Jennifer Brozek | November 2023

Good-bye Pharaoh

Again, with a broken heart, I must tell you that Pharaoh, our beloved Egyptian Mau, has gone to the clearing at the end of the path. He has joined his sister, Isis, three months after she passed. As before, the Husband and I are in shatters. It is an intense type of emotional pain. We are as affected by the death of Pharaoh as we were by the death of Isis.

Pharaoh was my kitty. I was his human. He brooked no argument on this fact. I was the one he wanted to see. It was my lap he wanted to sleep in. He loved the Husband. Yes, of course he did. But he knew that the Husband belonged to Isis, and she was the one who ruled the roost no matter what any of the other cats thought about it. Period. End of story. That was okay because he wanted me and had me as his. I accepted my duty with my whole heart.

Pharaoh lived for just over sixteen years. We got the twins even before we were married. I think, officially, our Maus were the first things we chose and bought together. Though, it was very clear from the outset who chose who. Pharaoh was so loving and lovable. He grew to an average of eighteen pounds (nineteen at his heaviest) and knew how to use that bulk to bring down prey (toys). More than once he stole a toy from me accidentally because he put his whole body into the attack.

We knew that Pharaoh didn’t have long to live after Isis left us. But much of the past three months made us think that he was going to become a little lich kitty, living forever. He rallied…until he didn’t. Walking hasn’t been easy for him in his last months and while the meds would work for a little bit, they didn’t work for long. It got to the point that walking was painful, and he couldn’t use the litter box unless we were there to help. He couldn’t really walk the stairs. In our last weeks together, I carried him to his meals, the litter box, his heated blanket. He stopped playing for the most part—and when he did play, he would have an asthma attack. He was so tired and uncomfortable in his skin. 

My darling boy was allergic to many things (beef and pork included). It meant he needed to spend years on so many different medicines that we created morning and night routines around which medicines we had to give him and when to keep him happy, comfortable, and thriving. I think our mornings and evenings will feel empty, incomplete, for a long time to come. There is so much less to do. Right now, my life feels so much less.

His last day was beautiful. We fed him all his favorite treats. We held him and soothed him when he had one of his confused episodes. When he fell asleep in my arms, he finally relaxed enough to snore like he hadn’t done in many, many weeks. At least a month. It was so sweet and tender—his relief, his final relaxation. I stayed with him until the end as I promised him I would. It is the hardest, kindest thing a responsible pet owner can do. I still miss Isis. I already miss him so much, and my heart feels like it’s never going to stop breaking.

We want our kitties back.
 
(We used Compassion 4 Paws. Dr. Nicole was understanding, patient, and respectful. It helped with this hard, necessary procedure.)

Bubble and Squeek for 13 Nov 2023

Anthology Forthcoming: December 12th release date, The Reinvented Detective anthology with fabulous people like Premee Mohamed, Seanan McGuire, and Harry Turtledove!

Class: Last class of the year: Class: Body Language and Description As Genre. This is one of my most popular classes. Excellent for short fiction and long. Spots and scholarships still available!

D&D Campaign Ending: It was an epic end to a multi-year campaign. As told by players in the game on BlueSky (must be logged in)… Wing's perspective and Seanan's perspective.

EVENT - Reading: I will be reading with David D. Levine at the University Bookstore on Nov 21. I will be representing the Reinvented Anthology series, The Reinvented Heart and The Reinvented Detective. David will be reading from his new book: The Kuiper Belt Job. Here’s the EventBrite event listing and the Facebook event listing.

Local Bookstore: I finally had the chance to visit Brick & Mortar Book store in Redmond. The store is beautiful and friendly. The staff is a delight. This is where to get my signed books for the holidays. Personalized, even.

Shoutout: I highly recommend Shigidi and the Brass Head of Obalufon by Wole Talabi. I am savoring this book like a woman who savors a favorite cocktail—with great appreciation without being too serious. (Though, I am pondering some of the techniques Talabi uses as a writer to steal.)  

Virtual Panel: December 4th! Deceptions and Death: Talking Thrillers. It includes me and other fabulous authors.

Support: As always… if you appreciate my work and would like to support me, I love coffee. I am made of caffeine. This is the quickest way to brighten my day.

How to Get Signed or Personalized Books From Me

The holiday season is upon us. Gift giving can be stressful or fun or both. If you want to get signed and/or personalized books from me, but haven’t seen me at one of my in-person events, I’ve got a solution for you. One that will work all year round and for any of my new physical book releases!

Introducing Brick & Mortar Books (Redmond, WA). They are a wonderful and friendly indie bookstore that is close to me that works with willing and available local authors to get signed/personalized books. Whether or not a book is physically at the store, as long as it is available through their site, customers can place orders and either have the book(s) shipped to their address or held for pickup at the store. All the books go through Brick & Mortar Books proper first before they’re shipped out or held, so the signing process is the same for local and long distance orders.

Once you decide on the book(s) you want, there is a Notes field available when customers place orders through the store’s website where they can indicate if they want their copy signed and/or any personalization requests. Once Brick & Mortar Books has the book(s) they will contact me and arrange a time for me to come in and sign/personalize the books. 

If you don’t see the book you want on the website, you can call or email the bookstore and request it. They will take it from there. Signed books sorted! Please support your indie and local bookstores.

November In-Person Events

November is a busy month. I will be at OryCon in Portland, OR from Nov 10-12 as the Editor Guest of Honor. I’m happy to say hello and to sign books. My schedule is below.

I will also be reading at the University Bookstore on November 21 with David D. Levine and the launch of his book, The Kuiper Belt Job. I will be there representing the Reinvented Anthology series, The Reinvented Heart and The Reinvented Detective (pre-orders are love), as the series co-editor. Several authors from the series will be in the audience.

===ORYCON SCHEDULE===

Friday
4pm – Pendleton
Workshop: Blue Pencil Edit & Critique

6pm – Mt. Saint Helens
Opening Ceremonies

7pm – Mt. Saint Helens
Guests of Honor Mixer & Dinner

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Saturday
11am – West Ballroom
GOH: Jennifer Brozek Autographs

2pm – Pendelton
The Caring and Feeding of Author Newsletters

3pm – Pendelton
Resurrect Your Writing

4pm – White Stag
GOH Q&A: Meet our Guests of Honor!

6pm – White Stag
GOH Workshop: Description and Body Language as Genre

Hope to see you there!