Monday, March 17, 2014

Carol Lynch Williams & Olive and Loki

Who is in the photo at right?

I am Carol Lynch Williams. I write books for middle grade and young adult readers. My beagle is Olive. We got her 18 months ago, when she was a pup. And Loki is a visiting border collie that we may end up keeping as our own. He's about two.

What's the occasion for Coffee with a Canine?

It's been cold and rainy and I know we're going ot be getting snow again. I always need something sweet on a bitter day. Not only that, my novel The Haven is coming out any moment. Gotta celebrate!

What's brewing?

Hot chocolate. Creamy, sweet, dollop of sweet whipped cream. Yum. I'll have a large, please.

Any treats for you or Olive and Loki on this occasion?

By now Olive has begged anything she get from anyone who will listen. She's pretty friendly. Loki is sitting next to me, patiently waiting. I'll share some of my bagel with cream cheese. Yup, you're seeing a fattening trend going on here. Cream. Cream cheese. Better throw some butter on there. Sweet. Yum.

How did your dogs get their names? Any aliases?

When Olive came to live with us, she was so tiny. We went through several names for her, and finally decided Olive because it just seemed right. Her nickname is Salty Dog. We got her from rescue. They thought she was a full-blown beagle, but nope. I think she has some chihauhau in her as she loves to burrow and she hasn't grown very large.

Loki is on loan from a friend who is out of town. He's a rescue dog as well. He started out one name, got the name Sirius (from Harry Potter) and then, when he was adopted a third time, he was named Loki after Thor's half brother. He's a fabulous dog. But he barks too much.

How were you and your dogs united?

The best dog in the world, Violet, was killed when she was hit by a car. We missed her terribly. Still do. Violet nipped at any of the boys she didn't like when they came to visit my daughters. One day my oldest daughter went to PetSmart and there she ran into the dog rescue people. She bought Olive, as a tiny puppy a day later.

Please tell us about your new novel, The Haven.

Shiloh lives at Haven Hospital and Halls, a school for the terminally ill. No one ever gets well. As memories of surgery, a stranger and odd events tap at her brain, Shiloh is approached by Gideon. He talks of rebellion. Gideon wants freedom for the Terminals. But Shiloh isn't sure she can do what needs to be done to help save herself and her schoolmates.

How do your dogs help--and hinder--your writing?

Loki knocks my hands out of the way when I try to type on the computer. He's pretty strong. He'll also lay his head on the keyboard. Things can get pretty spitty. I have to send him out. Olive sits in the chair behind me so she is warm and so am I.

Have any actual dogs inspired fictional dogs in your books?

There are animals in many of my novels. But Violet (the nipper) actually inspired the dog Thelma in Signed, Skye Harper, a book that comes out in June.

Squirrel, postman, cat....?

All three. Please. And children.

Who are Olive and Loki's best pet-pals?

Abbey, another rescue dog. Abbey is Olive's cousin. The three love each other and wrestle till I want to pull my hair out. Then they fall in odd places to rest until they have energy to wrestle and bark and nip and fight again.

What is each dog's best quality?

Olive loves to talk, loves people, loves to be petted, loves to be held. She also loves to eat.
Loki is a good guard dog, gives hugs when you come in after a long day and always looks likes he's smiling.

If Olive and Loki could change one thing about you, what would it be?

They would have me give them free access to whatever we are eating. And fridge privileges.

If Hollywood made a movie about your life in which Olive and Loki could speak, which actors should do their voices?

Sandra Bullock for Olive. But she'd have to do some whining. And Loki. Paul Rudd.

If Olive and Loki could answer only one question in English, what would you ask them?

Vets are saying you guys really don't have emotion. Do you? And can you tell me how to finish this novel?

Visit Carol Lynch Williams's website.

--Marshal Zeringue

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