Monday, December 7, 2009

Guinea Pigs Christmas

Merry Christmas from Boofhead and Beanie

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Yay! A contest for Writers

Are there any aspiring writers out there who would like to win a full critique of their manuscript? Well, check out this contest at The Bookshelf Muse:

Just click the link above.

Good luck everyone.


Monday, November 9, 2009

Illustrations for Return of The Dirty Rascals.

Here is a preview of my illustrations for my next children's book:

  Return of The Dirty Rascals

 Polly and Gertie



Polly is up to mischief

As usual, Polly and Gertie are always in trouble.

 The Teacher, Mrs Bellywag


Great Aunt Mabel always cooks disgusting meals

No way is Polly eating it.

Keep watching for more updates on Polly, Gertie 
and Great aunt Mabel.

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Life of King Boofhead.

I’ve decided to update my blog at the beginning of each month - hopefully I’ll find the time to stick to it.

King Boofhead has had a traumatic experience and he’d like to share it with all his fans. He's been blind for years, but has slight vision in one eye.

A few months ago, Boofhead started making strange noises that sounded like a loud heartbeat. It seemed to come from his diaphragm and out through his throat. He was also wheezing, but that came from his chest. The two sounds together, made an unusual noise and went on for hours without a break. Here is a link if you would like to hear it:

He’d never made a sound like that before and we’d never heard our other guinea pigs make noises like that. It was constant and he sounded distressed. He also lost his appetite, causing weight loss.

I took Boofhead to the veterinary surgery and the vet treated him for a respiratory problem and gave him a course of Baytril antibiotics. (By the way, never let a vet give you’re guinea pig penicillin.)

After a long course of the antibiotics, Boofhead stopped wheezing and his appetite improved, but the loud gumping sound persisted. Then last weak, whilst watching TV, we noticed some little black things moving around the carpet. When I turned on the light, we saw two, newborn baby mice. They were eating biscuit crumbs from under the table. (Okay, so I only vacuum once a week. I have to write, you know.)Well, if there are babies, there has to be adults, right? So, I set a safe trap and caught six baby mice, but no adults. I gave the babies a feed, then I released them in the bush down by the riverbank. (I couldn’t kill the little critters, could I?)

The adult mice managed to get in the safe trap, eat the food and get out again. We couldn’t seem to trap them and we realised that they must have been going into Boofhead’s cage at night and eating his food. (The cage sits in the corner of our lounge room.) We pulled the cage away from the wall, and there it was. A nest - made out of grass, hay, and small pieces of food. The mice had probably been living behind Boofhead’s cage for months. The only thing that separated them was the steel bars and mice could easily walk through them. Boofhead must have been trying to tell us, but we didn’t understand him. I’ll never underestimate a guinea pig again.

We searched for the hole where the mice had entered the house. We found a tear in one of the screen doors, but we still hadn’t caught any adult mice. My husband decided to set a death trap. I wasn’t very happy about that, but we couldn’t have mice running around the house and traumatising our King Boofhead, giving him lice and diseases.

I woke one night to find a mouse, walking along the top of our brick wall just beneath the ceiling. When he saw me, he dropped to the floor like an alien and disappeared under the bed. Yipes! No wonder Boofhead kept gumping, he was trying to ward them off. We ended up catching four adults, some in the safe trap, which we released, and two in the death trap. Poor little things. I hated that because they’re such smart and intelligent little beings and have such pretty faces. They look like miniature guinea pigs to me.

However, two of the adults were too smart for their own good, and I wish they had gone for the food in the safe trap, and stayed there. They could have gone to the riverbank with the rest of their family. I feel guilty now. Yes I do. :(
Now the mice have gone, Boofhead has stopped gumping and he's eating like a horse. He’s gained weight and is back to his usual self, pop-corning and wheaking for tomato.

Here's the last villain, a baby mouse I caught and released at the riverbank. Isn't he cute?

He's so adorable. Look at his tiny paws and feet.

Of course, there’s another story here. Boofhead’s already a main character in one of my Molly Gumnut Adventure books, so he’ll be back for another episode. It won’t be exactly like this post because Molly has a mind of her own. I don’t know what she’ll do when the mice invade her home, but I can’t wait to find out. What about you?

Please, leave a comment and let me know.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


Here is my second completed manuscript, hopefully is will be snapped up by an agent or publisher soon.

Patricia Puddle

A wildlife calendar? Molly Gumnut’s eyes popped wide open. Animals are her most favourite things in the whole world. She stopped fiddling with her pencil case and listened to the teacher. Miss Button said the best photo of a native animal will go on the front page. Molly wants to win and decides to take the best picture ever. She'll just have to keep an eye on Angela Bloomfield. The meanest girl in third grade will do just about anything to get Molly sent to the principal’s office again.

While searching for critters to photograph for the school calendar, Molly rescues a baby bandicoot from the claws of her neighbour’s cat. She takes him home to bandage his wounds, but her father says it's illegal to keep native animals as pets. Frustrated, Molly has no choice but to hand him over to her grandmother, a member of a wildlife rescue. Molly names the critter Furble and promises to protect him no matter what the cost. Grandma plans to release him back to his own territory when his wounds have healed, but that’s where the big mean cat lives. Molly can’t let Furble go back there again and she won't keep her opinion to herself. she doesn't care if she gets into trouble for yelling at the neighbour and disobeying her parents. She's kidnapping Furble and finding him a safer home.

Will Molly's plan work or has she put Furble in more danger? Or will Furble be released back to the garden with Tiddles, the tormenting cat?

Excerpts from this story are located below the pictures. Please feel free to leave a comment or contact me if you would like more information on this series.

‘ADVENTURES OF MOLLY MAVIS GUMNUT’ books are junior fiction aimed at confident readers aged seven to eleven. All the stories are set in Australia, in a rural village called Tumblewood.

MOLLY GUMNUT RESCUES A BANDICOOT is the second completed book in the series.

© Patricia Puddle.

   Molly got down on her knees and crawled along the muddy bank. She rummaged through broken branches and tree hollows, searching for lizards and frogs.

   "Uh - oh, here comes trouble." Lara jerked her head towards the dirt road.

   "Who is it?" Molly scratched her nose with her muddy fingers and peered through the trees. "Oh, poop in your underpants. Why did she have to turn up?"

   A high pitched whistling sound seemed to come from the wooly ball. Then it moved. Molly's eyes popped wide open. It wasn't a ball - it had tiny legs and big brown eyes. Molly unlatched the gate and ran into Mrs Popperwell's yard. She waved her arms at the cat. "Shoo, get away, Tiddles."

   Tiddles flattened his ears and hissed. He left the furry little critter on the grass and bolted under the house.

   The small brown animal had pointy big ears and pink feet. But Molly had never seen a bush rat with such a long, pointed nose before. Its chocolate brown eyes looked up in fear as it scratched at the ground with its paws.

   Molly threw her backpack on the grass and dropped to her knees. Ignoring the pain from the prickly, bindi-eyed weed, she reached out and grabbed the critter before it ran away. Holding it gently, she gasped. "Oh, you poor little thing, you're hurt."

   Blood oozed from the wounds on its neck and back.

© Patricia Puddle.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

The Wonderful World of Molly Mavis Gumnut

This is the wonderful world of Molly Mavis Gumnut. The riverbank where she goes fishing, the dirt road where she rides her bicycle, Her father's veggie patch, the dams and some of the critters she loves. (Keep watching this blog. More to come soon.)

Kangaroos, a water draggon, Furble the bandicoot, red-bellied black snakes, mangrove herons, pied butcher birds, horses and more.

These critters all feature in my Molly Gumnut chapter books.

The Beautiful Riverbank where Molly plays with Lara

The Jetty where Molly dives into the river

The Jetty at The River where Molly goes fishing

Picnic Table Down by The River

The Bush Road toward The River

The Dirt Road to The River

The Tree Molly climbs

Molly's Bush Track

Molly's favourite hide out, The Dam

This is the hundred year-old cottage thet Molly uses as a hidout.

Beautiful Dam full of Wildlife

Baby Butcher Birds climbing the wall to beg for a snack of mealworms

Two Greedy baby Butcher Birds, begging for mealworms

Butcher Birds begging for Mealworms

Jill the Butcher Bird landing on Molly's veranda

Jill The Pied Butcher Bird

Horses coming to visit Molly's Dam

Mangrove Herrons

Water Dragon

Red-bellied Black Snakes

Grey Kangaroo with joey

Grey Kangaroo with Joey in Pouch

Furble the Bandicoot

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Molly Gumnut Rescues a Bandicoot (Junior fiction)

I have now completed my second, junior fiction novel, Molly Gumnut Rescues a Bandicoot. It's aimed at confident readers aged eight to eleven.  In this story, Molly rescues a young bandicoot from the claws of her neighbour’s cat. Of course, nothing ever runs smoothly with Molly, and I never know how a book will end until I write the last chapter. I have it in my head, but Molly always controls my endings.

The inspiration for this story came when I cared for a little bandicoot that was attacked by a cat. I named him Furble and with the fantastic training I’ve been given by FAWNA (wild life rescue) I was able to bring him back to health and release him back to his family in the bush. It was an experience I’ll always treasure and I hope Furble’s experience is read by many. I also hope this story will encourage people to keep their cats in at dusk and dawn. That’s when these little critters are out and about.

Furble is one of the sweetest little critters I’ve ever seen. He will remain in my heart forever. I hope you all enjoy the photos and videos of Furble and I hope that Furble is enjoying the rest of his life. (Link to FAWNA (For Australian Wildlife Needing Aid)