Today we welcome Darlene Franklin as she shares insights about her latest story. Read through to the end to find out how to enter the giveaway.
With a collection as broad as kittens, where did I start to craft a story?
I wanted to write a third retold-fairy tale (to go with Cinderella’s Boot and Mermaid’s Song), so I quickly decided on base my plot loosely around the classic story, Puss N Boots. But how to do it?
As soon as I read the story, I pictured a tiny white kitten sitting atop a pair of floppy fisherman’s boots. His father leaves the hero a ramshackle shack and a rundown fishing boat for his inheritance. “Bootsie” creates some romantic magic for her hero throughout the story.
Bootsie sat in front of a shack teetering on the edge of a place I had passed hundreds of times, back and forth to my parents’ home in East Boothbay, Maine. So I decided to send my hero to my home, East Boothbay, Maine.
Rather than looking through for popular contemporary names, I used the middle name of my brand-new great-granddaughter (Alyvia) with her mother’s middle name (Bailey).
On top of that, my heroine spends her summers in her parents’ house so she can rent her home in town to holiday goers. My parents rented out the top floor of their home every summer for years. Add my deep love for all things feline, and Of Cash and Cats is one of the most personal of all my stories to date.
What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?
This past year my health has taken a downturn, to the point where I kept wondering if God wanted me to stop. Every time I asked God, He gave me more to do! But it wasn’t getting down. I figured out it wasn’t whether I should write, but how I went about it. I make a point of taking a break every 45-60 minutes to rest my eyes and arms and don’t force myself to work when I’m tired. So far it’s working.
Do you prefer cats or dogs? Why?
I wrote a novella for Love Comes on Kitten Paws. Does that answer your question?!
I love a cat’s co-dependence. They don’t need me, but they like being with me. And there is nothing so comforting as a cat’s soft purr.
What hobbies do you have?
I love adult coloring and journaling. My family bought me a Bible with journaling space on each page and hundreds of pictures to color. I’m loving it! I also enjoy word search books.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Best-selling Amazon and ECPA author Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she continues to write from a nursing home. She keeps going because God keeps giving her more assignments. She’s written more than fifty-five fiction and nonfiction books, including Pray Through the Bible in a Year (https://amzn.to/2GOZUVz) and Of Cash and Cats in Love Comes on Kitten Paws (https://amzn.to/2Lf3hIN).
OF CASH AND CATS
But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
1 Samuel 16:7 NIV
East Boothbay, Maine
Alyvia Bailey hummed to herself as she jogged up the last rise before the road dipped and ran by the ocean inlet. She always enjoyed this view of the quiet coastal town. Not that she needed the sight of the quietly rippling waters to let her know she was near salt water. The briny, fishy tang of every breath she took told her that. The caw of the seagulls overhead told her, too.
She paused for a second at the crest. As she expected her cat, Thomas, sauntered past, tail waving in the air, both question and invitation.
She headed for the post office, although her gray tiger cat didn’t follow her. When she finished her errand, she stepped outside to see the cat had disappeared. She walked to her next stop, the Coffee Shack.
“Want your usual, Alyvia?” Joey Morrow called from behind the counter.
“Just a minute,” she said. “I’m looking for Thomas.”
“He’ll know where to find ya,” Joey said.
But if Thomas had found something interesting enough to interrupt his morning’s treat at the coffee shop, Alyvia wanted to know what it was. He was handy at finding trash she could convert into treasure for use in her ministry to transients who appeared in town from time to time. Or perhaps there was someone she needed to help. Their numbers frequently rose during the summer. “I’ll be right back.”
She stepped into the cool summer morning and called, “Thomas? Thomas?” Heading away from the coffee shop, she heard a faint meow and followed the sound. When the volume increased growling and hissing a few seconds later, she broke into a full-out run. What she found brought on a full-throated laugh.
Thomas sat nonchalantly licking his paw, satisfied that he had brought the thing making all the racket to Alyvia’s attention. A tiny white kitten, maybe a month old, hissed in its tiny voice, hair standing on end so it looked like a puffer fish. The kitten was guarding its territory—a pair of old fisherman’s boots—with everything it had..
Alyvia was so busy studying the kitten that she failed to notice its owner until he scooped up the kitten in his large human paws. “What’s the problem, Bootsie? That tomcat is only playing with you.”
Thomas stopped licking his paws and blinked as if in agreement. The kitten licked the man’s fingers, and he pet it—her?—gently. “You’re fine.”
READERS, tell us about your favorite pet to be entered in the drawing for an ebook copy of “Of Cash and Cats”.