Friday, July 20, 2007

Great Big Blog Party 40 - Nancy the Cat Slayer!

Today's Guest Blogger isn't a writer herself but she is a great friend of a couple of writers - myself and Anne McAllister. Particularly Anne McAllister with whom she has been friend s for years. So it was through Anne that I first met Nancy (who didn't then have her nickname 'The Cat Slayer' ) when the BM and I went to visit Anne in her home some years ago. I visited Nancy then and had tea with her and her cute Beagle , Arrow and her Cat of Some Substance - Big Bart.

Then earlier this year, when Anne and the BM and I met up in Dublin, to do a research trip around Ireland, Nancy joined us and traveled with us as we went from Dublin to Galway and Galway to Ballyvolane - and it was at Ballyvolane that we met Archie the biggest cat in County Cork and it was also there that nancy tranmogrified into Nancy the Cat Slayer right before our eyes!

Now for fear anyone would take the name seriously, let me assure you that Nancy would never harm any creature. It was after I had taken several photographs of her - and Archie - in the sitting room at Ballyvolane that we looked back at them and realised that in several she was holding a ceremonial curved knife that had been on display and she had picked up to look at - while she was doing so, along came Archie - and the resulting photos make it look as she is indeed enticing him towards the wicked blade - and so Nancy the Cat Slayer she became known as ever since.

But in the interests of balance, I've also included a photo of Nancy as her lovely self. She was an asset on the research trip - a calming voice in times of crisis, an easy going companion no matter where we wanted to go and see , an intrepid explorer of the wild and wet and windy gardens of Ballyvolane House whien the rest of us were more inclined to hug the fireside while the rain lashed against the windows.As a result of this she was the only one of us to see the Ballyvolane donkeys, which I'm deply envious of.
So here's Nancy The Cat Slayer
I had the distinct privilege of accompanying Kate Walker and Anne
McAllister on a "research trip" to Ireland. I am here to report that Kate
had her nose to the grindstone at all times - except when she was protecting
the cats of Ireland from the notorious " International Cat Slayer." (That's
me.) The International Cat Slayer will be travelling to Canada tomorrow, so
I hope she has warned all Canadian cats to be on their guard. (Actually I
am not a cat slayer - I was caught on film, by Kate, in a very compromising
position with a cat. I do like cats, and have a lovely cat of my own.

A cat of great girth called Bart.)

It is most interesting to follow writers around as they do research.

What they call work, most of us think of as leisure activity, which makes
one wonder how they define work? I really do know that Kate and Anne work
hard. I have had first hand experience watching them when a character will
not do what he/she needs to do in a book, and have seen them agonize over
the "next scene" or the "last scene" or the sequencing of events in a book,
or an impending deadline when things just aren't coming together.

Since I am leaving for Canada in the morning, and my grandchildren are
visiting me this evening, this will need to be short.

My giveaway could be a book from Anne McAllister and one from Kate Walker.

I will be out of the country, but Arrow can pick the winner because she will be at Anne's house. Arrow has a great "nose" for winners - especially
of the bunny variety.
Again - Happy 50th,
From Kate:
Okay so Nancy's giving away my book - and Anne's (one of them)
If you could go on a research trip with an author, then who would it be and where would you go?


Liz Fielding said...

Hi Nancy!

I'd love to go with Lindsay Davis just about anywhere. Rome, Greece, Petra, perhaps. I adore her books and having listened to her talk, I know she'd be fun.


ilona said...

I would love to go to New Orleans with Sherrilyn Kenyon - I would be on the look out the whole time for one of her great Dark Hunters. LOL

Failing that any writer, anywhere, just to see how the research is really done :)

Sue A. said...

I also picked New Orleans but I decided I'd like to do the research with Anne Rice because I'm sure she would be a character, intereasting and very entertaining and would know everything there is to know about her haunting ground of New Orleans.

Minna said...

I'd love to go with Vicki Lewis Thompson to Hawaii.

Virginia said...

I would love to go with Sandy Blair and we would go to Scotland and visit the Highlands. Also I would love to do research with Constance O'Banyon, but most of her book are written about Texas.

Dena said...

I would go with Bronwyn Jameson, then I could go to Australia,one of my dream distinations since I was very young.Maybe we could hop on down to New Zealand as well.

robynl said...

I would love to go researching with Debbie Macomber. Her bio says she has traveled to places she could only dream about 16 years ago - Hawaii, Alaska, England, Italy, France, Bangkok, Hong Kong. She is so well traveled that she could show me many many interesting places/things.
She writes heartwarming, wholesome stories of love and commitment. Perhaps we could go and research by talking to people from all over the world on their 'love' stories.

Cherie J said...

I would love to go with Christine Feehan just about anywhere. I love her books.

Biddy said...

I would love to go to Maine with Julie Cohen... ok so she would be going home but I have read her books and she makes Maine sound like such a great place to visit.


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