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#HobbyCareerPassion: Animal Love and the Internet by Emily Heebner

Welcome to my weekly feature where authors share about the hobbies, careers, or passions of their characters. And Merry Christmas!! 

I’m pleased to introduce today’s guest, Emily Heebner…

Animal Love and the Internet 

I’m grateful for the internet. However flawed, it lets folks research any topic at any hour in the comfort of home. It allowed me to write about puppies being born.

I had married into a family of animal lovers. Not that I didn’t already love animals, I did! I grew up with a beloved dog, Cookie, a great friend and confidante. But in typical suburban fashion, my mother did most – okay – all of the animal care herself.

So when I became matron of my home plus dog, I put my foot down. “Everybody helps!” I declared.

Now that we have our third dog, Sally, plus two cats, plus lizard who’s determined to out-live us, I continue to study. Especially that night I arrived home late and almost drove over a furry larva in our driveway.

It was to be the night we switched from cat loathers to cat lovers.

I was opening our gate so I could pull my car in when I noticed a fluttering leaf out of the corner of my eye. Exhausted, I wanted to ignore it, but the night was hot and still, so I looked again. Lit by my car’s headlights was a furry larva near our hedge, squirming across the driveway. I left the car running, ran for the house and called, “Honey, come quick! Leave Sally inside!”

“Is it a rat?” I asked.

“A cat.”

Umbilical cord attached, the wee one was brand new, probably dropped by her mom when I opened the gate. We learned from the internet we should’ve given the mommy time to retrieve her baby. But we were unschooled and quick to adopt hero mode.

Soon “Solo” was swaddled in clean towels, with a ticking clock and a heating pad close by her box.

The internet taught us much. Since the mommy wasn’t there to lick, my husband assumed operation poop training, which entailed wiping Solo’s butt with warm, damp cotton balls. I was better at bottle feeding, getting her to latch onto the hummingbird like nipple as she sucked and “swam” in the air with her arms.

On the third day, the vet said to bring her in. While he checked her, our larva-kitten pooped on the table. I watched the vet pick up the piece of poop, throw it away, then stick his finger in her mouth. What? The moment flashed so fast, just like the wiggling leaf on the driveway that was now our tiny pet. Did I really see the vet stick his finger in her mouth? The same finger that picked up the poop?

Next day, Solo was lethargic. I put her on our bed to play but she lay still, then moved, dragging her back leg. I quickly put her inside my shirt, looked up fading kitten syndrome, phoned the vet, got in the car, and phoned Eric.

It was a different vet on call so we squealed about the other vet’s poopy finger moment. This new vet explained that without her mother’s milk, Solo was extra vulnerable to infection. He loaded her up with more than the recommended antibiotics and with a doubtful smile, wished us well.

Flash forward: Solo will be four years old this spring. She’s healthy. She and Sally are good friends.

In Seneca Lake, Arthur helps a Labrador deliver her puppies in a saloon. One gets stuck but survives. The internet and Solo taught me how to write that scene.

Blurb:

It’s 1944, and high school senior Meg Michaels has always obeyed her grandparents’ wishes, till now. They’re urging her to give up her dream of Cornell University and accept a ring from wealthy Hank Wickham before he deploys overseas.

But Meg has studied hard and yearns for something better than life in the rural Finger Lakes. Plus Meg’s suddenly fascinated with her childhood friend, Arthur Young, a handsome Seneca Indian farm worker. When Meg and Arthur nurse a sick puppy to health, their friendship transforms into love.

But locals look down on “injuns” and resent the fact that Arthur’s farm job exempts him from military duty. While the war rages in Europe, Meg and Arthur must fight their own battles at home…

Excerpt:

They all watched, hoping a puppy would begin to appear. Brandy grunted and contorted, but nothing changed.

“Dang it.” Arthur wiped his forehead into the upper part of his sleeve. Then he carefully slipped the fingers of one hand inside Brandy’s swollen vagina. She squirmed at first, even growled some. But as Arthur’s hand made its way farther inside her, she breathed through her nose, poised, as if she trusted him, painful as it was. Her eyes fixated at the towel beside her head.

“Good girl,” he murmured. “I’m gettin’ him, Brandy.” Her belly lurched. “Hold still now, girl.”

Arthur’s hand began to reverse direction. He pulled so slowly, Meg wasn’t sure at first. A tingle of dread ran through her. Minutes seemed to pass. Then his forearm tightened.

He shook his other hand toward Meg.

“Towel!”

She grabbed some clean ones from the whelping box.

“Sac’s broke.” He was pulling a wet tail and tiny paws from Brandy’s birth canal. He wrapped a towel around them. Brandy’s belly contracted. Then swoosh, the puppy slid out. Meg handed Arthur a dry towel which he wrapped around the pup. Brandy watched and panted, then gnawed on the cord and began to eat the afterbirth. But the puppy lay still.

“Gol dang it—”

Arthur picked up the lifeless pup and rubbed him vigorously in the towel. He stood and stepped back from Brandy, swinging the pup belly up, over his head, then down between his knees in an arc. He did it again, then checked the puppy’s nose and mouth.

“Dang it!”

He swung the puppy again, then checked his mouth. A soft gurgle could be heard.

“Atta boy—” said Charley.

“C’mon, big guy.” Arthur rubbed him roughly in the towel. “Wake up.” He wiped the pup’s nostrils and blew on his face. The puppy squirmed just slightly. Arthur rubbed and rubbed, as if summoning a genie from a magic lamp.

Meg stood beside them. “If you can wake up,” she said, “we’ll make you fat as Ol’ Pete.”

Arthur stopped rubbing and studied the pup’s face. “We’ll call you Li’l Pete, how’d you like that? Folks’ll think you’re one part hog.”

Brandy moaned.

Charley tried to grin. “His ma swears he’s pure pup, Art. She ain’t been near no hogs.”

“Keep rubbing and talking.” Arthur handed the puppy to Meg. He stooped down to check Brandy. “Comin’ head first. This one ain’t stuck.”

 

Bio:

Emily Heebner, MFA is a fiction writer, professor and theater professional. A Cornell University graduate, she worked extensively as an actor, then wrote documentary scripts for dvds including The Hours, Tuck Everlasting, The Count of Monte Cristo and The Passion. Seneca Lake, her Coming of Age novel, explores interracial romance. Published by The Wild Rose Press, it’s available in Print, ebook and Audiobook formats.

website: emilyheebner.com

facebook: https://www.facebook.com/emily.heebner.90

https://twitter.com/EmilyHeebner 

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Filed under Author Blog Post, Hobbies...Careers...Passions

New Release: Unimaginable Lover by Rosalie Redd

Today’s guest, Rosalie Redd has a very special interview for us…

 

Want to meet Tanen, the hero of Unimaginable Lover, book 3 in the Warriors of Lemuria series? I sat down with him for a brief interview…

Did you turn out the way your parents predicted?

Tanen adjusts himself in the chair and straightens the collar on his shirt. His brow furrows. “Much to my chagrin, no. My father was a warrior. I was a disappointment to him.”

I squirm in my seat. I am uncomfortable in the presence of this large male. “Why is that?”

He crosses his arms, his biceps bulging tight against his shirt sleeves. “Because I didn’t follow in his footsteps. Instead, I chose to pursue knowledge and my love of the ancient scriptures.”

What is your most treasured possession?

Tanen traces his finger along the pin that graces his collar. The silver metal, in the shape of the letter M, reflects the overhead lights with an unearthly glint. “My pin. It signifies my status as council leader and represents Lemuria and life ever after.”

I stroke my fingers over the keyboard as I record his comments. The sound echoes around the large chamber, and a cool breeze runs over my shoulder. Goosebumps form.

He leans back in his chair and touches one of the sunstones lining the cave walls. The gem flares, brightening the room and the air warms. “Is that better? The crystals will take away the chill.”

“Thank you, Tanen.”

What do you value most?

He studies me for a moment before answering, his gaze flicking over my features. “King Noeh’s respect. I will do whatever he asks to help win this war against our enemy, the Gossum, and for our goddess, Alora.”

I can’t help but smile at his sincerity.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

The muscles in his arms visibly tense. His gaze tracks to my necklace, and he cracks his knuckles. “I’d rather not say.”

My unease is once again forefront in my mind. The chair is suddenly rock-hard beneath my bottom and no amount of heat in the room will take away the chill running down my spine. 

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

The smile returns to his face. His blue eyes swirl with gold flecks, mixing together in a beautiful dance.

Despite my nervousness, I’m mesmerized.

He winks. “Ignorance.”

When he didn’t elaborate further, I clear my throat. “Time to move on.”

What scares you?

He places his arms on his thighs and leans forward. “Failing my king.”

I wouldn’t want to face this warrior in a dark alley.

What happens after you die?

A slow smile curls his lips, twinkling the blue in his eyes once again. “When a warrior dies his soul returns to Lemuria, back to the character board to fight again in another war on another planet.”

“Thank you, Tanen, for the interview.”

He places his hand over mine and gives it a gentle squeeze. “You’re welcome, Rosalie.”

 

Thank you, Rosalie and Tanen. I enjoyed getting to know you. Now, pelase tell us about your story…

 

unimaginableloverothersites

Blurb:

A shifter and a human together? Unimaginable…

One careless decision. The colony betrayed. Tanen’s only course is a desperate hunt for justice, but his solo mission is cut short when he’s mortally wounded during a fight. Rescued by a sweet, innocent female who nurses him back to health, he can’t deny the passion that burns between them. Now he must choose between his duty and honor or his desire for the precious, but forbidden, human female.

Broken promises and ruined love hardened Sheri’s heart. When she finds an injured and extraordinarily sexy man on her property, she’s pulled into a world she never imagined. As she nurses him back to health and they bond over their love of books, she’s torn between the lessons she learned from her rough past and the need to seek solace in Tanen’s arms, but she must learn to trust him, and herself, in order to survive.

Excerpt:

Sheri’s pulse raced as a strange mixture of shock and desire coursed through her veins. The tall, muscular stranger pinned her against the wall. One second she’d pressed 9-1—on her phone and the next, she was here, in his arms.

His biceps bulged, and she had a sudden urge to run her fingers over them, feel the steel that was below the surface, but her hands were trapped at his hips. She gripped his taut waist, and his heat bore into her, warming her fingers, tingling the sensitive nerves. Although caged in his embrace, he was gentle with her, holding back the strength that ebbed from him in waves. As he leaned in, his breath cascaded over her shoulder, warm and enticing.

“No infirmary.” His gravelly, rough command came out on a whisper.

She should’ve feared him, this stranger in her home trapping her in his arms, but instead, her insides melted, warmed by his touch, his voice, his scent. Something about him made her long for more.

So focused on the man who held her so close, she hadn’t noticed Coop. His insistent barks echoed through the house.

The man tensed, and in the process his lean body pressed tighter against hers. Her skin prickled at the contact.

With a quick glance over his shoulder, she caught sight of her pet. He growled, his lips curled over his fangs.

“No, Coop. Stop!”

His back legs bunched in preparation for his attack.

The man didn’t release her, but turned to face her dog. He held out one hand, palm open. “Halt.”

Coop’s growl faded.

He took a tentative step forward.

His nose quivered, and a small whimper eased from his chest. Her pet, an ex-police dog trained to track and defend, placed his muzzle under the stranger’s palm.

She gasped. If she hadn’t seen this for herself, she wouldn’t have believed it. He patted Coop on the head, and the dog’s tail beat against the floor.

The man’s eyes were red-rimmed, and sweat coated his forehead. “I have to leave…”

His eyes glazed over, and his grip around her waist loosened.

As her hands traveled along the space between them, her fingers trailed over the firm muscles of his abdomen and chest. The strength and power under his skin lit up her nerves. She moved a stray hair away from his brow and focused on his eyes. Bottomless pools of blue, they reflected the pain hidden behind his features.

Her chest constricted. “Please, let me help you.”

His gaze fell to her mouth, and he reached up to stroke her bottom lip with his thumb, teasing her. “How? Like this?”

Before she could stop him, he slipped his hand around the base of her neck and pulled her close. His mouth hovered over hers for the briefest moment. She closed her eyes, aware that doing so was an invitation all its own. Warm and welcoming, his lips tasted of musk and pepper. With unexpected tenderness, he teased her with his tongue, caressing the crease between her lips. The sensitive nerves tingled at the contact and she inhaled, parting her mouth.

Moaning softly, he deepened the kiss, and explored her. His tongue brushed the sore spot in her mouth, but instead of pain, his smooth caress eased some of the ache. The passionate need in his kiss bore into her, sending a wave of desire to her core. Beneath the thin material of her shirt, her nipples peaked, and she couldn’t hide her reaction to him. A slow groan rumbled in his chest.

Buy links

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N7K0PCU

Amazon AU: https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B01N7K0PCU

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01N7K0PCU

Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01N7K0PCU

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/unimaginable-lover-rosalie-redd/1125333110

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/unimaginable-lover

ibooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1185271791

 

rosalieredd15forweb

Bio

After finishing a rewarding career in finance and accounting, it was time for award-winning author Rosalie Redd to put away the spreadsheets and take out the word processor. She pens paranormal, science fiction, and fantasy romance in her office cave located in Oregon, where rain is just another excuse to keep writing.

 

Contact links

Website:  http://www.rosalieredd.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rosaliereddauthor

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/RosalieRedd

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/34148783-rosalie-redd

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/rosalieredd/

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/author/rosalieredd

 

 

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