Saturday, August 22, 2009

Interview with Jolie and Mardi, owners of author Ann Whitaker

Today I have two canine guests, Joli and Mardi, owners of human author Ann Whitaker. Anne has one romantic comedy out, DOG NANNY, currently being read by my own reviewer mom, Mayra Calvani.

Check out Ann Whitaker's cool links and be sure to check out her book!

Welcome to my blog! It's a treat having you here. Let's start with Jolie. Tell me, how did you come to live with Ann?

Jolie Blon: I’m the love child, their “bestest girl in the world.” I’ve lived with my mom and dad since I was seven weeks old. Their whole world revolved around me until I was two. I even had my own puppy book.

Then, it all fell apart. One day they brought home this pound dog named Mardi Gras. I don’t know what they saw in him. He was really wild and dumb and made this “oogly face” where he bared his teeth for no reason. I quickly broke him of that. Then Mom took him to school so he could learn how to act around civilized people, but if you ask me, it just gave him the big head. He later worked as a pet therapy dog. He really thought he was special when he got to go to the hospital and the nursing home, while I stayed home.

Hmm. Have you ever heard of 'jealousy' therapy, Joli? Oh, never mind. I don't know what I would do if Mom brought home another dog... Like, could I handle it? Nooooooo! So, let's switch to Mardi. Your mom writes fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and even songs! How does she have any time left for you?

Mardi: Not to brag, but I learned at a very early age how to handle women. One look at my little black eyes and ladies swoon. I’m also a very good kisser. So if my mom gets too wrapped up in her work, I jump on her lap and nudge her hands off the keyboard. She can’t resist petting my soft white fur.

About a year ago, I developed diabetes. So now I’m on a special diet and get shots twice a day, in addition to having my blood glucose tested. Because of my special needs, my mom has to pay a lot more attention to me than she does Jolie. Ha. I even get to sleep in the bed.

Sorry to hear about the diabetes. That must be hard! So I hear your mom has a romantic comedy just published by The Wild Rose Press, Dog Nanny. Tell us about it! It sounds like quite a riot! (my mom keeps laughing while reading it)

Jolie: I don’t understand why our mom wanted to write about those make-believe poodles when she has me. I’m smaller and lots cuter.

The dogs in Mom’s book, Dog Nanny, are named Noche and Blanco because one is black and the other white. They’re clipped like giant bichons—real Texas big-hair—and they’re very bad dogs. Why, they’ve failed so many obedience classes that their dad threatens to get rid of them. They use the furniture for doggy trampolines and jump in people’s laps without permission.

Not only that, they’re interfering with their owners’ love life, if you get my meaning. So their mom hires a nanny who has one month to train them. If that doesn’t work, they’ll be doggies of divorce or maybe out on the street where they won’t know where their next bone is coming from.

Mardi: It’s also a love story (gag). The trainer girl falls for this pilot, and they kiss with their lips. Jolie liked that part (cause she’s a girl), but my favorite scene was where the dogs went bye-bye in the car and got stopped by the cops. The nanny also tell the owners it’s important to neutral your pets. We got neutraled before we were a year old, so we think that’s probably good advice.

Jolie (rolling her eyes): I told you he was a dumbo. He means “neutered.”

Please, guys, show some control... I hear your mom plays the guitar. Between you and me, is she any good? My mom sounds like she's killing a cat when she plays the violin (not that I don't relish the sound).

Jolie: Amigo, you crack me up. Why don’t you come live with us? And I’ll send Mardi to your house. Can you believe Mardi likes cats? He once had a cat friend!

Our mom used to have a mutt dog who howled when she played the harmonica, but she doesn’t play that or the violin these days, thank goodness. And she’s not so hot on the guitar either.

We do like it when she sings and dances with us. She named me after a song. “Jolie Blon” is the name of a Cajun waltz and means “pretty blonde.” The name fits me well, since I’m a natural blonde with big brown eyes, and very pretty. Did I mention I’m a miniature poodle with papers? And highly educated. Since Mardi was a street dog, his lineage is questionable, though he looks like a poodle. I call him “dirty white boy.”

You're also very modest, Joli. So tell me, Mardi, is Ann as stable as she looks in her photo?

Mardi: Stable? You must be kidding. She taught high school English for 30 years! No one who does that can be stable.

Good point! When my mom does school visits, she comes back home looking like a grenade truck her. I keep telling her that dogs are better than children... So, what do you do to attract your mom's attention when she's pounding away on the computer? Share with other canines your most sadistic tactics.

Jolie: When I was younger I liked to shred tissue and chew on her shoes. Nowadays, I perch on the back of the couch where I can look out the big window and bark at nothing, just to irritate her. When the mailman drives up, I go ballistic. Sometimes Mom yells at me to be quiet or hisses at me like she’s the Dog Whisperer. Hah! I just bark louder. I also like to knock the pillows off the couch.

Mardi: My favorite trick is to stare at her and growl really low so she thinks I need something. If I stare at her long enough, she’ll sometimes give me what she calls a non-glycemic treat, like a piece of asparagus.

We both love to ring the bell to go outside, just to see how many times we can make her get up. She’s very well trained.

(With horror) Asparagus?! You must be joking! I pity you. Tells us something about Ann nobody else knows.

Jolie: She used to be a real party animal (snort).

Mardi: Yeah, and she once ran six miles dressed as a lobster. She says she was really hot.

Well, Amigo, we’re really are happy you gave us this chance to talk about our mom. We’d like to close with a reminder to all of you who have writer-moms and dads to train them well and be sure they have enough to drink. They have a rough life. Imagine sitting at a computer all day when you could be sleeping, barking, chasing cats, or rolling in dead stuff.

Gotta run now. We’re late for our naps!

Thanks for stopping by, Jolie and Mardi! You're quite an adorable duo!!!


  1. This is great. My poodle, Biddy, says she loves Jolie and Mardi.

    Many sales!


  2. Great interview. I loved "Dog Nanny." Although a cat lover, after reading "Dog Nanny" I wanted to go out and get a dog. However, my fat black cat Killer refused to let me.

    Carolyn Matkowsky/Cara Marsi

  3. My name is Junior, I am a big black German Shepherd. I like little dogs and cats. My best friend is a canary, he sings to me.
    I liked this blog, it's different and me and my mom like different.
    Way to go fellas, doggie cool!

  4. Cute interview. Keep mom in line and give her a hug from me. AJ

  5. Cute interview. Keep mom in line and give her a hug from me. AJ

  6. Great interview, Amigo. I'm impress with your interview skills and how you handle your guests. As a dog lover I think this is too cool. As a writer I think the whole concept is brilliant! I'm afraid you can't control what your pet truly says about you. You have a new fan Amigo!


  7. Hi, Amigo. GRRRRReat (haha) interview. My name's Maggie. I'm a Border Collie. My mom is in the Elements of RWA with Jolie and Mardie's mom (although I'm not sure what that means). I have a big back yard and a baby sister named Jill. But Jill weighs 90lbs (rolling my eyes) so she's a big baby. We live on a lake and I love to swim. My sissy baby Jill won't even go in the water. And you should see me on mom's boat! My ears blow back and I bark at all the other dogs on land (mostly I'm laughing at them because I have a boat and they don't)

    I hope my mom will stop by again!

  8. Fabulous interview Mardi and Jolie. Your mom and her book sound terrific. ;-)

  9. Amigo, you did a great job on our interview. We wish we'd thought of it first, but it would take a lot of time, and we like being retired.

    Hi, Biddy. It's nice to meet another poodle. We love you too! Thank you, Miss Patsy. So far our mom has raised over $400 for the Animal Birth Control Clinic.

    Miss Carolyn--Killer would get used to a dog. We've known some cats we really liked. Mardi used to have a cat friend he pulled around on the patio by the tail. Mom and Dad called the cat "Crooked Tail," but his tail was crooked before he came to visit us so don't blame Mardi.

    Miss Autumn--mom is beyond our control, but we try.

    Miss Elizabeth--we agree with everything you said. We admire Amigo a lot. And all this time we thought poodles were the smartest dogs on earth! Guess he showed us.

    Mardi and Jolie

    Jolie and Mardi

  10. Hello Jolie and Mardi, I enjoyed the interview. Hello Amigo, too, you conduct great interviews. My name is Bouncer (because I do) and I'm a Jack Russell terrior my mum, Hywela Lyn adopted from a shelter in Wales. Well, she thinks she adopted me, but actually it was the other way round!She also has two horses, Sally and T'pau but luckily they don't live with us, there wouldn't be room for three in my little bed.

    Mum wishes your mum lots of luck with her book, J and M, and says it sounds great!

  11. Great interview! I read the Dog Nanny and enjoyed it very much!

    Blessings, Teri

    Teri Wilson ~ Romancing the pet lover's soul

  12. What gorgeous dogs! Almost makes me want one...almost. We recently retired and want the freedom to come and go as we please for the first time in our lives.
    wish you much success with your book!

    Sylvie Kaye

  13. What gorgeous dogs! almost makes me want one...almost. We recently retired and want to come and go as we please for the first time in our lives.
    Wishing you many sales!

    Sylvie Kaye

  14. Maggie, we can just see your ears blowing in the wind and hear you barking. And Bouncer, you are smart to adopt a nice mom that will take care of you. We wish we lived in Wales. Our mom has been there and says it's beautiful.

    Miss Maureen, Miss Terri, and Miss Sylvie--thanks for dropping by and commenting. I hope you'll come back, too. This is a great place to get together and learn about other pets' authors. 'Cause we know what they're REALLY like.

    Jolie and Mardi

  15. What sensational dogs! Makes me miss having one. Although, you canines have broken the doggy mold!

    Vikki Bakus