Edgar tracked him and drew blood.

The feeling was mutual. If Edgar hated Ritchie, then Ritchie despised Edgar. Their acrimonious relationship launched a never-ending string of complaints I was expected to referee. Edgar left his mark on anything of Ritchie’s—either by way of bodily functions or shredding by claw. Ritchie, in turn, would conveniently forget to feed or give Edgar fresh water.

And so their feud went, back and forth, until I was dizzy.

Edgar eventually feigned boredom and lay low, and the spray bottles of water Ritchie had placed strategically throughout the house gathered dust. Ritchie, assuming Edgar had learned his place, emptied all the bottles and smugly declared himself alpha. Edgar’s retorts showed up in the form of hairballs and intentionally being underfoot. Ritchie swiped kicks, none ever landing thanks to Edgar’s quick escapes. Edgar added back spraying and shredding to his arsenal.

Ritchie was only slightly less passive aggressive.

Blurb:

Izzie Greene never wanted the limelight. As a caterer for Poe, the top-rated U.S. TV show, she had background player down pat. Her main focus was to spoil the cast and crew and fantasize about her celebrity crush, Scotsman Cardwell Bennett, while navigating the daily chaos.

Izzie’s professional life takes a sharp left turn when her ex-boyfriend unexpectedly arrives on set. Her personal life spirals into Hell when she runs afoul of an unethical paparazzo. Thrust into the public eye, her notoriety is fueled by equal measures of constant scrutiny, speculation, and half-truths. Her rumored romance with Cardwell further stokes the flames.

Held captive by the media, accident-prone Izzie struggles to keep her privacy, secrets, and sanity intact—not to mention her sense of humor. With help from her best friend Delly, her temperamental cat Edgar, and unexpected backup, Izzie might withstand the onslaught. And survive the season.

Website/Social Media Links

Website/Blog: www.misplacedmisfit.com

Facebook Author Page: facebook.com/themisplacedmisfit

Twitter: @MisfitKJPierce

Amazon Author Page: amazon.com/author/kjpierce

 Purchase Links

Amazon Book: https://www.amazon.com/Yours-Truly-K-J-Pierce/dp/1509212825

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/yours-truly-k-j-pierce/1126326413

The Wild Rose Press Website (E-Book): http://catalog.thewildrosepress.com/all-titles/4886-yours-truly.html

Author Bio: K.J. Pierce is a jack of all trades. Her interests are varied enough to make this a requirement for a happy existence. Her main goal in life is to understand the human condition, which she explores through various mediums, including fiction, creative nonfiction, and scriptwriting. She sometimes succumbs to itchy-feet syndrome, a holdover from her Army Brat days. As a result, she can sometimes be found bouncing from locale to locale. She earned a BA in English Literature/Creative Writing from Agnes Scott College and a MLitt in The Gothic Imagination from the University of Stirling, Scotland. She puts them to good use by crafting stories that run the gamut in terms of genres, but which always include an exploration of the societal misfit and the darkness which pervades all facets of life, even in the most comic of circumstances.

K.J. currently lives on the east coast of Central Florida with her cat Dorian Gray, who lives up to his name by striving to be the state’s most prolific lizard serial killer. Yours Truly is her first novel.

Thanks for stopping by! Please leave K .J a comment.

28 responses to “Furbaby Friday with Author K. J. Pierce

  1. Always enjoy hearing about other people’s furbabies and the things they do to entertain us.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks so much for having us over, Beth. And by “us” I mean, me, myself, and I. Ha! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m not sure who has had the more interesting life–you with all of your moves and experiences, or your animals as you describe them here! I loved reading this!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. A wonderful, entertaining post! And I LOVED reading Yours Truly and look forward to your next!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Didn’t know that blue-eyed white cats are prone to be deaf. That explains it! My grandmother had a white cat that was as deaf as a doornail, as we say in the South. (I have no idea what the heck a door nail is!) And I have no concept of moving every three years, either. I only moved once-when I went to college. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Weird, right? I’m sure there’s a reasonable, albeit genetic, explanation. How cool you had a white, blue-eyed cat in the family! 🙂 I’m not sure what a door nail is either, though I grew up with the saying as well, courtesy of both my southern-born parents…

      Like

  6. Enjoyed this post. My sister in law and daughter both went to uni in Scotland -Cathy even went to Stirling, my daughter to uni of Glasgow. I’m not surprised you are now in Florida! We also had an adopted dog named Laddie but he wasn’t ours for long – he had been stolen and abandoned and the owners traced him. Not easy to give back a dog even after only 3 weeks but we immediately went out and got our Beardie, Second Chance who was 6 weeks old and who grew up with my kids. Your book sounds like a hoot.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Charlotte! How exciting for your sister-in-law and daughter! I loved Scotland and wish I would have stayed longer than a year. Florida is not my first choice to have landed, but my entire immediate family is here, so… I keep trying to convince everyone to move somewhere with all 4 seasons, but no luck so far! 🙂 I’m sorry about your Laddie – that definitely sounds tough – but very cool your kids had an animal to grow up with!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I enjoyed your stories and pictures of the pets you had throughout your life. Pets do teach us a lot, don’t they?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much, Jana! I had fun recounting them, and digging to find pictures – thanks to a recent house renovation, a bunch of stuff is still in storage! There’s definitely lot to learn from our furries. Thanks for stopping by!

      Like

  8. Loved the pets and pics! Great post.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. In the 70 years I’ve lived with pets… living at home, married and divorced, we’ve had pets: dogs, cats, feral kittens, a white rat, gerbil, guinea pigs, canaries, parakeets, cockatiel and a duck, all indoor pets. Well except that mom and dad never had litter boxes, those cats went outdoors to do their business, but most came right back in when called, I learned a lot about the,. Main thing being docs and especially cats, have their own personalities. I’ve got stories I could tell. One being of Freddie our white duck that my sister and I got as a yellow duckling for Easter one year. He grew up being an attack duck, not liking anyone but my dad. He was dad’s guard duck. He’d sit on dads shoulder and watch tv with him and attack anyone who came too close to dad. The blood blisters I got from Freddie were too many to remember. A friend of a neighbor had a female white duck who lived in a shelter outside. They built her a small pond. Freddie went to live with them, fell in love with the female and became a friendly duck. Yes, they have their own personalities. I loved reading about your fur babies and am going to go buy “Yours Truly”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Judy – how cool is a pet duck?! I don’t know much about non traditional house animals, but I’ve heard ducks can be pretty territorial. With as many animals as you’ve had over the years, I’ve no doubt you have many amusing stories. Thanks for the kind words about Yours Truly – I do hope you enjoy it!

      Like

  10. What a beautiful cat(s)! I enjoyed your furbaby post very much. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

  11. KJ, I love your comments on various pets and what they meant to you. I especially enjoyed the Karma lesson. How often do we get to see someone pay for their sins! Pets are such wonderful markers in our lives and you just demonstrated how important they are. Your book sounds like a hoot, and if there is anything I like, it’s a hoot! I’ll be getting it!

    Like

  12. Hi, Jinny – thanks so much! I’m glad I learned early that karma is nothing to mess with – although if I’m honest, I’ve done my share of earning karma. 🙂 I do hope you enjoy Yours Truly. It was most definitely a hoot to write!

    Like

  13. Loved your animal stories. I always put animals in the stories I write. Best on your book!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s