Posted by Literary Titan
The ‘Tail’ of a Trio follows three dogs that, over time, become friends, despite having extremely different lives up till now. What was the inspiration for your story?
This ‘tail’ is delightfully based off a true story! Addie was a therapy dog owned by a dear mentor and colleague. I had the honor of knowing Addie for several years and can attest to her character portrayed in the book. On a balmy, early summer day, my colleague shared sweet stories of how fond Addie was of their neighbor’s dogs at their lake house. They lovingly built a bridge connecting the two properties so the pups could easily visit one another. Bee is a Blue Tick Hound who was quite frightened by thunderstorms. Her go-to move would be to dart underneath a bed and quiver as the storm carried on with its rumbles. Unprovoked, Addie would sit with Bee and whimper to her, almost as if she were coaching her through the thunderous sounds. Whenever it was not storming outside, Addie could be caught spending time with Rue, a Rhodesian Ridgeback, gently encouraging her to try out toys. Rue had been found on the side of the road, her story unknown. I was touched by these sweet stories and jokingly commented that they could be a children’s book. My colleague chuckled and triple dog dared me to write it. An afternoon later, the manuscript was created!
Addie sadly passed away during the publishing process, however her legacy continues through the playful lives of Bee and Rue, and the healing she brought to so many others.
What were some challenges you felt were important to defining your characters in this story?
Growing up in today’s world, we are taught to only portray the ‘acceptable’ parts of ourselves. Whether our humanness is drowned out by the pressures of social media, or the threat of vulnerability, it can be challenging to build authentic, genuine connections. It was important to me to illustrate the ‘whole’ of each character, even the parts that felt raw and difficult to share with the world due to shame or fear of judgement.
Addie encapsulated relational skills that have faded into the background of our society in such prolific ways. Her empathetic mindset allowed her to not take Bee or Rue’s initial defensiveness personally. She could recognize the ‘whole’ of the dog in front of her, and exuded patience, kindness, and acceptance. Bee showcased how overwhelming anxiety can be, and how this overwhelm can distract from initial positive interactions. Their first interaction held space for the awkwardness that can ensue from first meet and greets, however it also portrayed how to give one another grace. When we hop over to Rue’s perspective, her negative self-talk and shame ooze from her narrative. This challenge was important to highlight because our internal dialogues can be so destructive to genuine connections with others. If we don’t feel worthy of positive relationships, then we struggle to set ourselves up for success.
Again, Addie captured the beauty of giving someone the benefit of the doubt despite abrupt defensiveness. Addie did not demand rationale for Rue’s initial behavior, nor did she judge it. Addie simply showcased how to not judge a book by its cover.
What were some educational aspects that were important for you to include in this children’s book?
As a mental health therapist, I am a big proponent of advocacy and breaking stigma surrounding mental health. Whenever we initially pursue relationships, our consideration for one another’s headspace is left out of our perspectives. While I recognize it’s within human nature to make quick judgements, I believe it’s vital to teach our youth how to give one another grace and leave room for the imperfections that come along with being human.
Our mental health is as important as our physical health. This book portrays some common mental health challenges that can be invisible burdens others may be carrying. By gently illustrating and normalizing mental health obstacles, we can encourage positive discussions surrounding mental wellness and raise emotionally intelligent children. Also, it’s helpful to teach mindful interpersonal skills early on, as this can shape a child’s inner dialogue as they grow.
What is the next book that you are working on and when will it be available?
Presently, I am soaking up the joy of this book’s jump into the world. I am bursting with elation that this ‘tail’ gifted me the title of ‘author’ in such special ways. I am toying around with two ideas, as I believe a series could sprout from this momentum. Animals have played such a pivotal role in my life, and I have had the pleasure of witnessing firsthand their gateway to healing. The next book will either follow the ‘tail’ of two horses as they thoughtfully explore the process of healing from grief, or of a Husky and his journey to adjusting to a new sibling in the form of a scrawny kitten. Stay tuned and be on the lookout for these books in the next year or two!
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Posted by Literary_Titan
Three dogs have had a very different life up until this point. One dog, Addie, has a loving home with an owner she adores. She became her human’s assistant and works in their therapy practice with her. Addie is a therapy dog. Next is Rue. Rue had a loving home to start, but then one day, her humans disappeared, leaving her behind. She was rescued and brought to a new home, but she was always worried about being replaced and left again. The third dog, Bee, grew up in the pound; she never knew love, only stress and anxiety, and loud noises scared her. This well-written children’s book tells the story of how the three meet and become friends.
The ‘Tail’ of a Trio is written by Katherine Scott, a licensed therapist. She uses the dogs in this story to explain how therapy dogs help people and some situations in that they can be of service. Told from the dogs’ perspective, this heartwarming book can help children suffering from anxiety to see their feelings are normal and valid. I love that Scott explains different therapy terms and practices in the story. This is a friendly and gentle way to introduce the concept to children, especially kids who are unsure about therapy or feel something is wrong with them attending therapy.
The story is conversational and moves comfortably, giving readers time to talk about concepts and situations. I feel this book would help children that have anxiety understand that they are not alone and it is ok. In addition, the three dogs make the story approachable and less scary than if it were humans doing the same thing.
The ‘Tail’ of a Trio is an extraordinary tale of friendship, compassion, and understanding. Children will learn much from this short story and enjoy its artwork. Each dog has their own unique personality, and children will be able to find one to identify with. This is a beautiful book for therapists to have and recommend to help normalize therapy.
Pages: 34 | ASIN : B0B8334M45
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