Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Jody Casella & Zooey

Who is in the photo at right?

I'm Jody Casella, author of the young adult novel Thin Space, mother of two, and multi-daily dog walker of Zooey, a brilliant, hyper, mixed-breed rescue dog.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

We're starting the day off how we always do--Zooey and me--with her snoozing on the couch and me sucking down the first of several cups of cheap, yet strong, coffee.

What's brewing?

What happened to be the least expensive brand in the supermarket this week: Maxwell House French Roast with skim milk and one Splenda.

Any treats for you or Zooey on this occasion?

Me. Nothing. Zooey gets my son's old sneaker.

How did Zooey get her name?

We have an old cranky cat named Zelda and decided we'd keep the Z trend going. I'd like to tell you that these names are literary-related (Zelda Fitzgerald. J. D. Salinger's Franny and Zooey.) But I'd be lying.

How were you and Zooey united?

I did not want a dog. Honestly, I have been scared of dogs all my life. But last year my oldest child went off to college and my youngest child started a campaign for a puppy. I am not exaggerating when I say was dragged to the pound to pick one out. Then, I saw Zooey. It's ridiculous and sappy and silly, but I felt an instant bond. She's my dog.

Are there any Zooey-inspired dogs in your fiction?

No. But there should be.

Does Zooey do more to help or hinder your writing?

Both. On the positive side, she gets me out of my pajamas and out of the house. (I walk her at least three times per day.) These walks, I've found, give my bleary, computer-burned eyes a rest and help me work through plot holes. The negative: she scares the crap out of me sporadically whenever she sees a person walking outside, another animal, the mailman... Zooey takes her job as head of household security seriously.

Who are Zooey's best pet-pals?

Zooey has a boyfriend named Guster. He lives around the block and she adores having play dates with him.

Where is Zooey's favorite outdoor destination?

See above. Gus's house.

Squeaky toy, ball, stick...?

Punctured, deflated soccer ball.

Cat, postman, rabbit...?

Postman. Some day I think the truth will be revealed--that the man is living a double life as a psychotic serial killer. If only we had believed Zooey's warnings.

If Zooey could change one thing about you, what would it be?

Lately, my crazy travel schedule, which puts a major crimp in our couch sitting/dog walking habit.

What is Zooey's best quality?

Her puckery, crinkled forehead and floppy ears that plainly show her love for me.

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

The actress who does the voice in Tangled. Mandy Moore?

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

"Oh Zooey, why why why must you lose your sweet, loving mind and try to attack the mailman every $*%&# day?"

(Apologies to the mailman, but maybe I already know the answer to this question?)

Visit Jody Casella's website, Facebook page, and Twitter perch.

--Marshal Zeringue

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