Tell me what you are dreaming about…
The inspiration for A Dog Lover’s Dream came to me one gloomy November evening as I was sat cosy in my pyjamas in front of a logburner. Alfie, my labradoodle was stretched out on his bed enjoying the warm.
He then began dreaming and his little paws were scrabbling away and muffled woofs were emitted. I started to think about what it would be like if he could tell me what he was dreaming about. At that point, I grabbed my phone and wrote the poem that was to become A Dog Lover’s Dream.
We have all wanted our silent furry friends to be able to talk to us at one time or another and this is very much what this poem explores. I felt very moved when I was writing the poem as a world where Alfie could talk would be amazing! The reality is that we exist in very different worlds and unfortunately communication between us will always be limited.
From poem to published book
I read the poem out to close family and friends and the feedback I had was very positive. A colleague suggested that I turn it into a book, which was not something I had remotely considered. However, I decided to give it a go and figured at the very least I would have a lovely keepsake of my gorgeous Labradoodle who of course won’t be with me forever.
I set about finding an illustrator and got lucky! John McNally was recommended to me by a friend and turned out to be seriously talented. I had several long phone calls about what I wanted to capture with the illustrations for each scene. I then sent him several pictures of Alfie and some of me as a kid. Whilst John set about creating the sketches I refined, reworked and re-read the poem over and over (and over again!) to make sure the words were exactly right.
After Christmas and once the drawings were complete, I contacted my graphic designer and organised a logo for the book, worked out what size book to create and discussed layout options. By February 2017 I was ready to go to print…