Pat Wahler, Author

Penning stories to savor.

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A Political Comment (Sort of)

September 23 marks seventy-two years since President Franklin D. Roosevelt gave a famous speech. Why do I bring up a political speech at a time when most of us want to cover our ears over anything related to politics? Simple. The speech had to do with Fala, FDR’s beloved Scotch Terrier, easily my favorite presidential pet, and almost certainly the most famous dog in American history. Fala traveled everywhere with his master, sniffed heads of state, and received so much fan mail he needed his own secretary.

After a trip to the Aleutian Islands in August, 1944, FDR came under attack by political opponents who started a rumor that Fala had been accidentally left behind after the presidential visit. They claimed FDR dispatched a Navy battleship to bring the pup home at a cost of many millions of dollars to taxpayers.

FDR addressed this fur-flying fib at a dinner hosted by Teamsters. Check out a snippet of his response below. His deadpan delivery is priceless.

Politicians take note. If your speeches were clever as this one, I’d be more inclined to listen.


It’s Official!

Early last fall, Sheree Nielsen, friend and author of Folly Beach Dances, called me about collaborating on a writing project. She had an idea for a picture book about a one-eyed cat named Midnight, based loosely on her own cat by the same name.

I’m a sucker for an animal story, and needed no convincing to jump into the world of children’s book writing.

Sheree and I got together over coffee, tea, and chocolate; spending hours brainstorming, creating and revising.  Finally, like birthing a baby, the time came to push our little manuscript out into the world.

After studying the market and sending our story, we found an editor gracious enough to  give us concrete feedback and suggestions. This meant more coffee, tea, and chocolate; and, of course, more rewriting. The story left our hands again, and several weeks ago we were thrilled when Amphorae Publishing Group, a well-respected local press, offered us a contract.

Doing the happy dance!

Doing the happy dance!







Once all the details had been ironed out and confirmed, a formal announcement came from Amphorae on September 8. The book is scheduled for release in 2017.

We are so excited to see our story, tentatively titled Midnight, the One-Eyed Cat; with its uplifting messages about friendship, courage, and self-confidence, brought to life. Thank you, Amphorae!

You wrote a story about a cat? Pfffft!

You wrote a story about a cat? Pfffft!


It’s Labor Day

Labor Day has arrived again, filled with picnics, barbecues, and parades; marking not only a day of rest and recognition for American workers, but the end of summer. However, things weren’t always so rosy.

In the 19th century and earlier, it was extraordinarily difficult to make a living. Most people worked twelve hour days, seven days a week, and still had trouble making ends meet. During the Industrial Revolution, even children as young as age five or six could be found working around dangerous equipment in unsafe factory conditions.

People were frustrated and angry. They wanted fair treatment.

On September 5, 1882, working men marched in support of American workers. Later, strikes and riots over the issue caused bloodshed. Yet eventually labor unions made headway in helping to improve conditions, and Congress extended an olive branch by officially designating the first Monday in September as a day to recognize the value of American workers.

Thankfully, we’ve come a long way since then, baby.

Labor Day parade 1900-Library of Congress

Labor Day parade 1900-Library of Congress

But even as we celebrate, let’s not forget that some don’t have the luxury of relaxing on Labor Day. So here’s a special shout-out to law enforcement, fire-fighting personnel, military, medical practitioners, retail workers, and all others who give us help when we need it, whether it’s a holiday or not.

We hope you enjoy your day in whatever way makes you happiest!

Winston and Bogey in a rare moment of rest on Labor Day. Just think what I could accomplish if Labor Day came more often.

Winston and Bogey in a rare moment of rest on Labor Day. Just think what I could accomplish if Labor Day came more often.

You Found Us!

I’ve been posting on Critter Alley at Blogspot for years. It’s a familiar format for me, and one that I’ve grown quite comfortable using. So after getting comfortable with Blogspot, why would any sane, normal individual decide to try something new?

That, my friend, is a good question. Here I am now, feeling like I jumped in a time machine while blindfolded to land in a different century where everyone else speaks a foreign language.  Huh?

Please bear with me. I’m doing my best to learn Wordpress. And even though Critter Alley’s location and title have changed, the focus hasn’t. All posts will be similar content to those that appeared on Critter Alley; featuring Winston the Peek-a-poo puppy, Bogey a very cool cat, critter-related topics, books, and writing. Since I don’t know how to migrate years of prior posts, if you’d like to take a look at our history, check out this link:

We love subscribers. If you’d like to know when a post appears, enter the required information in the subscriber link at the bottom of the right hand column. You’ll receive email notification so you won’t miss any news, and I promise not to overload your mailbox.

Comments are most welcome. I’d love to know what you think!

Won’t you please considering visiting us from time to time in this strange new world?

We won't be hiding a thing!

We won’t be hiding a thing!

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