Dana Mentink is a two
time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner. She is the author
of over thirty titles in the suspense and lighthearted romance genres. Her
suspense novel, Betrayal in the Badlands, earned a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award and she has also been honored
with a Holt Medallion Award of Merit. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense and Harlequin
Heartwarming. Besides writing, she busies herself teaching third grade. Mostly,
she loves to be home with Papa Bear, Yogi, Boo Boo, a dog with social anxiety
problems, a chubby box turtle and a feisty parakeet.

My writing is
going to the dogs lately. No kidding. It’s strange how life parallels art
sometimes. As I worked on Sit, Stay, Love, my first dog-themed book
about a pro baseball pitcher and a geriatric pooch named Tippy, my own sweet
old doggie was about to take her final walk. Nala was a part of our family for
thirteen years and I knew that she was entering her final weeks as I pounded
away on my keyboard. I found the scenes I wrote about the fictional Tippy were
extra poignant, as I watched my sweet Nala enjoy napping in the sun and eagerly
plodding along through her (slow) morning walks.
In addition
to Sit, Stay, Love, I was working on a K-9 continuity for Love Inspired
Suspense! I delved into the world of bloodhounds, otherwise known as “noses
with dogs attached” for that story. So while my fictional dogs flourished,
my own darling Nala passed away, just as both books were headed off to the
editors. Oh how I cried. I still do. There will never be another dog like my
adorable Nala, my writing partner, my devoted friend. For a long time the house
felt empty without the jingle of her collar, and I looked for her in the
hallway and lying on the grass in every patch of sunlight.
But time has
a way of passing, doesn’t it? Spring has brought us a wild, wiry little mutt
named Junie. We went to the Animal Rescue foundation in search of an older,
mid-sized dog and we emerged with a ten-pound puppy who adores her squeaky toys
and steals my pencils at every opportunity.
Odd, that a
similar wild, wiry little mutt named Jellybean is currently finding his way
into my work-in-progress. Junie’s a bundle of zany energy, she eats absolutely
everything and as I type this, she is knocking all the pillows off the sofa.
Will this insanity be a part of Jellybean’s character in Paws for Love? Oh you
betcha. I wonder what our box turtle will think after she awakens from her three-month
hibernation to find out there’s a puppy waiting to sniff, poke and pester her?
“Doggone it!” I imagine she’ll say before she goes to find a nice
hole to hide in.
I don’t even
want to know what the parakeet thinks!
Sit Stay Love
Take one abrasive professional athlete, a quirky out-of-work
schoolteacher, and an overweight geriatric dog, and you’re ready for a lesson
in love…Tippy style.
Pro baseball pitcher Cal Crawford is not a dog guy. When he
inherits his deceased mother’s elderly dog, Tippy, he’s quick to call on a
pet-sitting service.
Gina isn’t thrilled to be a dog sitter when her aspirations lie
in the classroom. Furthermore, she can’t abide the unfriendly Cal, a man with
all the charm of a wet towel. But with no other prospects and a deep love for
all things canine, she takes the job caring for Tippy.
As Gina travels through Cal’s world with Tippy in tow, she
begins to see Cal in a different light. Gina longs to show Cal the God-given
blessings in his life that have nothing to do with baseball or fame. When her
longing blooms into attraction, Gina does her best to suppress it. But Cal is
falling in love with her too…
Discover the charming story of Tippy, the dog who brought a
family together.