My first ever Christmas book comes out in November and I’m so pleased to be sharing the space with two fantastic authors: Myrna McKenzie and Carole Mortimer. The three of us were tasked with writing a novella each for the anthology, A Puppy for Christmas. Carole chose to write a workplace story (with a maddening boss with an even more maddening puppy), Myrna gave a struggling war veteran an irresistible puppy/neighbour combo.
And I…?I toyed for a few minutes with a story which highlighted how very much a puppy was NOT just for Christmas, but then I decided that an animal welfare lecture wasn’t very Christmas-y. So I gave it some more thought. I knew I wouldn’t be writing any old pups. I wanted better puppies, wilder puppies, more puppies than any puppy book ever! Puppies galore!! And thus my third of the anthology was born, complete with a gorgeous French zookeeper, an ambitious but wounded veterinary nurse and not one, not two, but EIGHT wild dog pups desperately needing life-saving vaccinations.
|Out in US/UK/AuNZ in November.|
Here’s the background of my novella - The Patter of Paws at Christmas.Zoo Vet nurse Ingrid isn’t much on Christmas because her family split down into two new families pretty much as soon as she moved out of home, and between her toddler-aged new half-siblings, an inherited uncle who’s heavy on the groping, and two parents who are being so darned civil about their divorce, Christmas has most definitely lost its appeal. So she volunteers to work the night shift from Christmas Eve through to New Year’s Eve, monitoring a wild dog pack for the first signs of emergence of their eight pups from a very rickety den dug by the first-time mother.
What she doesn’t know is that she’ll be sharing the watch with a gorgeous zookeeper, Gabrielle Marque. The same man that she had an ill-advised one-night stand with twelve months ago right after he arrived. Right before the French import stole a coveted promotion out from under her.Ingrid and Gabe do their best to keep things professional and civil—after all they’re there to give the pups some life-saving anti-parasitic treatment before they and their developing immune systems get infected with some pretty nasty bugs doing the rounds of the pack—but their past won’t be shaken off as easily.
All that French gorgeousness, all that history, all that past pain, and all crammed into a three-meter square observation room that is little more than a bunker. Twenty-four-seven. For a whole week.Ugh…
I loved writing this book and, coincidentally, I got to write it in December and so it was a wonderful way to spend last Christmas. I typed ‘the end’ in fact, on Christmas Eve 2011. I’m thinking I’ll read the entire anthology on Christmas Eve 2012 for a nice spoil.I have one copy of A Puppy for Christmas (featuring all three stories) to give away to one lucky commenter who tells me what you’ll be doing on Christmas Eve 2012. Or whether you’ll have a puppy in your house right about then. Or whether you’ve ever volunteered to work to get out of Christmas family obligations. Hey…it’s Christmas, I’m easy.