Why do I have a fascination with cats? And how did I end writing about C.A.T. – that dashingly gorgeous robotic feline that you all know and love?
I suppose it goes back to my Grandma. As a girl she lived in a village in Northumberland and then went to work at Cragside House as a cook – yes her name is up on the board there. While there, she got to be friends with a wild cat. Now this wild cat would not let any man near her, except one. Yes, you’ve guessed it. It was my Grandpa to be.
But her extraordinary relationship with cats did not end there. My grandparents went to live in the terrace houses of Gateshead. Their last house still stands today. You can imagine it… rows upon rows of closely packed houses each with a small courtyard at the back having an outside toilet. One of the neighbours opposite had a black cat that they kept on a leash of barbed wire. Well Grandma certainly didn’t approve. She marched right over and took the cat, saying it was now hers. Given the life it had led, it was ferocious to everyone around it, except of course Grandma. As you can see, she had a way with cats.
So it’s not surprising that whenever possible there has been a cat in my household… so when this piece of software in need of a platform had developed an interesting character, which I realised it had certain cat-like attitudes, the answer was obvious. A robo-cat!
Yes it was only supposed to have a bit-part in a novel I was writing at the time… but it took over that novel… so I had to come to an agreement with it… it could have its own books (note the plural), providing it left my novel alone. And the rest, they say, is history…