Monday, July 1, 2013

Ann Bonwill & Arthur

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Ann Bonwill, picture book writer, and this is Arthur T. Dog, canine wonder. Arthur is a 7 year old male Cardigan Welsh Corgi (picture Queen Elizabeth's lovelies, but with a tail).

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

We're celebrating the release of my new book, When Mermaids Sleep. Arthur's favorite part is the fairies sleeping in flowers, since his ancestors served as fairy steeds.

What's brewing?

I am a tea drinker - preferably strong mint. Arthur will drink anything - preferably muddy puddle.

Any treats for you or Arthur on this occasion?

I'll have a scone with clotted cream and jam, in honor of Arthur's birthplace. He'd like chicken and cheese, but since he's a long dog and needs to watch his weight (back problems) he gets canned green beans instead.

How did Arthur get his name? Any nicknames?

Arthur seemed like an appropriate name for a Welsh dog favored by royalty. His "official" name is Kilvroch Be A Clown, and he certainly is one! Arthur has many nicknames, including T-Dog and Fuzzy-Nose. He's also been called Rabbit by curious children. My husband wanted to name him Thunder Scar, which couldn't be more inappropriate given his scaredy cat ways.

How were you and Arthur united?

We got Arthur as a puppy [photo right: Arthur the puppy] while we were living in England. He's from a show dog family, but because of his slight stature and turned out feet, he was not deemed "show quality." He's star quality to us (and to the judges who awarded him first place for "friendliest puppy who doesn't jump up!"). When leaving his first family he cried all the way home. We cheered him up by composing a song for him, which we often sing to this day.

Does Arthur do more to help or to hinder your creativity?

Arthur helps my creativity by making me laugh every day. He warms my feet in the winter, and he sometimes pushes me out of the bed which allows for late night writing fests.

Who are Arthur's best pet-pals?

Arthur does a friendship dance with any dog we meet on our walks. Excited-Anxious-Excited-Anxious he's like a pogo stick and knows nothing of playing it cool.

Squeaky toy, ball, stick...?

Squeaky toy - specifically Katie's Bumpers.

Cat, postman, squirrel...?

Most definitely squirrel. He is oblivious to all others, including giant pheasants walking across his path in England and herds of roving rabbits in Germany.

What is Arthur's best quality?

Loyalty. Arthur is steadfast and true. In proper herding dog fashion, he doesn't like to let any of us out of his sight, and he prefers the whole family to be in the same room (everyone on different floors drives him to distraction).

If Arthur could change one thing about Virginians, what would it be?

Our weather. He's not much for the heat, and salt laden snow hurts his paws. He'd also like for us to take more walks, play more tug-of-war, and drop more food.

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Arthur could speak, which actor should do his voice?

Face to face, Woody Allen. Behind a closed door, Samuel L. Jackson.

If Arthur could answer only one question in English, what would you ask him?

Why do you lick ____ (the couch, our toes, the dishwasher, insert anything stationary here)?

Visit Ann Bonwill's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

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