Thursday, June 27, 2019

Lord Banjo on Becoming a Star: Part One

Once upon a time, before I gave any thought to writing a book, I spent my days by Mum’s side . . . well, mostly at her feet. Whether she was on a conference call for her corporate job or quietly working on her newspaper columns—yes, Mum’s a writer too—I could be found snoozing beneath her desk.

I might take a walk with Dad, but when we got home, I’d wander upstairs, get a treat from Mum, and settle beneath the desk to snooze—until, that is, Dad mentioned lunch. I managed to join him in the kitchen for a bite of ham while he fixed his sandwich, and then it was back to Mum.

Writing a book meant I spent more time awake at her feet, dictating my story while she typed. By then, Mum had retired from her full-time job and could devote her every waking hour to typing my book and writing her columns. After we put in a good chunk of work time, I’d accompany Mum downstairs where she’d fix dinner while Dad and I watched the news.

It’s hard to say how we established our daily routine, but I’ve always stuck to Dad in the evenings. I lie beside his recliner with his hand all but glued to my belly. If his hand leaves my side, I give him a tap with the royal paw, the signal for him to put his hand back where it belongs.

I may now be known as the Royal Pooch, but our weekday routine has remained pretty much the same. Sure, the royal revelations in my DNA results made me swell with pride and put a bounce in my step; and, sure, I made a few teensy-weensy demands as befits a descendant of French Royalty.

I must point out that the only demand my Royal Parents met was that they now occasionally refer to me as Lord Banjo. They have yet to give me table scraps, and they’ve never invited me to sleep in their bed. My life remained pretty much the same, until, that is I finished my book “Lord Banjo the Royal Pooch.”

I thought it was great fun to bark my story as Mum typed and had no idea that writing about my privileged life was only the beginning. They—whoever they are—say we dogs live in the moment, and I guess that’s what I did because I never gave much thought to what would happen after my book came out.

First came the new wardrobe. In preparation for my debut as an author, Mum enlisted Miss Beth as the Royal Seamstress to make a robe and crown. Those two laughed and laughed over Mum’s sewing skills or lack thereof. It was Miss Beth who put in Mum’s zippers way back when they were in high school Home Ec class. Mum learned to cook but never took to sewing.

No worries; we spent the day with the Royal Seamstress as she designed and produced a magnificent robe—purple velvet lined with lavender satin, topped off with a white fur collar and gold clasp. How was I to know the robe was only the beginning? To read the rest of the story, be on the lookout for my next blog post.

Lord Banjo lives in Georgia with his Mum, Kathy Manos Penn. Find similar stories in his book, “Lord Banjo the Royal Pooch,” available on Amazon. Contact him at

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Lord Banjo, Puddin', and I take turns writing these blogs, and we'd love to hear from you. Please leave a comment.