Sammy Needs Our Help

Posted by Max | Posted on 12/09/2017 06:50:00 PM

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Doods, you all know Sammy, he's been my blogging bud for forever, like almost as long as I can remember. He needs surgery to remove a cancerous tumor on his tummy, and all I want for Christmas is for him to get it so that he lives a long time.

There's a GoFundMe page where you can donate a few bucks, and anything helps. Seriously...this year don't send me anything (cause some of you do and I like that BUT...I need this more) and do this instead. And not just for Sammy--think of his brother Miles. What would the world be without Sammy and Miles together???

The goal on the GFM page is $1000 but you doods know that medical stuff always winds up costing more. The closer to $2000, the better.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Posted by Max | Posted on 12/01/2017 06:14:00 PM

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...but not Whovimas, not yet. The People have been putting up outside decorations and the Woman decorated the front room, but my Who tree and TARDIS lights has not been put up yet. I've been promised that will happen on Monday most likely, but dang. I usually get it before everything else.


No one expects those decorations to go unmolested. They're more like, how soon with the little black furball send them flying? I'm thinking by tomorrow night.


This dood isn't exactly what I had in mind for Jeff, but hey, it's Christmas and he'd probably want to wear Christmas clothes. Or maybe I'll write another book with Jeff in it and introduce Kringle, his festive little brother.


Kringle gets lit every night.

Fits right in with the Woman.

Oh, come on, you saw those pictures from the boobie walk...

The People Have Returned

Posted by Max | Posted on 11/23/2017 11:39:00 AM

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Okay, they actually came home a few days ago, but they've been simmering in Ouch Stew and that hasn't exactly been conducive to me getting to use the computer. They were gone for 5 days, which in cat time is like 3 years, so I had to ignore them for a while because they expected me to miss them and I had to let them know that no, I did not. The substitute human made sure we got fed enough had water, and she scooped the litter box, which filled most of my basic needs.

Granted, I did not let her get too close to me, but Buddah is a whore and he allowed himself to be petted. This is super funny because the Woman is mostly afraid to touch him because he enjoys biting her. But shove a total stranger at him, and sure, pet me, pet me good (she was not a total stranger to the Woman. Hell, I met her first. The substitute human was DKM's niece, not the Grandma, but we get the Grandma in January.)

The People seem pretty happy with how the boobie walk went. The Woman did not get sick this time, which was what she most hoped for since she has a bad track record with getting sick on event. They skipped a couple miles each day--hills that they knew better than to try, even though the Woman really wanted to try the first big hill but once she got a good look at it she knew if she wanted to be able to walk on days 2 and 3 she probably shouldn't--but racked up 54 of the 60.

And I've seen pictures...they had way too much fun doing something that was supposed to be hard.

Apparently, the people of San Diego like to keep boobie walkers as pain free as possible, so they stand on the side of the road and hand out a lot of red stupid drinks. As well as red stupid treats. This picture? As I understand it, the Woman is sucking down a Jello shot. And she sucked down 3-4 of those every day, and that was just the start of the imbibing.

There was a lot of Fireball along the way--her favorite stupid drink--and I heard the Man tell her she probably had 12 or more shots along the way.


I mean, look at this. They drank shots of Fireball off a ski! And that was just the first day! Now, she's telling me all the drinking was medicinal, and she partook because she was in pain and it helped her finish every day, but I know a steaming pile of poop when I see it. But, hey, whatever makes her feel better about it.

It got them both to this:


Which led to them getting to this:


That's their team, the Pink Slips. They raised over $20,000 for the fight against breast cancer, and then got out there and walked their asterisks off.

Since today is Thanksgiving, I suppose I can admit, I am thankful they do stuff like this even if it means I get substitute humans. I'm thankful they can do stuff like this. I have taught them well over the years.

Happy Thanksgiving, doods.

They had lots of nice views on the walk. I suppose I should also be thankful they came home and didn't stay because it was so nice there.


Boobies

Posted by Max | Posted on 11/14/2017 03:46:00 PM

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It's that time of year. The time I am abandoned while the Woman goes somewhere and walks for boobies. This year she's taking the Man along with her, and forcing him to walk alongside her. I mean, he LIKE boobies--who doesn't--but it seems a little mean to me. He could be staying home and catering to my every whim, but noooo.

It really sucks because we've been writing and I've coughed up a good story and I want to work on it, but she's taking the typing fingers with her.






Just because these pictures make me LOL



Blog Blast for Peace!!!

Posted by Max | Posted on 11/04/2017 12:00:00 AM

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Not On Fire Now...

Posted by Max | Posted on 10/28/2017 03:00:00 PM

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As of this morning, the biggest fire that was burning not too far from us was declared contained. That was a long time and a lot of land burned up. A lot of homes and businesses lost. Animals and people, too. It's still dry as fark out here, and hotter than normal, so paws crossed it doesn't happen again.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Ok, it took me a while, mostly because I've been feeling lazy, but there's a link in the sidebar now for getting pawtographed copies of The Space Between Whens. If you don't count the shipping costs, it's a little cheaper getting it from me. If you do count them, eh, the pawtograph makes it worth it, right? RIGHT?

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

The people are gearing up for this year's Boobie Walk. For realz, they're both doing it this year. THE MAN IS GOING TO WALK! They've been riding their bikes for training a lot, the Woman says it's good cardio, but she knows her feet aren't ready for the actual walking part. She's not worried about it because she knows what to expect and says as long as she manages her electrolytes well, she'll be fine.

She doesn't want to get sick again. It's happened on a couple of walks, but she's pretty sure she knows what the real issue was, and just has to accept that on Day 2 she's going to feel like crap, and has to push through it until she feels better. This seems to involve copious amounts of Starbuck's tea, so there better be a lot of those along the way.

I really should have bought stock in Starbucks years ago. I'd be a thousandair by now.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

Don't worry about us while they're gone. Y'all know Diva Kitty's mom, right? Her niece is going to watch us and feed us. I might hide under the bed for a couple of days but I'll sneak out to eat food when she's not looking, and then when she least expects it, =BOOM= Psychokitty in her face!

Eh, I don't think I'll really hide. I'm kinda curious about new people. But I do sleep a lot now, so she might not see much of me simply because I have naps to take.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

 

Pet me. Right between my ears. That's a good person...

...but we're okay...

Posted by Max | Posted on 10/13/2017 12:25:00 PM

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This is Northern California right now:






There are 15 fires raging, 500+ people missing, at least 30 have died, 2,000+ homes destroyed, 30,000 displaced and evacuated, and it's nowhere near over. Some of the most beautiful parts of NorCal are ash now, and some historical sites are threatened.

Charles Schultz's home, along with a lot of his memorabilia, is gone. His widow escaped, so the important part is covered, but it gives you an idea.

Real people. Their world is on fire, and there's nothing to go home to.

But we're fine where we're at. The closest of the fires, the Atlas Fire, is about 45 miles by road, maybe 25 in a direct line. We had a couple of super smokey days--the Woman was not allowed outside because she has breathing issues--but the wind picked up and blew a lot of the smoke out.

Good for us, not good for firefighters.

The Younger Human got *a lot* of smoke from another fire, so much that the air was brown and seeping in under his doors. But his house should be fine, the fire would have to push closer and jump the Interstate to get to him and his Much Better Half and the dogs.

But still...shit's on fire. And it will be, for quite a while.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

I know, it's been over a month since I blogged. I had stuff to talk about, but I've also had a few people complain because I talk about book stuff too much, and they don't come here to read book stuff. So I just kinda shut up.

But...book stuff...I now have some hardback copies of The Space Between Whens and I'll pop a link up soon, probably in the sidebar.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

The Woman and I have a daily game going. It's called The Battle of the Straw. I sit on the little table and lean toward the straw, she stops what she's doing and wags her pointy finger and says, "No, you don't." Then she goes back to reading or typing or looking at immature things on Reddit, and I do it again. 

She thinks she's winning, but we all know better.

Now Buddah? He tried to play it once but he didn't quite grasp the point. He jumped up there and grabbed the straw right off the bat. So it was over in, like, 1.4 seconds, and what's the fun of that?

Well, it was fun for me. I got to hear her call him a little shit and then she chased him off the table, and had to get a new straw.

♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦♦

 This is what I'm gonna do the rest of the day:


I'm old, doods. All I wanna do is hang out and sleep. I might move to the sofa or the bedroom, but this is it. One nap after the other, interrupted only by snacks.

It's a great life.

We have the hots...

Posted by Max | Posted on 9/01/2017 12:04:00 PM

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Hot.....................................Hot............................Hot

It's a freaking good thing the People got the cold air blowing thingy replaced, because this weekend is going to be super toasty. Along with it being hot, there are a couple of wildfires north east of here and the smoke has worked its way down here, which means the Woman is going to spend the weekend inside, not going anywhere.

This is great for me because it means I get a lap when I want it, but not so great for her because she wanted to go outside and do walking and bicycling things. She has a treadmill and a bicycle propped up on this rolling thing that doesn't let her roll anywhere, but she wanted to go outside.

Suck it up, lady. You can sweat inside, but then shower because I want your lap.

We took off from working for the last 10 days because the Man was off work and they wanted to go do things...but it was hot then, too, so they didn't do nearly as many things as they wanted. And on the Woman's birthday she wanted to go to San Francisco, but then a white supremacist group was having a "prayer rally" which meant there would be counter-protestors (she wanted to do that, but the Man didn't want to get arrested) so they decided to not go...so of course the rally got canceled.

But he still wanted her to have a special birthday, so he took her to Taco Bell for lunch and then Denny's for dinner.

And ya know what? If you wake a person up early on their birthday, they are not happy to see you.


Kindle & Paperbacks at Amazon!

Posted by Max | Posted on 8/21/2017 07:24:00 PM

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Just in time for the Woman to take time off and do things with the Man for the next 10 days...

So far it's out in two formats: Kindle and paperback, and the paperback is probably only popping up at Amazon so far. The hardback has been uploaded to the printer and distributor, but we haven't seen a proof of it yet, so that may be a couple of weeks.

Click here for the Kindle version.

Click here for the paperback.

Eventually we're going to make all the books available on other digital formats (iBooks, Kobo, Nook, etc.) but before that they have to be converted to ePub...and if you have a device that reads ePubs and you want them before that, we can work something out.

Or heck, you can get the Kindle version and use Calibre to covert it yourself. It's pretty easy, and the file doesn't have DRM, because I figure if you bought it, you should be able to put it on all your devices (but don't be a jerk and upload it to a file sharing service because that's just not nice.)

Ideally, to get the most out of this book you should read all three books in the Wick Chronicles, but there's a preface for those who want to jump in with this one.

From the back cover:

Fresh from a time-travel date gone very wrong, Wick reminds the Emperor: the woman he was currently holding hands with had warned him—if she survived the battle with wizards and elves, she was murdering his virginity. Time to pay up, dude. And while Wick prefers to ignore the intimacies in human relationships, he isn’t sure Will can handle the things that Aisha will expect from him and feels responsible for making sure Will doesn’t fall off and break a hip.


Wick acts as guardian of their new relationship, but standing in Will’s way is his mother, who is adamant that he’s courting disaster and risking that Aisha will hear every private thought he’s ever had, and on the sideline is Aisha’s seventeen year old son, Jimmy, who has a monumental secret of his own that takes them to the When of Will’s natural life—and nothing prepares Will for how deeply he identifies with Aisha’s son, and how closely entwined their childhood nightmares are.


"Wick After Dark is a delightful mix of sentiment and laugh-out-loud funny. Max Thompson takes a risk with this one, and it pays off wonderfully." ~Ian Murphy, Murphy’s World
 

"This is not your children’s Wick! You’re going to laugh and you’re going to cry, and in the end, you’re going to want to buy poor Wick a new rug." ~ T.L. Crow, editor


"Max Thompson has gone where no cat has gone before—into grown-up territory, laced with big issues that he tackles with humor and grace. This is the book adult Wick fans have been asking for, and Max definitely delivers." ~ Jo Schotz, I Eight What?
But the best part of today? I GOT STEAK!!!

Dang, it's been another month...

Posted by Max | Posted on 8/19/2017 08:43:00 PM

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I swear, I am not trying to let this blog dissolve into dust and cobwebs. We've been busy with book thingies, getting the edits nailed down and cover made, and we're in the end stretch. For realz--the Kindle version could potentially be available by Monday. The paperback on Amazon by mid-week, and another week or two for the hardback and general-release paperback.

After we get this done...doods, the Woman says we're taking a break to have a Real Life for a bit. The Man is off next week and they want to be able to go and do things without worrying about work things, and I suppose taking some time to recharge is a good thing. This book is #4 in a year. Well, almost a year. We really wanted it to be out by the anniversary of Emperor, but... close enough.

No reason for the picture, other than this is how smart Buddah is.
I think most of what the People are going to be doing is walk stuff. They're both walking for boobies in November and need to ramp up how far they can go because the Woman is all I AM NOT MISSING A MILE THIS YEAR and he's all I JUST DON'T WANT TO DIE. And I'm all PLEASE STOP TALKING BECAUSE I'M TRYING TO NAP!

They went to downtown Sacramento last week and walked a lot and even seemed to have a good time. By the end of the day they had 10 miles in and they sure as heck smelled like it.

Now, I don't enjoy the smell too much, but doods, have you ever licked a person who's walked 10 miles? They taste like a potato chip! And I like licking potato chips when I can get away with it. It's not as good as licking Cheetos, but still pretty tasty. If you get a chance, give it a try. It's nothing like licking them on a normal day. That usually tastes like disappointment and crushed dreams.

Okay...back to work, so we can finish this weekend and put an end to the Year of Writing Furiously and get to the Week Where Max Naps While the People Walk.

It's been a month...

Posted by Max | Posted on 7/24/2017 11:59:00 AM

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Well, not a whole month, clearly, but isn't that what people say when they've had, like, 3 weeks crammed with things? "It's been a month..." Yeah, like that.

First, the cold air blowing thingy died. First it wailed, then it screeched, and then it just stopped. The people called someone to look at it, and he was all Star Trek Bones and said, "It's dead, Jim," which was confusing because there's no one here named Jim, and I totally just made that up.

Buddah hogged the cold air...
But it was dead, and the people had to get a whole new one, which took TWO FREAKING WEEKS so we had the hots around here for a bit. There was a tiny cold air blowing thingy in the living room, which made thing bearable, but the rest of the house sucked big fat hairy donkey balls.

We survived. And a few days ago a couple of people showed up to replace the cold air blowing thingy AND the hot air blowing thingy, which meant Buddah and I had to spend an entire day in a bedroom together, which made me 67 kinds of unhappy. It didn't even help when the Woman decided to be nice and sit in the bedroom with us. She watched TV until something happened and it stopped working, and then she read a book, but that still didn't make me happy about being there.

Let me out.
We have cold air now, that's the main thing.

The other thing that we've been doing...for a while now Amazon has not been carrying the print versions of a lot of my books. We still don't know why. We think there's a beef between them and the distributor, but since we could never get a clear answer, the Woman set about getting, at the very least, the paperback editions of The Wick Chronicles back up with a new distributor.

So, they're back. If you wanted a paperback of any of them, just click on the book cover images in the sidebar.

If you wanted a hardback, it looks like you'll either have to go to another online bookstore (like Barnes & Noble) or get them from the Woman. She still has a few copies.

The other other thing we've been doing is working on the first Wick After Dark book. The editor has it right now, but there are some things the Woman isn't quite satisfied with so she's talking about some rewrites. Our original goal was to have it out near the one year anniversary of The Emperor of San Francisco, but I don't think we're going to meet that, especially since it's in about 3 weeks and there's no cover art or editor's notes.

We want to get this right...so we're going to sit down and comb through the part that isn't sitting quite right with the Woman, and then retool it. *I* think it's fine, but she's all, no, this is funny stuff but it doesn't push the story forward. I want to keep the funny stuff, so there may have been a little growling going on here last night.

Just a little bit. And some hissing.

Just a little.

The New Treat Machine

Posted by Max | Posted on 7/06/2017 05:35:00 PM

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Holy nommables, doods. A while back, Kimo & Sabi's person recommended this thing to the Woman, because the Woman was whining about the effort it takes to chop real live fresh dead things into Max-sized bites, so she bought one.

You need this.

This may be the best thing she's ever bought. It made chopping up dead delicious things so easy that I get steak almost every day now, and today she used it on SHRIMP.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00HL3TBDQ
And it's perfect. It shreds everything, so she never worries about me choking an a not-well-chewed bite.

Did I mention that I get treats from it like EVERY DAY? Doods, I'm not not even getting paid or anything to tell you about this. It's just awesome and I think every kitty needs one.

I'm pretty sure people can shred things for themselves in it, too.

If you can't get your people to get one (and they're not even spendy) maybe remember it near Christmas and ask Santa for one.

Now excuse me, I have shrimp to devour.

Doods, doods, doods...!

Posted by Max | Posted on 6/30/2017 06:42:00 PM

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Ok, after crushing my hopes and dreams on my birthday, the Woman said that she had another reason for not letting me get my driver's license on my birthday. Apparently, not everyone passes the test, and she thought that if something went wrong, it would ruin turning 16 for me.

Hell, she went to take hers on her 16th birthday and the testing guy was really mean and yelled a lot, and in the end wouldn't even let her take the test because she didn't know where the high beam indicator light was. A couple days later, he wouldn't let her take it because the tail light on the car was cracked. So she knows about ruined birthdays from driver's exams.

But then...then... she got up super early today, and totally made this happen.


I AM LEGAL, DOODS!!!

Now, I have some money saved up so I have to count it all and then set aside this year's Toys for Tots funds, but I think for once I'm going to spend some on myself and get a new car. I'm pretty sure Amazon sells some spiffy ones, so I know what I'll be doing tonight.

I think I want a convertible, but I'm not set on exactly which one.

And today got even better! She bought real live fresh dead steak for me, and tonight the man grilled it, and then she shredded it so I have steak treats for about a week.

16

Posted by Max | Posted on 6/21/2017 08:19:00 PM

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So. Yesterday was my sweet 16th. I have lived longer than any other cat that the Woman has lived with. She's kinda surprised, given my weight, but she's not going to examine it too much, because...well, why rock the boat?

I was all excited when I got up, because THIS WAS THE DAY! I was going to go to the DMV and get my license. But then the Woman was all, "Sorry, dood, I have to go get my boobies squished," which was fine, because BOOBIES, but when she came back she dosed me with some hard reality.

She sat in her chair and said, "This is where the driver sits. And this--" she pointed at her foot "--is where the accelerator is. Can you sit here and get your foot down that far? Because you have to in order to make the car go."

Well. Damn.

It wasn't even noon and my dreams were shattered.

Still, there was STEAK, which made up for it, and PRESENTS, which were sent by awesome people. Auntie Michelle sent me some crunchy treats, which I didn't get a picture of because I made the Woman open them as soon as I saw them, and they are really good.

But the Woman took pictures when I opened the other present. This one from the Food Lady, my spiffy editor at Mousebreath.


HOOLIGAN IN A CAN!!!


Smells good.


Open it for me. I don't have thumbs.


Holy crap, doods! LOOK AT ALL OF THIS STUFF!!! There's nip and super nip and nip toys and tiny treats to make my breath fresh and a feathery thing that Buddah reallllly wants to get his paws on.


I decided to guard the feathery thing for a while. And get my spit on it. Just to ruin his fun.

Even if I did wind up sharing with Buddah...
 Tonight, there was bacon, so it was like my birthday kept right on going. And there's still more steak! The only disappointment was not getting my driver's license, but I suppose that's all right since I really hate going outside.




Hahaha He had cereal...

Posted by Max | Posted on 6/09/2017 03:42:00 PM

5

The Man passes gas at night, so when he gets home in the morning he's the one who opens a can for us. This morning, he not only opened a can, but he grilled fresh steaks for me.

He had cereal.

Srsly, doods, this is like the best birthday month ever. I'm getting steak treats EVERY DAY, and the people are eating hamburger helper and hot dogs and cereal.

I think they're having pork chops for dinner, but that's fine because I'll probably get a bite of that, too.

So far, so good

Posted by Max | Posted on 6/06/2017 07:01:00 PM

4

Six days into my birthday month and things are awesome. The other night the Man grilled 3 little steaks for the Woman to cut up into treats for me...and then he made Hamburger Helper for them to eat.

Seriously, doods. I got steak, and they got Hamburger Helper.

In other news...in the right sidebar, under my picture, there's a poll and I would very much appreciate it if you guys would answer the question. It's simple: for the Wick After Dark series, would you like to wait for 1 long book, or would you like to get it as 3 novellas (shorter, about 50,000 words each.) The way we're doing it, the final book would essentially have 3 stories with their own ending that merge into each other, so we can do it either way.

So, whatcha like? One long read or three shorter ones?

Please and thank you!

IT'S JUNE!!!

Posted by Max | Posted on 6/01/2017 03:19:00 PM

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You know what that means, right?


IT'S MY BIRTHDAY MONTH!!!

No one really knows exactly what date I was born on, but they guessed it was somewhere between June 10-June 25, so the people picked the 20th to be my birthday. But this is a milestone birthday, so I'm gonna celebrate all month long.

This year I turn sixteen, SIXTEEN. And you know what happens when your turn sixteen?

YOU GET YOUR DRIVER'S LICENSE!

 As soon as I'm done here I'm going to the DMV website to download the manual so I can start studying, and then on my birthday I'm going to suck it up and let the Woman take me outside so I can go there and take the test. And maybe after that we'll go to lunch and then car shopping, because at this stage of my life I totally deserve a convertible.

A red one, I think. Or maybe blue, if I can find one in TARDIS blue.

And now, Shaggy...

Posted by Max | Posted on 5/26/2017 09:17:00 AM

12

Doods. Shaggy. I am leaking.


Shaggy decided to head for the Bridge last night while he was sleeping--which is, honestly, how I would like to go when it's time. But man...he was also one of the really early cat bloggers; he and his bro Scooby started Little Cat Feet in 2005, when the cat blogosphere was just a tiny drop of water in a really big pond (their little brother, Scout, joined them in 2006) and having them around was like gaining a couple of furry bros.

No doubt about it, the party that started for Chey ramped up, and now they're celebrating Shaggy's arrival, and I bet Scooby is like 97 kinds of happy to see him. But here, we're hurting. I know his mom is hurting. We're leaking.

He was a most awesome dood, and he will be missed.

How I'm Working Lately

Posted by Max | Posted on 5/25/2017 12:19:00 PM

12

Like this:


I'm not old enough for some of the things going into the next book. In fact, there are parts the Woman has to write for me, because I have never participated in activities of the bouncy kind, which means I may have to give her a byline. ON THE COVER. But maybe in tiny print, because the rest of it will totally be mine.

And the hardback version of Forked is available now, and I have 10 on hand for those who want pawtographed copies. Just look in the sidebar, just under the picture of the cover. If more than 10 sell, I can get more. I have a few paperback copies, too.

And the biggest thing...

Chey.

I am heartbroken.

Chey was one of The Originals, the long time cat bloggers, of which few are left. I honestly thought I would go to the Bridge before she did, and when the Woman told me that Chey just hadn't bounced back from how awful she's been feeling lately, my heart just cracked.

Chey was going to change the world. Y'all remember when she and Derby ran for President and VP back in 2008? They totally would have won, if not for speciism. They would have made this world a far, far better place. And now it's a little bit dimmer for not having them here.

I now that sooner rather than later I'll see her and all our other friends that have gone on before us, but for now, I'm going to let myself feel sad. Just for a bit. And then I'll have a snack, something fishy because she loved her fishy flakes, and I'll take a nap.

I'll miss you, Chey. But party on. I know there's a massive to-do going on at the Bridge to welcome you there. I can hear it from here, echoing in the space where the sliver of my heart was, the one shaped like you.

The chair is still there...

Posted by Max | Posted on 5/07/2017 10:31:00 PM

4


This was taken in the middle of the night. The lights in the living room were off so the Woman used the flash on her phone, which normally ticks me off but didn't bother me too much this time. She says it makes the picture look like an old Polaroid. I think it just looks like I'm sleepy and want her to go away.
* * * * *
Oh, and I looked at Forked on Amazon, and it looks like they linked the less expensive version to the Kindle version, so it's good to go. We'll work on getting paperback editions of the first two books to show up as being sold by Amazon instead of from 3rd party sellers only this week. BUT YOU'VE READ THEM ALREADY, RIGHT??? Of course you have.