As you know, I draw from my real life for soooo many scenes, people and tidbits in my stories. And although many of you may have heard this story before, I’m going to tell it again, and then see if you can guess which tidbit this real-life event inspired for one of my books.
Way back in 1995 (before most of you were born…just kidding), it was a lovely July afternoon and our little family was enjoying a nice visit with some of my cousins. We were down at my Mom and Dad’s place in the North Valley in Albuquerque…just chit-chatting away. (Here we are on that very eventful day-at right-Kevin, Mitch, Me, Trent, Sandy and my cousin, Brice).
Brice’s parents (my Uncle Russell and Aunt Linda), and Brice’s little nephew were visiting from Colorado and we were all having a wonderful time just talking and laughing together. Mitch was 5 years old, and Brice’s little nephew was perhaps two or three years older than that, and he and Mitch were playing out in my parents’ backyard.
At this point, I must give you this little piece of information: That being that my mother is truly a saint! And that she never, ever, ever raised her voice to any of my kids, and simply spoiled them rotten with love and fun adventure.
That’s why, when I suddenly heard my Mom rather screeching with a sort of panicked intonation, “Mitchel Lee! You get in that house right now and scrub your hands with hot soap and water!” I was astonished! (And she really did say, “hot soap and water,” not “hot water and soap,” which further testifies of her sense of panic!)
Immediately everyone raced out onto the back porch just as my mom hauled Mitch into the kitchen, lifting him up to the kitchen sink and beginning to wash his little hands.
In the interest of time, I’ll just skip to the chase: Mitch and Brice’s little nephew had been adventuring around in an old shed on one corner of my parents’ property. Inside the dilapidated old shed that was beautifully swathed in honeysuckle, over near an old wooden piano crate, the boys had found…the carcass of an old, dried-out-to-mummification cat! AND Mitch had thought it was an old toy and carried it up onto the back porch to show my everyone!
Now, once my mom had disinfected Mitch’s hands, she went back outside to investigate the find…and was naturally uber-intrigued by it! Believe me, a mummified cat was/is right up both mine and my mom’s alleys! It was a fascinating thing, in truth…and of course my mom made sure to slather Mitch with praise for finding such a treasure, as she both apologized and explained why she had been so freaked out when he’d first offered it to her. So it ended up being a way fun find for him after all…and for my mom, too!
This is a photo I took of the cat once my dad had scooped it up with a pitchfork. It’s not anywhere near a true vision of how incredibly interesting the old gal really was…but it gives you an idea. Furthermore, I would’ve initially freaked out at least as completely as my mom did if my five-year-old son had handed it to me instead of to her! But it was pretty darn awesome, and many years later, it DID inspire me to incorporate something into one of my books…a similar experience by a few of my characters.
Do you know which “something” and scene it inspired and in which book? Well, if you do, or even if you have a good guess, just leave a comment here, on Facebook, Goodreads or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and you’ll be automatically entered in my contest this week!
But before I let you know what the prize/prizes will be for this week’s blog contest, however, I better let the winners of my last blog contest know that they are winners!
I loved everyone’s posts, so it was way hard for me to choose! But for some reason, “Misti Dawn’s” and “Nichelle’s” post popped out to me today! Therefore, Misti and Nichelle, if’ you’ll please e-mail me your snail-mail addresses at email@example.com, I can get your copies of Our Tree Named Steve shipped of to you, okay? Thank you EVERYONE for your name stories! I LOVE each and every one of them!
As for this blog’s prize/prizes…I’ll be giving away 2 hardcover copies (1 to each of 2 winners) of the book that includes the “something” that was inspired by the mummified cat my son Mitch found in 1995! What’s so great about that? Well, for one thing, this book has never been in hardcover before, AND for another, it has a GORGEOUS new cover to boot (which will premier Monday)! (There are some hints in there about which book it is, if you haven’t already guessed!) Thus, this particular blog contest will end Sunday night…so don’t delay in leaving your entry comment! Your chances of winning are VERY high…being that my last blog only had a total of 18 comments…so don’t despair, and go ahead and guess, okay? You don’t even have to guess correctly to win! Ha ha ha! So, see you in a few days to announce the winners…and here’s hoping you enjoyed this little tidbit about a real-life incident being stranger than fiction!