Category Archives: CLON-X

My First Road Trip


Welcome back. I hope you enjoy reading about my first road trip with my new parents. Continue reading

Working Dog: Rise of the Riesenschnauzer


Photo courtesy of workingdog magazine. STL Joseph Garcia and one of his working Riesenschnauzers. STL stands for Special Team Leader.

When Pat designed our website, she said I could have my own blog. I did post a few articles, but being Darcy’s canine sidekick is a full-time job. And life is about to become really hectic as Pat, Darcy, and I embark on a new adventure in CLON-X—book four in the Darcy McClain and Bullet Thriller Series. I’m still trying to catch my breath from Genocide, and here we are—off again.

I’m writing today’s post to dispel the idea that I’m starring in a cozy mystery series. Some prospective readers thought, “Dog on the cover—cozy.” I love a good cozy, but the only time I’m cozy is at night when I want to hog the bed or if I need attention. Then I’ll cozy on up to you. That said, when you think GIANT schnauzer, think WORKING DOG!

Most breeds were created for the express purpose of performing a specific task, which means canines are designed to have jobs, even if that job is cuddling! Since I’m a rescue and Darcy isn’t that familiar with me yet, she has no idea how talented I truly am. Only Paco, my former owner, knew I had the ability to become a great detection dog given the right handler. In CLON-X, Darcy’s best friend Sam, who has some experience in scent detection, will take my skills to the next level, helping Darcy to realize just how smart I can be…with the right handler.

I thought about doing other tasks such as service or assistance work, but I’m not patient enough. And can you imagine a giant as a guide dog? I could excel at herding, agility, or even water rescue, but I ruled them out along with being a show dog. My real interest lies in detection. Training for search and rescue piqued my interest, and I can certainly imagine myself tracking a missing person—picking up a human scent, sniffing the air as well as the ground, following the person through the wilderness, braving hazardous weather, swimming through debris-infested water… Sorry, I digress. With my keen sense of smell, I can definitely see myself as a detection dog, especially a cadaver detection dog.

So while Pat and Darcy work on plot points, I’m dividing my time between reading workingdog magazine and watching videos of STL Joseph Garcia train his Riesenschnauzers. Rise of the Riesenschnauzer. Love it. Check out this link to see what real working dogs look like:

These days, my favorite motto is: Throw me to the wolves and I’ll come back leading the pack—Sinead Imbaro:

Now that I’ve explained what a working dog is, let’s tackle BBD. Black dog syndrome, or big black dog syndrome, is a disputed phenomenon in which black dogs are typically passed over by adopters in favor of lighter-colored animals. I’ll tackle BBD in a lighthearted way in next week’s post via a guest spot by Emily Bruer.

Next week: Black Dogs.



New Mexico Book Settings: Arroyo Seco

One sunny afternoon I drove to one of my favorite villages in Northern New Mexico, Arroyo Seco (known as Seco by the locals) to photograph the town for this blog post. Seco is located approximately seven miles north of Taos, New Mexico, and sits below Taos Mountain. On October 7, 1745, the town’s inhabitants acquired the rights to the lands under a grant by Joaquín Codallos y Rabal. However, as a site, it was first deeded in 1716 to General Pedro Lucero de Godoy by the Viceroy of Mexico, but the general never settled on the land.  Continue reading