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Monday Mentions: Lee Child, Reacher & Speeding To Publish

by | Aug 13, 2012 | Cat Behavior & Care, Dog Training & Care, Writing Advice & More | 14 comments

.The long promised short clips from the 2012 Thrillerfest finally will be posted–and here’s the first, with the awesome Kathleen Antrim interviewing Lee Child about his Jack Reacher novels–and the movie. Honestly, I can’t imagine having written so many novels. It’s waaaaay different than writing nonfiction, and my first thriller has just about done me in.

I’m gasping, filled with Sisyphus-icity as the launch date draws near for my thriller. After screwing up my courage and sending out oh-so-polite requests for well known folks to read and maybe offer a kind word about the book, I’ve been blessed beyond my wildest dreams. But I can’t slow down. This hamster wheel is on a roll and speeding up.

So this past week, Dr. Marty Becker, D.P. Lyle and James Rollins kind words were included with polite invitations to savvy book reviewers to take an advance look. For a book to be successful it must be found, so authors can’t afford to be shy.

In the days and weeks ahead, I’ll post some of my efforts in the hopes it might also help others traveling similar publishing journeys. Fair warning–I may ask for your help because it takes a tribe to get folks to notice a new book. And I know y’all have the power to get schtuff noticed, especially thrillers with bite. 🙂

On to our regularly scheduled Monday Mentions, 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. The second short video of SQUEE! cute cats is sure to relieve stress (it did mine, anyway!).


Agent as Publisher–Sorta-Kinda

New Kindleboards Blog this is something to watch, Indies!

Bonfire of the Straw Man an awesome post from David Gaughran that debunks some of the strangest arguments AGAINST indies

5 Keys to Writing Success from social media maven Kristin Lamb

Panic Attacks and help for writers and other creative folks from Kristin Nador

8 Easy Social Media Tips from Jenny Hansen

The Science of Disgust who knew it was a protective mechanism?

How To Self Pub and Ebook some good general info

NetGalley for reviewers finding great books

FAKE Reviews? Say it ain’t so!

50 Shades of Grateful a peek into new (old) realms for writers from Tameri Etherton


Recalled Metal Pet Bowls …can you say RADIOACTIVE?! Sheesh

Call for Winn Feline Foundation Research Grants

Readers Raise Funds to Save Bookstore Cat Awwwwwwwww…

Dog Training Controversy–Or Not? Great blog for those with questions!

TNR Pilot Program Success!

Video of Mugsy-Cat Fighting Gators wow

Keeping Puppy Feet Clean

Scary Coyote Encounter

Pet Population Shrinking?

Kitty Cams what the cats do–but is the evidence skewed? Check out this one that proves not all cats are killers and then decide.

Wonderful fun video below the Lee Child interview, sort of a cat’s eye review of a new cat tree, from Janea Kelly. Enjoy!

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. Stay tuned for more news about my forthcoming THRILLER, LOST & FOUND!


  1. Jenny Hansen

    I ALWAYS love your Monday mentions posts, Amy. They open my horizons. 🙂

    Thanks for the mention and sign me up when you start doing publicity. Gotta help pimp my pal’s book, especially when it has a cool autistic kid in it!

    • amyshojai

      Thanks so much Jenny. You KNOW that I’ll return the favor when your “risky baby biz” is ready to hit the shelves. *s*

  2. jennymilch

    Amy, I’m so glad you’re finding a great response to the need that suddenly presses as release day nears. It’s true, you can’t be shy, but you are so gracious that I’m sure people want to read your work and the spread the word. And word-spreading is what it’s all about, right? Excited for your big day!

    • amyshojai

      Oh thanks bunches! I’m excited for YOUR big day, too. *s* Glad to have you visit the blog.

  3. patriciasands

    Amy, we are all SO excited about your launch and waiting to hear how we can help! Just say the word, my friend.

    • amyshojai

      Patricia, you’re always so supportive–I can’t thank you and everyone enough! Any success the book has will be due to all my wonderful friends and readers!

  4. Tameri Etherton

    There is just way too much awesome in this post! Congrats on sending out your book for requests. The very thought makes me shudder, so I’ll be sure to check out your posts on what worked for you. I’m so excited your thriller is coming out soon!

    Your links, thank you for including me in them! They are amazing. I actually have the stainless steel pet bowl that’s been recalled. I never would have known if I didn’t read this post. Thank you so very much!

    Like Patricia said, I can’t wait for the launch and will be happy to help out. So cool!

  5. Kathy

    OMG – Be still my heart! I’ve been a Jack Reacher/Lee Childs fan for years! Bless you for posting the video interview. I’m saving it for my “fun break” later today. (PS I’m a Blog Paws member and tracked you down from the “Monday’s rants” that Carol started.)

    • amyshojai

      Hi Kathy, thanks for visiting the blog! Lots of folks are Lee Childs/Reacher fans. Sorry about the audio issues in the video. The room was HUGE and there’s a bit of an echo. I’ve several more videos (with better audio) to post in future Monday Mentions. *s*

      I’m loving Blog Paws! Will check out your blog, too–rescue dogs rock! (well, they wag anyway *s*)

  6. Karyl Cunningham

    Not too surprised about alligator-fighting kitty, to be honest. Gators are not as aggressive as crocodiles and are more likely to back down if their prey puts up a real fight. Plus, those were rather smallish gators he was smacking around. LOL

    The dog training article – I so need to repost that link. And again I wish people who are still obsessed with Cesar would read things like that. They try to excuse him by attacking his opponents, asking if they are against his good advice to walk and spend time with your dog, while ignoring the fact that this does NOT excuse the other things he does to them. Yes, it’s great that he wants people to spend more time with their dogs, but it’s far less great that he seems to think bullying is the only way to “cure” bad behavior. But I have still seen people following his methods who had dogs who obeyed them out of FEAR, not RESPECT. These are the people who, when their dog finally snaps years later, will cry that they don’t understand what happened, when the signs were there all along. If you lead by dominating, you also show your dog that the position of top animal in the house is won by fighting, so if he sees what he perceives as an opening to take leadership, he’s going to go for it. It’s just inviting trouble.

    And go on. Try to tell me how your going to alpha-roll that mastiff who weighs almost twice what you do. No really, I’m listening. You can’t muscle an animal that’s got more muscle than you do. Just not going to work.

    Do you need to establish yourself as an authority? Of course! But there are better ways to do it. I have seen websites that claim mother wolves will bite their puppies in the face to punish them. I have NO idea where that “fact” came from, but usually the most you see mothers do to handle unruly puppies is make some displeased noise at them, and sometimes gently mouth them (which is very different from biting) and shove them to where they can hold them still for like half a second. More of a “hey shush and listen to me a second, would ya??” At least, this is what I’ve seen and read thus far. Of course, people also mistake the nature of pack hierarchy for wolves. The main reason only the top ranking male and female mate is because they are usually the parents of ALL the other wolves in the pack. It’s an instinctive failsafe against incest. And even then, sometimes there is more than one alpha of a given sex – haven’t read up as much on how or why that happens, but I don’t think there’s been much research into it yet.

    We don’t currently have a dog, granted, but with the cats… let’s see, the “unpleasant” things they are exposed to… snapping our fingers when they’ve gotten up onto a shelf they’re not supposed to be on (attention-getting – they look at us on the snap, and once they make eye contact they jump down), occasional sharp noise (again, to get attention) to keep them from getting into something they shouldn’t (like that piece of raw meat that fell on the floor – Anubis has not had raw before so we didn’t want to risk that his tummy couldn’t handle it – unfortunately sometimes the lure of edible things in this case outweighs all other external stimuli, but you can’t win ’em all I guess). Sometimes restraining them for their own safety (or on rare occasions, to try and get them to calm the @#$% down, in which case it usually involves a more cuddly form of restraint and rocking back and forth). Occasionally the gentle momma-tap on the nose if they ignore noise-based attempts to stop them from stealing off our plates (never hard enough to cause pain, just to startle/get attention yet again, since that lure of food is hard to break attention from). And of course, the Worst Thing Ever: not giving them treats for several hours after an infraction (or sometimes in the case of litterbox mishaps, until kitty proves he can go poop in the box where he’s supposed to) – because a certain fuzzy brat has a long memory and offering a reward too close to when he’s done something he shouldn’t can cause problems. If he goes to the litterbox when we can see him, we will offer him treats as soon as he gets out. If we’re not near the treats and we hear him in the box, we will tell him what a good kitty he is (which he eats right up). Now, occasionally if he plays too rough and bites (or on one occasion, when he whacked Simba REALLY hard on top of the head back when he didn’t understand that he’s a very strong kitty and that’s too rough for other kitties), he will get a “that was bad” as soon as it happens, and play stops right then and there. But the b-word only comes out when he’s done something serious, because when that word comes out, he knows his daddy means business. Because that does not get uttered very often, and he knows when that word gets said in that tone, daddy is unhappy and daddy being unhappy is ever worser than the Worst Thing Ever of not getting treats. All things in life revolve around the Great and Powerful Daddy for he is shining and wonderful and the purveyor of tasty things and cuddles.

    Good lord I ramble every time this topic comes up… LOL But I’ve seen the mistakes, probably made a few of them myself, and I get insanely frustrated when people see pets (especially dogs) more as servants than members of the family. If you got the dog to train it for a specific purpose, that’s fine too – you expect your kids to do chores, right? But they have to see what’s in it for them. And if they love you and respect you, they’re more likely to follow your rules even when you’re out of the house. (one of these days I need to just make a blog post out of some of this mess I post in replies to your blogs LOL)

    ANYWHOO changing subject – the coyote behavior in that article is actually sometimes exhibited year round by the coyotes in our area. But then, apparently a recent genetics study shows our coyotes aren’t full coyote. They are coyote, dog, and wolf (listed in decreasing order of content) – so they’ve got a whole mess of conflicting instincts running around. And unfortunately that dog part makes them totally unafraid to come right up to your house in broad daylight. Oh, and they hunt in packs, Can’t forget that part. Midwest coyotes are insane… the ones here have started harassing my aunt’s cattle when their numbers get big enough.

    As for kitty cams… far from being a killer, one of my parents’ recently departed oldsters actually SAVED small critters. One of the other cats found a bunnt nest and decided they’d make a good snack. But not him. Being the good samaritan he grabbed the bunnies by the scruff one by one and brought them into the garage to set them in his little cushioned cubby-hole to get them away from the hunter. LOL

    • amyshojai

      Hi Karyl, I’d read that, too, that coy-dogs are more bold. I don’t think we have wolves in our area.

      Love the notion of your parents’ cat saving critters–either that or stashing for a later snack, LOL!

      • Karyl Cunningham

        We don’t have wolves in our area either, not anymore (which is largely why the coyotes moved in – go figure, they’re probably more of a problem – from what I understand wolves are at least easier to teach to be afraid of people). So I figure this happened way back when we were still in the process of killing them all off, and it’s just been in the bloodlines ever since. Because when your population is dwindling, you get less picky about who you have puppies with. Granted, we do occasionally get wolf sightings, but usually those are chalked up to people’s captive wolves getting out (I don’t mind private ownership of “exotics” under the right circumstances but geez, people, learn to do it right! That includes proper secure enclosures for the animal’s safety and everyone else’s!) or to people mistaking big coyotes for wolves because they don’t know the difference in facial structure. Now, I’ve seen a trio of what I am absolutely certain were wolves passing through our yard back when I was younger, maybe middle school or high school, but I figure they were just passing through, probably making their way across from some other state with more forest or something. Also one a year or two ago along the road, that HAD to have been somebody’s “pet” that got out. He looked too happy to see that car going by.

  7. Karyl Cunningham

    Okay, more commenting (sorry LOL) but I LOVE LOVE LOVE this page linked off of the dominance article, because it not only says WHY the theory is bad, it also gives alternatives with SPECIFIC examples. Plus, I’m learning a few new things which is awesome (like, I never knew it was OK to give a treat to an aggressive dog to calm them down). Soaking this stuff up like a sponge, because if I’m gonna do this, and do it right, I’ve got to. But the more I’m reading… holy cow, I need to just start using myself as an example. The same things that make animals more upset do the same to me. The same things that appease them… well, you get the idea. THIS is why I want to start taking video and paying more attention to what I do. I swear I overthink things sometimes, need to break it down into simplicity.


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