For as long as I can remember, I've had imaginary people living in my head. Odd people, some would say, weird people. Wizards, cyborgs, mercenaries and cats...lots of cats---shape shifting cats, talking cats and telepathic cats. After continual nagging from this bazaar cast of characters inside me, I decided to unleash them on the world in my science fiction and fantasy stories. I'm an collector of not only books and cats, but also of experiences. I rode in rodeos, drove racecars and flew airplanes. All good experience for being a writer.
Like the young veterinarian in Hip Deep in Dragons, I encourage everyone to be a responsible pet parent and have your cat or dog spayed or neutered. And adopt a shelter pet. Far too many of these beautiful fur children are in need of forever homes. Anyone who says these are just "dumb animals" has never lived with a pet. Each one is an individual--with distinct personalities, quirks and desires. And they are, in their own way intelligent--as anyone who's attempted to hide the bag of catnip from a feline junkie or contain an escape artist dog can attest. Once we brought these sentient beings into our homes, provided them with food and safety so that they no longer have to fight for their survival, their furry little minds have been freed up to think up the most devious schemes to entertain, baffle and horrify us.