Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Interview with Balto, Aaron Lazar's New Dog

It's not easy living in the shadow of your owner's previous dog, especially if said dog has passed away. Here to tell us about it is Balto, Aaron Lazar's new dog. Aaron has written several novels about a dude who solves mysteries. They're published by Twilight Times Books, which happens to be one of my mom's publishers. He keeps a blog, too. My mom once reviewed one of his books, Tremolo. I hate to admit this, but Balto is as harmless as he looks in that photo. Either that, or he's giving hell of a performance.

Bio: BALTO is a half King Charles Cavalier Spaniel and half poodle, sometimes known as a “Cavipoo.” His fur is soft as a bunny rabbit’s and it curls into little ringlets. He is known for his skills as a therapy dog, has expressive big brown eyes, and can often be found on Aaron and Dale’s laps. He sleeps with them every night, and has given them an enormous amount of comfort since the passing of their dog, Max, in 2007.

Welcome to my blog, Balto. Tell us about your human dad, mystery author Aaron Lazar. What kind of person is he?

Aaron is a bit obsessed with his writing. Every morning, he wakes me up when it’s still dark out. After he lets me out on the run, he stokes up the woodstove and we both sit on the comfy couch under a thick blanket. That laptop is a touchy subject, though, because every time I try to put my paw on it, he stops me. Sometimes he lets me lay my head on the corner, though. It’s warm. These morning writing sessions are one of my favorite times of the day. Just me and him. Cozy and snuggling. If it weren’t for the incessant tapping of the keyboard, it would be perfect.

I agree that tapping can be very annoying at times, especially when I'm trying to sleep.What type of books does Aaron write?

He calls them mysteries, but they’re really more like life in the country with a bunch of bad guys who keep getting in the way. I recognize lots of our life in there, from the kids, to the gardens, big country feasts, walks in the woods, and more.

Of all his books, which one is your favorite? Why?

I’m only two, am I’m struggling to fill the paws of my predecessor, Max. Aaron tells me he loves me every day, he fusses over me, lets me sleep with him and the missus, and takes real good care of me. But I still feel like I’m in the shadow of Max every day. The missus still has Max’s old collar hung on her bedpost, and his picture is the one on the wall. He’s featured in all of Aaron’s books, and wow, does Aaron glamorize him. Max even saves Gus LeGarde’s life in Double Forté. Even though I’m a teensy bit jealous of Max, I think that book is my favorite.

Hmm. Balto, this blog is supposed to be funny, yet here you are, making me cry (I must keep my macho reputation, so please make an effort, man). Er, okay (blinking away any sign of tears), does Aaron fall asleep when he reads a book? Does he snore? What titles keep him awake the longest?

Always, especially when we’re in bed. We get all settled, with me in the crook of his legs. It’s nice and warm there, especially with the down comforter to snuggle into. He props up his pillows, puts on the light and his reading glasses, opens the book, and within a few minutes, I am jolted awake by this horrible thunderous roar that shakes the walls. Then I go over and curl up with the missus.

Okay... Does he snack compulsively while he writes? Sometimes I have to block the entrance to the kitchen to prevent my author mom from snacking so much. Of course, then she calls ME overweight.

Aaron LOVES to eat, and always says, “Don’t feed the dog! It’s not good for his heart!” But he always sneaks me a little something in spite of his high falootin’ ideas. For some reason it’s always healthy stuff, like green beans and Brussel sprouts. Once in a while I get a juicy morsel of swordfish, and that’s the best. My favorite is string cheese, but I can only get that from the missus. She’s a real pushover.

Woof! Woof! I won't even bother to shift my bottom for healthy stuff like that!


  1. LOVE it!! What fun and such a cutie!!!!

  2. Cutie???

    The more I look at that photo, the more I'm convinced he's putting on a show...


  3. Amigo

    Another wonderful interview. How do you do it?
    You dogs sure stick together. Don't authors have any other kind of pet?


  4. Another great interview, and don't worry brussel sprouts ware good for you


  5. Don't worry, Shari... my soon-to-be guests include fish and a parrot!


  6. My owner has been a little down lately - he got laid off. He expects me to try to help him find a job. So I'm dusting off my paws and digging in. He's willing to stay with engineering, but he'd much rather do high quality editing for a publisher. Any ideas for him? I really need to cheer him up!


  7. What a wonderful pet! Nice to meet you, Balto!

  8. What a clever dog you are Balto. I used to think of myself as a cat person, but no more. Please tell your owner that, even though he's been incredibly prolific with a day job, this may be an opportunity to write (and maybe teach writing) full time? Some people (the exception I know) even make a good living out of it. I also suspect that the publishing industry is making itself too lean, which means that they're going to need freelance editors in the near future in order to survive. I've heard stories of some getting so lean that they can't meet their book contracts and client orders. So freelancing is worth considering. I am more than happy to provide a reference for Aaron -- he's the best.

  9. Awwww Balto, don't think of it as living in Max's shadow as much as being a fond reminder of how much Aaron and his wife love dogs and wanted to open their hearts and home to another adorable furry creature. I'm sure you'll be a hero in one of Aaron's books some day too.