In Ruth Perkinson’s book Piper’s Someday, a three-legged dog and 12-year-old girl befriend one another and go on the journey of a lifetime. Missing limb aside, the dog saves the owner’s life.
Little did Perkinson know, her book would foreshadow her own life. Her dog River was diagnosed with cancer last year leading to the amputation of her left hind leg.
Now, Perkinson is trying to get the story to Hollywood. In her personal blog, she writes of her and River, “I’m the writer. She’s the talker.”
“You think that you know everything about dogs – but I think in reality, they are really here to show us what to do. Teaching us how to be.”
Perkinson wrote Piper’s Someday after she lost her dog Scout to bladder cancer.
Now with River starting chemotherapy last month, she’s becoming an advocate for K9 cancer and is enlisting friends and non-profits to hear her pup’s story. A former teacher, Perkinson had her dream come true in 2005 when her first book, Vera’s Still Point, was published. Her fifth book, The Mystic Market, comes out this September.
With the recession, it hit home for Perkinson who had to sell her truck to help finance River’s surgery.
“My books don’t sustain me,” she said.
When she first adopted River, she says the pup was unruly – jumping chain link fences, running away, causing minor property damage. After wrapping up Piper’s Someday she took River to training classes to become a therapy dog. After taking River to elementary schools on Richmond’s east end, they began visiting the Virginia Home – a long-term residence for adults with physical disabilities.
“There was one woman there that would just light up when she saw River,” Perkinson said. ”I would have to pick River up and she would do tricks for her.”
“She’s gone from this totally crazy dog to a service animal to now prophetically losing her leg to soft tissue sarcoma.”
Perkinson hopes to bring awareness with her story and Piper’s Someday to hopefully make money for K9 Cancer research. According to local non-profit FETCH-A-Cure, 6 million dogs will be diagnosed with Cancer this year.
She’s started a grassroots campaign to get the story in the hands of producers through her blog and networks of readers. ”This is very authentic,” she says. ”I think it can happen.”
For more information on Perkinson’s & River’s journey, check out her blog at http://ruthperkinson.blogspot.com/. For more information on Perkinson’s books and Piper’s Someday, visit RuthPerkinson.net.
Kevin Clay is the editor and publisher of GAYRVA.COM. He is a Richmond native, loves the city and knows it's on the edge of greatness. Don't hold back RVA. You can follow Kevin on GAYRVA's Twitter or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Thursday, March 6, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. at Artworks Galery the Richmond Business Alliance, Wanda Fears, KMI Insurance, and Crowson Promotions will sponsor a Book Signing – Meet & Greet at Art Works Richmond to “Celebrate the Written Words of Richmond’s Gay Authors Ruth Perkinson & B. MacGregor.” This event was rescheduled from February [...]February 28, 2014
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