Monday, April 12, 2010

Caitlin Crews & Faye

Who is in the photo at right?

It turns out that I take most of the pictures around here, so there are very few of me and the pets! So this picture is about a year old, but it's still pretty much life as I know it. That's a picture in our old apartment with two of our cats (a brother and sister named Puck and Ariel), me, our current dog Faye, and, over there in the corner, our old and much-beloved dog Jake who died just about a year ago. (We miss him!) Faye is (as far as we know) a Basenji mix, according to some Basenji owners we met in a dog park. We don't really know. She looks Egyptian to me, and acts more like a fox or a cat than a dog. She's about four years old. I'm Caitlin Crews and I write books--that's what I'm doing in the picture. Editing, by the looks of it. I'm currently writing my fourth romance novel for Harlequin Presents, but I've also written a bunch of other novels under my other name, Megan Crane.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

If I am working, there is caffeine--lots of it. Vats of it! And wherever I go, so goes Faye. She prefers to be surgically attached whenever possible. She's a needy one--but awfully cute.

What's brewing?

My favorite coffee in the world is probably hazelnut, with a nice, thick creamer so the whole thing tastes like the sweetest, richest dessert in the world--but packs a punch!

Any goodies to go with the coffee?

I work at home, so I have to be careful with the goodies--I have far too much unimpeded access to the fridge. But if it's chocolate, I want it. If it's chocolate and in the house? It will be in my mouth.

Any treat for your dog on this occasion?

Faye just likes to be nearby. She doesn't need treats, she just needs to have her people in her line of sight. She keeps watch. She chooses vantage points throughout the house so as to best keep her vigil. Right now, as I write this, she is about two inches from my right foot beneath my desk.

How were you and Faye united?

Friends of ours adopted her brother, Gus, from a rescuer a few years back but the rescuer loved Faye so much she couldn't bear to give her up. But then time marched on and the rescuer felt that Faye would do better in a house with fewer foster dogs. So she asked our friends and they thought that Faye would do well with us. I knew within an hour that she was our dog--and that was that! I've included a picture of Faye and her tan-colored, silly-faced brother--he looks absolutely nothing like her, but they have the exact same mannerisms.

Does Faye have any influence on your writing?

She's always watching it happen. She keeps me honest... and industrious!

How did Faye get her name? Does she have any aliases?

I don't know where she got the name, but it suits her!

Squirrel, cat, postman...?

She's the most people-oriented dog I've ever met. She doesn't care about any of those things--though, that said, she is not a fan of anyone knocking on the front door. That's the only time she really makes any noise. Other than that, she's a very, very quiet dog. She is just starting to loosen up and communicate a bit more--she now yawns pointedly. Yes. That's her big communication accomplishment.

Tennis ball, stick, squeaky-toy...?

Nope. She only wants a toy when another dog is visiting and she wants to indicate who's boss. Otherwise, she just wants to be as close as possible to her humans.

Who is Faye's best pet-pal?

I've included a picture of Faye with Tigger, the elder cat in our home. I don't know that they're pals, necessarily, but they share a sunbeam from time to time.

What is Faye's best quality?

She's ridiculously smart, but she also dances on her back feet and waves her front paws in the air when she gets excited. I love that she's both quick and goofy all at once!

What is your dog's proudest moment so far? Her most embarrassing?

Faye is far too dignified to embarrass herself. So I do it for her--I make her wear embarrassing hats sometimes, and also, I'll admit it, a raincoat because she REALLY doesn't like the rain.

And her proudest moment comes every night when she manages to wedge herself in between my husband and me in the bed. As you can see in the Christmas photo with my husband and me, she's a mad licker and she likes to be in the middle. She can't be stopped!

Caitlin Crews' new book is Pure Princess, Bartered Bride.

She has made her home in places as far-flung as York, England, and Atlanta, Georgia. She was raised near New York City, has backpacked in Zimbabwe, been on safari in Botswana, and visited tiny villages in Namibia.

She currently lives in California, with her animator/comic-book artist husband.

Megan Crane, her alter ego, graduated from Vassar College and got her MA and PhD in literature from the University of York in England. Her books include Names My Sisters Call Me.

Visit the official Caitlin Crews website and blog.

--Marshal Zeringue