My Dearest Puppy People,
I can’t tell you what a joy you have been to me, these years we’ve met together here at Foxglove Farm. Many of you have come and had a seat in my kitchen, met Agatha in person, had a cup of coffee and visited with one or another of the little four-footed creatures that call this place their home. Many more of you I have never met in person but I feel I know you anyway, that we’ve shared a bond of the love of animals and shared stories about them.
What a sweet blessing you have been in my life, your faithful reading of my postings, your loving and generous comments, your precious prayers, I am so thankful for each and every one of you dear readers. I can’t tell you how much of an encouragement you’ve been. In large measure it’s because of you, because of your letters and exhortations to write, children’s stories and books about Agatha, about life at Foxglove Farm. You’ve helped me have the courage to step out take the first steps on this new path.
Soon and very soon, the first 2 titles of a series of 5 (did I just say that out loud?) yes, FIVE children’s books will be beginning a journey of their own into the wide wide world and I hope into the hearts of dog lovers everywhere. “Bonsai Comes Home To Stay” is my special favorite, his true little tale is a poignant one with a very happy ending (we love happy endings Agatha & I).
I’ve shared an excerpt to the Bonsai tale, we even have a real live website here with book previews and even a spot to pre-order! I was so taken with his story when I saw his little woebegone face in a blog post by a dear friend Karrianne Wood that described his arrival at her farm (you can see the real Bonzai here on her wonderful blog www.thistlewoodfarm.com) that I couldn’t stop thinking about him until I gave him his own honest to goodness book! A Yorkie right? I know, but his story captured my heart and I had to tell it for him…
I loved writing the story of this elderly little fellow and I’m especially thrilled to report that upon reading the first proof copy aloud to three 7 & 8-year-old little girls, that the room was so quiet that you could have heard the proverbial pin drop, the only sound the ticking of the old clock on the bookshelf. Little girls who loved their iPads and games on their mama’s phones, sat completely still, softly quiet and captured by this small dog and his tiny struggles, that they had tears in their eyes at the part of the story where Bonsai found himself in the Old Dog’s Home…
I’m so very excited and cannot wait until the first copies of Bonsai arrive, literally hot off the presses and I can share them with you. They are partially yours anyway, I never would have had the courage to step out in faith and share them with the world if it hadn’t been for you. I have treasured your words and believe in my heart that you’ve spoken truth into my life and it’s time to take flight, to take to the wing, to soar and let my stories take on lives of their own. My prayer is that they to make people laugh and yes shed a tear over stories of real dogs and their small journeys. Stories that people will read to their children and grandchildren, turning the pages slowly to have time to enjoy the beautiful watercolor illustrations, each with a heart of its own.
“A Puppy’s Christmas Wish” makes ME cry when I read it! Goodness, I wrote it so you’d think after a few readings I’d be not so teary! The day I took the photos of Tinsel and Buttons, Jingle & sweet funny Sparkle Plenty, I knew there was something special happening, the camera whirring and puppies telling a story right before my eyes.
My desire is that in reading or hearing these stories, children will learn to love dogs, develop a love for reading and most of all, a love and heart for the animals in their lives. That dog lovers of all ages will find entertainment and a bit of rest and refreshment in books with delightful illustrations and photos that make the stories come alive. A word about those beautiful watercolors, lest you think I’ve developed an entire new vocation as artist, alas, they are not my own (though the photos will be!) but are painted by a wonderful artist, Vianne Chang who skillfully brings each of my characters to life.
OH, I WISH I could send them out to you all FREE of charge, you have such a part in their creation… My wiser and better half reminds me that there is the tiniest profit after the investment to publish books on this rather small scale. Our cost is not much under what they are priced at so to keep peace in the family and pay the bills if you decide to purchase a copy, I promise to send it along with a personal note from Agatha & me. I’m trying to decide if she’ll cooperate and put a paw print inside the cover, but ink and dog paws might not be the most brilliant thing I’ve dreamed up yet!
With Most Heartfelt Wags,
terry & agatha
(& bonsai & fluffy blue eyes & barkley & tinsel & sparkle plenty & just a few more…)
P.S. Faithful readers, I humbly ask that you help get the word out? If you like to pin things on Pinterest, if you have a few dozen dog loving Facebook friends, or if the lady where you take your dry cleaning is a dog lover, won’t you help spread the word and the new website: https://tellencross.squarespace.com and Bonsai & the rest of my little books with anyone who might sit still enough to listen?!? I so hope everyone loves and enjoys these stories, in my heart, I know this is something I’m meant to do and I know that along with my dear puppy people, God will help Bonsai & Tinsel and all the rest sit up and bark!