I'm delighted to have author Carysa Locke guest blogging today to talk about why writing a story for Pets in Space was such an important project for her.
We are a household of two cats and two dogs. Of those four pets, three are rescues. Our second rescue was Maya, an Australian Shepherd/Husky mix that came to us through a friend’s no-kill shelter. Dogs get shipped to them from other states to avoid being euthanized. Our older dog was winding down to the end of her life, so we’d been halfway looking for a puppy to get, partly to help entertain our Bengal cat Julius, who didn’t understand why his companion of twelve years was no longer interested in playing.
This puppy came to them from Fresno, California, an entire state away. She and her sister had been found wandering the streets. Our friend thought of us as soon as she arrived, with her quiet demeanor and sweet personality. We met her, and that was that. Maya came home with us.
But that was just the beginning. It soon became clear that whatever her experiences had been, they had left an indelible mark on Maya. She wouldn’t go outside unless one of us stepped out with her. Afraid, we think, of being shut outside and never let back in. She had strange episodes where a noise or a touch would trigger her into what we called puppy flashbacks, where she would cry inconsolably and bury her head against one of us, while refusing to let us touch her. We’re fairly certain that someone, at some time, was physically abusive towards her.
She has a very hard time trusting humans, even those she has met and liked several times. Each time is a new opportunity to win her trust, and each time it is like starting over again. When our older dog passed away, we decided the best thing we could do for Maya would be to get a second puppy. She has improved by leaps and bounds since we did, learning to trust more quickly, and really coming into her own as a loving, happy dog. Her flashbacks are becoming fewer and more infrequent.
It astounds me sometimes, to think about the things Maya endured before she came to us. We may never know her full story. But what we do know is that she has a happy, safe environment with us, where her biggest worries are trying to stop her herding instincts from chasing the cats on a daily basis.
It’s hard for me to imagine that there are people out there who will abuse animals who are defenseless and unable to protect themselves, but that is exactly why projects like this one are so important. Anything that can be done to raise awareness for rescue animals, or to aid organizations that train animals to be companions for humans in need, is a great thing to be a part of. I’m proud to be involved with Pets in Space, and so excited to share my story, Escape Run, with everyone.
Here is a small teaser, introducing my character’s pet, Ember:
Ember looked up at Teegan with a glint in her blue eyes. Her fur rippled in the wind. She was almost entirely a silver color that disappeared against the brightness of snow, but tufts of red circled her eyes like a mask, and tipped the end of her tail and each paw, as though they’d been dipped in the color. It is high summer. It does not snow in high summer, Teegan. There was a distinct tone of disapproval to the kith’s mental voice. As if she couldn’t abide the sky spitting snow in the wrong season.
Thanks so much for hosting me today.
Carysa Locke is the author of Pirate Nemesis and Pirate Bound. You can find her here:
Teegan’s job as a hunter is to track down the Talented, those driven insane by their gifts. She and Ember, her psychically gifted fox, have tracked dozens of people for Cole, the man who works to rehabilitate and recover these troubled souls. When one of Cole’s most dangerous patients escapes, Teegan and Ember are on a hunt that could prove fatal if she doesn’t keep her focus on her mission. Unfortunately, Cole is proving one distraction that might make this her last hunt if she can’t do that.
Can Teegan keep her heart and mind in the game long enough to save an entire planet’s population, or will her distraction lead to heartache – and possibly death for everyone?
_______________________________Pets in Space Anthology
Release Date: October 11 2016
Join the adventure as nine pet loving sci-fi romance authors take you out of this world and pull you into their action-packed stories filled with suspense, laughter, and romance. The alien pets have an agenda that will capture the hearts of those they touch. Follow along as they work side by side to help stop a genetically-engineered creature from destroying the Earth to finding a lost dragon; life is never the same after their pets decide to get involved. Can the animals win the day or will the stars shine just a little less brightly?
New York Times, USA TODAY, Award Winning, and Best selling authors have eight original, never-released stories and one expanded story giving readers nine amazing adventures that will capture your imagination and help a worthy charity. Come join us as we take you on nine amazing adventures that will change the way you look at your pet!
10% of the first month’s profits go to Hero-Dogs.org. Hero Dogs raises and trains service dogs and places them free of charge with US Veterans to improve quality of life and restore independence.