Monday, June 7, 2010

Lori Handeland & Elwood

Who is in the photo at right?

Lori Handeland and Elwood.

Lori Handeland is a two time RITA Award winner and the New York Times bestselling author of the paranormal romance series, The Nightcreature Novels, as well as the urban fantasy series, The Phoenix Chronicles, as well as the June 2010 release, Shakespeare Undead.

Her yellow lab, Elwood, is 11 years old.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

Elwood always protects the door when Lori is writing. Every day he follows her around until she sits at her computer, then curls up between her and the door. Sometimes IN the door. So no one goes in or out.

What's brewing?

Green Mountain Breakfast blend and a lot of it.

Any goodies to go with the coffee?

Isn't coffee good enough?

Any treat for Elwood on this occasion?

Elwood gets one tiny milk bone in the morning before we settle down to work.

How were you and Elwood united?

Elwood is the nephew of our first lab, Jake. When Jake went to the big dog bed in the sky, we wanted another lab since Jake had been so good with our two boys. We returned to the place we'd bought him and low and behold, Jake's sister had just had puppies. It was fate.

Does Elwood have any influence on your writing?

I have put Elwood into a few stories. There is the gun shy hound dog in A Sheriff in Tennessee. Elwood does NOT like guns. There are also the twin labs in Doctor, Doctor, named Jake and Elwood.

How did Elwood get his name? Does he have any aliases?

When we had our first dog, Jake (who was actually named after the hero in my first book, Second Chance) people would ask "where's Elwood?" So it was a natural progression.

I call him Zippy. He barks a lot, and I say "zip it!" Which led to the nickname.

Where is Elwood's favorite place for an outing?

He loves to go to a local dog park and run through the woods.

Squirrel, cat, postman...?

Loves (hates) them all. In his younger days he would jump 6 feet off the ground after squirrels. He still tries to catch them. He thinks cats are indoor squirrels and behaves the same. The highlight of his day is to chase the mailman from window to window, barking as if he would eat the man's liver if given the chance.

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

None. He is the only lab I've ever known that refuses to fetch anything.

Who is Elwood's best pet-pal?

His "cousin" Copper. (My husband's brother's dog.) They are about the same age and will run around and around the yard chasing each other until they both collapse. Which is a lot sooner than it used to be.

What is Elwood's best quality?

Undying loyalty to his family.

What is Elwood's proudest moment? His most embarrassing?

Proudest--the mailman IS scared of him.

Embarrassing--he thinks the deer on the hunting shows are IN the TV. He barks at them, then chases them around the TV and is always so shocked not to find them there. He's been doing this for years and still hasn't figured it out.

Lori Handeland's website.

--Marshal Zeringue