Climb That Fence and Take That Leap
by Philip Johnsey
Philip will be awarding a $50 Amazon gift card to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour. Follow the tour at Goddess Fish and comment at all stops to increase your chances in winning.
Edmund blasts across the yard against my calls to come in. He gleely runs off and I chase him across the grass only to find a unique butterfly or a sky filled with stars. As soon as I stop and admire, Edmund promptly comes to my side and rubs against me.
Do you ever wonder if there is more to your pet’s behavior than meets the eye? Sometimes their antics are more than just random behavior. Can we learn something about ourselves by watching them?
I believe so and Climb that Fence take that Leap is a compilation of personal, inspirational animal stories and the life lessons I gleaned from them.
After enjoying these stories, hopefully you’ll enjoy more quality time with your furry friend and know what it takes to Climb that Fence and Take that Leap!
Hello and thanks for stopping by and visiting with me and the bunnies. It is so nice to have Philip Johnsey here. Readers I hope you enjoy this interview as much as I did. Oh, hold on Philip Johnsey; every time someone new stops by the dogs and bunnies go crazy.
What do you do when you are not writing?
Lately, it seems a little bit of everything! I work full time as an I.T. security person. When I’m not doing that, you’ll find me biking, kayaking, playing volleyball, running, hiking, or traveling. I love to explore new places and photograph them. Lately I’ve been taking road trips and love it.
Can you tell us about your challenges in getting your first book published?
I wanted to self-publish and the biggest challenge was selecting a company. I spent days, it seemed, reading tons of online posts, visiting sites, and learning everything I could. There is so much information regarding book publishing that I found it overwhelming! I visited a friend who had successfully self-published and that was the clarification I needed.
The other challenge was the final editing prior to the book approval. You know how our minds can easily fill in the blanks even though there are words or letters missing? Well, I had read the manuscript so many times I had trouble accurately editing the final book proof. I needed someone who wasn’t familiar with the story, so I asked a friend to read the final proof.
Did you have a favorite toy as a child?
I loved cars/trucks as a child. Whenever I could get a new toy, I always asked for a toy car/truck. As an adult that hasn’t changed, just the price of the toys!
If you could travel in a Time Machine would you go back to the past or into the future?
I would go back and thoroughly appreciate the time I had with my parents more. We had fun, but as a kid, you really don’t understand how valuable time can be. I’d give almost anything to see them again and share my current life stories.
If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 things would you want with you?
An axe to cut wood for shelter and building things.
A means to make fire.
A pot to use for cooking.
Course, I’d really like a SAT phone so I could call for rescue!!
What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast?
I love to eat breakfast, anytime of the day!! An omelet onions, green peppers, and cheese topped with a little sour cream. Add some turkey bacon to the side, along with some homemade grits (not instant) with either butter and salt or cheese and bacon. Then add some fresh made pancakes that have blueberries or strawberries inside. That kind of food makes you look forward to getting up in the morning!
Night owl or early bird?
A little of both; I get up at 5am for work, but I find myself up till 11pm and beyond writing or producing videos. Every now and then, I have to quit early and get some sleep. Someday, I’m going to be like my cats and spend the day napping in the warm sun.
I’m pretty easy going; things that annoy me are usually things I consider inconsiderate or time wasters. This one I’ve seen all across the country: when you’re done filling up your car with fuel and decide to peruse the store inside, please move your car so others can get fuel. It’s annoying to have all the pumps taken and only 3 people actually getting fuel.
The other one involves ATMs. What takes a person 5+ minutes to make a withdrawal from an ATM? I can insert my card, enter the pin, select fast cash and be gone in under a minute.
Skittles or M&Ms?
M&Ms all the way!!! When our local grocery store has them on buy one get one free, I stock up.
Where is one place in the world that you would really love to visit someday?
Alaska!! I’d like to photograph the landscape, climb the mountains, fly to a remote wilderness area, take the train, and more. I’d also like to drive the Dalton Highway all the way to the Arctic Circle. I’ve read about people doing that and it’s quite an adventure.
One of your favorite quotes –
The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it’s too low and we reach it. Michelangelo
Do you prefer print books or eBooks?
Even though a phone or tablet can contain way more books than I could carry, I still like the feel of holding a real book and flipping through the pages. When you hold a real book, it feels like you’re connecting with the author; you’re actually holding his/her creation. Book stores are still one of my favorite places.
What is the craziest thing you have ever done?
Just over a month ago, I took a 3 week road trip. I drove from Florida to the western corner of Colorado and camped for 2 weeks. It sounded fun at first and as the departure time approached, I began to get nervous and ask myself “just what am I doing”. I went solo, camped in a tent with no electricity, no cell service, and the only running water was the creek behind me. A small town was only a few miles away so I wasn’t totally isolated. I also met the nicest people camping. It was a bit scary to leave everything I knew behind but it was the best thing I’ve done in ages; to totally step away from everything I normally do and look inward was life changing.
Do you have any hobbies?
I love nature photography and thoroughly enjoy composing an image and attempting to get it as perfect as possible through the lens. I recently discovered videography and am totally hooked on that. I’ve put together a few stories on my YouTube channel and that’s been a blast. I also enjoy travel blogging which allows me to combine the photography, videography, and writing. I’d be remiss to not share a link so swing on by: www.theworldaccording2phil.com. I also enjoy cooking, although that often takes more time than I have. Course the best part of cooking is eating it!!
Do you drive a manual or automatic vehicle?
I learned to drive on manual transmissions and love the total control of them. I love coming up to a corner, down shifting, (not using any brakes) and then punching it as I go around taking off. You can have so much fun driving a manual! My 4Runner has an automatic with sport shift which isn’t quite a full manual, but it’s fun.
Besides writing what other artistic talents, do you have?
I love photography, especially nature photography. Sharing the world’s beautiful places and encouraging others to go see them is a lot of fun. My newest creative joy is creating and editing videos of locations and events. I recently took video of a Carolina Wren’s nest from egg to the baby bird’s first flight. It was so much fun, especially to see the babies take their first flight! If you’d like to check out some of the fun places I’ve visited and videos, visit my blog: www.theworldaccording2phil.com
What do you think of this term- Writer’s Block? How do you overcome it?
It’s very real and it’s that place where you really want to write, but nothing is coming through. It’s like a faucet wide open, but someone turned the water off. Going for a walk is how I break through that barrier. My development has a path that is a mile around, so I’ll casually go walk that. Usually about midway, ideas start popping into my head. I always tell people to carry a way to record your thoughts because if you receive multiple inspirations, you’re bound to forget one.
What advice would you give aspiring writers?
The first thing is to write your “voice” and what easily comes to you. The best articles are the ones that come the easiest. I’ve written articles that were just short and sweet but just flowed from me. They’ve always received more accolades than a longer more “thought out” article. The other thing I’d say is write about everything. Sitting at the kitchen table; write a story about the dishwasher. It sounds odd, but being able to take something normal and make a fun story is quite challenging and good for developing creativity. And finally, just keep writing and submitting work. I know that sounds like a no brainer, but you never know what story will be the one to get you going.
If you were writing a book about your life, what would the title be?
It’d be titled: I’m still here; this wasn’t supposed to happen. I was raised very religious and my parents believed so strongly that Christ would return at that time, that there were not any plans for my future. I distinctly remember my Dad telling me Christ would be here before I was 17. Now I’m 40 something, still here and learning every day. It’s been an interesting life and I’m thankful to be alive and healthy.
Where can your followers find you?
The easiest place to find me is on one of two blogs: www.theworldaccording2phil.com, www.peakreflections.com, or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ClimbThatFenceTakeThatLeap
Any last words?
Thank you for the opportunity to share a little bit about me. It was fun and I enjoyed the dogs and bunnies! Next time I’ll bring one of my cats; I’m sure they’d enjoy playing with new friends. Thanks again and have fun!
Thank you so much for taking time to chat with me today Philip Johnsey. It’s been a pleasure having you and I wish you much success in the future.
Unconditional love isn’t always easy:
You remember how I said I’d spend more time with her? That became very difficult as the disease progressed. The sickening smell, the drool, and the wet fur made it hard to be near her, let alone pet her.
Whenever she came up to me, there was always a puddle or mark left from her drooling on me or rubbing against me. Anything she laid on or was near captured that smell.
Then one day I looked at her, and she just looked so pitiful. How could I not show this cat who’d been with me eighteen years some love? That was just being selfish and mean. I grabbed some old towels and began to hold her frequently. She just loved it. As soon as I picked her up, she’d just purr away. Yeah, the stink would get through onto my clothes, but that was OK. It was worth it.
It had always been easy to hold her when she was clean. Now that she was stinky and sick was when she needed that affection the most. As much as I loved my cat, there were days where it was difficult to be close to her. Often I’d get upset with her, and I knew that it was my frustration coming out. I just wanted to help her be well.
Unconditional love can be hard sometimes. You have to go way past the funky appearance and the odd smells, and think solely about the other person. You have to think about what it’d be like if you were in that situation. What would you really like?
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Raised on a farm and having been a volunteer at different animal rescues, it’s no surprise that his first two published articles were about animals. So it’s only fitting that Phil’s first book is about animals and the connections we share.
From Phil’s first high school job to present, he’s spent his career working with clients, explaining complex ideas in an easy to understand manner. In addition Phil enjoys exploring the world and sharing those adventures via writing, photography, and videography.
Phil’s credits include, multiple certifications, Reiki master, photographer, author of two blogs, author of a travel column, creates short segments for a local T.V. station and whatever else he can get into.
Kirkus Review: https://www.kirkusreviews.com/book-reviews/philip-johnsey/climb-that-fence-and-take-that-leap/
Barnes and Noble: