Monday, October 10, 2016

Mike Nemeth & Sophie

Who is in the photo at right?

Hi, I’m Mike Nemeth and the pretty face with the deep brown eyes is Sophie. Like me, she’s a mixed breed of unknown components, and like me, she’s never met a human she didn’t find interesting, although I have to admit that Sophie is far more popular. While I write books (Cinderella’s Slipper, Defiled and soon, Absolved), Sophie protects my wife and me from all the other critters in the neighborhood.

What’s the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Sophie and I begin each day with a cup of coffee and a doggy treat in our backyard to cleanse our minds, and our territory, so we can be productive at our respective tasks. We’d drive to a coffee house if it weren’t for Sophie’s aversion to cars. She knows they too often lead to the vet’s office or the doggy hotel.

What’s brewing?

Gevalia Vanilla Latte most mornings, no sweetener. Sometimes Colombian.

Any treats?

Sophie always gets a bone. Sometimes my treat is my wife joining us for our morning ritual.

How were you and Sophie united?

Sophie was abandoned as a puppy and wandered into my brother-in-law’s yard to drink at his fountain. She was emaciated and near death. My brother-in-law texted us a picture and said, “Can you take one more?” At the time we had three other rescue dogs, all of whom are now in doggy heaven. We couldn’t resist Sophie’s sad brown eyes. And we still hang that original photo on our wall.

How did your dog get her name?

We thought Sophie’s svelte figure, ahem, deserved a name often given to beautiful actresses.

Does Sophie help or hinder your writing?

Sophie finds a sunny spot beside my desk and basks until it’s time to remind me to take a break from writing. Then we take a walk and the next writing scene becomes clear. Write, walk and think. Write, walk and think. That’s how we produce a book together.

Has Sophie inspired any fictional dogs?

No, but what a great idea. She’ll be in the next book!

Cat, postman, squirrel…

The cat on the other side of the cul-de-sac tortures Sophie constantly, walking around Sophie’s yard, lying in the street as though he owns the territory. Sophie watches from the dining room window and emits a constant low growl. I think the relationship works for both of them.

Ball, squeaky toy, stick…

Stuffed animals. At the moment she has a huge blue and white teddy bear that she drags from room to room, stopping to rip holes and distribute the stuffing.

Who is Sophie’s best pet pal?

Charlie, our next door neighbor’s poodle, comes for play dates. Hercules, our daughter’s Chihuahua, often comes to stay but Sophie is jealous of the lap time Hercules gets. Sophie is not built for laps. But Sophie’s best friends are the young kids on the street.

What is Sophie’s best quality?

Sophie knows how to chill. She’s fiercely loyal and loving and wants to meet everyone who comes to the door. She’s gentle (except for cats).

If Sophie could change one thing about Georgians, what would it be?

Stop testing that infernal bad weather warning siren. It drives her crazy.

If Sophie could answer only one question in English, what would you ask her?

Why do you hide your bones when you are the only dog in the house?

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Sophie could speak, who would voice her?

Kathy Bates. I think Sophie would love to sound menacing to cats and squirrels. Think: Misery.

What advice would Sophie give if asked?

It’s a wonderful life, so just chill and enjoy it. Like I do.

Visit Mike Nemeth's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

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