The Write Pet by Lindsey R. Loucks
Like most cats, mine is addicted to sunlight. He prefers to lay in a large patch of it like a sphinx, paws crossed, and a smug smile underneath that cute little triangle nose. These moments are when I get most of my writing done. When I look over at him to see that he’s at peace and that everything is right with his world, only then can I torment my characters’ lives. Geez, I guess I really am twisted. Oh, well.
On days when it’s cloudy though, it’s a constant battle with one very unhappy kitty.
“I have no control over the weather! Can’t you just pretend you’re basking in sunlight?” I plead with him.
He answers in continuous cries throughout the day until I have to give up the sentence I’ve been working on for TWO HOURS to give him a bunch of cuddles and kisses that coax his motor into overdrive. But he still won’t let me finish that sentence. Perhaps I need to move to Florida.
It may sound like I’m complaining, but my cat (whose name is Jesse) is my world even if he won’t let me write every day. His victory laps around the house after a successful trip to his litter box make me laugh every time, even after a grueling day at work. I look forward to our cuddle-time on the couch in the evenings in front of the TV when he stretches himself almost the full length of my outstretched legs to take up every part of my lap that he can. When his eyes grow huge and he attempts to climb my leg after I’ve peeled the plastic off a new human food container, I’m forced to succumb to his need for playtime with crinkly things. I pretty much love everything about that cat.
My boyfriend and I adopted him from the local humane society when I was still in grad school. Our apartment building had just announced that it was now pet-friendly, and my shouts of joy made my boyfriend smash his hands to his ears until he agreed it was time for a cat.
We didn’t choose Jesse to adopt; he chose us. When my boyfriend walked by his cage, Jesse stuck out a paw and swatted at him with a cute little meow. We read his history and learned that he’d had hip damage from being struck by a car nearly a year earlier and had been waiting for a forever home ever since. That’s when we knew our search was over. Our hearts broke for him. How could such a cutie still be waiting for someone to adopt him? We quickly bundled him up in his new cat carrier and brought him home.
His hip damage must not have been that bad because he was soon rollicking all over our apartment (and into our hearts) with the speed of a freight train.
My love for Jesse (and all cats) has crept its way into many of my stories. Some are ghost-sniffing cats, some are lazy cuddle-bugs, and some are a mix of cat and other species in my futuristic worlds.
And as I write these stories, I look over at Jesse smiling in the sunlight, and it makes me want to stay at my keyboard forever. Jesse makes real life seem perfect while my evil imagination conjures all sorts of horrors for my poor characters.
I guess Jesse is the reason why I can write what I do. So, excuse me while I go smother him with kisses.
Title: Haunted Chemistry
Publisher: Entangled Publishing
Date Published: September 30, 2013
Genre: Romantic Horror
Word Count: 12000
When bookish college co-ed Alexis heads to the laundry room in her new apartment, she runs into Ian Reese, the chem lab partner she crushed on all last semester. And the guy who stood her up on their first date. But she’s down for an awkward reunion, and no better place than her creepy laundry room.
Ian has every intention of making amends, but just when Alexis begins to trust him again, a new threat calls more than their future together into question. A ghost from the apartment’s past is hellbent on revenge, and if he wants to get his girl, he’ll have to get the ghost first.
“What’s with his name?” Ian asks.“Well.” I kick off my sandals and look around for the cat. He’s usually springing toward me as soon as I walk in the door. “I got him at the humane society, and one of my friends who works there has a four-year-old daughter who named him Triable. She was trying to say triangle because he has triangles all over his head. My friend shortened it to Tri, and now that’s the only name he answers to.” I slap my legs and make kissy noises. “Come here, Tri.”“Ah, I see. So he’s a dog dressed in a cat’s triangles.” Ian slides me a grin. “I like dogs.”I snort out a laugh, but it fades fast. Still no Tri. Then I hear it—a low growl. I follow the sound. It grows louder the closer I get to the kitchen. I gasp when I see the cat, and my hand flutters to my mouth.He’s crouched in front of a lower cupboard door near the far wall. The cupboard door is open. My chest tightens.Tri’s ears are folded back. The hair along his back spikes up. A growl that ends in a hiss spits from his mouth. I’ve never heard him do that before. The sound makes me shudder.I turn to Ian, who stood right behind me, and point to the cupboard. “It wasn’t open when I left.”He brushes past and steps slowly toward Tri. The cupboard door blocks whatever might be inside. I know I didn’t leave this one open, and Tri has no reason to open it, though I don’t doubt he could if he wanted to. I follow Ian.He stops a good distance from Tri and bends over to peer inside the cupboard. “It’s just appliances.”Tri peels back his lips to bare needlelike teeth and hisses. It’s obviously not just appliances in there.
Available for purchase:iBookstore
Lindsey R. Loucks works as a school librarian in rural Kansas. When she's not discussing books with anyone who will listen, she's dreaming up her own stories. Eventually her brain gives out, and she'll play hide and seek with her cat, put herself in a chocolate induced coma, or watch scary movies alone in the dark to reenergize.
She's been with her significant other for almost two decades.
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