Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Introducing Patricia Cooper

As some of you know, I virtually cannot type anymore. But I have many books to write yet (Yojimbo: "I can't die yet-- I have too many people left to kill!") and Libby can't  easily take dictation, partly  because she can't hear my hoarse Parkinson's voice, and partially because by evening she is exhausted and drained by an ever more irrational  Post Office.

About two weeks ago my veterinarian of 35 years, Terry Gonzales, who even when she was out of work (even when she was recovering from cancer!) always made house visits so that my dogs might die at peace in their own beds, called me and insisted that her sister had to be typing for me. I still do not know how this miracle came about -- she hadn't seen me for months, even heard I needed a typist, and Pat certainly isn't a "typist,"- she is a literate scholar with degrees in literature and history, and I expect rather comfortably off. I think she was bored!

After ten minutes with me she had quoted Kipling, Wilde, and Dorothy Parker. I left Terri to talk
 dogs with Libby,  and took Pat into the library and quizzed her. I sent her home with a stack of books, mine and others, and said that if she felt up for working for me after reading those we could talk. We've been talking ever since.

We have now officially begun my second book of books, which you will hear much more about. Soon to come in the blog is a detailed outline,  for this is a "new thing under the sun", to be partially crowdfunded by my friend and agent Daniel's wife's publishing company. It should make me considerably more money and less heartburn than Hounds did. It will also be far more unusual than the first one, a huge compendium of books I love and why. The short title is "With Trees", and I bet a lot of you will know exactly what that means.

I accused Pat of being a "woman of mystery" after I had known her a few days. She protested that she was not mysterious at all, and then told me that though she had grown up in the South, she was born in Japan and Japanese was her first language, and though not Catholic, she had gone to Catholic schools until her parents feared she was becoming a "Papist". She showed total familiarity with cowboy lore.  She then added the following:

"I've had my fun, but nothing, dear folks, like the adventures you have lived. I am a widow; my husband of 20 years died in late 2013. He was a star: brilliant, multitalented, highly skilled and uniquely funny  (and a beautiful ballroom dancer). Different occupations (legal secretary, autopsy assistant [!!-- SB], administrator, parapsych researcher, political organizer) have filled my years..."

Woman of mystery, I say. At any rate, if this works out, and I think it will, she will have more responsibility in the fiction and memoir areas in the  NEXT two books, and a full research partnership and cover credit if we ever do the Passenger pigeon book. Here she is; working:






And in a hilarious poster with her late husband





























6 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve
Hi Steve
What great news!
"Another door opens!"- Sounds like you may even have some fun delivering the "New Ventures".
Judging by the poster, it seems that Patricia also has a real sense of humour!- that's a huge bonus...................

Enjoy it All!

Love to you all

John & June

guy boyd said...

Steve, it's wonderful to hear that you are planning two more books. I hope you and Patricia pull off the pp book. Your thesis is fascinating and original and I look forward to seeing it extended to book length. Patricia, I bet you will have fun too.

Inspired by your ambition and determination, Guy

Cat Urbigkit said...

Welcome Patricia! We are looking forward to learning more about With Trees, and plan to help spread the word about the fundraising effort when it begins.
Best,
Cat & Jim

Melinda said...

"...and the mouse that drowned in my bedside water glass, ..." Sounds promising. I just peeped into Hounds of Heaven as it was delivered today right before I have to be off to work. Now this will be a looong day and the work even more boring than usual until I can go home and read the whole book at once.

Steve Bodio said...

Cat- you will be in it of course...

Malcolm Brooks said...

First two minutes I've had to check in with the blog in...well...awhile, but I'm thrilled that you and Patricia (and for that matter Daniel and Katherine) are making this all happen...can't wait to see the results!