Conversations with My Dogs

Photography author David Leswick said, “My book is a bit of a mix of genres. It is a mix of photographic coffee table book and series of short humorous stories phrased as conversations … It is a book for all ages.” Here’s a synopsis:

A photographic journey through having three fun and lovely dogs in our family. The journey starts with Eva the Brittany who is later joined by Bruno the Golden Retriever and Agnes the genetically diverse rescue dog. The photos and personalities of each dog are revealed via the imagined conversations (i.e. Dogversations) with or between the dogs. The conversations are lighthearted with clean humour and often filled with misunderstandings and puns and center on how the dogs understand and fit into life with their human family. The humor has been likened to the Smothers brothers and Bill Watterson (the creator and writer of Calvin and Hobbs).

David has created a website for his book at Dogversationsbook. You can send an Instagram message to @theDogWearsPantlers, ask him questions on Goodreads Author David Leswick, or read book reviews of his photographic novel.

David’s Interview

You see an amusing incident while grocery shopping. Do you (1) record what happens in some form OR (2) do nothing?

I will record it. I will use cell phone camera if it’s an oddity involving a sign or item that needs to be seen to be appreciated. But if it’s something that involves an interaction or person, I’ll just make a mental note of it instead of invading privacy by pulling out the camera. I will then tell the story to my wife or friends when appropriate. I don’t post about these things on social media as I try to be thoughtful about what I share online and always endeavor to respect the privacy of others.

Respecting another’s privacy is a wonderful trait!

Are you a person who (1) makes and follows New Year resolutions OR (2) never bothers with resolutions?

I often think about making New Year resolutions, but rarely make them formal. The reason that I don’t want to make them at New Years is because we should be able to make changes any time of the year, not just on January 1st. That being said the best resolution that I have made recently (I think it was a mid January one) was to not let data get stale. I’ve tried to apply this at work, at home, and with my photography. For my photography it includes timely sorting, editing, sharing and posting. I don’t always achieve this goal, but when I do it feels great.

Such an admirable goal!

Which is more important: (1) a reduction in global warming OR (2) reduction of communicable diseases?

This has nothing to do with my book and my response is neither clever nor witty, but I feel that I have to answer it as it is a very important and topical issue. I strongly believe that we need to reduce global warming. The science is overwhelming on the topic and our future will be bleak if we do not address it. There are also solutions out there that we must prioritize and adopt for the good of all creatures on earth.

Understandable reasoning!

You’re shopping for a present for a child. Do you buy a stuffed (1) purple elephant or (2) lime green with red spots dog?

The lime green with red spots dog. Elephants are great, but when it comes down to most decisions where a dog is an option – I always go with the dog. That might explain why we have three of them.

LOL of course the dog for you!

What is your (1) favorite book quote OR (2) favorite movie quote?

My favorite movie quote is from Thor in Avengers: Infinity War. When he declares that he needs to go to Nidavellir, Drax challenges him saying “That’s a made up word”. Thor’s response “All words are made up” is just perfect because these five words are at the same time unexpected, accurate, succinct, true and hilarious. Plus the title of my book is a made up word so I think of the quote often.

Interesting explanation of your favorite!

Thanks for being interviewed, David!

Dogversations book cover

April’s Heart

Author Shilah Ferr has published a coming-of-age romance novel. Here’s a synopsis:

Autumn 1977. Thirteen year old cheerleader April Schweiter falls hard for Mitch Hudgins, putting an end to childhood and changing her life forever. April embarks on a coming of age journey full of angst and unanswered questions. And her dysfunctional family is only one of the problems in her way.

Classmate and wrestler Mitch Hudgins can’t get enough of April either. She stirs in him surprising passion that is new, unfamiliar and needs to be explored.

But they say goodbye when they attend schools in different towns, far away from each other. Surely staying together wouldn’t have a chance of working out. But they were crazy for each other! Would breaking up have a chance of working out?

“You guys are the nicest friends anyone could have!” April choked down a sob. She was still emotional at the realization of the future of her romance with the guy who took her virginity, the guy who once told her he loved her, the guy she fought for, the guy with whom she was really very happy with. She was heartbroken but didn’t know it yet.

This romance novel is the story of young love, hot and heavy, with all the drama of high school in the eighties. The ebook contains almost 40 Spotify music links on all the songs in the story, taking you there.

“What are we going to do Mitch?” April whispered.

“I don’t know April, I just don’t see how…” This time it was April who kissed him. She didn’t want him to say what he was going to say. Mitch didn’t want to say it anyway. They wanted things to stay the way they were, but that was impossible.

Find out what happens to the star crossed lovers with the on again, off again romance riddled with breakups.

You can read reviews of her coming-of-age romance novel on her April’s Heart website. You can follow her on Facebook at AprillovesMitch or on her Shilah Ferr page, send her a Tweet, or ask her questions on Goodreads Author Shilah Ferr.

Shilah’s Interview

You prefer (1) to eat a home-cooked meal with family and friends OR (2) to eat in a big-name restaurant?

I completely prefer to have a home cooked meal with family and friends, in fact, cooked by me! I am an avid and fairly accomplished self-taught cook, and I’ve been cooking for years. I even made baby food for my children back in the day and did not buy baby food! I also have done some catering, just because it’s so much fun! We live in Virginia Beach, and when friends or family come to visit I love to entertain in our sunny backyard with a home cooked meal!

A self-made chef among many other accomplishments!

Your significant other or child asked you to do something you don’t like to do. Do you (1) grin and bear it OR (2) mumble to yourself while doing the task?

I am very accommodating. I feel compelled to help. Sometimes when asked, and sometimes without being asked. Everyone needs help attaining their goals, or achieving the greater good. I hold the line if asked to lie or cheat, that is a tough sell for me. There’s got to be a better way. When the going gets tough (I’ve got stories!) I feel protective of the feelings of those in need and prefer to not complain. My dad says I am good at being neutral, and not taking sides.

Neutrality it is!

Do you write (1) when the mood takes your OR (2) at a set time?

I write, and do most other tasks, when the mood or moment strikes me. April’s Heart flowed out of me once all the pieces of the basic plot came together. I wrote every moment I could, feeling so inspired, and enjoyed every minute of it. I was “living” in my little 80’s world there for a while, I was engrossed. When I do not feel like doing something, (like cleaning the house) I try not to fret about it because I have learned time and time again that eventually the mood will hit me and the task will get done!

Definitely working to Glen Miller’s song!

You prefer to watch (1) a sunrise OR (2) a sunset?

As I’ve stated, I live in a beach community. Although I’ve witnessed WAY more sunsets than sunrises, sunrises are truly special. Maybe part of the reason is that you’ve got to be awfully lucky to catch one! Once when temporarily living a block from the beach for a few months, my husband made a point of waking us up a couple times to get our butts up to the sand to watch that first sliver of sun show itself at the horizon. In April’s Heart, April and Mitch spend one special night on the beach and revel not only in the sunrise, but the “Golden Hour”, as it’s called, that occurs once the sun is up. Also something to behold!

Beautiful description!

What is your favorite (1) song OR (2) book?

Some of your readers may know that April’s Heart has almost 40 (37 to be exact) 30 second Spotify music links embedded on all the songs in the ebook edition. Those songs have become (if they weren’t already) very important to me. I think I’d have to say “Strange Magic” by ELO has to take the top prize. So haunting, so angsty, it embodies the raw emotion I love, and tried to emulate for April and Mitch in the story.

Interesting explanation!

What provides more inspiration to you: (1) art OR (2) nature?

I am more inspired by nature than anything. I rely on it. I notice lines and colors, and trust they will work when compiling my own designs. For example, when renovating our home after the washing machine (located upstairs) malfunctioned and flooded the whole house, one simple sea shell became the color pallet. White, beige, and shades of blue have helped us create a beautiful living space! My husband still has the shell somewhere.

Wow! Sounds lovely.

Thanks for being interviewed, Shilah!

April's Heart book cover
April’s Heart