A few years ago on the way to a Chickamauga Cherokee tribal meeting, my husband and I stopped at a rest-stop just inside the Missouri state line. As we took a little walk to stretch our legs from the long ride in from central Oklahoma, we encountered a rather dapper yuppie couple walking a pair of teeny-tiny terriers. Seriously, the leashes weighed more than the dogs! After the couple passed, my husband gave a derisive snort and mumbled: “Oh, look. Rats on a string.” As soon as we got back in the car (and I stopped chortling), I pulled the ever-present steno-pad from my purse and jotted down a few notes. A few months later, that “rat on a string” comment made it into my western romance novel, PRAIRIE FIRE, as Teacup the Chihuahua. Which just goes to show you that it’s unwise to do or say anything in the vicinity of an author, as you never know what might wind up in the next novel.
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