Author Q&A – Kelly Shoup/ Lucky

Kelly Shoup


Tell me a little bit about your background, both as a writer and a cat lover.
I have always grown up around cats, and my cats have always had interesting stories. To this day, cats with interesting stories seem to seek my parents out! As an adult, I got cats as soon as I could, much to the dismay of my at-the-time roommate. I tend to follow my heart and let my head, and checkbook, follow. I can’t imagine my life without cats and am so grateful for the cats who allow me to share their home. As for being a writer, it has always been a dream of mine to write books. I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity!

What inspired you to submit to this anthology?
I have been involved in Lucky’s story from day one. What started out as a mission to save one cat became so much more. Having a platform to speak out against animal cruelty, particularly in smaller animals, is incredible. We have been able to highlight so many less fortunate cats and that is gratifying. When a fellow volunteer suggested contributing to the anthology, I saw it as a wonderful opportunity to share Lucky’s story and emphasize that cruelty happens, but love, including the love from a virtual family, can conquer all.

Tell me a little bit about your relationship with the cat in your story — from your own (human) perspective.
Lucky’s mom and I are really good friends. All throughout his recovery, the volunteers really hoped that Lucky would go to someone we knew so that we could continue to hear his stories. In rescue, you don’t always get the satisfaction of “where are they now?” To be able to hear and see how well Lucky is doing is amazing. Lucky is a very shy cat. He has selected his humans and he’s okay with the ones he has selected. I have visited with him since he was in his forever home. He’s doing extremely well, and the pictures I get show just how well he has adjusted.

Why did you choose to support HART?
I sort of fell into volunteering with Homeless Animals Rescue Team. A couple of friends volunteered with them and we got our first dog through HART. When my husband was deployed, I spent a lot of time volunteering and fostering dogs through HART. I had an opportunity one summer to foster a mom and her kittens, and the rest, is history. Through our volunteer work with HART, we have come to know some wonderful people and some equally wonderful animals. They are the reason Lucky is alive, having taken a chance on him when no other rescue would, so it was a no brainer. I feel as though HART will always be involved in some aspect of our lives.

If you had written the story from your own perspective, would it have been different?
Absolutely! Never in my life have I experienced the pain and terror that Lucky went through. We begged the shelter to let him go early, we tried everything we could think of to get them to release him early. They refused and he sat suffering miserably for 10 days. I wanted to highlight that and show how resilient cats can be. Lucky was such an inspiration and I tried to convey that in writing his story.

What’s your next writing project that you’re working on?
Keeping up with Lucky’s page is a full time job! I have some rough drafts and some ideas, but nothing really concrete. I am actually toying with a couple of children’s book ideas, to include one with Lucky’s antics, but finding the time to dedicate myself to writing can be challenging. On top of the many species of animals we have at home, I have two children that keep me on my toes!



How did you feel when your story was chosen to be included in the anthology?
I was very excited! To be able to share my story alongside some pretty amazing cats has been wonderful. I’m also excited about the outreach and the opportunity to continue to speak out against animal cruelty.

Tell me about your relationship with the human who submitted your story and helped you write it.
My ghostwriter is a nice lady. She brings me treats from fans and always asks my mom how I’m doing. She does a lot for homeless animals and that is excellent my book! She’s not as cool as my mom, but mom’s a pretty tough act to follow!

Is there an event or anecdote that was left out of the story that, looking back, you wish you had put in?
A true gentleman never kisses and tells!

What do you think of the other cats in the book? Which one do you admire or look up to the most?
I think we all have amazing talents and I am honored to share pages with them!

There are so many famous cats, in the news, in movies, and on the internet. Which one is your favorite, and why?
Grumpy Cat makes me laugh. Her face is so expressive and the things humans come up with make me laugh! I would like to take this opportunity to give a head bonk to the many cats on the internet who helped to share my story: Batgirl, Bagheera, and Anakin the Two Legged Miracle cat, to name a few. They all used the power of social media to help me when I was at my lowest point. That has truly been an inspiration for me!

If a movie were made of your life, which actor do you think should be cast to play you? (Using the latest CGI techniques, of course!)
This is a tough question for me — so hard that I polled my furiends. I think we settled on Joseph Gordon-Levitt (though that Bradley Cooper guy was a close second!!). He’s handsome (so the ladies tell me), and he seems down to earth. I would like my love interest to be Sandra Bullock! Mom tells me that I don’t have a love interest in real life, but anybody who stands up for homeless animals deserves a role in my movie! MOL