Sunday, October 4, 2009
Interview with Patches, owner of author Beverly McClure
Hello, woof, my faithful readers! Today I'd like to introduce you to Patches, owner of young adult author Beverly McClure. Beverly is a super nice lady (or so my mom keeps saying) and the author of many young adult novels published by Twilight Times Books and 4RV Publishing. Check out her website and her blog!
Hey Patches, how you doing, Man?
I’m trying to stay out of trouble, but it isn’t easy.
That sounds like the story of my life. Anyway, thanks for stopping by! Woof! Here are some questions for you, dude.
Meow! Goodie! I like to talk.
Who is Patches, the Cat?
I don’t know my exact birthday, but I’m about three years old, according to the vet. I’m a calico, and I guess my former owners decided they didn’t want me. One day I found myself in the country, no home, nobody to love me, nothing to eat. That’s when I learned to keep trying. This pretty white house had a patio with lots of insects flying around the floodlights. I’m a great jumper, so I sprang up and caught a moth. It took several to fill my empty stomach. Then Beverly saw me. It was love at first sight, at least for me. She brought me in the house and fed me chicken from a can. I’ve been her cat ever since.
So what's it like living with Beverly?
She’s easy to live with. She gives me yummy food and makes sure my water dish is full. I snuggle beside her at night, and she doesn’t roll over and crush me. When I tell her I want to go outside, she opens the door for me. She has her moments, though, like when I sharpen my toenails on her furniture. Then she fusses at me. She bought a couple of scratching posts, she calls them, for me to use. But they aren’t as good as the chair. She also moves me when I try to type on her computer. How’s a cat to write a story, without a keyboard? I can’t hold a pencil in my paw to write on a yellow tablet.
She looks so sweet in the photo. Is she as harmless as she looks?
Looking over my shoulder to see where she is. No Beverly in sight. Good. This is just between you and me, Amigo. Yup, she is harmless, except when she’s working on a story, which is most of each morning. If I want to take a nap in her lap then, she says I distract her and tells me to sleep on the sofa. I pout a little, but being the understanding cat that I am, I do what she says.
I'm not as understanding, I admit. I sulk BIG TIME. I hear Beverly writes stories for young adults--that's teenagers, right? How does she know what teenagers want to read?
I think she’s never grown up. Inside she’s still a teenager and likes to relive those years through her characters. Kids today have some of the same problems kids years ago had. (No, I’m not telling you how many years ago; Beverly has sworn me to secrecy.) Another reason she knows a little about teenagers (no one knows everything about teens, not even teens themselves) is because she has three sons who were once teenagers and gets ideas from things they did.
Of all of Beverly's books, which one is your favorite? Are you in any of them?
I like Rebel in Blue Jeans best, because of the animals in it. No, she hasn’t included me in any of her books, and I don’t understand why. I’m loyal, loveable, and pretty. But do you know what kind of cat she put in Rebel? A Siamese. Do you believe it? A Siamese. Beverly claims she wrote the story before she met me, or she’d have put me in, and she can’t change it now. I still think I’d be a more interesting character.
I heard those Siamese are really infantile, always begging for affection. Anyway, tell us about Beverly's latest novel. How long did it take her to write it?
She has two novels coming out this fall/winter: Caves, Cannons and Crinolines and Just Breeze. She told me from start—getting the idea and doing the research for Caves—to finish took about four years. At the same time she worked on that one, she wrote Breeze, in about three years.
Did she ignore you during that time? What did you do to get her attention?
I wasn’t her pet when she started either story, but towards the last I came on the scene. She was really busy writing and hated interruptions. When I wanted her attention, I did different things: One, I rubbed against her legs and gave her my politest meow, letting her know I was lonesome and needed cuddling. Two, I stretched out on the floor by her desk, rolled onto my back, and smiled, showing her how beautiful and big I am. If that didn’t work, I jumped up on the dining table. That got her attention fast. She says the table is for eating on, not cat naps.
Leave us with some feline words of wisdom.
If you want something bad enough, keep trying. When I spot a juicy grasshopper or a tasty mouse, I crouch and wait, not moving a muscle. Then, at the right second, I pounce. The critter never sees me coming. Oh, yeah, sometimes a fast mouse escapes, or a grasshopper lucks out and flies too high for me to reach. But if I hang in there I succeed. So keep trying. Say “I can do this.” Set your eye on the target. And pounce. What I’d really like to catch is a rabbit. I don’t like them anymore than you do, Amigo.
Sending a soft “purr.”
Thank you, Patches! Woof!