Thursday, August 16, 2007

Chowder is a Cover Girl

I adopted my cat, Chowder, in 1990. She was a kitten, the last of three sisters, and huddled in the back of the cage, alone and terrified. Over the next sixteen years, Chowder survived (though never quite accepted) the arrival of my daughter, the addition of another cat, and feline diabetes. She was a long-haired, green-eyed beauty who, with age, became somewhat of a crank.

But I loved her all the same.

Chowder made an appearance in both of my young adult fantasies, Key to Aten and Return to Aten. After the second book was finished, I sent my editor, Nancy Hammerslough, a picture of Chowder. I figured Nancy would like putting a furry face to the name. My editor not only liked the pic, she wanted to put Chowder on the cover of the book.

Now, as she got older (and crankier), Chowder stopped grooming herself, and she wouldn't allow me to brush her for longer than 30 seconds. Whenever she seemed in a mellow mood, I'd cut dense mats from her fur and run a damp cloth over her. I wasn't optimistic about getting a good photo.

Chowder died only one month after the book came out. She didn't know she was a cover girl, but I was pleased that she'd been immortalized (at least until the book goes out of print). And I think the picture turned out pretty good, don't you?

1 comment:

Carolyn Burns Bass said...

Ah, Lynn. I remember when this happened. Chowder was gorgeous and I love the cover. Those green eyes are so mysterious, no?