Thursday, August 8, 2013

Dog Days with Linda O. Johnston

Dog Days continue! Welcome to today's guest, Linda O. Johnston, author of mysteries and romances, including the Pet Sitter and Pet Rescue series. Join Linda and her dogs and be inspired. ~ Sheila

Dog Days and Me

Linda O. Johnston

I’m really happy to be blogging here at Write Here, Write Now, especially with the focus on August’s Dog Days! 
I love all animals, but most especially dogs.  I write the Pet Rescue Mystery series for Berkley Prime Crime, which is a spinoff from my Kendra Ballantyne, Pet-Sitter Mystery series.  I’m also working on a new series for a different publisher.  Can’t talk about it yet, except to say that, yes, it involves dogs!
My most recent full-length Pet Rescue Mystery is OODLES OF POODLES.  It centers around some rescued poodles playing the roles of rescued poodles in a movie that’s being filmed.  I also have an e-novella available in the series, NONSTOP SPANIELS, which features NKLA--“No Kill Los Angeles”, which is an initiative of Best Friends Animal Society.  And my next Pet Rescue Mystery will be TEACUP TURBULENCE, featuring rescued pets that are moved from a part of the country where new homes are hard to find for them to other areas where they’ll find loving owners right away.
I also write for two Harlequin series: Harlequin Nocturne and Harlequin Romantic Suspense.  For one of them, my stories involve canines a lot.  Which?  Well, I write the Alpha Force miniseries for Nocturne--about a covert military unit of shapeshifters.  And most of them shift into... you guessed it.  Wolves!    
My most recent Harlequin book, a Nocturne, was UNDERCOVER WOLF, a February 2013 release.  And yes, it does happen to have at least one werewolf in it.  And suspense.  And a whole lot of romance.  My next will be COVERT ATTRACTION, a Harlequin Romantic Suspense story, to be published in December.  It was fun to write, but it’s one of my few stories these days that does not include dogs.
And how do I do it all?  I owe a lot to my two Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Lexie and Mystie.  They keep me grounded.  They give me orders.  In fact, I’m usually at their bark and call.  They insist on snuggling on my lap as I write or edit--fortunately, one at a time.  They inspire me.  They give me unconditional love, and having extra love in my life, in addition to having a wonderful husband and human family, can only help me write the conflicts and happily-ever-afters of romance!
In fact, both Lexie and Mystie are pawing at my arm as I write this.  Oh, yeah.  That’s because it’s their dinner time.  I’ll go feed them... then return to the manuscript I’m currently writing. 
Of course, my dogs aren’t always supportive of my writing.  Mystie has been known to flick the electrical switch that turned off the computer while I was writing.  She loves to chase sunbeams and reflections and shadows in our house and started licking the base of my desk to create her own reflections--and, in her excited jumping, she leaped on that switch.  Needless to say, I wasn’t happy, and I doubt she completely understood why I scolded her. 
But I wouldn’t change her personality, or Lexie’s.  We’re empty nesters when it comes to our human kids, so I’m really glad to have my fur-kids around.  Since I’m currently a full-time writer, I’m around for them.
And they’re always, delightfully, around for me.
How about you?  Are you inspired by your pets?  

Linda O. Johnston’s first published fiction appeared in Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine and won the Robert L. Fish Memorial Award for Best First Mystery Short Story of the year.   Since then, Linda, a former lawyer who is now a full-time writer, has published more short stories, novellas, and 33 romance and mystery novels, including Harlequin Romantic Suspense as well as the Alpha Force paranormal romance miniseries for Harlequin Nocturne. 

Linda’s Pet Rescue Mysteries, a spinoff from her Kendra Ballantyne Pet-Sitter mysteries for Berkley Prime Crime, feature Lauren Vancouver, a determined pet rescuer who runs a no-kill shelter.  In this cozy series, “no-kill” refers to pets, not people!   


News News News

I'm delighted to announce the release of the Audible edition of Drop Dead on Recall! Now Janet MacPhail can talk directly to you - special thanks to narrator Erin Mallon for letting Janet speak through her! You can buy the Audible edition here

The Money Bird, sequel to Drop Dead on Recall, will be out SOON - it's in the warehouse, and shipping soon to vendors!

You can pre-order now from the usual sources, including Pomegranate Books, who are again offering custom autographed copies of The Money Bird, Drop Dead on Recall, and Rescue Matters! How to Find, Foster, and Rehome Companion Animals. 

And more good book news ~ Alpine Publications has re-printed the paperback edition of Rescue Matters! How to Find, Foster, and Rehome Companion Animals again, with the resources section updated.  Rescue Matters is available in paperback, ebook, Audible, and large print editions. Bulk discounts are available from Alpine, and autographed copies can be ordered here

Please come back Monday ~ 
I'll be blogging about some of my favorite dog books!  
~ Sheila


  1. A new series? Interesting. : )
    Since my lovely Akita passed, I have been without a doggie companion. I do miss the company, but I know I need to be home for 3-6 months for proper training. Impossible this year, but maybe next.

  2. I'm sure you'll know when the time is right, Robena. It's sad to lose a pet, and being without a canine family member must be hard.

  3. We are most certainly in the dog days of August! Humidity here in the East is unbearable as I write. How wonderful to have a pet in a novel.And pet rescue is such a worthy topic! Best wishes.

  4. I also use my dogs as a jumping board for my ideas. I have two Aussie now and have had many other breeds. My middle grade, DOG DAYS OF SUMMER, includes service dogs. I didn't know there were so many sub texts in genres. Maybe I need to call mine a Service Dog drama!
    Will definitely look up your books. I love reading dog stories...

  5. I do not have any pets at the moment. But I love visiting yours!