Effing Feline ends Ed’s career #wewriwa

Photos: DepositPhotos

I, Effing Feline, insist that Ed stop writing. Immediately. Right now.

Why, you may ask? Because his work has achieved ultimate perfection. One line in today’s snippet tells the deep and honest truth, and nothing he could possibly write can top it.

Alien Contact for an Enhanced Nutcracker is a Christmas novella and the 6th installment of the Alien Contact for Idiots series. Last week, Holly Jansen got locked out of her apartment because her roommate made off with her part of the rent money. She’s torturing her poor cat, Thug (love that name!) by dragging his carrier through winter rain.

Can you pick out the nugget of profound truth?

“Not far to the car now, Thug.”

She frowned. Now she wasn’t just talking to her cat, she was lying to it. If a woman couldn’t be honest with her cat, who could she be honest with?

As though to punish the lie, the northern gods turned the rain into sleet. Holly never swore—well, hardly ever—but she thought some nasty thing about her lying, stealing Aussie roommate. Ex-roommate.

“There’s the car, for real this time. Soon, Thug, I’ll turn on the heater and you’ll be warm as a freshly caught mouse.”

Her hands were so cold she dropped the car keys into icy water running along the curb. She had to go to hands and knees, in a puddle of course, to get them – and when she finally snagged the keys, it was too dark to see the keyhole so she had to feel around for it with fingers so numb they couldn’t have felt a chainsaw.

Effing Feline here again. The purrfect line is, of course, “If a woman couldn’t be honest with her cat, who could she be honest with?” The answer, of course, is no one. So always, always, be honest with your cat!

Be sure to visit the other great writers in Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday.

Alien Contact for an Enhanced Nutcracker

They both need a Christmas miracle

Holly Jansen, a young orchestra conductor down on her luck, is secretly hired by an alien king to conduct The Nutcracker on Kwadra Island as a Christmas present for his American wife. This big break seems like a Christmas miracle, but after she meets the lead dancer, she wonders if it’s a curse, instead . . .

. . . because the Kwadran queen has secretly ordered superstar dancer Rafael Sekwa to produce a potlatch dance honoring her husband’s ancestors — on the same date, time, and stage as The Nutcracker. The stubborn genius is determined to do so, no matter what, and Holly finds her ambition melting in the face of her growing admiration . . . and love.

Coming October 21! Pre-order your copy at:



  1. Hywela Lyn · · Reply

    It’s not always that I agree with Effing, but on this occasion I believe he’s right. (We don’t want you to stop writing though, Ed, that’s not what I meant!) Looking forward immensely to reading this in its entirety!

    1. Another way of looking at it is “What good does it do to lie to your cat? None.”

  2. Effing might want to get that poor car warmed up in the car before you stop writing. Plus we still need the end of the story.

    1. You’re right about how Effing feels about getting the cat warmed up. He identifies strongly with any cat named Thug.

  3. If everyone in the world had a cat, we’d be a lot better off. (They’d be too busy petting the cat, playing with the cat, admiring its feline perfection, to indulge in hate or war.)

    But I agree, don’t stop writing, Ed. Just put more cats in your books!

    1. You forgot cat-related activity — cleaning cat scratches!

  4. I prefer the phrase “as warm as a freshly caught mouse.”

    1. That phrase works well for cats, less well for humans.


    1. At some point, I suspect I’ll have to stop. But until then, it’s one of the things that gives meaning to my life. More meaning than money, I’m afraid.

  6. Sleet and darkness are a terrible combination. Thug deserves lots of treats to make up for this indignity.

    1. I could’ve started this story “It was a dark and stormy night,” couldn’t I?

  7. I feel the cold and the misery all right – very effective writing! Brrrr. Great snippet, enjoying this story so much…

    1. I’m determined to torture Holly (and, by proxy, Thug) just as a writer should!

  8. Author Jessica E. Subject · · Reply

    Oh no! Those are horrible conditions! I hope she does get into the car, and doesn’t break the key or something. She’s already had enough bad luck.

    1. Her luck will change, never fear.

  9. Brrr! I’m going to have to go make some hot chocolate to warm up after reading that. (And Thug is a great name for a cat.)

    1. Later on in the book we see a great example of his Thugishness in his relationship with the hero’s dog.

  10. Cathy Brockman · · Reply

    That is a great line and awesome snippet. I also love the name thug.

    1. The name Thug could apply to Effing as well, don’t you think?

  11. Elaine Cantrell · · Reply

    Nice writing! I could feel the cold.

    1. Romance is supposed to make you feel warm, even hot, but whatever.

  12. Teresa Cypher · · Reply

    Effing… But of course, Ed cannot quit writing. 🙂

    This snippet, after our first big chill-down of the year, and our first frost this morning… Fishing around in sleet cold water. Prolly wouldn’t feel a chainsaw. 🙂

    1. Cool! I mean, cold!

  13. Love this; If a woman couldn’t be honest with her cat, who could she be honest with? … LOL

    1. I trust you always tell your cat the truth, Iris.

      1. Of course!! Wait … what cat ?? LOL

  14. Great description of being half frozen in winter. Makes me want tea and a warm blanket. I feel for her and her cat

    1. And to think that I wrote this in hot, dry Arizona.

  15. Great imagery of being chilled to the bone!

  16. I loved the phrase “warm as a freshly caught mouse.” Believe me, that is warm. Effing, you may be happy to know that I am always honest with my cats!

  17. Diane Burton · · Reply

    Perfect description of a cold, rainy night complete with mishaps. My fingers got cold imagining her predicament.

  18. Lisa Lowe · · Reply

    Effing always a moral compass. I love how going to holiday performance inspires a whole book. We all know the experience of cold water or snow in winter numbs fingers. Such a good description.

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