Cats and Writing

I recently got a kitten. Her name is CocoaPuff. I observe her a lot and am struck by how much her behavior and “cat-titude” reflects the spirit of a writer.

For instance, when she chases a toy, she commits to it 100%. She doesn’t just run after it, she charges forward until it’s in the grasp of her paws (or her jaws—she fetches), even if she takes a tumble or two along the way. If she’s on the sofa or bed, she doesn’t just hop off, she flies off, paws fully extended like Supercat. This girl knows how to go after her goal. Just the kind of attitude that writers must have to get published. Do we have setbacks? You bet! Do we take a tumble or two along the way? Absolutely! Can we let them stop us in our quest? No way! We indulge in a little chocolate then get back up and move on!

Last week, CocoaPuff fell in the toilet. Did that slow her down? Oh, no! She scrambled out, shook off her hind legs and moved on. Kind of like what writers must do after receiving a manuscript rejection (and yes, sometimes it even feels like climbing out of the toilet).

Occasionally, CocoaPuff climbs into my arms, wraps her paws around my neck, rubs her face against my cheek, and snuggles with me. She needs to feel loved and know that she has a safe place in the world. Just like writers—we need assurance, and our support circles of family and writing friends/colleagues give this to us.

I have a quote on my computer that says, “Authors like cats because they are such quiet, lovable, wise creatures, and cats like authors for the same reasons.” I’m not so sure about the quiet part, but I definitely feel a kinship with cats.

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