Tigger’s story evolved from our annual Christmas newsletter. As a highly mobile family, we have friends all over the world and our Christmas mailing list became so international and long that we had to resort to a ‘Round Robin’ for lack of time. Once the children were old enough to write their own columns, we decided that Tigger should have his as well, and so he started writing – often reluctantly, because he generally felt he had better things to do – about the year’s events from his perspective. Feedback from the recipients of the newsletter was overwhelmingly positive: Tigger’s column became something of an institution among our friends and relations, and people began to look forward to new cat adventures each year. Many referred to things he wrote about when we met them during the year, and some actually started addressing their Christmas mail to Tigger, thereby putting us humans firmly in our places.

Given all this international fame, I suggested it was time for him to commit his whole story to the laptop. After much procrastination and many silly excuses (‘I have my paws full trying to train your dogs’... ‘how can I think straight when you put me on a diet?’...’if you stopped moving all the time, I might be able to collect my thoughts’...) he eventually agreed. So I became his PA - typing was never one of his strengths, to be fair – and over several years he dictated his life story to me. Bar a few arguments over the finer points of the plot, most of which he won anyway, the story is 100% his brain child. I can’t speak for our readership, obviously, but personally I think he has excelled himself. He thought so, too.

When Tigger passed away in March this year (2014), our whole family was bereft. For one thing, we all realized our newsletter would never be the same again. There will be an obituary, obviously, but who could ever hope to take his place by my side at the laptop in future? The little green cushion that was his favourite perch remains empty. We’re fortunate indeed that he has at least left us his literary legacy to remember him by. Not that we were ever likely to forget him, mind.

You can read Penel Ashworth’s review of The Memoirs of Tigger: a Cosmopolitan Cat here:

Tigger has his own Facebook page: just look up ‘Tigger Haywood’

Susanne’s cat, Bilbo has decided that he might quite like to test the waters and see if Tigger was on to a good thing with writing his memoirs.  He thinks he’ll begin gently by writing a blog before he builds up to a bestselling blockbuster. You can read the first of his entries here in Bilbo’s Buzz 

Dogs Come when Called

"Dogs come when called. Cats take a message and get back to you."

"Of course, every cat is really the most beautiful woman in the room."

Edward Verrall Luca (essayist)

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