One of my dogs, Donut, watches TV. Not just anything on TV. No, this little Golden/Dachshund/Basset mix is a very discriminating viewer. He likes to watch other dogs. Dogs 101 and It's Me Or The Dog are big favs, as are certain commercials for doggie products (puppies peddling potty paper are not a priority for this pooch, btw) but his most favorite are dog shows. The Eukanuba Dog Show on Animal Planet was a big hit last night, though I don't know that he'd have made the same choices for Best in Show. In fact, if it was left up to Donut he'd have thought he would have made a pretty good choice. And further more, he'd have picked his best buddy on the planet, Bacon (our Carin Terrier/Dachshund mix) as best sporting dog because he's always a good sport and up for anything, and his next best pal, Moxie Miss Tee, a tabby cat, as best working breed because of all the mice she catches. Yeah, Moxie is not a dog, but that wouldn't matter to Donut, to him she's the best.
Sometimes when I go into a bookstore or read articles about what's hot in publishing I come to the conclusion that I understand publishing about as much as Donut understands the dog show. I love it. Love to gawk at it and dream about it. I would love to play a bigger role in it but when I see what makes the lists, gets the praise for being the best example or gets the big endorsements, I don't always get it. Really? That's what makes a bestseller? That's what makes the literati swoon?
Donut just likes it when the dogs run toward the camera. I just like it when the story sweeps me up and runs away with me. I appreciate the beauty and athleticism and symmetry when a good writer gets it right but I also love it when things mix it up and make me care when I really didn't want to - the way my dogs always have.
I guess that makes me a lit-mutt. A happy accident both in my writing and my reading. I may never make best in breed.
Donut doesn't care that he's not in the big show. He's happy. He's loved by a select few, and is found annoying by a few more. I don't know what the point is other than us mutts need love too! So maybe next time you are in a bookstore to buy a new book, think about adopting an author/book that doesn't come preapproved by all the high falutin' judges and if you have some writing that fits in that category, I hope someone adopts your work too!