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Mavis Duke Hinton -- today's guest

Mavis Duke Hinton is our guest today.  Welcome, Mavis.

Thank you for having me, Sylvia.

Give us a short bio (Who are you, hobbies, where do you live, etc.).

In my 21-year career as an English teacher, I have taught AP British literature,
creative writing, speech, journalism, and English for grades 7 – 12. Currently, I teach
English online with Sycamore Online Academy in California to students across the
USA and several foreign countries, but I live in North Carolina—such is technology!
Although born in North Carolina, I grew up in a military family and lived abroad in
Europe during my childhood. I’ve also called several U.S. states home, but my favorite
was Alaska.

I have had several careers, most of which had something to do with teaching and/or
writing and editing: I have been an editor for Christian and secular organizations,
—but in my twenties, I spent a year as a police officer, since at that time, my husband and brother-in-law were in law enforcement. Over the years, I’ve jokingly told students that my stint in
law enforcement gave me additional training for the classroom (laughs).

I enjoy traveling, reading, writing, cooking, spending time with my family, and
laughing. Oh yes—I love to laugh and share it with others—it makes life enjoyable!
My hubby Clark and I have been married for forty-one years and we have two
wonderful married daughters and sons-in-law. We are also blessed with three
grandchildren, one granddawg Shadow (upon whom the Sarge in my books is based),
four grandkitties, and our own dachshund, Duke.

I have two published novels now: I AM SARGE, Book 1, and I AM DACHSHUND,
Book 2. DACHSHUNDS FOREVER, the final book of the trilogy, is currently a work
in progress—the operative word here is “progress,” since I am about two-thirds of the
way through the story at this time.

Why do you write the type of books that you do?

Why do I write from the dachshund’s viewpoint? Oh, I've been asked that question
countless times . . . and I always give the same answer, basically something like this:
It is a running joke in our family that we just know what a dachshund is thinking
by its facial expression and body language. My late father used to tell us what our
dachshunds were thinking, and I believe I have inherited that “gene” for doing so. All
of this is tongue in cheek, of course—and it makes for many a laugh around our house.
When I decided to walk away from full-time teaching and write my books, my family
encouraged me to use the dog’s viewpoint in the books. Voila—Sarge the author!

My other reasons (besides the “gene” thing) for writing from the dog's viewpoint are:
1) I enjoy imagining how day-to-day happenings must appear to the family dog;
2) I can shift reality to share with readers what dogs think about life situations;
3) I have a zany sense of humor (my family can attest to that), and can use such humor
when incorporating it into the dog’s viewpoint;
4) I love and appreciate dogs as man's best friend. They show us unconditional love,
like God has for us. One of the characters in THE DACHSHUND ESCAPADES series,
Papa Duke, so aptly states my feelings about dogs:  "A dawg loves you no matter what. You can be ugly, old, even dumb--but a dawg don't care. All he wants is your love and some food now and then. I think dawgs represent the unconditional love God has for us--maybe that's why He created them, to show that to us."

What Bible scripture has impacted your life the most?

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves,
it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9 NIV

Is there a book you’ve read that has been truly spectacular?

With my Southern roots, one can never go wrong with GONE WITH THE WIND. I
cannot tell you how many times I’ve read it or seen the movie—and a rarity, the movie
is true to the book. Love it. There are hundreds of others, but I’ll leave it at that.

What’s the funniest/quirkiest thing you’ve ever done?

Oh my. At present, I suppose my shenanigans in playing Barbies with the
granddaughters, who are six and seven. We all adopt our own “voices,” and act
out a story, but we often end in giggles! I usually attempt some sort of foreign
accent with my Barbie character as well. I’ve also done puppet shows for them with
various stuffed toys as the characters, and I get behind a table or couch and do all the
characters myself. I’m zany with the grandchildren.

With our little grandson who is two, we look at his books together. I’ll point to various
pictures and say the wrong thing; for example, I’ll point to a dog and say, “Look at
that nice cow.” He laughs and loves to correct me: “No, Gamma, DOGGIE.” He knows
I’m joking, but he loves setting me straight.

Please tell us about the featured book.

My books of THE DACHSHUND ESCAPADES series are written from the family dog’s
viewpoint. Sarge is humorous and quite insightful regarding humans.  I AM SARGE is Book 1.  Sometimes a dachshund’s “lowdown from the ground” perspective is just what human beings need.

"I was only eight weeks old when I was adopted into my new human family
who knew immediately I was a super dog. They proudly gave me the name
Sarge—after my Papa Duke, who was a sergeant in the Army. Quite a
fitting name for a good-looking dachshund too, I might add. I just know
someday I’ll do great and mighty things, befitting a super dog.
But in the meanwhile, I’ll just steal your heart and make you laugh out
loud with the antics of this 'chow hound.' And maybe, if you come over,
Papa and I—two food lovers—might just share a snack or two with you,

Fall in love with Sarge, the quintessential dachshund,
and laugh along with his foibles and humorous escapades.

Where can readers find you on the Internet?

My website: www.MavisDukeHinton.com
My blog: www.blog.MavisDukeHinton.com
My Facebook page: Mavis Duke Hinton’s Books
Twitter: @writer4dawg

Thank you for sharing with us, Mavis.  I look forward to reading your books.

This has truly been a pleasure, and I thank you once again.