Hi, SEers! Mae here with something a little different—today is Black Cat Appreciation Day. Many of my blogging friends know I have a black rescue cat named Raven. In honor of Raven, all the cats, dogs, and other pets who have writer parents, I thought it would be fun to share about the furry friends who keep us company when we’re working on our craft.
Whether I’m jotting story notes, drafting, or editing, Raven is usually camped out at my desk. When she was a kitten, I had a small desktop bed for her. Now, I convert a drawer into a bed. She has a soft, fluffy blanket covered with cats to ensure she’s comfy (photos below). If I’m on the couch with my Macbook, she often tries to lay in my lap while I’m typing—not ideal, but I know her cuddling will eventually give way to her curling up beside me.
Many writers have pets. And many famous writers loved cats—including Charles Dickens, Mark Twain, Raymond Chandler, T. S. Eliot, Cleveland Armory, and Ernest Hemingway to name a few. Even if you’re not a cat lover, you’re likely familiar with Hemingway’s Key West home, and the six-toed felines who wander his estate. Descended from his cat, Snowball, there are between forty and fifty “polydactyl” cats who freely roam Hemmingway’s home. How I would love to visit!
As writers, we often find ourselves battling interruptions—phone calls, texts, inquisitive or talkative family members, TV (depending on where you’re working). I’m sure some of you have cats, dogs, or other pets who crave attention, want to play fetch, go for a walk, bat around a squeaky toy, or are vocal when it’s feeding time. But for the most part pets are companions who simply want to hang out with us while we work.
In honor of Black Cat Appreciation Day,
enjoy these quotes about cats from famous writers:
“Authors like cats because they are such quiet, lovable, wise creatures, and cats like authors for the same reasons.” ~ Robertson Davies
“Books. Cats. Life is good.” ~ Edward Gorey
“I wish I could write as mysterious as a cat.” ~ Edgar Allan Poe
“A cat has absolute emotional honesty: human beings, for one reason or another, may hide their feelings, but a cat does not.” ~ Ernest Hemingway
“When a man loves cats, I am his friend and comrade, without further introduction.” ~ Mark Twain
“Cats must have three names—an everyday name such as Peter; a more particular, dignified name, such as Quaxo, Bombalurina, or Jellyorum; and, thirdly, the name the cat thinks up for himself, his deep and inscrutable, singular Name.” ~ T. S. Eliot
And lest this post be solely about cats (even though it is Black Cat Appreciation Day), for those of you with lovable, loyal dogs, there were/are many famous authors equally devoted to canine companions—John Steinbeck, Virginia Woolf, Agatha Christie, Dean Koontz, and Stephen King to name a few. Whatever type of pet companion you have, I’m sure he or she has nosed into your writing time in one way or another. Share a few thoughts in the comments. Even if you don’t have a pet at the moment, memories of cherished furry, feathered, or scaly friends are welcome too.
Ready, set, go!