Writing and Publishing
In 2003, my nonfiction book, Click for Joy: Questions and Answers from Clicker Trainers and Their Dogs, was published by Sunshine Books (now KPCT). Later that year, it won the Dog Writers of America’s Maxwell Award for “Best Training/Behavior Book of 2003.” Although I haven’t pulled out the reports from my publisher, I estimate it has sold over 20,000 copies, and it’s still selling. Not bad for a book written for a type of training most people hadn’t heard of ten years ago!
After writing Click for Joy, I experimented with screenplays. Screenwriting is the road not taken for me; when I was in high school I dreamed of writing for television. I know now I would never relocate to Los Angeles, so that door is closed. But, unwilling to turn my back on my first love completely, I wrote two screenplays. The first won a couple of small contests and was optioned but not produced. The second was a semi-finalist for a Nicholl Fellowship.
I loved the story in the second screenplay, so I decided to expand and novelize it. The project, titled Doubting River, became my first novel. I started it back in 2008, and then shelved it for a decade. I pulled it out at the end of 2019 and began querying agents in September 2020.