Yes, It’s Revision… But Is It DELICIOUS?

Like other folks, lots of writers have pets.

And while it had been a whole lot of years since I had pets, for Christmas my guys got me a cat.


Very cool cat.

Likes to help. Really likes to help with revision, which is generally not an area where I welcome help.

Here. Let me show you…

Sheldon Helping 01

Here, have a tissue.

Sheldon Helping 02

No, don’t have a tissue. I want it.

Sheldon Helping 03

Wonderful tissue smells delicious.

Sheldon Helping 04

Tissue is chewy but not tasty.

Sheldon Helping 05

I claim the pen in the name of ME!

Sheldon Helping 07

Why does the pen not leap to the floor?

Sheldon Helping 08

Something is wrong with this pen.

Sheldon Helping 09

My pen.Β  Mine.Β  Leap?Β  No?Β  Betrayed by technology…

Sheldon Helping 10


Sheldon Helping 11

Also pinned down.

Sheldon Helping 12

Could be tasty.

Sheldon Helping 13

Is definitely chewy.

Sheldon Helping 14

Is NOT delicious.

Sheldon Helping 15

If you’re going to yell at me for chewing, I’m going to sulk.

Sheldon Helping 16

I’m not looking at your stupid revision.

Sheldon Helping 17

Not looking…

Sheldon Helping 18

Definitely not looking… (But flicky tail says thinking about looking…)

Sheldon Helping 19

Oh, GAWD, yummy revision!

Sheldon Helping 20

That did not happen. See me not looking?

How about you? Have a picture or two of the “help” you get while you’re working?

If you have a photo-sharing service like Flickr (or whatever else is out there — I don’t keep up), post one or two images of your helper helping below.

I’d love to see. πŸ˜€

No more than two. My blog is set to mark as spam any replies that have more than two links in them, and I don’t want to accidentally lose your post.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and indie-publish my new ones.

43 comments… add one
  • Charlotte Lenox Mar 13, 2017 @ 5:41

    Our sweet furbaby, who was very helpful about lying on papers and books, and in this instance, helping me build her pyramids:

    She sadly passed away young from cancer. One of the hardest goodbyes I had to say.

    • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:33

      I’m so sorry you lost her in such a difficult way. Big hugs.

      I lost my last cat, Spenser, to cancer. I decided he was going to be my last cat ever. It was so difficult it took me nearly ten years (and the guys telling me a kitten was going to be my Christmas present), for me to take a chance again.

      I’m glad I did.

      • Charlotte Lenox Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:58

        Thank you for sharing, Holly πŸ™‚ We felt much the same way, but our other resident kitty started howling up and down the halls for her lost friend, so we ended up adopting again. Sheldon looks like a fun kitty (though occasionally aggravating, but that’s part of a cat’s job description). Definitely seems like a character!

  • Tom Vetter Mar 12, 2017 @ 14:24

    In a twist of irony for a guy named Tom, I am not a cat person. Not my fault; I’m very allergic to them.

    I do have dogs, monogamously. The current fellow, a silky terrier named Rascal, is number three. I bought him as a puppy ten years ago for Gabriela, who adored him and he her. But Rascal concluded long ago that he is MY dog. Our twice-daily walks have maintained our girlish figures, and we have covered 3,500 miles together that way in the decade since.

    I don’t do Flikr, so you will have to imagine a buff-and-grey version of Toto, with a 2-inch coat of silky locks, and ears akimbo: the left ever-alert, the right folded to melt the hearts of women (and he knows it!).

    As I am under constant attack by squirrels, who peer in my windows to steal my work for the Chinese Red Army to copy, his job—detecting them and driving them off with a sudden barrage of furious bouncing and barking—can be hard on my concentration. And when he decides we need a break, only my lap will do.

    Happiness IS a warm puppy. πŸ˜€

    • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:30

      Awwww. He sounds both beautiful and wonderful.

      And good luck fending off the Evil Squirrel Army.

  • Michelle Miles Mar 12, 2017 @ 8:48

    I hope this link works. πŸ™‚ This is Dexter. It’s SUPER helpful!

    • Michelle Miles Mar 12, 2017 @ 8:48

      Meant to say HE’S super helpful. ha

      • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:29

        ROFL! When the cat sits or sleeps on your manuscript, you know it’s been approved.

  • P.D. Singer Mar 12, 2017 @ 8:20

    I get help with cover design and formatting too. Publishing cat is publishing. (He really is that big–18 lbs.)

    • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:28

      WOW! He’s gorgeous. And that’s a lot of cat. Only slightly smaller than your average editor. πŸ˜€

  • Kim Iverson Mar 11, 2017 @ 13:38

    Oh my goodness he is too cute. I actually did just share a picture of my “help” the other day on Instagram. I have a 8.5 month old Doberman who decided to share the chair with me and yeah, she was not as helpful as she thought she was.

    I’m rather glad mine didn’t try to gnaw on my work though, haha.

    • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:27

      “I’m rather glad mine didn’t try to gnaw on my work though, haha.”

      Seriously. If yours gnawed on the work, there’d be nothing left. She’s beautiful.

  • Sylvia Nickels Mar 11, 2017 @ 8:45

    When my grandson and his beautiful tabby came to live with me, Monkee weighed between fifteen and twenty pounds though he was only about a year old. I always felt that he must have some Maine Coon in him. I fell in love with him and apparently he with me. He insisted on sleeping with his head and shoulders on my shoulder as I sat at my computer. When the shoulder got numb I’d put him down, he’d keep trying to climb right back up. Still miss the rascal, he developed kidney problems after a few years and we had to say goodbye.

    • Holly Mar 13, 2017 @ 7:26

      Hugs. It’s hard to lose them. He sounds wonderful.

  • Michael Polk Mar 10, 2017 @ 14:46

    My dog, every so often on her way to her bed, which was usually behind me, would find that the only suitable path involved walking on my laptop. (I work on the floor pretty much all the time. My mom keeps saying, “We can get you a desk.” To which I reply, “Mom, I didn’t use my desk when I had one.)

    She would also walk on my homework, on my shoes, on my laundry, or on pretty much anything that was in her way. That is, unless she didn’t feel like it. In which case, she would look at me and whine, asking me to move whatever was in her way.

    So my dog would just help my writing, but also try to help every part of my life she could step on or interact with. (“You’re eating an apple? I’ll help!” “You’re cutting some ham? Why aren’t you cooking that bit? Do you not want it? Ooh, here, I’ll help! I’m closer than the trash can!” “Hmm. You haven’t played your guitar in a little while. Ooh! I’ll step on it to get you inspired, then stare at you while you’re singing! See? I’m listening!”)

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 7:03

      LOL! Cool story — and big help, too.

  • Charlotte Babb Mar 10, 2017 @ 14:26

    so nice to have a smile on a Friday. Maybe I need *h*e*l*p* with revision too. I could visit the shelter tomorrow…

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 7:02

      πŸ˜€ They do make the process more fun. Remember to buy a whole-punch and BIG binders if you decided to go the “Fur Help” route.

  • Clare Walker Mar 10, 2017 @ 14:02

    A cat also likes a nice tea break!

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:59

      Very cute cat. Elegant (except for having his whole head in the cup). πŸ˜‰

      He looks like my daughter’s cat Jeeves.

      (We considered both Wodehouse and Wooster as names for Sheldon, but neither fit.)

  • Gabby Mar 10, 2017 @ 13:51

    My fur baby looks a little like yours and he also likes to β€œhelp”. I try to distract him but it is short lived.

    His favorite place is laying on my hand (and he gets very annoyed when I try to continue typing) or suddenly walking over the center of the keyboard which has fun, random results…

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:57

      The picture was gone, though apparently some folks saw it. πŸ™

  • Katharina Gerlach Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:53

    Cute kitty. My dog lies on my feet. He’s not exactly helping with writing or revision, but he keeps my feet warm. πŸ˜‰

    • Jean Mar 10, 2017 @ 15:36

      Having warm feet must help in some way with writing and revision.

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:55

      When we lived in the trailer in Georgia, the office got horribly cold in the winter. The cats would curl around my feet when I was writing then.

      It DID help.

  • Sarah Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:34

    Okay, that was just freakin’ adorable ❀️ Thanks for sharing, he’s a handsome cat and also cute, if you know what I mean!

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:54

      πŸ˜€ Thank you.

      He’s buff-colored, which I’d never seen before, and this color is apparently rather rare.

      Weirdly, he matches all our furniture, our lampshades, and our walls. We’ve joked that the buff mutation is urban camouflage for cats.

  • Deborah Turner Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:20

    My cat, Sassy, would lie on my arm, with her paws on either side, just holding on, “helping” me write. If I got up to get coffee, I’d come back to see she had added to my manuscript by walking on the keyboard, as she went across my desk to investigate my husband’s.

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:52

      That sounds very sweet.

      Sheldon isn’t a particularly cuddly cat unless he’s falling asleep. He like to actively help. You know, picking up the pen you’re using, tossing it to the floor, leaping after it, and killing it for you so that it won’t attack your pages anymore.

      Like that.

      • Deborah Turner Mar 13, 2017 @ 11:05

        Sassy is the most cuddly cat I’ve ever been owned by. All my cats have been writing helpers, some more than others. Sassy was the most original of the lot.

        I had a guide dog we were training once, and she must had decided the writing was just bad that day because instead of editing the work, she just gnawed all the monitor wires. “There, that’s fixed. You can’t see anything now.” We went and got a new monitor cable and she went in the corner and put her paws over her face. Honestly, the writing wasn’t that bad!

        • Holly Lisle Mar 13, 2017 @ 12:10

          LOL! That’s a great story.

  • Therese Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:14

    Well, that was adorable.

  • Kellie Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:13

    My cat used to come flying into the room, leap up onto the desk or table where I was working, and scatter every paper that wasn’t bolted down. Then she’d walk back and forth across the keypad of my laptop. Feeling the love!!

    • Holly Mar 12, 2017 @ 6:50

      “and scatter every paper that wasn’t bolted down.”

      Mine does that now. Which is why I work between two big D-ring legal notebooks with every sheet of paper hole-punched and bolted down.

      Sheldon is not my first cat, this is not my first revision, and I STILL remember trying to put together again all the pieces of the one a years-earlier cat leapt into with frenzied joy.

  • Marya Miller Mar 10, 2017 @ 12:07

    Now that’s what I call a Writer’s Cat. Except that HE wants to do the writing, apparently. πŸ˜‰

    What a beautiful boy!

    I do have photos, but no way to share them: I had a Siamese named Minkey who liked to play “Curse of Monkey Island” on the computer (we think he thought it was ‘Minkey Island’); Was once caught and photographed turning the pages of “The Secrets of Face-to-Face Communication; and who once joined in an art class when I was at Art College by dropping a dead mouse onto a sheet of newsprint on the studio floor (he was supposed to be the *subject*).

    We all agreed he was Participating. “Mouse Ex Mortis” by Minkey.

    Oh the silliness our cats cause us humans to be distracted by…

    • Holly Mar 11, 2017 @ 6:50

      πŸ˜€ Awesome story. Cat Muse with Mouse.

  • Anna Mar 10, 2017 @ 11:59

    I don’t use Flicker, but I have innumerable photos of my (former, alas) cats helping me write, usually by sitting with folded front paws on a stack of paper. You are so lucky to have Sheldon, who is clearly 1000% smarter than Sheldon Cooper. He is gorgeous!

    • Holly Mar 11, 2017 @ 6:46

      πŸ˜€ He’s a sweetheart, mostly. He begs bites of peaches and oranges, which he licks like he’s trying to understand why I eat them. He chases shadows on the walls, and play-bites.

      But he’s happiest when I’m working at the table, and he can help (and steal any pens I haven’t clipped down.

  • Jean Mar 10, 2017 @ 11:50

    I love Sheldon.

    I just blogged about one of my trusty helpers last week. Tarzan.

    I don’t have pictures, but Sneaky climbs onto my chest and blocks the screen. In a definite, “Oh, you are too cute” moment, she will sit on the arm of the chair, wrap her paws around my upper arm, and drop her head to my shoulder. Who can work with that?

  • Anne Mar 10, 2017 @ 11:44

    Too cute!

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