Give a warm welcome to Angus, proud owner of romance author Sandy Nicks. Angus is here to talk to us a little bit about Sandy and her books, especially her latest one just released by Vanilla Heart Publishing, titled Falling for Autumn. Sandy is the editor and founder of the site, Cool Stuff 4 Writers, which was nominated by Writer's Digest as one of the Best 101 Websites for Writers in 2009! Way to go, Sandy!
Welcome to Pets & Their Authors, Angus! You must be proud of your Sandy. Tell us, how did you come to live with her?
It was Fate! Well, I believe it was Fate that intervened because I was born in 2007 to parents who couldn’t keep me and whose human owner didn’t want me. They seemed rather eager to find me a home and placed an ad in the paper. Luckily, Sandy read it and she and my dad came and adopted me.
I was only seven weeks old at the time, but I remember the ride home like it was yesterday. I felt sad and confused, but Sandy hugged me and assured me everything was going to be all right. I cried the first few nights until Sandy finally let me sleep in her bed. Yeah, I looked at her with my sad brown eyes and totally got over on her. I’m happy to report that I still sleep in her bed even though I take up the majority of it – I’ve grown a lot since then!
What? She lets you in bed? I'm not even allowed upstairs! You live with other pets. What makes you think you're your mom's favorite?
We have a house full! I have three canine sisters, two feline sisters and three feline brothers. I’m the alpha male of the household and enjoy playing with my sisters and chasing all the kitties. I would never hurt them, but it is fun and shows them I’m the boss.
I know I’m my mom’s favorite because she’s always hugging and kissing me. I mean, she does the same to the others, but I always get in between them. Plus, I’m always with her. If I wasn’t her favorite, I wouldn’t be the one on the couch when she’s reading, by her desk when she’s writing, and on the bed when she’s sleeping. It’s like she wants me with her all the time.
I have to admit, I’m the cutest of all my siblings. I’m the only one who can smile and crinkle their brow to make it look like I know what she’s thinking. Since I’m the biggest dog in the house, I believe she also favors me because I remind her of her beloved Jake who passed away in 2004. She really loved him and even dedicated her book to him. My mom has a soft spot for big dogs.
I like the part about making them all feel like you're the boss. Good work, Angus. So your mom writes romantic comedies. Tell us about her book and what makes it funny!
Falling for Autumn is the first book in the Sisters for All Seasons trilogy. Crazy Days of Summer and A New Trend for Spring will be out in 2010. She also has a time travel romance, Circle of Eternity, that will be available in February 2010. That one is funny, too!
There are a lot of things that make Falling for Autumn funny. While Autumn is trying to rebuild her life, her mom is always offering cosmic advice and insisting Autumn get an aura cleansing. Then there’s Jack who is attracted to Autumn, but he’s hiding from a hitman and doesn’t want to put Autumn in jeopardy. This leads to a series of comedic events. In addition to the characters being funny, the way Autumn handles her mom, shady boss and her attraction to Jack, is handled in a humorous way that most people can relate to.
Reflected in all my mom’s books is her belief that love and a sense of humor go hand-in-hand.
I also find it funny when my mom talks to her mom on the phone. She whines like a little baby, then prentends she's the boss around the house. What a phoney! Are there dogs in your mom's book?
Yes! The main character, Autumn, has a dog named Buddy. Autumn’s mom, Daisy, also works at a no-kill animal shelter where quite a few scenes take place. One of the shelter dogs, a Lhaso Apso named Delilah, plays a major role at the end of the story, but I’m not allowed to give it away. Delilah is based on my sister, Emma.
Sounds like my kind of book! How does Sandy go about promoting her novel?
She has a web site: www.sandynicks.com, and uses Twitter and Facebook to keep readers and friends informed about appearances and upcoming books. She also does book signings and interviews.
My dad and human siblings leave postcards everywhere they go which has really helped with sales in our community. Sandy’s publisher, Vanilla Heart Publishing, does a lot of promotion for their authors like book trailers and author pages on their web site: www.vanillaheartbooksandauthors.com.
I also want to mention that my mom is a participating author in a program called Operation Ebook Drop. Authors in this program donate their books in Ebook format to soldiers who are stationed in the Middle East. It’s a small but great way to show our support!
Vanilla, huh? The name names me kind of hungry. Hey, that's great--what Sandy is doing to support the troops! But to go back to her writing... Is she disciplined? Does she have any crazy author quirks?
I believe if she didn’t have deadlines, she wouldn’t be as disciplined. She loves to write, but without those deadlines, she’d probably spend more time playing with me and taking me for car rides.
Quirks? Where should I begin – Woof! I won’t embarrass her too much, but she does do some weird things. She loves sticky notes and has them all over her desk with notes on her work-in-progress. Her desk is sacred. She has candles, a rock garden, a jar of candy, Celtic crosses, and other doo-dads. No one is allowed to touch anything, but the cats do a great job of knocking stuff over. I always laugh when they get yelled at.
She also has a vision board above her desk that’s filled with inspirational sayings and pictures. She believes in visualization. She thinks that that if you see it and say it every day, all that you dream of will come to fruition. Believe it or not, some of the things have come true! She’s still waiting for the Mustang though. I think she’ll be dreaming about that car for a long time.
She loves to listen to music while she writes and sometimes I’m forced to listen to her sing. It’s painful, but I love her all the same. There are times when I think she’s singing, but she’s actually reading her work out loud. That might be her weirdest quirk, but I hear a lot of writers do the same thing. I also hear a lot of writers have pets. Is that a quirk? LOL.
Sounds way too much like my mom--with all her index cards stuck to her closet door and her daily affirmations! So, what do you do while she writes and ignores you?
I don’t let her ignore me. I always let my presence be known. When mom writes, I’m either sleeping by her chair or lying on the arm of the couch next to her desk. I’m always within an arm’s reach so she can pet me when she’s having a hard time with a scene or needs to rest her eyes.
I do the same, Angus. Feels great, doesn't it? I love to lick mommy's feet. Where is Sandy's book available?
Mom’s books are available in both print and ebook formats. You can find both formats on Amazon/Kindle, BN.com, Smashwords, All Romance, Sony and Omnilit. You can also order the print edition from your local bookstore.
Leave us with some canine wisdom.
Hmm…don’t ever play, nap, laugh, sing, bark, love your humans and fellow animals, or believe in yourself in moderation. Life is short, especially when one year is equivalent to seven, so make sure you live it to the fullest!
Thanks for this opportunity, Amigo! My mom and I love your web site and enjoy reading about the other pets and their authors!
Thanks for stopping by this side of the woods, Angus! Let us know when Sandy's second book comes out!