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Exciting Writing News

Posted on 1/4/2018 at 10:04:20 AM

Today I’m writing to let you all in on a little secret that has been in the works for some time now. I am excited to announce that I signed a contract with the wonderful editor, Kate Foster, of Lakewater Press, for the publication of my debut novel, THE FOSTER.

Believe it or not, THE FOSTER was inspired by our adoptee, Meadow, who had some quirky, and sometimes creepy habits, when we first adopted her. Of course, she quickly won our hearts and proved to us what a sweet and loving dog she is with her people, and I no longer second guessed her actions when she was sneaking up behind me and staring at my back, among other things.

But the story idea took hold and eventually led to me penning THE FOSTER, a novel about Judge, a Catahoula leopard dog with a disturbing stare, who keeps being returned to his foster homeā€¦because his owners keep turning up dead.

I can’t wait until it’s published so that I can share it with all of you, but we have some edits ahead of us and a cover to create, so it will be a while yet. Our planned release date is the end of 2018. In the meantime, I’ll keep you up to date on it’s progress, as well as any other writing related news.

Quick Update

Posted on 1/1/2018 at 9:44:28 AM

Happy New Year Everyone! I was updating my website for 2018, and I realized I never sent out a note to let you know that I’ve decided to start using a pen name instead of my married name, Donna Owczarek. Since “Owczarek” loosely translates to “Shepherd” in Polish, I plan to use the name D.L. Shepherd on any future works, instead of Donna Owczarek.

The reason is simple. With my last name so difficult to spell, (and pronounce), I wanted it to be easier for my valued readers–just like you–to find me. But it’s still me, and I’m still plugging away at my keyboard, drafting novels inspired by my four-leggers.

I’ve also begun tweeting under my new pen name, so if you’re on Twitter, I’d love if you might follow me HERE.

Lastly, I just created an author Facebook page, which you can find HERE.

Thank you for all of your follows, likes, and shares!

Another Sad Announcement

Posted on 1/17/2017 at 8:44:59 PM

Sweet Leah With a heavy heart, I need to let you all know that Leah passed away on the 7th of January. Her health had been failing for several months, but she hung on until after she reached her 17th birthday at the start December, and then remained stoically at my side through the holiday season.

She passed at home in my arms in the wee hours of the morning, a stark contrast to how we recently lost Toby, in distress, at the vet’s office. Neither loss was easy. Neither without regrets.

I will cherish every moment of the 13+ years I was lucky enough to spend with my Leah. I hope she is somewhere peaceful, running and feeling like a young dog again, as her presence here is greatly missed.

(To read more about Leah, CLICK HERE)

A New Arrival

Posted on 8/10/2016 at 9:24:23 PM

I’m delighted to introduce you to our newest addition, a Labrador pup we named “Cooper.”

8-9-16 (3)

We added the little guy to our household last Wednesday, and he is just shy of 12 weeks old in this photo.


He is a sweetheart, a clown, and a little piranha with extremely sharp teeth all rolled into one rambunctious (yet sometimes lazy) bundle of shiny black fur.

Cooper is also our first puppy, so it will be interesting to see what kind of character he grows into. Wish us luck!

Sad Announcement

Posted on 4/6/2016 at 3:23:52 PM

Lake George 014With a broken heart, I wanted to let you all know that over this past weekend the time came for us to let Toby go. He had been suffering with several ailments, including severe valvular disease, hind-end weakness, anxiety issues, laryngeal paralysis, and a mass of undetermined origin in his lung.

When his breathing difficulties became nearly constant, we knew that his quality of life had greatly diminished, and so we helped him along before his suffering could grow any worse. I will forever miss my sweet, trouble-maker of a Labrador, and he will always hold a special place in my heart.

(To read more about Toby, CLICK HERE)

Just a Quick Note

Posted on 3/13/2014 at 2:46:10 PM

Donna and her dog, Leah.

I’m excited to share with you that my essay about how I met my dog Leah was published in Modern Dog Magazine.

The essay can be found on the last page of the Spring 2014 print edition and is titled “Chosen.” It is also available to read online by CLICKING HERE.

If you go check it out, I’d love for you to stop back here and let me know what you think.



Welcome to My News Page

Posted on 8/3/2013 at 1:05:14 PM

If you’ve been poking around my new website, it seems you’ve found your way to the news section. With this being the first post, there is no real “news” to share at the moment, but please check back regularly to stay informed about my writing endeavors.

Or even better – why not subscribe?

Because let’s face it, news in the publishing world is sometimes dreadfully slow. Why waste time checking a bookmark the “old fashioned” way, when you can have announcements sent to your favorite feed reader or delivered straight to your inbox via email?

Thanks for visiting the site – and I’d love to know what you think! Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below, or contact me directly.