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  • December 30th, 2009 | 1:57 AM
Of Dogs and Writing - Taking Care of Business

Cassie is not a fan of the rain. When she rings the bell to go outside normally all I have to do is slide open the door and watch her trot out back to take care of business. Except when it's raining. The door opens and she sniffs the air then glares at me as though the stuff falling from the sky is all my fault.

She steps out, hesitantly. She really has to pee but she doesn't want to get wet. So she stands in the middle of the patio (getting wet because there's no overhang or tree for shelter) and instead of just racing on and doing what she needs to do she folds her ears back, tucks her tail between her legs, and waits. For a creature descended from wolves it's really laughable to watch her cower in the pouring rain.

I want to tell her to hurry up. That the sooner she takes care of things, the sooner she can come back in and get dry. But I don't know if it would make a difference, even if I could make her understand me. It's like she wants to have something to complain about.

In some ways I'm a lot like Cassie. When I think about some writing projects, some assignments I might have that aren't at the top of my fun list or some kind of business part of the job that I keep postponing, I know I should just jump in and take care of them so I can cross them off my list. But I don't. I wander around the house, moaning and complaining about how much I don't want to do something and probably spending more time whining about it all than it would have taken me to do whatever needed doing.

I watch Cassie getting more and more wet as she makes no attempt to move off the patio and do what she is supposed to be doing. I sigh, and utter the magic words, "Go potty and you can have a cookie."

She looks back at me and gives a few short wags of her tail before finally walking off behind the back of the house. A few minutes later she bounds back inside, glued to my side until she gets the promised treat. She's been rewarded. All is right in her world.

I think sometimes I forget to give myself a cookie, or even the promise of one.

I'm working on changing that. How about you?
There are so many stories only you can tell.Tell them, please.


( 5 comments — Leave comment )
December 30th, 2009 03:36 pm (UTC)
I love this post. I can just see Cassie standing in the drenching rain, waiting for incentive. lol. That's often how I feel when ideas seem elusive. We should all have more cookies!
December 30th, 2009 05:08 pm (UTC)
You crack me up. I have spent half a lifetime thinking about what would be best to do first, or in what order, or exactly how, instead of just doing it and getting a cookie. I am going to keep that image of the dog in the rain in my head to get me going. Reading LJ is one of my self-administered cookies. Thanks for all you post.
December 30th, 2009 06:03 pm (UTC)
Heh heh,I love the idea of a reward. Maybe it'll help my bad habit of procrastinating. I love reading these posts, Susan.
December 31st, 2009 12:01 am (UTC)
Yes well if only life was that simple and I suppose it should be. If I had a cookie for everything I need to get done I would be the fattest person on this earth but all jokes aside. I too have a great image of Cassie standing there in the rain. You write so well to be able to give people those mental images and to actually feel what you are writing that is what it is all about.
New Years Eve here so all the best for the new year and maybe you can get some of those unfinished projects done without too many cookies.

- Anne McKenna
(Deleted comment)
January 1st, 2010 07:34 pm (UTC)
Another great post. Happy new year to both you and Cassie!
( 5 comments — Leave comment )

Who am I?I was born on the Cancer/Leo cusp and share a birthday with Ernest Hemingway and Robin Williams. The similarities don't stop there as I can go from depressed to ecstatic without ever passing go. I feel scared most of the time though my friends call me brave and I find it easier to believe in my friends than to believe in my own abilities to make what I want out of my life.

Who am I? A wife, a mother, a daughter, and even, gulp, a grandmother.

Who am I? A writer who never gets tired of playing with words, even when the words are hard to find. A writer of books for children and articles for grown-ups and many things in-between.

Who am I? A motivational speaker, writing instructor, workshop leader and full-time follower of dreams.

Who am I? Read and find out.

Susan Taylor Brown

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"Successful writers are not the ones who write the best sentences. They are the ones who keep writing. They are the ones who discover what is most important and strangest and most pleasurable in themselves, and keep believing in the value of their work, despite the difficulties."
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"Writers write about what obsesses them. You draw those cards. I lost my mother when I was 14. My daughter died at the age of 6. I lost my faith as a Catholic. When I'm writing, the darkness is always there. I go where the pain is."
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