The Difficulties of Writing With a Cat

Hello Fiction Lovers!

So today I thought I’d write about how difficult it can be to write (or simply be productive) when you have a cat. I love my cat, Carmel, but she seems to have an agenda to keep me from writing. She’ll ignore me when I’m seeking her out to pet her or when I’m procrastinating, but as soon as I’m ready to be productive there she is, ready to be petted and generally admired. So I thought I’d share some of the common scenarios that seem to happen and see if any of you had similar experiences.

The most common is when I’ll sit down in a chair and start pulling out my laptop. Suddenly, she’ll be in my lap, purring, and begging to be petted while taking up the room where the laptop was supposed to go. Since it’s almost a crime to push a cat off your lap or get up once they’ve chosen you I’ll typically end up having to put my laptop off to the side on the armrest and type one-handed. If I try to type with both hands she’ll generally get in the way even more until I actually pet her with one hand. So writing is still feasible when this happens, but a lot slower and a little tedious.

Another scenario is when she’ll actually sit or lay across the keyboard to stop me from writing. That’s typically a progression from the last scenario because I wasn’t paying attention to her enough. Given that Carmel is adorable and that writing is next to impossible when she does that, the best policy is to pet her until she has enough and leaves. A bittersweet moment, but then I can do what I set out to do.

The last situation I’ll mention is when the weather is nice and I’ll have noble intentions to write outside so I can also feel the sunshine. I’ll get outside and set up my writing spot–whether that’s a blanket on the ground or in a chair–and be already to write, but she’ll conspire with my dog to be as cute and needy as possible. Pictures will need to be taken, bellies rubbed, and some failed attempts at fetch with the dog before writing can occur. However, by that point I’ll tend to be too hot or realize I can’t see the computer screen in the sunlight and I’ll have to retreat inside before the writing actually happens.

Do you have stories of trying to write but pets getting in the way? Let me know in the comments! Also feel free to let me know if you have any questions and I hope you all have a great week!

Pets in Fiction

Hello Fiction Lovers!

Many people I know–as do I–love animals and benefit from the companionship a pet offers. The moments when the cat actually deigns to use your lap as a pillow, or the dog greets you with such enthusiasm that you think you must of been gone for ten years instead of ten minutes, really help make the day go from bad to good or from good to perfect. Knowing this, it makes the distinct lack of pets in fiction disappointing. They can add so much to the story and yet often writers don’t spare the words to add them in. Pets can help the characters by giving them support, providing them with motivation to keep going and comfort when things are bad, and being just enough of a lovable nuisance to keep things interesting. Pets aren’t perfect, just like people, but that’s just what makes them more fun.

The great thing about having pets in fiction is that they don’t have to be a dog or a cat or a fish as well. A wizard could have a dragon or a nightmare as a pet, a warrior could have their trusty stead (which could be a horse as easily as it could be a camel or rhino), a cyborg could have a sentient animal-like robot or a monkey. Truly, your imagination is the limit. The pets in question wouldn’t have to been actual animals from here on Earth unless the story takes place on Earth as we know it (and even then you could come up with an explanation about how having a fictional creature for a pet would work for that story).

This isn’t to say that every story needs to have a pet added to it. There are some stories were having a pet involved would be out of place and not  good for the characters or the pet, but having pets added to at least a few stories could help them along.

So just as there are many pets looking for adoption in the real world, I’m sure there are more than a few looking for their life long companions in fiction. I wish you luck with finding the perfect one for your story!

Feel free to post any examples of great pets you’ve read in fiction down in the comments and let me know if you have any questions. I hope you all have a great week!