Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Why the Dowager Feline Would Get Published if She were Human

As many of my blog followers know, I have an aged cat named Clancy. She is 18 years old and quite feisty. She's survived three major moves across state lines. According to our new vet, she has a feisty personality. I agree. In fact, her recent health scare and subsequent healing has led to our discovering many interesting qualities about Clancy.

Before her illness, we only fed the Dowager Feline dry food. But upon the vet's orders, we switched Clancy over to wet cat food. She loves it. In fact, Clancy's become a wet cat food addict. And she's not just addicted to all wet cat food. No. She only prefers certain flavors and textures of wet cat food. And she'll stop at nothing to get exactly what she wants.

Our Dowager Feline has developed amazing powers of persistence in achieving this goal. If she were a human and a writer, I bet she'd use these powers of persistence to get published.

Here are some of the Dowager Feline's methods and how a writer might utilize them:

1) The cat food is dispensed in my laundry room. Dowager Feline is deaf, but has excellent vision. She waits by the open door, which is directly across from our bedroom, and when I get up to get a glass of water, she meows for food. A writer might use a similar technique by continuing to be close to the publication door so when it opens, she can zip her MS through it.

Focus on the prize!

2) If the Dowager Feline sees me and I don't respond right away, she thinks nothing of finding another household member to meow at, very loudly, until that person goes into the laundry room to feed her. A writer needs to remember that when one person rejects her, she should immediately target another agent/editor with her work.

Focus on casting a wide net. 

3) The Dowager Feline knows my paths within the house. She knows the main areas I spend the majority of my time and she haunts them. She also travels my path. A writer needs to know her publishers and agents. She needs to read their blogs, learn their habits, look for interviews and know what they are seeking.

Focus on understanding the writing business.

4) The Dowager Feline does not eat food she doesn't like. She stubbornly refuses to eat only a few kinds of flavors. And she employs the first three techniques till she gets what she wants. Period. A writer needs to know that she deserves what she's seeking. She should walk away from negative, distasteful commentary or critique and she should also walk away from stinky deals that ask her to lower her standards.

Focus on quality and positive feedback.

5) The Dowager Feline always comes and spends time with me after she receives what she wants and fills her belly. She is sweet and cuddly and thanks me by keeping me company and purring very loudly. A writer needs to thank the people who help her along the way to achieving her goals. 

Focus on creating a positive image.

We writers can learn a lot from the Dowager Feline, Clancy. And now, off I go to feed my current cat owner.



7 comments:

Wendy Marcus said...

Great post! As usual. Entertaining and informative!

My husband had a cat who only ate the meat flavors of Fancy Feast and the fish flavors of Amore. If you put anything else down, she wouldn't touch it. Well, except for when we ran out of cat food and gave her some canned tuna!

Gwen Hernandez said...

Awesome post, Christine. You come up with the best analogies!

Angie Paxton said...

The Dowager Feline. I love that! I have no idea what this cat looks like and can still totally picture her. Maybe she could be your agent. Sounds like she's got all the tools for it. If only editors spoke cat.

Martha W said...

Once again Christine you have amazed me. This is a great post. I lol'd, earning weird looks from my co-workers... :) Clancy rocks.

Christine said...

Hi Everyone--thanks for your comments. Yes, the Dowager Feline is an elegant beast. I think I will have to post her picture on the blog. And maybe I should hire her and force all the editors to learn Cat Talk :-)

Persistence is the key.

Louisa Cornell said...

What a terrific post Christine! I think the Dowager Cat should teach a writing workshop. And you are obviously fluent in cat as you interpreted her message beautifully. Loved it and I will take her writing advice to heart!

Christine said...

Hi Louisa--I think having the Dowager Feline teach a class would be fun. Perhaps I shall have her put together a powerpoint presentation and I'll submit to the writing chapters I belong to for review. She is a very astute feline.

:-)