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Monday Mentions: Cat Books, Pub Tips & The Name Game

by | Jun 25, 2012 | Cat Behavior & Care, Dog Training & Care, Writing Advice & More | 12 comments

Monday Mentions is the mash-up-day of all the neato-torpedo links and videos, pet schtuff and bling and writer-icity crappiocca collected over the past week. Some of this “schtuff” can be hard to categorize and may fit more than one topic so I urge you to at least scan them all.

I’ll be sending out my Pet Peeves newsletter this next week so if you haven’t yet subscribed, here’s a gentle reminder. That’s where you’ll see the “sneak peak” of the cover for my debut thriller LOST AND FOUND–it’s awesome!–and learn more about the NAME THAT DOG and NAME THAT CAT character contest.

Today I catch up on some books languishing on my TO-BE-READ stack–and more thoroughly reviewed as time permits. But the delay is breaking my heart because these are books that YOU WANT TO READ! Truly. So with very brief blurbs and more to be posted to amazon to help out my fellow cat writer colleagues, please take the time to check out these awesome books.

CAT DADDY is the first book of what I hope will be more from Jackson Galaxy (with Joel Derfner). Jackson is the star of the Animal Planet show My Cat from Hell and Derfner is a New York pet lover and nonfiction author.

This is a hiss-and-tell-all memoir focused on Jackson’s come back from a life of drugs to offering cat advice to millions. The book might better fit in a self-help/memoir slot on Amazon but it’s understandable the marketing team would want to leverage his celebrity with the TV program. But while he credits one special cat with helping him save himself from…well, from himself…the book only peripherally addresses the cat behavior issues that make his show such a success. For fans of Jackson, that’s not a problem and the memoir is very well written and entertaining look into his private life. He includes some general cat care and behavior advice here and there, but the book is about Jackson. Period. I hope that Jackson will follow up this entertaining book with more prescriptive titles focused on his self-taught cat behavior successes.

No, Jackson does not have a degree or certification in cat behavior–but has graduated obviously from the “school of hard-case-kitty-knocks.” I’m delighted that the show, and his book, reaches millions of cat lovers who otherwise might not realize that a “cat problem” in fact can often be turned around.

Your Cat: The Owner’s Manual comes to you from awesome vet author Dr. Marty Becker (Good Morning America and Dr. Oz Show contributor) and pet journalist Gina Spadafori (Cats for Dummies and more)–you can’t find a more knowledgeable and FUN writing team anywhere!

Savvy cat owners will recognize lots of the advice in this book, which offers a prescriptive approach and tips for finding cats and adoption advice, home care and safety issues, some common behavior challenges, and healthy cat information. There are a LOT of cat care books out there. Marty and Gina, though, deliver with humor and trademark furry affection, and the format of the book makes it easy to find the tips you need. And yes, I can call ’em Marty and Gina because I’ve known both of these folks for years and they’re just as thoroughly nice people in purr-son as they are on the page. 🙂

There are two parts of the book I particularly want to offer as a shout out. The Acknowledgements offer a who’s who of the cat care/behavior world and, as the authors so eloquently point out, no book is ever the product of a single person. Kudos to this team–some I know personally and others by reputation, and listing these folks offers even more credibility to the material offered in the book. Further, readers will treasure the value-added Resources section listing Internet contacts for some of the best cat gear and problem solvers available–that alone is worth the price of the book!


Inspiring Lost Cat Story from RomeoTheCat and Robin Olson

City Pays Panhandlers to Care For Puppies is this a good idea? what do you think? It’s raising some hackles.

Catalysta Musings, new blog from the Catalyst Council!

Kent Butler’s Awesome Catnip Chronicles this also could be a writing home for some of y’all yearning to publish some kitty schtuff.


The Espresso Book Machine prints your POD book in minutes! Is this the wave of the future?

How To Get Love from Indie Publishers

Animoto Book Trailers, a kewl tool shared by my friend and awesome thriller author Karen Dionne

Free Program Spots Cliches & Overused Words

Writers Conference in Denton, Texas July 21-22

Nifty Keyboard Shortcuts from the awesome Jenny Hansen

Recommended Book Writing/Publishing Suppliers from Dan Poynter

Literary Challenge–Contest looks interesting. Be sure to always read all rules and conditions before entering any contest.

Should Writers Plagiarize Themselves? crap, I’m in trouble…

Short Term Profit Vs Long Term Readership? Interesting discussion about is it either/or …what do you think?

Author Solutions Intro’s BookStub a discussion of this awesome (expensive!) program from WriterBeware


Coffee Wards Off Dementia–hell yes, I’m there!

Meditation Changes Your Brain I need all the brain changes I can get (do we have a theme going here?) Wonder what meditation whilst drinking coffee would do?

I love hearing from you, so please share comments and questions. Do you have an ASK AMY question you’d like answered? Do you have a new kitten and need answers? Stay up to date on all the latest just subscribe the blog, “like” me on Facebook, listen to the weekly radio show, check out weekly PUPPY CARE must knows, and sign up for Pet Peeves newsletter for your chance to NAME THAT DOG  and NAME THAT CAT character in the forthcoming THRILLER, LOST & FOUND, and pet book give-aways!


  1. donnagalanti

    Thanks for all the cat info – with 2 crazy brother kitties I need it! That new show my cat from hell is really getting promoted every chance. Interesting memoir about how one cat saved him from himself. Thats a unique spin, usually its dogs who get all the fame.

    • amyshojai

      Yes, I’m glad the cats are getting some attention Donna. There is a promo team behind the show that helps bunches in getting the word out.

  2. smesmer

    I’m with you on the coffee!

    • amyshojai

      LOL! Can’t function without my coffee…and now I know that’s not a bad thing. *s*

  3. Jenny Hansen

    Oh my freaking God…that Writer-icity is AWESOME! Thanks for mentioning me and turbo-thanks for giving me the Espresso Machine POD link. I have a crit partner who asked me about that just the other day. I can’t wait to read through this after work tonight. (You rock!)

    • amyshojai

      Ha! Lots of good schtufff this past week, Jenny, including your blogs.

  4. Brenda

    My grandmother made it to her 90s with all faculties and lived for her coffee. I hope to follow suit.

    I always love to hear of all things cat!!!!!

    • amyshojai

      Brenda, if God is a woman she’ll make chocolate and coffee (and maybe cheetos) GOOD for us! LOL! We already know cats extend our lives. 🙂

  5. Tameri Etherton

    I am cracking up at the two very different covers for those books. Actually, the concepts are the same, but the guys are polar opposites! Love it. Thanks for the giggle and great links.

  6. Karyl Cunningham

    Looking at Heather B’s response on the panhandling article, I seem to lean toward agreeing with her – that we need to know more about the program to make a judgement, and that you can’t lump all panhandlers and homeless folks together. Yes, SOME of them got their by their own fault or through laziness, but quite frankly it upsets me when people assume that ALL people in a bad situation did something to “deserve it”. Because it’s the same logic people woould use to tell someone like me that I’m only in a low-paying job because I “don’t work hard enough”, which is a load of CRAP. There are people who work themselves to the bone, probably more than I do, who can’t make ends meet. Sorry, folks, but sometimes luck plays a role, you have to take that into account. Yes, if they’re just a lazy panhandler doing it because they don’t want to bother looking for a real job, I would agree that putting puppies with them is a BAD IDEA. But if all somebody needs is a little bit of a boost, if they’ve been genuinely trying to get back into a job and having trouble (say, because they can’t afford business clothing to go interview in?) it might just be what that person needs to pick themselves back up, brush off, and get back into a decent life again – in those cases the puppies probably WOULD be well taken care of.

    • amyshojai

      Good points, Karyl, as always. In today’s economy there are lots of folks struggling. Having a pet gives you a reason to keep struggling, plus can help relieve health issues that might cost even more. Just sayin…

  7. dogwalker8

    Reblogged this on Touch of Home Pet Care and commented:
    I love Jackson Galaxy on Animal Planet. He does have a gift and like his down to earth approach. What you may not know is that he has a line of flower essences, called Spirit Essences,, he uses. I am an advocate for holistic health and wellness.


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