If it’s June 26, 2020, it must take your dog to work day!
Under ‘normal’ circumstances on a Friday, I would be working from home. Since we went under lock-down in my area in late March, things have been far from the norm.
This year the last Friday in June, which falls on June 26, I’ve booked the day off as a vacation day (I have my doubts I’ll use all of my allotted vacation time before the end of the year). However; I’ll still be working in a sense.
This afternoon, I’m doing a reading from one of my adult (not that kind of adult material for you people with dirty minds – and even if it were, I would choose a PG13 rated passage) novels for Seniors Centre Without Walls. Best of all, the only requirement is I have a phone. A conference call is the order of the day. I like that even better.
So what does this have to do with taking your dog to work today? Well, nothing really, except I am taking my sweet Buddy with me when I do the reading. He can sit in my lap whilst I read and answer questions. At least I hope there are questions from the virtual audience.
Here’s my sweet boy. He travels well – doesn’t trash hotel rooms, bark a lot or have accidents indoors – home or away. This picture was taken at St. Hubert in Quebec City.
On days I’m working from home, he’s usually in the kitchen with me. Sometimes he wears my phone headset but as cute as he is, he’s rubbish at taking my calls.
My Buddy even has his own book. Well, in that I wrote it and he and his four fantastic furry friends star in it.
Miracle on 34th Street meets Sleepless in Seattle…
Toronto business consultant, Serenity Layne, knew the only person she could depend on was herself. Busy with her career, she has no time for other pursuits and life’s intangibles
Widowed for three years, Roger Scott, a data security specialist in Quebec City, is a single parent to his ten-year-old son, Adam.
On a day out on the Plains of Abraham with their black Labrador Retriever, Roger’s cell phone rings incessantly. Adam has played matchmaker and put his father’s profile on a number of online dating sites.
The week before Christmas, Serenity is heading up a series of meetings after a six-month study of the Canadian retail chain, jonathans. After an unpleasant encounter with one of the store managers, she escapes from the boardroom of the Château Frontenac Hotel, only to be bowled over by Roger and Adam’s dog.
Guilty over the accident, Roger invites Serenity out for a drink by way of apology. Over the course of the week, and spending time together, feelings long dormant for Roger are re-awakened. At the same time, emotions foreign to Serenity fill her with contentment and happiness.
Hilary Dunbar is a uniformed constable with the Vancouver Police with an agenda to rid the streets of drugs, especially the bad ones the notorious dealer, Carlos Navarra, is trafficking.
Heroin addict, Erik Layne, has lived on the streets of Gastown for as long as he can remember, having left home and Toronto as a rebellious teenage addict. His and Hilary’s paths cross when she finds him unconscious in an alley after injecting a batch of the contaminated drug. He must fight for his life to keep from dying, not only from the tainted smack but also from the man who provided it.
A domestic disturbance call goes wrong, and Hilary suffers life-changing injuries as a result. As luck would have it, she and Erik are hospitalized in the same ward at Vancouver General Hospital. When she sinks into a deep depression, it’s he who pulls her out of her doldrums.
But will Hilary’s obsession with bringing down Navarra and others like him destroy their relationship and, more importantly, jeopardize their lives?
Or did they both receive an award?
Drum roll, please …
And the survey says!!!
I received the ‘official notification’ at 11:11 a.m. Of course, the 15th would fall on a day that I’m working in the office rather than from home. When I’m at home, I don’t have to maintain a sense of decorum like I do at work.
Well, without further ado, let me shout it from the rooftops that both It Happened on Dufferin Terrace and It Happened in Gastown won the “Recommended Read” award for 2020!
While this isn’t my official badge yet, I did take the liberty of using my handy-dandy snipping tool and extract it from the header of all the badges in a previous blog post.
Yippie!!! I’m happy dancing in my chair and shouting (under my breath) from the rooftops!
June 15th is only a few short days away. It’s almost time for the announcement of the 2020 Author Shout Reader Ready Awards.
I’m both excited and nervous. The two books I entered have made it this far. Will they have what it takes to be a winner? I sure hope so.
Both books were fun to write. Old Quebec City, where It Happened on Dufferin Terrace is set, is one of my favourite cities in Canada to visit and until this year, have done so regularly. I’m not sure if a visit this coming November will happen or not. It will be a waiting game, thanks to COVID-19.
Ah, the majestic Hotel Chateau Frontenac. It’s such an impressive structure any time, but especially when viewed from across the river. The huge castle-like building stands guard over the city from atop the cliff.
Remember the movie Miracle on 34th street, where Doris had lost faith in the world and brought her daughter up, not believing in fantasies? That’s where I got the inspiration for my character, Serenity.
Roger, a widowed father with a precocious son, came to me through the film Sleepless in Seattle.
The other book, It Happened in Gastown, set in one of the older neighbourhoods of Vancouver, in particular, was researched thanks to Google maps. I did cross an item off my bucket list when I went there in 2019 to ensure what I had written was accurate. Four days on the train to the fair city, four days there and four back.
Google is a fantastic resource, but you don’t get the full effect looking at a city virtually. I’m glad I went. I loved the train trip (a bonus). As far as neighbourhoods go, I was spot on. 🙂
The steam clock on Water Street in Gastown, Vancouver was the impetus for the second book in the series. I first saw it on info breaks on Knowledge Network between programs and watching the CBC television series, DaVinci’s Inquest.
Stay tuned. As soon as the results are received, I’ll be shouting from the rooftops, or sobbing in a corner. Let’s hope I’m shouting.
My Scottish roots and writing by Melanie Robertson-King