Always happy when serendipity allows me a chance to talk about my novel with a stranger. Yesterday, in Seattle, a crisp and sunny winter solstice, I walked my dog to the library to pick up Still Life with Bread Crumbs (Anna Quindlen), and Zelda (Nancy Milford). When I returned home along the path at Green Lake, I spied a tiny dog being walked by two women (60-somethings like me). My dog went into a low crouch, weight on her back paws, refusing to move forward. Tiny tot did the same.
“Dogs aren’t saying hello to him today,” the woman in charge of the leash lamented.
My dog went for tiny tot. “Be nice Lucy,” I said, then realized I called my dog by the wrong name.
The dogs visited in the way dogs do.
“What’s your dog’s name,” I asked.
“Romeo. And yours is Lucy.”
“No, her name is Lulu, but I called her Lucy because that’s the name of a character in a novel I’m writing, and she’s on my mind.”
“Oh, are you a local author?”
“What have you written?”
“My debut novel was published two years ago.”
“What’s the name of it?”
“A Tight Grip. It’s a novel about golf, love affairs, and women of a certain age.”
“Can I get it at the library?”
“Yes, you can.”
“And, what’s your name?”
I told her my name, and she said she was going to check it out.
“Hope you enjoy it,” I said. Then Lulu and I walked home, and she matched the bounce in my step.