Pot Brownies in Senior Centers and Be The Rock and Live with Intention

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Pot Brownies in Senior Centers and Be The Rock and Live with Intention
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Lately, a lot of Carrie’s writers have been talking about how they want to write with intention and that always makes Carrie’s brain hitch a bit, which is why we’re doing this podcast, a slightly deep dive into intention.

According to Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary, intention means

the thing that you plan to do or achieve an aim or purpose

And over at a site all about spiritual wellbeing appropriately called Blissful Light,

Intention is probably one of the most essential parts of healing, abundance, manifestation, personal and spiritual development. 

Whoa, right? That’s a lot to put on one word or one state of being. Healing. Abundance. Manifestation. Personal AND spiritual development. It almost makes you tired to just think about it.

And it’s also a lot of . . . words. Abstract words. And over here on Dogs are Smarter Than People, we’re not really big on abstractions. So, we’re going to break it down a bit for you in real world terms.

You want a hot dog. You find money. You go to a store. You buy a hot dog.

You make a decision: buy a hot dog.

You do the actions: find money, go to store, buy dog.

Intention works the same way. You have to decide what you want and then you have to take the steps to get what you want.

Sometimes the deciding is the hardest part. It’s like when you go to the grocery store in the U.S. before COVID and there is an entire aisle full of cereal choices. Your brain balks. So much cereal! Too much choice. Wheatabix or Captain Crunch? Co-co-puffs or corn flakes? You can get stuck.

Back in 2004 Barry Schwartz wrote a book about people being overwhelmed by too many choices. A lot of other scientists and researchers dispute his theory. But, we know Carrie has a hard time with it. 🙂 You might too.

Here’s the thing:

We make choices every day. Stay in bed. Get up. Go to the bathroom now, try to hold it. Answer the phone? Don’t answer it.

We constantly live with intention, but we want to be able to visualize and make the big steps toward those loftier and more exciting outcomes. Prince Harry and Meghan Markle didn’t just leave their royal life for America; they imagined a different life and took all the complicated steps to get there. The Rock didn’t just become a superstar and get to dance with Gal Gadot. He took all the complicated steps to go toward bigger and bigger goals.

According to Blissful Light, there are key steps to doing this.

Focus your thoughts-

Visualize what it is you really want. Be specific. See it clearly.

“Heartfelt Emotion”

That’s their term and it works. You want to really experience the emotion with that thought/want/dream. It’s that beautiful connection that happens with aspiration. It’s pretty magical.

Try not to wish to be a unicorn and don’t let setback/negativity get you down.

You want to go toward goals that are currently possible in this world. And in that same way, any goal in this world, any life is going to have highs and lows. Know you might have setbacks, keep going anyway.

Nike Ad It, Baby. Just Do It

Remember that big second step of intention? It’s action. You can’t just wish for a hot dog to appear in your hand. You’ve got to make your luck and opportunities by taking the appropriate steps toward your goal/desire/hot dog/life as The Rock. You’ve got this.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE

Dream big. Work toward those goals. Make choices that move you toward that vision. That’s a huge part of living with intention.

AND THE STORY ABOUT THE POT BROWNIES AT THE SENIOR CENTER? It’s right here.

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

Sublime Steampunk. Author Interview with Tony Quintana

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Sublime Steampunk. Author Interview with Tony Quintana
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I was lucky enough to interview the brilliant, young, amazing and talented Tony Quintana, writer of wonder.

Tony talks about how he uses his perfectionism to motivate him, how his background in theater and art helped create Dashiel’s world, and how he began his debut novel in Spanish, only to decide to translate it all by himself into English. It’s a magical story and a magical book that began when he was just fifteen!

I hope you’ll check out the podcast and Tony’s amazing book! I mean seriously, just check out the art that it’s inspired.

WHAT IT IS ABOUT

When bloodthirsty metal soldiers from the empire of Zaphyrelia infiltrate the divine barrier protecting the magically-infused oasis of Azahar, an unlikely hero is found in Dashiel Ermitage, a simple librarian’s apprentice with a longing for adventure.

But with the metallic menace finally defeated after a valiant battle, Azahar faces a greater problem: the barrier that protects the land is weakening, leaving them vulnerable to their enemy. Dashiel’s wish for excitement becomes a reality when he is recruited to join the Cobalt Phantasms, an elite order that hopes to provide relief to the Zaphyrolean people suffering under a tyrannical rule. His journey takes him through a wonderful but dangerous nineteenth-century world of flourishing machines and dwindling magic.

Dashiel’s new life, however, is threatened by a long-held secret that will put an end to his adventuring days if it ever comes to light. Will he prove to be the hero Azahar needs to overcome their enemies, or will Dashiel’s past destroy his chance to save everything he holds dear?

WHERE YOU CAN FIND TONY’S FIRST BOOK

Where to Find More About Tony and his Books

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tonymquintana/?hl=en

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100074737030172

Author page: https://www.crystalcarriagepublishing.com/tony-m-quintana/


SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

Man, Are You Toxic? How to Start to Get Over It

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Man, Are You Toxic? How to Start to Get Over It
/

So, this week in our attempt to make your life a little bit better, we’re talking about being toxic and we are specifically talking about men being toxic.

And to do that we first have to define what toxic masculinity is.

Maya Salem in a 2019 NYT article writes that it’s:

  • Hiding your emotions, pretending you aren’t upset
  • Making sure everyone thinks you’re hard. (not your muscles, but your brain/soul/emotions)
  • Violence=toughness=powerful

“In other words: Toxic masculinity is what can come of teaching boys that they can’t express emotion openly; that they have to be “tough all the time”; that anything other than that makes them “feminine” or weak. (No, it doesn’t mean that all men are inherently toxic.)”

Salem

But toxic masculinity is more than that. It’s a set of beliefs that a lot of men believe about themselves and that a lot of women believe about them, too.

What are those damn, stupid beliefs. According to Dr. Axe, they are things like (all the italicized below is a direct quote, but the format in the notes is hitching:

  • Manhood is defined by violence, sex, status and aggression.
  • Men should not be interested in “feminine things” because this makes them appear weak
  • Men shouldn’t display “feminine” traits such as emotional vulnerability.
  • Men and women can never truly understand each other or just be friends, for reasons like men are always interested in sex.
  • Real men are strong and don’t show emotional signs of shame or weakness.
  • Anger and violence are useful ways of solving conflicts.
  • Men are not suited to be single parents/the dominant parent in a family.

So, you might recognize some of those beliefs in yourselves or in others, rights? And it’s kind of a lot of bullshit.

You can be male; you can be a man and be nuanced. And there isn’t some dichotomy of man strong/woman weak. We’re not even going to begin to talk about how tough female sex organs and birthing organs are, right?

Sigh.

That is a rant for another time.

Moving on, masculinity theory has its origins in gender theories and has been expanded by the work of Raewyn Connell (Australian sociologist), Dr. Ronald Levant (researcher) and others who speak of the patriarchal dividend. And according to Dr. Axe, it’s about:

“A set of values, established by men in power, that functions to include and exclude, and to organize society in gender unequal ways. It combines several features: a hierarchy of masculinities, differential access among men to power (over women and other men) and the interplay between men’s identity, men’s ideals, interactions, power and patriarchy.”

So, what are those values? We talked about some of them, but those aren’t all. Let’s go at it from another angle.

Over on Tiny Buddha, Charles Razook writes:

“Toxic masculinity has bred men to be the life of the party. Drink hard. Smoke cigarettes. Do drugs. Be indomitable. This behavior always necessitates sleeping in to recover afterward and lower productivity.

“For women, on the other hand, there is more of an emphasis on looks, composure, and output. Essentially, on being perfect.

“This may sound misogynistic, backward, and antiquated, but unfortunately, these expectations still affect our society, though they are slowly changing. And the result is not very positive for men or women.”

How does this hold us all back? That’s kind of the question, right?

According to Scientific American,

“But this scramble for dominance and denial of emotion comes at great cost. It blunts men’s awareness of other people’s needs and emotions, drives domestic and sexual violence, makes aggression look like a reasonable way to solve conflict, forbids seeking health care (and even thinking about seeking mental health care), and pours fuel on the fire of drug and alcohol abuse

“Toxic masculinity even invades life’s small pleasures. To paraphrase the comedian Bill Burr, the man box means you can’t admit a baby is cute, hug a puppy, say you want a cookie, order banana pancakes, or carry an umbrella in the rain (“Get those shoulders up!”).”

And how do we fight it?

  1. Allow your kids and your men to have emotions and express them, damn it.
  2. Call out people for being nasty trolling idiots.
  3. Look at your kids’ role models. Are they toxic?
  4. Remember toxic people can change. Your mistakes don’t have to destroy you. Just thinking they do is toxic.
  5. Admit that culture and society has helped shape you and your personality and belief systems.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE

Don’t be afraid to explore who you are and why you are that way.

Links

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-to-fight-toxic-masculinity/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/what-the-wild-things-are/201810/toxic-masculinity-what-is-it-and-how-do-we-change-it

https://www.ladbible.com/news/weird-man-who-called-womens-swimsuits-pornography-loses-his-job-20210909

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

Let’s Go Live on a Sailboat!

On Thursday, my co-podcaster, Shaun, and husband guy, takes over the blog.

He’s adorable. I hope you’ll read what he says even if he does occasionally sound like a surfer dude from the 1990s or Captain Pontification. And no, we don’t always agree. 🙂

best podcast ever
Shaun

So, Carrie has been bugging me all day to get this blogpost done. Right before dinner, she tells me that we should spend 5-10 years living on a sailboat, just cruising around, and enjoying life.

I said to her, “Hell yes! I am all for that.”

Then we sat down, ate dinner at the coffee table and watched some YouTube videos about live-aboard sailors while we ate. It was great! After dinner, Carrie cleaned up while I attended to some other responsibilities that were pending in my life. After the chores were complete, we both, almost simultaneously, sat down in front of our computers.

I said, “I am going to see what’s for sale in the world of used sailboats in Maine.”

Carrie replied in a very happy voice, “That is the best idea I have ever heard of! While you do that, I will check on mooring fees in the nearby vicinity.”

“Hey, look at this one!” was my response, because I was already knee deep in the used sailboat online market.

Then she started to read off some rates for moorings in our general area and then started telling me about the pros and cons of each different area.

I was getting excited! I mean, honestly, this is like one of my lifelong dreams. Sailing around, earning money with an online career, swimming naked in the crystal clear, warm water of the Caribbean . . . all with a beautiful wife. Who could ask for anything more?

As my mind began to fog over with dreams of my dream finally coming true (in a few years of course) I heard this crystal-clear siren call of a voice break through.

“Hey! You working on that blogpost or what?”

I jumped so hard it was like awakening from a falling dream. “Uh, uh, yes ma’am.”

But you know what? As soon as I send this off to Carrie via email so that she can get it posted (sorry it’s late, baby!), she will be right back on track to planning the dream. And the thing about Carrie is that once she has an idea in her amazing brain, she won’t let it die out! Especially if she knows that it will make me happy.

That is why I am still the luckiest man in the world.

Peace kids!

Remember to always Love Your Way Through It!

Shaun

My little, creepy book baby is out in the world because who doesn’t want sad, quirky, horror with some romantic bits for the holiday season?

It’s a young adult novel (upper) called WHEN YOU BRING THEM BACK, please buy it!

It’s super fun.

Porn is Taking Over Your Life.  How to be Successful in 2022

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Porn is Taking Over Your Life.  How to be Successful in 2022
/

Hey!

We’re going to start the year off right by talking about porn.

What the what?

And this is your year to give up porn. And no. We aren’t talking about erotica. We’re talking about what self-help guru Tim Denning calls “addictive habits.” He uses the word porn to grab attention (it works if you’re here) and explain how these addictions are everywhere.

He then categorizes all the different types of porn we have.

There’s lifestyle porn – sitting on the toilet and whipping out your phone.

There’s money porn – always being on your phone or laptop so that you can earn that “100,000 in five months,” always reading the article or watching the podcast to figure out how to make that money super quickly.

There’s startup porn, which is basically being addicted to starting new businesses so you can get that money.

There’s revenge porn where you are a mean punk on social media, hurting people’s feelings in comments, subtweets, or messages.

There’s real porn. We don’t need to explain that, right?

There’s influencer porn where you are all about your brand and selfish instead of giving.

I think there are a lot more addictions than that. There’s the:

Diet Addiction

You think you’ll be happy if you just lose that 40 pounds but you keep hopping from one diet to another.

The Outside Photos Addiction

You think everyone wants to see your vista photos.

Television, Video, and Gaming Addictions

You spend all your time consuming other people’s content and escaping. Escaping is fantastic, but you don’t want to do it all the time.

Denning writes:

“The secret to kill all forms of porn is discipline.

“Discipline yourself to focus on what you know is good for you.

“You have a list of habits already that you probably follow — like exercise, reading, leisure time, meditation — and you can focus your time there and get far better returns than the endless porn-fuelled addictions of meaningless nonsense.

“Porn is an addictive distraction to doing the work you know you want to do. Getting started with your life’s work each day is hard, but so is continually distracting yourself with life porn.”


Instead, maybe think about what you want, who you want to be, what you want to do and think about how you can give up the porn that’s holding you back.

  1. Stop trolling people.
  2. Stop being mean to yourself.
  3. Stop watching so much content (except us of course). Just kidding.
  4. Stop making ideas and not actually pursuing those ideas.
  5. Stop reading your phone when you go poop.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE!

You only have so much time in this world. Use it well. Use it the way you want to. Not the way your addictions want you to.

LINKS WE MENTION

https://www.ksat.com/news/local/2021/12/26/strange-news-stories-from-2021/

https://timdenning.substack.com/p/your-life-is-full-of-porn-stop-getting

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

How We TOTALLY Screwed Up Our Branding

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
How We TOTALLY Screwed Up Our Branding
/

So, here at the podcast we’re going to be making a big change this year and DOGS ARE SMARTER THAN PEOPLE isn’t going to be quite so much about writing tips and more about life tips.

Wait! What? Yep. We’re shifting.

First, we have fantastic content about writing, but um, we don’t have the word “WRITING” in our podcast.

If there is anything we’ve learned from our dogs is that you’ve got to be clear about communicating who you are.

Sparty communicates that he is a dog who is all about food and snuggles.

Gabby communicates that she is a dog who is all about keeping a watchful eye over her family and long hugs.

And “Dogs are Smarter Than People” while it’s gathered over 263,000 downloads (thank you all), is definitely not communicating anything about writing.

So, we’re shifting and adapting. We’re going to start another podcast called more appropriately “Write Better Now,” and we’re keeping this one and it’s going to be much more dedicated towards helping us all be as smart and wise as our dogs.

I hope you’ll chill out with us and join us in our journey. Maybe even like and subscribe.

Here’s our quote where we try to be wise:

“Our greatness lies not so much in being able to remake the world as being able to remake ourselves.” ~Mahatma Gandhi

And here’s our writing tip of the pod:

Write the story you long to write, not the story you think everyone else wants to hear. Yes, you can make more money self-publishing if you blow off your own wishes/desires and write to market, and money is good, but you have to listen to your muse, too, take chances, and grow.

Dog Tip for Life

Life is about more than money as long as you have food, shelter, clean water, safety and heath care. Go after the life you want!

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

Kissing Under the Dung Twig and The Glaring Woman at the Grocery Store

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Kissing Under the Dung Twig and The Glaring Woman at the Grocery Store
/

This week in honor of the holiday season, we’re going to talk about a time Carrie did a very Carrie thing at a grocery store in Ellsworth, Maine. It will eventually relate to books, we promise.

One day in the grocery store line a lady behind me dropped her  bag of Cheetos. I picked them up.

She dropped her box of Wheat Thins.

I picked them up.

She dropped her onion. It rolled over to me, shed some purple skin, and hit my foot.

I smiled. I picked it up. I gave it to her.

“I must be missing the belt,” she said.

So, then, it was my turn with the clerk. I opened my bag and my wallet was not there. My check book? Check. But the wallet? MIA.

I told the cashier, terrified.

She said “If you’ve written a check here before, you don’t need an ID.”

???

So, I said, “I don’t know if I have.”

I spent the next three minutes alternately explaining that I had visions of my red cloth wallet hanging out by the 12-grain organic bread in the bread aisle, or in the post office where I’d just used it, or in the middle of the parking lot, or, gulp, in some evil wallet-snatcher’s hands. I looked for sympathetic glances from the food dropper behind me, but she no longer liked me.

I wrote out the check. The machine beeped. The cashier looked at me, apologetically. “You’ve never written a check here before.”

“Okay,” I said. “I’ll run out and check in the car.”

So, I raced outside despite the fact I was not wearing a sports bra, and unlocked the car, and… no wallet. I gasped. Really. I stepped back and there, beneath the tire, was a flash of red. I snatched it, clutched it to my chest (still without the sports bra) and raced back to the store.

“That was fast,” said the clerk.

“You found it!” said the nice guy who came to finish bagging.

Glare, said the dropping stuff lady who was behind me in line. Glare. Glare. Glare.

It’s like what I imagine happens to my books. I start off really well, everyone likes what I’m doing, and then — bang — I screw up. Drop the voice or something, make a character do something nobody wants her to do.

And then what?

Glares from one. Sympathy from others.

The Carrie Story

WRITING TIP OF THE POD

Everything can help inform your story and make a scene to use later on.

DOG TIP FOR LIFE

Be kind when other people are struggling, not just when you are struggling.

LINKS WE MENTION

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

The Time Our Dog Peed On the Christmas Tree

Because I’m a little stressed out because of the holidays and the state of the world, I’m recycling this blog from 2007. HELLO! Ancient times.

Back then, we had an awesome dog named Tala (a Great Pyr), who wrote the whole blog because my dogs are like that. So helpful. Here you go.



Hello. I am Tala. I am Carrie’s dog. This Sunday I took my humans on a little adventure.

Aw, yes… the love.

So, Sunday I convinced the fam to go get a Christmas tree because there was a monster storm coming Monday. I could feel it in my doggy bones. They get some creaky when the barometric pressure changes, you know.

So, I explained to the Emster (the little human) that I was not going to be doing much work. I was merely a supervisor. She’d have to do the heavy lifting.

Of course, she said. I’ll do anything for you, Tala. You are the most awesome-ist doggy ever.


I concurred.

I found the perfect tree and barked it down with my awesome doggy breath.

 My work here is done.

I then convinced the humans to haul it out of the Christmas tree patch while I sniffed around for bones, dead rodents, old poo, and other yumdilicious things.

They said:  We’ll do anything for you, Tala!

Yes, humans, you will. One little puppy-dog pout and it’s all over. No use pretending.

And then I peed on a tree. An eight-foot-tree, and Carrie (the bigger human with long hair) screamed and quickly pretended like it didn’t happen.


Is this good, Tala?
Yes, little human. It is.

And look how happy she is, just thinking about picking up the tree. That’s not my car by the way. I don’t like silver. It blends in with my white fur too much and I look pasty.

It was a bit of a haul getting the tree out of there, but I made those humans march fast through motivation.

March, humans! March! Hurry! Snow is coming!!! And I might pee on another Christmas tree!

 They hauled the tree a long, long way. They really did it. They hauled that tree. And everyone says humans aren’t good at anything other than brushing out hairballs, picking up little mistakes and putting them in paper towels, and giving out doggy treats while saying “Sit. Sit. SIT!” over and over again. I’ve proved those nay-sayers wrong.

And they hauled the tree out just in time, too… because the next day looked like this…

Hhmm. We’ve got lots of potential tree hauling and peeing opportunities around here.

Note: Do I not look like a Snow Dog? Yes. Yes. I do.

Unfortunately, though, the youngest human, worn out from the events of the day before, passed out while sledding.

 No more, Tala. No more. I’ve given you all the dog treats I can find. And you keep hogging the sled.

Don’t you worry. I buried her some good.

 I’m just that kind of dog. The helpful kind.


It’s hard not to miss that dog. It’s a good thing a lot of her spirit lives on in Gabby.

Gabby Dog carrying on the tradition of peeing in inappropriate places
And making goofy photos by Christmas trees.

My little, creepy book baby is out in the world because who doesn’t want sad, quirky, horror with some romantic bits for the holiday season?

It’s a young adult novel (upper) called WHEN YOU BRING THEM BACK, please buy it!

It’s super fun.

Bonus Author Interview with Debut Author Taylor Ann Wright

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Bonus Author Interview with Debut Author Taylor Ann Wright
/
Taylor Ann Wright!

I was lucky enough to read Taylor’s book in development and I’m so glad it’s out there in the world.

During the podcast, we talk about Taylor’s first stories, her love of lions and even have a cameo from her amazing cat.

It’s pretty hard not to fall in love with someone as great and enthusiastic about writing as Taylor is. Her charm is infectious and her book is amazing! I hope you’ll check it out.

About Her Book

The king of Hollow is dead. When the news of his murder is spread to his kingdom, no one knows why he was killed. For decades King Dravin ruled with wisdom, kindness and peace. A death this brutal was seemingly unprovoked. Queen Seraphina, his wife, now sits on the throne. With someone so sinister and evil ruling the kingdom, the only chance of finding the truth is in the hands of their 22 year-old daughter, Princess Adelaide.

Facing anything it takes to find the truth, Adelaide must overcome torture, betrayal, and the potential demise of those she loves most. When it seems as if she has finally found an answer, she loses all of her memories. Leo, a strange man that found her in the forest, is her only hope of discovering not only who she is, but what her mission was in the first place.

Will Adelaide find the truth? Or will she die trying?

Where to find her:

Socials:

INSTAGRAM: Instagram.com/authortaylorannwright

FACEBOOK: Facebook.com/authortaylorannwright

YOUTUBE: https://youtube.com/c/TaylorAnnWright

Get the book!

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09HPFMRKG/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_awdb_imm_WE4GYQP8YBGQBYH5RKP8

Atomic Wedgies, Power, Noogies and Does Your Character Need to Be In Your Novel

Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Dogs Are Smarter Than People: Writing Life, Marriage and Motivation
Atomic Wedgies, Power, Noogies and Does Your Character Need to Be In Your Novel
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Yesterday on Carrie’s blog she talked about a writer worry that happens a lot, which is figuring out when your novel has too many characters.

You should check that out at carriejonesbooks.blog if it’s one of your worries, but here’s a bit more information about making that deadly decision (deadly for your character, not you).

ANOTHER WAY TO DETERMINE IF THE CHARACTER NEEDS TO BE THERE IS TO THINK ABOUT YOUR CHARACTERS’ ROLES IN THE STORY.

Protagonist – The main character. It’s the character that the reader likes, loves, roots for, worries about, the character that moves the plot forward and has emotional development.

Antagonist – The naughty one who keeps our protagonist from quickly achieving their goals.

Sidekick – The bestie. The support system for the protagonist.

Orbital – They tend to get the protagonist in trouble even if that’s not their intent. Think Hermione in Harry Potter. She’s the coolest, but her insistence on doing the right thing and being heroic sometimes pulls Harry into a path of uh-oh. The orbital is basically an instigator.

Love Interest – I don’t have to explain this one, right?

Confidante – This is the person the protagonist tells their secrets to. It can be a trusted friend, a mentor.

Foil – They aren’t the villain, but they are the protagonist’s opposite. Think Draco Malfoy in Harry Potter.

Red Shirts – These are the extras. They are hanging out in the background and encountered, but not super important. The Patils in Harry Potter

If you have a ton of one type of character, you can probably delete or combine one.

WRITING TIP OF THE POD

Diversify your characters’ roles and consolidate. Don’t have too many characters doing the same thing/serving the same role.



DOG TIP FOR LIFE

Keep your crew tight. Don’t think the red shirts are the sidekicks.

SHOUT OUT!

The music we’ve clipped and shortened in this podcast is awesome and is made available through the Creative Commons License. 

Here’s a link to that and the artist’s website. Who is this artist and what is this song?  It’s “Summer Spliff” by Broke For Free.

AND we are transitioning to a new writer podcast called WRITE BETTER NOW! You’ll be able to check it out here starting in 2022!

We have a podcast, LOVING THE STRANGE, which we stream live on Carrie’s Facebook and Twitter and LinkedIn on Fridays. Her Facebook and Twitter handles are all carriejonesbooks or carriejonesbook.

Carrie is reading one of her poems every week on CARRIE DOES POEMS. And there you go! Whew! That’s a lot!

Here’s the link.

best writing podcast WRITE BETTER NOW
Write Better Now – Writing Tips podcast for authors and writers
best podcast ever
loving the strange the podcast about embracing the weird
best poetry podcast by poet
Carrie Does Poems

LINKS WE MENTION

https://english.stackexchange.com/questions/142716/where-does-noogie-come-from

https://www.gotoquiz.com/what_killier_wedgie_do_you_deserve_girls_only

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