One of Bouchercon’s traditions is its auctions – usually a live one and a silent one, which raise money for a literacy campaign. This year, the beneficiary was Dolly Parton’s literacy campaign, the Imagination Library. , which provides books to kids. And so, to contribute, I put together a “cat box” of cat books. And, yes, I briefly considered putting them in a cat – litter – box. Better sense prevailed and I instead packaged them up in a pink plush cat bed. But in the few minutes that the bed (safely stored in my car until I was ready) was in my house, being packaged, Thisbe found it – and claimed it as her own. The deadline to contribute was approaching, and so I packaged it up anyway, feeling the guilt that only a cat lover can know. And on my return, I got her a (seemingly) identical cat bed. And she rejected it! I was being punished. Until today….

The original, which I had hoped to package up without incident.

The “cat box” at auction.

And finally, today…