Welcome to my Blog…established to spread the bark about my book, Every Dog has its Week, written to enlighten readers about the state of the dog in the states of the nation, and to elicit an intelligent exchange about issues regarding our four-legged best friends.  To read more, please see ABOUT.

As I take a break from painting to blog, I’ll write about some books that had an impact on me over the course of the year, and yes, they all have a dog-theme. When I first started writing a few years ago, my husband asked if I could write a story that wasn’t about dogs or ice-skating.  I proceeded to write a children’s book about an ice-skating dog  based on my experience as a skating instructor. It’s adorable by the way!  And lately, it’s true, it does seem like I’ve gone to the dogs…

Before I proceed, I would like to mention a new product called the WalkieWay, designed by author and pet expert Nikki Moustaki and Aerospace Engineers.  I’ve written about Nikki and her remarkable Pet Postcard Project often.  To read about this new product, check out http://www.walkieway.typepad.com/walkieway.  The WalkieWay is a new collar/leash combo that works as a secure “Leash on Demand,” bringing peace of mind to dog owners everywhere, and it sure would make a nice holiday gift, too, for the dog-lovers in your life.

In October of 2009, I was fortunate to have attended a Highlights Foundation Workshop to study the Art of  Biography with Editor-in-Chief of Calkins Creek Books, Carolyn Yoder.  Workshops provided by the Highlights Foundation have helped many aspiring writers to achieve their dreams.  If you are thinking you cannot afford a workshop, check out their website, http://highlightsfoundation.org/foundation.org to learn about how you may be eligible for a scholarship. (You can read my post about this in the Archives of June 25).

One of the nice things about blogging is getting to talk with other writers and occasionally receiving copies of books to read and discuss with you.  I really enjoyed Jon Katz’s return to Fiction with his book Rose in a Storm (Villard).  This story, that takes place during a monstrous snowstorm in New York State, has readers following a faithful dog as she carries out her duties despite great obstacles.  Told through the eyes of Rose, a Border Collie, it’s a gripping adventure that also packs an emotional wallop.  I had the opportunity to interview Jon earlier this year (Archives-July 29th).

In the wake of Marly and Me, Narrative Memoirs about dogs continue to be very popular.  In September (during National Dog Week) I posted my interview with Seattle-based Steve Duno about his book, Last Dog on the Hill: The Extraordinary Life of Lou (St. Martin’s).  It’s a rewarding read about a fateful meeting of a dog and a man and how they changed each other’s lives for the betterment of all.  You can read that post in the Archives of September 21.

Thanks to Glenn Plaskin’s publishers, (Center Street), for forwarding a copy of his Katie Up and Down the Hall: The True Story of How One Dog Turned Five Neighbors into a Family.  The story transports readers to the unique “village” of Battery Park in downtown New York City.  Katie, a beloved Cocker spaniel unites hallway neighbors and helps them through the events of 9-1-1 and beyond.  I also thank New Zealand author Jeffrey Moussaeiff Masson for sending me a copy of his book The Dog the Couldn’t Stop Loving: How Dogs Have Captured our Hearts for Thousands of Years (Harper Collins) which presents a compelling exploration of the unique bond between dog and man that has evolved over a prolonged period of timeYou’ll be amazed while you read about some of Jeffrey’s first-hand accounts laced with scientific findings.

This year, I also came to call Denver-based author, Tracy Aiello, a friend.  In her Miracle Dogs of Portugal, Tracy educates young readers about history, and the legendary attributes of the Portuguese water dog breed.  You can read more about Tracy in my interview with her at http://www.examiner.com/pets-in-newark/lisa-begin-kruysman.

There are many other books that are on my “must read” list and I will present them to you in the new reading year.  And of course, keep reading as I let you know how my own book, Every Dog has its Week, is progressing….Enjoy the holiday and take time out to enjoy your family, pets, and a good book or two! If you have a dog-themed book you would like me to explore, please contact me at pst39crd@aol.com.