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On My Back Paws (SAMPLE)









On My Back Paws

Anna Skoyles









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Copyright © Anna Skoyles 2015


The right of Anna Skoyles to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.


All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic or otherwise, without the prior permission of the copyright owner.


All the characters in this book are fictitious, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.





Hello, my name is Seamus and my make is a golden retriever. I am just having a little chew on my favourite bit of tasty carpet waiting for Sophie to tell me off. Nothing is happening. She is still too busy with her favourite toy (as usual) to notice me. She is always playing with it and talking to it. I wish she would let me join in. I am much more fun but Sophie doesn’t seem to think so; well not anymore anyway. Her toy can’t do tricks like me; I am doing one now but she isn’t even looking.

I huff and go back to chewing the tasty carpet. I wish we were in Gnaw-folk. I think I’ll have a nice little nap and dream about being there. Soon I am snoring away and back at the beach, dreaming about the first time Sophie took me to Gnaw-folk. It was the best day of my life. Sophie and I are running along the sand with the wind in our hair.

‘Come on Seamus! Let’s go for a walk!’ she calls to me. The wind blows and knocks her pointy hat off.

I rush after it to fetch it for her and drop it at her feet. ‘Good boy Seamus. I’m so glad I found you at the animal shelter. Sit down here beside me whilst I cast some spells.’

She gets out her special stick and waves it in the air. It bends where she has taped it up. Don’t tell anyone but that was my fault.

‘Nothing’s happening. What is the matter with this thing? It never works properly!’ Sophie winds the tape around it a bit tighter and then looks at me. I hide my face under my front paw. ‘Seamus, have you been playing with this again? I’ve told you before, my magic wand is not a toy.’

Sophie tries waving it in the air again but nothing happens (except for me blowing off but I often do that). Then we both see a man running along the beach with a surprised look on his face. His bottom is getting bigger and bigger! Now he has got two bottoms!

Sophie cries out loud ‘Oh no! What have I done? and then I wake up from my dream. I dream about that day quite a lot.

I never saw her magic wand after that. That’s when Sophie started going to something called work and leaving me at home all day. It’s time for my walk now so I am going to fetch my lead.

‘I’m too busy for walkies today Seamus,’ she snaps when I drop it at her feet. Then she scratches her head; she must have fleas. I’ve had them before, they are itchy.

While Sophie is having fun without me I’d like to tell you more about me. My favourite things are biscuits, going for walks and Sophie. She is my best friend and she doesn’t like sharing her toys but you’ve probably realised that. All she thinks about is finding something called a ‘leading man’. Do you know what that is? I don’t. Once I brought her my lead because I thought that was what she wanted but she carried on talking so I chewed it and then forgot all about helping.

The flashing box with people on it is on in the corner of the room so I’m going to watch that now instead because they look like they are having fun. I don’t know what the box is called but it’s brilliant; it flashes and talks! I like to watch the people on it; sometimes I wonder what it would be like to be able to talk. I am a very clever dog but that’s the one thing I can’t do. I really wish that I could though. There is a lot I would like to say, especially to Sophie, like how I wish things were like how they used to be, how they used to be when she was my still best friend.

I think I must have upset her because she never takes me for walks anymore. I don’t know what I’ve done wrong. I’ve tried and tried to work it out but the last time I did that I found some of my biscuits and forgot what I was thinking about (they are delicious). I know I chew the carpet a bit but that’s only because I miss her. I’ve tried looking extra cute when she comes home, fetching the post and running about but nothing helps; not even my best cute face.

Soon after I broke Sophie’s magic wand she gave up being a witch. She wasn’t very good at it anyway; that’s what her sister Imogen said. Imogen is my second best friend and Sophie’s sister. She lives along the road from us and she visits me, takes me on my walks and gives me biscuits now Sophie is something called a ‘casting agent’. I don’t know what that means, do you?

I do know it’s making her scratch her head a lot. Perhaps the leading man problem has something to do with it, or she really has got fleas. I really want to help Sophie because she’s my best friend but I don’t know what to do.

‘‘The director didn’t like any of the actors I sent you?’ Sophie says to her favourite toy and then scratches her head again. ‘None of them are suitable?’

I wonder what is wrong. It must be the leading man problem again. Her toy is talking back now. ‘There’s been something missing from the men we’ve seen. Can you find someone more….innocent but charming? Chad is a little too old.’

‘But he’s the best in the business’ she tells them.

‘We’d like to see someone younger and British. Find us some new talent!’ the toys replies.

Sophie looks sad and stares into her tea, she is still in her pyjamas and her hair is like a bird’s nest. She has plonked down on the sofa and is rubbing her head now. I decide to go and cheer her up so I go and sit down next to her. Oopps! I didn’t realise I am a bit windy today; perhaps she won’t notice the smell! Sophie pulls a face at me so I hide my head under my front paw and pretend to be asleep again.

‘I’m sorry that you aren’t happy with the men I sent to audition. Some of the actors I found were very charming, I thought’ she puts down her toy and waits for it to reply.

‘You’re getting closer to what we’re looking for but none of them were quite right. Why don’t you come in today for a meeting? We can discuss it then’ the toy says back.

Sophie looks into the mirror with a shocked look when she sees her scary hair and says ‘I’ll be there in an hour.’

Then she bends down and strokes my head, ‘Seamus, I’ve got to go out for the day. Imogen will be here later to take you for your W-A-L-K’ then off she goes upstairs.

Sophie spells the word walk so I don’t get too excited. What she doesn’t know is that I know how to spell! Imogen will take me today because Sophie is going to leave me for the third day in a row while she goes to this work thingy. I think she must go on walks with her new best friend and that makes me even sadder than when I had no friends at all. That was the worst time of my life.

My Mummy died five years ago and I was sent to a place called the animal shelter. At first I didn’t like it. I had no friends. I was so lonely that I used to cry at night. The people at the animal shelter looked after me and they introduced me to Sophie when she came to visit one day. Then she took me home! We became the best of friends straight away and that was when my life changed forever!

Sophie and Imogen are my family but not even Imogen can help Sophie with the leading man problem. I hope Sophie finds the lead man soon because I miss her. I miss her so much that I wish she was still a witch. Even though she wasn’t very good at it, she did spend all her time with me. I wish there was something I could do to help. I would do anything, anything at all to have my best friend back. But what can I do? She doesn’t take any notice of me because I am just a dog. If I were human….if I could talk, then I could really help, couldn’t I?


Chapter 1

Sophie and Imogen are in the lounge eating biscuits and drinking tea. I want to join in on the biscuit eating so I’m going to interrupt.

‘Hello boy’ Imogen strokes my head; it feels really nice when she does that. It’s almost as good as eating one of my biscuits.

‘Sis, I just don’t know what to do. I’ve auditioned every actor I could find.’ I am sitting at Sophie’s feet wondering what an actor is. It sounds interesting. ‘I have to find the leading man soon or my career is over!’ Sophie looks sad again. I put my paw on her lap so she’ll stroke me too but she hasn’t noticed me so I do it again.

‘I don’t know what to suggest Soph. Didn’t your meeting yesterday help? It sounds like you’ve tried everything.’ Imogen scratches her head. Perhaps she has fleas too. Sophie should put the cold slimy stuff on her to get rid of them. She uses it on me all the time. I don’t like it!

‘I have! But I don’t know what to do anymore; I’ve been up all night worrying about it. The film can’t go ahead without the leading man! I’m desperate! Perhaps I should dust off my magic wand!’ Sophie laughs but her eyes aren’t smiling like they used to. I wonder where she put the magic wand after she taped it back together. I’d like to see it again, it was a brilliant toy: all sparkly and stick like. No wonder she didn’t want to share it!

‘You’re joking, aren’t you? Remember what happened last time? That’s why you gave up being a witch.’

‘I know I wasn’t very good at it but I’m desperate. I have to find the leading man or my career is over! And you know I can’t afford to lose my job…’ Sophie is by the cupboard getting something out. It’s the magic wand! I had forgotten how fancy it is. Perhaps she’s finally going to let me play with it! I bark at her to show her I am ready for a game.

‘Down, Seamus!’ Sophie is holding the magic wand in the air, she is teasing me. I jump up to catch it but she moves away. This new game is fun. ‘Hmm, I’ve got an idea’ she says, interrupting my game and talking to Imogen. I sit by her feet hoping we can play again. ‘Seamus is such a handsome and obedient dog, isn’t he?’

‘Yes, he’s a brilliant dog.’ Imogen strokes me again. She is right about that!

‘Sometimes I wish he were human. I wonder what he’d say and what he’d be like. In many ways he’s a lot like the leading man in the film….’ Sophie is scratching her head now; the fleas must have jumped onto her. I move away. I don’t want to get them!

‘Oh no…. I know what you’re thinking and you can’t. You just can’t!’ Imogen looks worried. Perhaps she knows that she’s going to get the flea treatment.

‘What? It’s the perfect solution! Seamus would make a great leading man!’ I hear my name so my plan must have worked. My mouth is dribbling at the thought of one of my biscuits! ‘It’s worth a try…….’ she goes on without any sign of a biscuit for me. I drop to the floor with a huff to show how annoyed I am.

‘It’ll only go wrong……may I remind you why you gave up being a witch? That man was never the same after you’d cast that spell on him.’

‘Well that was just a slight mishap.’ Sophie is waving the magic wand in the air. It must be time to play again. I wag my tail.

‘One of many, more like!’ Imogen laughs.

‘Well I don’t care. I’ve got no other option. I’ll turn Seamus into my leading man and if he’s doesn’t get the part then I’ll just change him back!’

Where is my dog biscuit? I’ve been waiting patiently for it. Sophie hasn’t even gone to the kitchen yet and there is a little puddle of dribble on the carpet that might get me into trouble.

‘If you say so…I still think it’s a bad idea.’ Imogen has folded her arms across her front and crossed her legs.

Sophie points the magic wand at me and waves it. I jump up; try to grab it with my paws as Sophie says loudly ‘Turn Seamus human’. There is a puff of smoke. Then everything changes.

I can’t see because of all the smoke. I begin to cough and choke. I try to stay awake but my eyes are heavy. As I take another breath I can’t stop the sleepy feeling from taking over my body. Before I know what’s happening I have fallen to the floor with a thump.


I hope you enjoyed this sample


If you’d like to read the full On My Back Paws novel, it’s for sale now in paperback and on Kindle.

Here are the links to UK and US versions:



For more information on my work please visit http://ajsbooks.wix.com/woof You can sign up to my newsletter, where you’ll get special offers for readers, information on my new books and exclusive information on my work. See the end of this book for the link.

Best Wishes



Anna’s Books

[_ _]


On My Back Paws

[A lonely dog, a magic spell and a friendship to be saved!
A novel for children and adults, especially dog lovers]

Kindle and Paperback Editions


[_ _]

Picture Books

Euston’s Special Day: The Very Forgetful Elephant Story
A delightful children’s picture book with hand painted illustrations

[_Pre order today – _]Out 1st October



Short Stories

[Poppy’s Bunch
A quick women’s fiction read with a sparkle of romance]


More coming soon!



I sometimes give away stories, like this one….

Sign up to my newsletter and you’ll be the first to hear about them!


Sign Me Up


This will sign you up to my newsletter.

I promise not to spam you or pass your details on.


For more cool stuff:

Visit my website www.ajsbooks.wix.com/woof

You can also[+ ][+follow me on Amazon]
Be the first to hear about my new releases!
(Just click the follow button under my name)


On My Back Paws (SAMPLE)

SAMPLE CHAPTERS of the fantasy comedy novel On My Back Paws 'A fun, fantasy about friendship and trust' 5 Stars - Readers’ Favorite. Do you love dogs? Then you're going to fall in love with Seamus, the golden retriever and his exciting dog story! This is Seamus' story, told in his own words. Seamus is lonely. He has a lot he'd like to say; especially to his best friend Sophie, but he's just a dog. He wants to know why she keeps on leaving him all day; has she found a new best friend? Sophie, meanwhile, is having trouble with her new job. She can't find the right actor to play the leading man in a film she's working on. Seamus would be perfect for the role but he's just a dog... until one day, with the flash of an old magic wand, both their lives change. Can Seamus save their friendship by helping Sophie? And can he really resist being who he truly is? The perfect book for dog lovers of all ages. So if you love dogs, or know some one who does, join Seamus on his exciting adventure. Download his dog story today! PLEASE NOTE THIS IS A SAMPLE, NOT THE FULL LENGTH NOVEL

  • Author: Anna Skoyles
  • Published: 2016-08-30 13:00:09
  • Words: 2721
On My Back Paws (SAMPLE) On My Back Paws (SAMPLE)