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Yesterday I read about how a U.S. big game hunter believes he accidentally shot Zimbabwe’s oldest (not to mention protected) lion, Cecil. The game hunter wasn’t apologetic, as he was just doing what he loves (killing wildlife for sport and trophies) and felt he had all the proper permits in order. He just wanted to let people know in case they were looking for the noble, thirteen year-old creature. The people who will face criminal charges are the two Zimbabwean men who helped lure Cecil to his death. Since then, it’s been confirmed that Cecil was killed, the story has blown up and there is international outrage. The men from Zimbabwe are going to trial, and the American game hunter…a dentist from Minnesota…has gone into hiding.

This, like so many articles about human interactions with our fellow creatures, broke my heart. It also reminded me (as if I need to be reminded) of that book I want to write and am always researching or thinking about when I should be working on existing projects. I haven’t said much about it, but it’s goal is to explore the “human”/”animal” relationship. I put both words in quotes because the definition of and distinction between each is highly debatable.

And all that I’ll say now is that I am continuing to move forward with this book and today spent some quality time on the Bodleian Library website…to discover that this July they launched a digital library of special collections available to the public! I’ve still decided that I’m also going to move forward with getting an external library card…and because it’s the Bodleian that involves an application and fees, though well worth it, in my opinion. But here is something I can start using right away. IMG_2607 http://digital.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/

Sometimes being a writer of fiction seems like a frivolous pursuit when I see how much help and stewardship this planet needs. But then I am reminded of the role that fiction and its brave creators have played in helping to raise awareness and change attitudes about the injustices and tragedies occurring in this world. I want to be a writer and believe I have a talent for it…and perhaps if the great big Universe sees fit, my talent and I can do some good for my fellow creatures, two-legged, four-legged, no-legs, or otherwise.

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