Publication Day: 28th November
Now, only two days away.
Two days until the children's book, Tammy and Willow is out on sale.
I can't believe it. After all these years of perseverance.
I've believed in this story and despite numerous set-backs (not necessarily to do with writing) it's now here, ready for others to enjoy.
Why did I write Tammy and Willow?
And who are Tammy and Willow?
They are - were - two very clever and beautiful border collies.
I wrote about them because they were a HUGE part of my life.
These are not fictional characters - although there is a fair bit of artistic license added to the story. These two were perfect stars for a book because each were unique and so absolutely amazing and entertaining to be with. They captivated everyone who met them.
And I feel so blessed to have had not one but both in my life.
Believe me, I didn't always think like this.
When Tammy died, she left me devastated. To some people she may 'only be a dog', but she was my world. She was my best friend, loyal companion, the sunshine on my rainy days. When she died I felt so alone - even though I wasn't, I had my family around me, yet life without Tammy felt so frightening.
I felt lost and shaky without my best buddy. She seemed to know what I was saying - even thinking - and I could tell this by the look in her eyes.
I know that probably sounds a bit flaky to some people, but it is the truth.
Tammy was one in a million.
The inspiration behind Tammy and Willow was one sunny day, back in July 2000.
It had been nearly two years since Tammy died and we - that's me, my husband and parents - were on our way the Border Collie Trust GB to meet our new puppy.
I remember, just before leaving the house, I thought to myself; 'Tammy, if you're here, please come with us and help us choose the perfect pup.'
I like to think that there is a life after this one. That it's like walking out of one room and into another.
It's too painful to think that those we love just cease to exist.
To be honest, I think that everything runs in cycles; the seasons, biological life cycles, planetary cycles...
So, how can death be the end?
It's one of life's greatest mysteries and it fascinates me.
Anyway, back to my book, Tammy and Willow.
Back in July 2000, I still felt Tammy's presence, I sensed she was still around. Maybe this was wishful thinking? I don't know. But I do remember waking up one morning after dreaming about her.
I dreamt that Mark (my husband) and I were on holiday and Tammy had been allowed back to us for one week - just one week.
During that time we were able to say goodbye to her properly and also, we were reassured that she was OK. Tammy was doing fine, even though we couldn't be with her and see her everyday as things had once been for the previous 12 years.
That dream had such an impact on me.
I was on a high. It felt as though Tammy had actually come back to see us. I know, it all sounds crazy - but that is the truth.
I felt marvellous, the best I'd felt in a while. Now, however crazy the dream sounds, to be feeling the best I'd felt in ages surely can't be a bad thing?
As it turned out, our new puppy, Willow, was the perfect addition to our family.
She was nothing like Tammy, yet just as adorable and loved equally as much.
Did Tammy help us choose her? We will never know. But one thing's for sure, no matter how difficult things get, life does move on and happier times do lie ahead.
Thank you Tammy.
Thank you Willow xx
You will find copies of Tammy and Willow at: