Animal Magic

Everyone knows how hard it is writing if you’ve got children. We know this from looking after our niece whilst our sister’s in work. Our niece is nearly 3 and as much as we love her, we don’t get a minute’s peace to write until she goes home. But there’s something that most people don’t think about – how hard it is to write when surrounded by animals. If it’s not the cats pestering for food, to go out, or starting fights with the neighbours’ cats, it’s the iguana breaking out of his tank, getting himself locked in the bathroom or stuck in gaps that are clearly too small for him. We also look after our sister’s dog (she’s less demanding than our niece) and she needs letting out, feeding or rescuing from our biggest cat, Warlock (he’s bigger than her. It causes problems.)

But take this afternoon. The iguana, Kyler, was roaming around upstairs, causing the usual havoc – trying to get into the snake tank, causing avalanches in our room and getting wedged under a candle holder. We were downstairs, enjoying a much-needed Red Bull O’Clock when we could hear him trampling the laptop, which was on the landing – it’s where we work when he’s out. Got upstairs to find he’d typed vb;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;p[ into the chapter and deleted a paragraph. He can’t make these types of editorial decisions without consulting us!

Kyler hard at work on Majesty of Darkness


That poor laptop. It gets tramples by Kyler and the cats, has had nail varnish (green) dropped on it, yesterday a bag of carpet fell on it and it face planted off the settee. It falls off the settee more than is healthy for a laptop that’s probably about 5 years old. And it hasn’t broken once 🙂 When we bought a new laptop because ours is too slow for the Internet, our main requirement was that it must be able to withstand being dropped and must be Raven-proof. They need to list that in the technical data.

We also have a new recruit into our animal army. We’ve been feeding two stray cats – Murdoch and Mousaffa. Murdoch’s done his disappearing act, but today, Moosy appears to have officially adopted us. He hasn’t left our garden all day. Seeing as he’s met the joining requirement – must be an animal and have nowhere else to go – we’ve de-wormed him. We also have to de-flea him and take him to the vets to sort out his gums and possible ear mites. We also have to try to sort out the issue between him and our duck, Peking. She keeps chasing him away. She didn’t mind Murdoch, so we’ve come up with a theory – she only likes monochrome cats. Our cats are either black, or black and white. So is Murdoch. Moosy is ginger. Hence his name – he looks like a lion (yeah we know we’ve spelled it wrong). So we might have to send them to an animal version of Relate. Or let them sort it out with foam bats and cuddle therapy.