Monday, November 21, 2011

What Would YOU Ask a Zookeeper? (+ Shout-Out to Lydia Kang!)

Have you guys discovered Lydia Kang's blog yet? She's a brand-new member of the Lucky 13's Blog of 2013 debut authors, and her YA sci-fi, THE FOUNTAIN, debuts in Spring 2013 from Dial Books for Young Readers.

In addition to being a writer, Lydia is also a doctor, and she generously shares her medical knowledge every Monday during an ongoing series she calls Medical Mondays. During this series, she takes reader questions about medical-related issues, and this is a GREAT resource for aspiring writers. Here are some examples of past questions:
  1. "Can you explain how a person might go blind after a severe trauma, rather than by disease?"
  2. "What kinds of effects can prescription drugs of abuse can a person have, and what are the withdrawal symptoms if they go off the drugs?"
  3. "What's the turnaround time for tests to prove illegal steroids were being used?"
Do you have a medical-related question in your work in progress? Take advantage of Lydia's expertise by emailing her at: MedicalMondays (at) gmail (dot) com!

I've been enjoying Lydia's "Medical Monday" posts so much lately that I feel inspired to try my hand at my own series. After thinking about it for a little while, I think I may have come up with something.

As many of you know, I'm a zookeeper and animal trainer by background, so I definitely have my share of random animal knowledge.  And occasionally, one of my writerly friends will have an animal-related question about the novel he or she is writing. (i.e., "What does dolphin skin feel like?" ... "If my protagonist killed an adult brown bear, could he carry the pelt by himself, or would it be too heavy?" etc.)

In the spirit of knowledge sharing, I'd love to start a new series on my blog called "Ask a Zookeeper," where I take any of those random questions you have about the animals in your stories. (I've worked with primarily North American animals and some Asian animals, but I know lots of others who can help with additional animals.) And look, I've even designed a pretty badge, using a pic I took of Lyutik the polar bear at the Alaska Zoo:


Do you have a question?  Shoot me an email at lisa.chickos (at) hotmail (dot) com or leave a comment, and please feel free to spread my post to others you think may be interested in participating. I look forward to reading your questions!

9 comments:

Jaye Robin Brown said...

Sent you an e-mail question :0) About crows.

Sarah said...

I'm a huge fan of Lydia's, and I agree her blog is awesome. Good luck with this new series--I'm really looking forward to reading the posts!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I've followed Lydia's site for a long time now!
Question - what's your favorite and least favorite animals to deal with?

Lydia Kang said...

This is brilliant! You mean I have my very own, personal go-to Zookeper for my fictional questions? Awesome!

Okay, I have a question too. How would a bear kill a person? Like, what happens in a mauling? Are we talking torn out throats, or disemboweling...

Sorry, I know it's gruesome, but I wanted to know for one of my previous WIPs and I never quite got the answer.

Donna Perugini said...

Great idea, Lisa! Not only is what you're doing interesting and creative, it brings out the creativity in authors and curiosity in your readers.

Some of the questions you get really make me curious. I think you could even open up psychological profiling here along with the zookeeper section. Seriously! Not all bears (black, brown, grizzly, etc.) are the same regarding their agressiveness.

Good thinking!

Emily Rose said...

This is really neat! I love your blog!

Zooks said...

Thanks for generously offering to help out your animal-info-challenged fellow writers. Can Capuchin monkeys see in the dark? And do they see colors? Thanks!

LisaAnn said...

@Jaye: Got it... Will definitely feature it! Thanks!

@Sarah: Thank you so much!

@Alex: Ooh, good question... I'm getting excited already!

@Lydia & Donna: Yess, bears are fantastic. Will do!

@Emily: Thank you. Beautiful profile pic!

@Zooks: Oh my gosh, that one's hard... Will have to consult some friends!

Dinda Amanda said...


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