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Help Save Kiki from Cancer (GoFundMe Campaign)

I hope people will read the below as it is the information that was shared in a recent GoFundMe Campaign that my wife and I created for our cat Kiki.  The link to the campaign is below and I wanted to share this posting here in hopes others may read and share.  I thank you all in Advance.

My name is Kiki and I’m hoping other humans will help my humans, Shawn and Jennifer, raise money so I can have cancer surgery. A recent visit to the Vet was scary but when my female human heard the word cancer she did cry.

I have heard my humans discussing finding the money for the surgery and they have talked about this thing called debt. I guess my female human has many student loans, and my male human may have to pay more on his medications for Multiple Sclerosis when the new insurance year starts. I will be honest, being a cat I have no idea what that all is, but money is tight.

So, I am hoping that there are other kind humans that may help us get this surgery done. They have a mass to remove from my cute tail. After the surgery, there will be additional costs for further treatments and why I hope to raise the money to help my humans.

You see, these two humans brought me in to their home and have taken good care of me and their other cats. We have been given much love, toys, and played with often. The vet visit for me came not long after we lost my big sister who died from old age and her organs shutting down. It is for this reason why I do not want to leave my humans now as they need me to fill the hole left by my big sister leaving the family.

So, I thank any and all humans for helping with the funds that I am looking for to help my humans. Please do not tell the secret that I can use this computer thing. My male owner is always working on one, and as he works I will sit on the desk and watch him and how I learned. He’s just not happy when I go after that thing called a mouse.

In all seriousness, Jennifer and I would greatly appreciate any help that people will be able to give us in keep our Kiki in our lives. She is a unique cat who is willing to share her love with us daily. I do hope those who have read the posting get a smile about how I wrote this posting as I wanted to show that although a Cancer diagnosis for anyone is never good, it is by staying positive and finding a way to smile that keeps us going.  Again thank you to all that are able to help. If for some reason we go over the requested amount we will be giving some of those funds to charity

 

https://www.gofundme.com/save-our-kiki-from-cancer

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Posted by on November 13, 2018 in Personal, Uncategorized

 

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Water to Water Character Interview Kititit (Weesah)

The below is a character interview from the book Water to Water written by Author Karen A Wyle. Please enjoy the insight into on of the characters minds from her book.

{Note Kititit is a Weesah and a peddler who befriends Terrill and Honnu}

Q. How did you become a peddler

A. Well, now. That’s a ways to think back . . . . When I was a young sprout, we had a neighbor who was a peddler, wagon and all. I thought her wagon was about the prettiest thing I’d ever seen, all painted up as it was. And she used to let me help load the goods in the back – leastways, helping is what she called it. Getting in the way is what I’d call it, remembering. And when she’d been away and came home again, she always had stories to tell about the places she’d been. I’d never been anywhere, and I got to hankering after a life like she had.

 

Q. Your wagon – did it used to be your neighbor’s?

A. Right you are! Though by the time she figured she was ready to stay home and play with her grandchildren and take it easy, the wagon was what you might call used up – the canopy, anyway. My folks gave me a new one, and I picked what to paint on it.

 

Q. You have a mate and children, I hear. How have you managed to strike a balance between traveling and family life?

A. Well, I don’t have just any mate. I made sure to find a lady as liked to hear stories. I promised to always bring back plenty of stories. And she’s an independent sort – doesn’t need someone at her elbow all the time, telling her how to do things. A mate as hung around every day might get annoying for such as her. So we suit each other. And the longer I’m away, the longer I stay home and do my bit with the young ‘uns and the beasts and the garden and all. And now that some of our young ‘uns are grown, she has plenty of help when she needs it.

 

Q. You’re acquainted with Terrill and Honnu, I believe. How did that come about?

A. I’ve known Honnu a good piece of his life, I’d say. I visit a few different fisher villages, and he lives – or lived, I’m not sure which is right just now – in one of ‘em. I was the first Weesah he ever saw, I reckon, and how he would stare! Anyhow, he’s a curious fellow and always likes to hear my traveler’s tales.

 

Q. That brings up an interesting point. Aren’t you somewhat given to exaggeration in those tales of yours? Should Honnu believe everything you say?

A. (laughs) No, I can’t say as he should. But I reckon he knows that. Now, I wouldn’t say he knows just what to believe and what not to. But if he ever asked me, serious-like, I’d tell him.

 

Q. And Terrill? How did you meet him?

A. That was luck, if luck is something that happens, as to which I’ve no firm opinion. His da took ill, and Terrill was one of the funeral party as took him to the sea. I left Honnu’s village about the time they left to head home again, and we got to talking on the road. A nice young fellow. On the serious side, and tending to worry more than is comfortable for a youngster his age. I did my bit to cheer him up, when I could.

 

Q. And how did Terrill and Honnu meet each other?

A. (chuckles) Well, I’ll maybe let you ask one of them about that. I’d best be packing up and heading on, pretty soon. Any last questions? Or might you be wanting something from the wagon before I go? I’ve got some good knives I picked up a few towns back. Or if you’ve little ones at home, I have toys — balls for juggling, and these dolls. See the bits of shell that make up the armor? And of course, I have fish. Always plenty of fish.

 
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Posted by on November 4, 2018 in Interview

 

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Water to Water Character Interview Terrill (Vushu)

The below is a character interview from the book Water to Water written by Author Karen A Wyle. Please enjoy the insight into on of the characters minds from her book.

 

[NOTE: Terrill is a Vushlu. He would have become an adult next year by taking a ritual first journey to the ocean with other Vushla his age. Instead, he attained adult status prematurely, accompanying his dying father to the ocean, where his father went into the water to be dissolved.

 

Interviewing Terrill is a tricky task. As the book begins, he is understandably morose. Later, when he is less so, he has good reasons not to reveal his activities and concerns. I’ve dealt with this dilemma by splitting his interview into two, and working within the limitations Terrill sets.

 

The first interview takes place at a rest stop during the funeral party’s return trip. Terrill speaks in a quiet monotone most of the time.]

Q. I’m very sorry about your father.

A. Thank you.

 

Q. It will take you quite a while to get home. How are you occupying yourself along the way?

A. I’m trying to remember as much as I can about Da. [a pause; he clenches and armors his fists] But the things I remember keep reminding me of things I don’t know. Questions I never asked, and never can, now. [long pause]

 

Q. Have you found any ways to keep your spirits up?

A. There’s a Weesah peddler who’s been traveling alongside us. He likes to tell stories. When I listen to them, it takes my mind off . . . other things. I’ve even laughed a few times. [glances to the side] Not that my uncle approves. Of the listening or the laughing.

[An older Vushlu approaches; the interview concludes]

———–

[The second interview takes place around three months (or the equivalent) later. Terrill is now traveling in the peddler’s wagon, as is Honnu, another Vushlu about his age.]

Q. Is this where you expected to be, at this time?

A. No. Nothing about what I’m doing these days is as I expected. One unpredictable event has led to another.

 

Q. What can you tell me about these events?

A. [a slight smile – which for Vushla means a rounded mouth] Very little, I’m afraid. Except that one of our funeral party, my aunt, became very ill on the way home. The others returned to the sea with her. I [a short pause] chose not to. That led to my becoming better acquainted with Honnu. And that led to everything else.

 

Q. So do you think you’ll become a peddler?

A. [another smile] I don’t think so. But for now, I’m a peddler’s assistant and have my duties. I’d better go.

 

Q. Perhaps we’ll meet again along the road.

A. I . . . don’t think that is very likely. But stranger things have happened. [a quiet chuckle] Indeed they have.

 
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Posted by on November 4, 2018 in Interview

 

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Water to Water Character Interview Honnu (Vushu)

The below is a character interview from the book Water to Water written by Author Karen A Wyle. Please enjoy the insight into on of the characters minds from her book.

 

[NOTE: Honnu is a young Vushlu. His family are fisher folk and live by the sea. This interview takes place around the time the story begins, on the beach, in late afternoon. Honnu is cleaning a fishing boat.]

 

Q. Hello. I hope I’m not disturbing –

A. Watch out! I’m using seawater here.

 

Q. It’s splashing all over you. Isn’t that a problem?

A. Not with this suit on. [He gestures along his body.] It’ll keep the water out for years and years yet.

 

Q. Do you have such suits for visitors? For rent, perhaps?

A. Sorry, no. They take a long time to make. We only get them when we’re done growing, and then we keep them for a long time. Let me just finish up here, and we can talk.

[a few minutes later]

All done! I have a few minutes before I go do chores.

 

Q. I gather you fish for a living.

A. That’s right.

 

Q. Do you like it?

A. [a slight pause] Pretty well. I like working with other people. More when they appreciate my help, which they mostly do. Of course, I like it better some days than others. In hot season, it’s cooler out on the water than on land – though the suit does make me warmer than I’d be otherwise. Cold season, that can get, well, cold, suit or no suit. And I get pretty tired by the end of the day. But it’s better than being bored. [another pause] Not that I’m never bored.

 

Q. Do you picture yourself doing anything different, later in your life?

A. [scuffs a hind foot in the sand] I’d like to see more of the world, someday, somehow. I hear stories – mainly from the Weesah peddler who comes here – and I want to see for myself whether they’re true, and what other stories might be out there waiting to be found.

[someone calls Honnu’s name from a nearby dwelling]

I’d better go. Chores, like I said. It was nice talking to you. If you want to come with me, you could maybe stay for dinner. The peddler brought sausages, and we’ll be having a campfire.

 
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Posted by on November 4, 2018 in Interview

 

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Ten +1 Questions with Author Karen A Wyle

I first wish to thank Author Karen A Wyle for taking time to answer the Ten +1 Questions regarding her recent release, “Water to Water“.  You will find information below on her world building, to her writing process and inspirations. I do hope you enjoy her responses as much as I did.

 

Question 1: When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?

–I don’t know for sure, but I know it happened by the time I was 10 years old. At that age, it was my ambition to be the youngest published novelist ever. I was quite irked to find out that a 9-year-old girl in the UK had beaten me to it.

 

Question 2: What inspired you to write Water to Water?

–It was almost November 2017, and therefore time to get ready for the 2017 National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo or NaNo for short). I had various possible ideas saved in a folder — and then I had a dream with the image that opens the book, a Vushlu meeting the sea in its final moments. The idea grabbed me by the imagination, and I went with it.

 

Question 3: During the initial writing process where did you get the idea for the book and its characters? 

–I spent the first few days before NaNo 2017, and the first few days of NaNo, brainstorming ideas for scenes and characters. My husband contributed a key plot point.

 

Question 4: Where do you get the ideas for the worlds you find yourself creating?

–I’ve been reading science fiction for decades, which has no doubt fertilized my world building faculties. A great deal of the writing, whether world building or any other aspect of it, happens on a subconscious level.

 

Question 5: Who were some of the authors that inspired you as a child growing up and their books? 

–I’m glad you asked for some, since I can’t possibly remember them all: C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia; Frances Hodgson Burnett’s A Little Princess and A Secret Garden; Edward Eager’s Half Magic, Knight’s Castle, Magic by the Lake, and Magic or Not?; Walter Farley’s Black Stallion series; P. L. Travers’s Mary Poppins series; Laura Ingalls Wilder’s Little House series; and Hilda Lewis’s The Ship That Flew.

 

Question 6: What was the feeling like when you saw the first completed version of your book?

–It’s a thrill every time. I grin ear to ear and bounce on my toes.

 

Question 7: Do you continue to write and in what genre? 

For NaNo 2018, I’m heading in quite a different direction, or rather, two of ’em. I’m about to start the rough draft of a romance novel set in the 19th century American West.

 

Question 8: Who do you imagine being the people reading your book?

–For my novels up until now, I imagine most of them being people who love to read in general and also know and love science fiction.

 

Question 9: Any good suggestions for those who want to try writing their own book?

While it isn’t the right process for everyone, NaNo can be a terrific way to get over hesitation and self-doubt and just get started. It’s also ideal for finishing a rough draft, as opposed to constantly editing and re-editing the beginning of one. The supportive online community at https://nanowrimo.org/ can help a new author make it through.

 

Question 10: When not writing how does you like to spend your time?

–Reading! I read whenever I’m not doing something that makes it impossible. I also like taking photographs, but haven’t done as much of that in recent years. I also like walking in pretty places and watching a few (not many) TV series. I don’t get to travel very much, but enjoy it when the logistics aren’t too annoying.

 

The + 1 Question

If you had any one place in the world you could travel to for a book tour, where would that place be, and why? 

  –At the moment, it would be Boston, MA, because my younger daughter lives there. More generally: London. I’d want the tour to include Hatchards, Primrose Hill Books, and Lutyens & Rubinstein.

 
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Posted by on November 1, 2018 in Interview

 

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Zombies are not Always Humans by Shawn Micallef

Photo by Shawn Micallef

What is Halloween without a ghost story. I realized late this year I did not create any special content for this spookiest day of the year.  So, I take laptop outside with me and as I await the scariest of creatures I start to put fingers to keys and produce this story. Those creatures, well of course children looking for candy and the ever so “happy” parents walking along with them.

I mention the timing of this story to hope you may forgive me some grammatical errors that may appear within this story.

A bone chilling scream, one that turns the blood ice cold, sending shivers up the spine and often results in a look towards the scream. The other result is often panicked footsteps growing fast as people run in the opposite direction of the scream.

The two words that created such a scream…” ZOMBIE CATS!!!!!!”

You may find yourself going what? Zombie cats? Why would that create such terror in a man, woman or even a child?  It is simple my friend, the zombie outbreak did not find itself claiming human after human as books, and movies would have us believe. In this instance, the outbreak took hold in our four-legged friends: Cats, Dogs, squirrels, chipmunks and even the family hamster.

Sure, you may laugh at that, and even wonder what is there to fear about such an outbreak. We must forget that man domesticated many of these animals. We have let them into our homes and we trust them with our families, and often see them as one of our own.

So, it was a peaceful world till an asteroid passed within a very close 100 miles from Earth sending radiation down upon the planet. Scientists informed humanity that he radiation would be harmless to humanity, but they did not factor in the animals. This would turn out to be catastrophic to humanity as the first signs of danger came out of China and South East Asia.

I have to say that when first report of animals attacking those who ran the kennels and dog mills was first met with joy by many in the west. Those who felt that it was barbaric to eat dogs for food were thrilled and saw it as karma that this was happening. Those feelings lasted for all of twelve hours as videos started popping up all over the internet. Those cute cat videos had been replaced with snarling, foam dripping, and black eyed creatures attacking their owners. The first 5 to 10 of these seemed to be claimed to be faked but as more started to show up a few turned into hundreds, thousands, and eventually they stopped.

The videos were replaced with news stories that pushed all other concerns off the airwaves. The bi-partisan bitterness was gone, the headlines on divide gone, and replaced with the horror that was about to hit the west. You see, the trajectory of the Asteroid had it moving from East to West.  The west had time to prepare, they were advised to lock up their pets, some even stated as going so far as mercy killing them. However, remember these are family pets that are part of the family, and many said no not my pet. Sadly, if they had only headed the warnings.

Now, let me explain what happened when a human was attacked by one of these zombie critters. The whole thing would start with the pet’s eyes turning a dark black. There feral instincts returned immediately and nothing was safe from an attack if it had a heartbeat. This met children to adult were not safe from an attack. You should remember that I said heartbeat as their attacks were meant to kill.  Sure, you could hold off one or two animals, but after awhile they attacked with a pack mentality. The pacts would grow in size from small numbers to over a hundred depending on area. You then add in feral animals and even the military of great countries found it difficult to stop the packs. There was one news story on how a great army was wiped out by a pack of animals containing cats, dogs, hamsters, mice and even some larger zoo animals. The animals lost quite a few but another side effect of the virus, or whatever it was, gave the critters a near zombie like abilities. The critters, well they did not go down easy and would take quite a lot to put them down. Another problem with that military unit, they had already seen losses from their own animals as the units dogs had gotten loose and done their damage.

So, by now you can guess what that scream would cause such panic. Humanity was under attack from those creatures, big and small that we at one time considered family. Humanity finally found themselves on the lower end of the “new” food chain. It became increasingly harder and harder to escape the packs. This is one thing that the books and movies got right, and that large urban areas were first to fall. Of course, the rural areas did not fair much better as many had their share of pets.

Those on the International Space Station could only look down and see the fires from space as they lit up the planet. Eventually even those men and women on the ISS found themselves in danger and feeling the results of the event, ask supply missions suddenly stopped. They were left up in space with no support, or help.

You’d have thought that parts of the artic would have been save, but think again. Those in Alaska and other locations would use dog teams as a way to travel. They may only have them for sport purposes, but even they were turned. So, even the artic regions were not safe. In truth, were there was a pet there was bound to be death.

The world as we humans knew it had been turned upside down. There was death and destruction all over the world. A simple bit often leads to massive infections, but if the critters got you down on the ground, a hold of your throat, and well please I’d rather you use your imagination than describe. Plus, at some point children could find this record.

Oh who am I, why am I writing this? I was lucky to a point. You see I am a prepper and had a bomb silo buried in a secret location about a mile into the woods from my home. I been able to keep up on what has been happening in the world through short wave radio. I was in touch with a group in Montana when I heard the scream come over the mic. I have not heard a word from that group since. My electricity is off a generator in another room and that is going to be the cause of my death.

I say my death as I can here mice trying to dig thru the walls. The exhaust for the gas generator was not sealed properly and the critter have found their way down to the generator room. I will not attempt to refill the generator as that means sure death. However, air circulation is also powered so again if the critters do not get in, when the air flow stops, well, yeah, I’m gone. I’m kicking myself as I did not get time to put in the solar panels and batteries that were next in the planning of my “bunker”.  So, I’m using what time I have left to put at least some type of general down for anyone who may some day come across my location. You may ask how would they find it, well when I know the time is getting close I’ll turn on the emergency beacon I have that is battery powered. It will at least last longer than I will.

It is time for me to save this, close this laptop and let those who may come, if anyone does find it.  I feel the air getting stagnant, breathing getting harder, and I’m getting light headed. It’s only time now. To think, the creatures and critters we called our pets would…………………………………………………………………….

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2018 in Short Stories

 

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Water to Water by Karen A. Wyle

I first wish to open by stating I have had the pleasure of reading several of Author Karen A. Wyle books in the past. She has always been able to create very believable world settings combined with characters readers will find themselves relating to as they read the pages of her books. As expected, Karen A. Wyle does it again in her latest book, Water to Water.

In the pages of Water to Water, readers will find a world that is unique and new to readers. It is a world with multiple beings living upon the planet with each type of being having its own belief systems and part to play within the pages. The book will tackle topics from death to the wonder of discovery. At the same time, as we all find, sometimes discovery comes at a cost.

Water to Water setting is that of an alien planet which allowed author Karen A. Wyle to utilize her imagination when creating the world that will be discovered thru the eyes of the books main characters. These characters will not be familiar either as they will have multiple appendages in some cases. They may be considered non-human to some, but their relationships and emotions are all too human. This adds an additional complexity to the characters in my humble opinion.

As readers will find the book opens with a scene that sees a member of the Vushla race preparing for his final walk to the sea. The Vushla believe that they need to go to the sea and allow the water to reclaim them at the moment of their death. It falls on Terrill’s hands to be the one to walk with his father to his final rest as he is reclaimed.

At the same time,, this is taking place a young Vushla hides away in a traders cart. The trader Kititit, a Weesah,  has engrossed this young Vushla in his tales of what Kititit has seen and learned thru his travels. Thus, Honnu has hidden away leaving just a note for his family to know where he is going. A brief moment on the road will find Terrill returning with family from taking his father to the sea run into Kititit and his cart. It is not long after this moment that the book will really begin to open up the world of the Vushlu and the Weesah. A world that is vast and at times will have the two Vushlu boys questioning the things they have been told and believed.

As I read the book I found myself thinking of other tails of boys running off to explore their world. I thought of books like Stand by Me, and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Like these books, both took the reader into a world of adventure that allowed the reader to explore the world around the boys thru their eyes. Each of those books is set in many different times than today, some of their lessons are not what is politically correct in today’s world. The fact is they told a tale of exploration that left others wondering what would it be like to throw all aside and take a risk and wonder.

You see, this is what comes from the feelings and emotions that are conveyed within the pages of Water to Water. The boys will work for their passage, but at the same time, their predetermined beliefs will be questioned. They will learn things that may shatter their worldviews, but at the same time, they will see wonders they would not have gotten had they not taken the urge to travel.  This urge going against much of what the Vushlu may believe, but in reality, the experience is the best teacher for someone.

The connection between our three main characters will grow strong. We also cannot forget the beast like creature that pulls the cart. The group will reach for wonders, and Kititit will do all he can to help the young Vushlu learn about their world.

Author Karen A. Wyle again does an amazing job in developing the characters within the pages of Water to Water. She may be writing a book set on an alien world, with alien species, but again they can be seen to be all too human.  In truth, the trip these two Vushlu take is one that many would probably love to take today. A chance to get outside of what they consider the norm, and really learn about others. Something you will find yourself doing at least thru the eyes of the characters within the pages of the book.

 
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Posted by on October 29, 2018 in Reviews

 

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