The Write Pet by Shelley Munro
I want you to time-travel with me, back to late 2003. I was an aspiring writer, still struggling to find my voice and the right publisher fit. An oddly shaped peg, I didn’t fit into the Harlequin mold at all, and I’d started submitting manuscripts to e-publishers. One of these e-publisher had a call out for sci-fi romances, and I had the perfect idea. I had two female aliens—an explorer aunt and the over-protective military niece who was determined to keep her favorite relative safe. Unfortunately, they crash land in the small imaginary country town of Sloan, New Zealand.
Yes! I thought, and hurriedly started writing. One problem. Our fox terrier cross dog wanted to go for a walk.
“In a minute,” I said. “I just need to finish this scene.”
“Woof. Woof. Woof,” Scotty said.
And so the conversation went with Scotty having the final word. “Woof.” It was walk time, and that was that.
“If you don’t be quiet for five minutes I’m going to write you into the scene,” I said.
“Woof. Woof. Woof.”
“Right,” I said and started writing.
The fern leaves shook, dried leaves crackled underfoot. Janaya’s outstretched hand never wavered, the heavy weapon still pointing at the bushes.“Don’t shoot.” A black nose thrust past a lacy fern leaf.Janaya’s eyes widened.A black face with black eyes poked into view. “Are ya gonna shoot?”“Janaya put the weapon down. It’s a dog. Nothing to get trigger happy about.”“Yeah,” the little dog said. It stepped into full view. The dog stood below knee height and had white fur peppered liberally with black spots. It trotted closer, tail wagging. “Do ya have any food?”Janaya reholstered her neutralizer and rolled her eyes. “Talking animals?”“I never met a human who talked back,” the little dog said. “Food? Do ya have any?”
This is the moment Scotty took over my book and became Killer, the talking dog. I submitted the first three chapters to Ellora’s Cave. Sure, it was a cute story, but a talking dog? Nah, they wouldn’t go for it. But they did, and Killer aka Scotty continued on to have other adventures. The original book is Talking Dogs, Aliens and Purple People Eaters. In Never Send a Dog to do a Woman’s job Killer acts as a chaperone/spy when alien Alexandre wants to start up tours for aliens. In Romantic Interlude Killer heads off to Africa and advances the course of romance.
I had a blast writing the three Talking Dog books, and if it wasn’t for Scotty they wouldn’t have been quite as much fun. Killer is full of one-liners and quips that still make me laugh when I know how the story goes.
Sadly Scotty is no longer with us. She’s buried in our garden and lives in our memories and the Talking Dog series. Bella, our new doggy addition, is used to getting called Scotty. I’ve told her to be careful or she’ll end up getting written into a book too. So far she’s behaved...most of the time.
Title: Never Send a Dog to do a Woman’s Job
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Date Published: Jan 2005
Genre: contemporary sci-fi
Word Count: 62900
Sex. Lily Morgan hasn’t had any since her husband ran off with his boyfriend. But where will she find a man willing to overlook chronic clumsiness, dimpled thighs and cellulite?
Sex. Prince Alexandre Bellangere has too much. Sex, that is. Being treated as a sex object is becoming a pain in the ass. Heck, he’s more than just a pretty face and muscular body. Alex has brains and ambition.
But Dalcon princes are expected to have sex, mate and breed royal undergrowns. Determined to change his life, he sneaks from the palace and the planet disguised as plain Alex Bell.
Sex. Lily Morgan takes one look at the golden stranger and starts thinking “what if?”
Alex Bell takes one look at the curvy travel agent and reconsiders his stand on sex. Maybe.
Sex. Lily’s family is not happy about her mating with an alien they know nothing about. They decide to leave Killer, the talking dog, to keep an eye on the situation.
Take one chubby travel agent and an alien Dalconian prince in disguise, add in sex, laughter, endless possibilities. Combine and shake vigorously. Result…a true-blue love.
Lily swallowed loudly then her tongue swept out to lick her lips. Another groan built at the back of Alex’s throat. Pure enticement. Torture. He lowered his head, wanting to claim her lips, to taste her, and sip and savor more than he wanted his next breath. Lily rose up on tiptoes straining to meet him, her face mysterious in the moonlit darkness. Alex lowered his head a bit more. Their lips touched briefly and then parted.Another loud rustle sounded right beside them. Alex and Lily sprang apart, both staring at the swaying leaves of a lacy fern.“Who’s there?” Alex demanded when all he wanted to do was curse out loud at the interruption and because he’d left his weapon back at the Morgan house. Only a fool went out without a weapon. He thrust Lily behind him. “Come out with your hands where I can see them.”The silhouetted ferns trembled. Dry leaves rustled. A black nose appeared followed by a black and white head.“Don’t shoot!”That bloody dog again.Alex straightened from his protective stance in front of Lily. “Why aren’t you on the ship with Janaya?”Lily laughed, a soft tinkling sound that made him yearn to hold her again. “She’s hardly likely to answer you back.”Alex met the dog’s sly grin with a frown. Unfortunately, Alex knew the dog could answer him back. Lily was lucky she couldn’t understand the devil beast. He glared at Killer, his hands fisting at his sides.Killer stuck her nose in the air, presenting him with pure attitude. “I needed to use the restroom. I didn’t expect them to go without me. Call them back. Tell them to come get me.”Alex opened his mouth to blast Killer then remembered Lily was present. For some reason, no one had seen fit to tell Lily about the dog talking. He wasn’t about to break the news.
Available for purchase:
All three books are available for 99c each at Ellora’s Cave. The entire Talking Dogs series for less than the cost of a cup of coffee!
Shelley Munro is tall and curvaceous with blue eyes and a smile that turns masculine heads everywhere she goes. She’s a university tutor and an explorer/treasure hunter during her vacations. Skilled with weapons and combat, she is currently in talks with a producer about a television series based on her world adventures.
Shelley is also a writer blessed with a VERY vivid imagination and lives with her own hero in New Zealand. She writes mainly erotic romance in the contemporary, paranormal and historical genres for publishers Carina Press, Ellora’s Cave and Samhain Publishing. You can learn more about Shelley and her books at her website and you might even find her lurking at Facebook or Twitter.
The author is offering one e-copy of the winner’s choice from her Talking Dog series to a randomly drawn commenter.