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Author Pet Of The Month
Pamela Cook

Pamela Cook and Teddy

Pamela Cook writes women’s fiction set in beautifully rendered Australian locations. Her books always feature animals in some way, usually horses or dogs and Pamela has the wonderful knack of combining beautiful writing with page turning tension. She also has a fantastic podcast, Writes4Women. Pam interviewed me recently for the podcast. We jokingly pre-named the episode “Confessions of a Genre Slut” because, well, let’s say, if the cap fits…..but it has since been renamed The Long Haul. The episode will be dropping on February 24.

Part 1. Author Questions. The Fast Five.

Q1. Serial pet monogamist? Or ménage a pet?
Definitely the latter! We have 3 dogs (plus one part -timer when my daughter stays over), 2 goats, six horses, a cat and three neglected goldfish. Can you tell I didn’t have many pets as a kid?

Q2. Set the scene. – where do you hang out with your pet/s?
We are very lucky to live on a beautiful rural property in the Illawarra only an hour’s train ride from Sydney centre. When I’m writing I can look out the window and see what my horses are doing, and I usually have a dog looking at me through the window whining to come inside (Teddy I’m looking at you!). And yes, he does get his own way far too often.

Q. 3 Pet character profile
Baloo is my 8 year old quarter horse and you could not get a more handsome boy (definitely not biased!). I’ve had him for about a year and a half now after my other boy Rio went lame with a fractured fetlock. While Rio is okay to hang out in the paddock his show days are over. So enter Baloo who I bought during Covid and fell instantly in love with even though I only saw videos before sending through the payment. Is that classified as online dating??? Turns out my instincts were right. He’s got the most gorgeous nature, moves like a dream and – did I mention how handsome he is? We’ve just completed our fifth Western Pleasure (think cowboy hats and bling) and he just keeps getting better.

The other love of my life (sorry hubby) is Teddy, our four year old ‘bointer’. That’s not a recognised breed but a cross between a boxer and a german short haired pointer. He is the biggest sook you could ever meet, spends most of his day sleeping on the lounge and occasionally gets an attack of the zoomies. Always short lived though, before he retires back to the couch.
show together

Q 4. Muse, distraction, or disruptor?
I’d have to say distractor for both. But then I am a very experienced procrastinator so it doesn’t take much!

Q 5 Best pet in a book?
Claude the parrot in Sarah Winman’s Still Life. If you haven’t read it yet do yourself a favour and grab a copy.

Part 2. Now we’re talking, or panting, or purring…

1. Favourite Treat
Pamela: She’ll have a nice chilled glass of bubbles accompanied by a bag of salted crisps
Teddy: A total guts. Any food other than banana
Baloo: Liquorice. But he’s on rations so it doesn’t give him cavities

2. Their Worst habit.
Pamela: Takes way too long to feed us. Even when we stand at the gate (Baloo) or look through the window (Teddy) with our best ‘I’m absolutely starving’ looks she just keeps bashing away at the computer as if we’re not even there!
Teddy: Sneaking onto the bed at some ridiculous hour in the morning and hogging the bed – and he’s not exactly tiny!
Baloo: Tap dancing when fly spray is being applied. Mate, don’t you understand it’s for your own good???

3. Their best quality
Pamela: She loves us to bits even when we bark and sleep in the bed (Teddy) or spook at a tiny little noise in the show pen while she’s riding me (Baloo)
Teddy: Would not hurt a fly. A great big loveable boof head.

Baloo: Puts up with his owner/rider making a zillion mistakes and has the loveliest nature 9other than the tap dancing)

4. Bedroom truths. Eg. On the bed, under the bed, next to the bed, closed bedroom door. 3 in the bed. ????
As revealed above both Teddy and his ‘brother” Remi ( a Smithfield which is a border collie cross) like to jump on the bed in the middle of the night, unless it’s the middle of winter in which case they’ll fight it out to see who gets closest to the wood burner.
Definitely no bed for Baloo. Although he is looking forward to stables being built so he doesn’t have to stand out in the rain like any old normal horse.

Pamela Cook and Baloo

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