Parrot’s Plot Points “Pam, I can’t tell you how grateful I am that you’ll take JoJo.” Missy said, appearing at my front door holding a large, covered birdcage with an elaborate gold handle at the top.

“Well, I don’t know much about parrots, but I’ve certainly heard a lot about JoJo. And, um, most of our friends warned me not to help you. I don’t understand why. You said JoJo is easy.”

Missy followed me into my home, stopping at the kitchen nook with wall-to-wall windows.

“Yes, yes, this is perfect,” Missy said under her breath. Then louder she said, “would you hold the cage while I get the stand?”

Missy ran out of the house as if afraid I’d give her the rather heavy cage back. But I knew she was worried about her dad, who’d had a sudden heart attack. Missy’s flight to Florida, where her parents lived, was in an hour.

“He’s gonna die,” a voice came from underneath the sheet that covered the birdcage.

I jumped a bit, and felt the bird move on her perch. “Watch it!” the squeaky voice demanded.

I knew that some parrots could talk. But this one seemed to not just be “parroting” conversation.

Missy ran back in with a tall brass stand and placed the birdcage on top. “Ready?” she asked, and I didn’t know if she was talking to me, or JoJo.

“As ready as I’ll ever be,” JoJo said.

I gaped and turned to Missy. “JoJo answers questions?”

Missy nodded her head, opened her mouth as if to say something, then closed it again. “Gotta go,” she said in a rush, handing me a list of instructions. “Here’s her feeding schedule, but if you miss it, don’t worry. JoJo will tell you.”

“Wait!” I pulled off the cover and stared into intense fathomless eyes – almost surreal with an otherworldly focus.

“She’ll be back in 10 days,” JoJo said.

I pulled Missy away from the front door, where she was trying to escape. “What kind of parrot is JoJo?” I asked.

“A rare Macaw. She’s 36 years old and changes color depending on her mood. She’s wise beyond her years though. You’ll see.” And then Missy raced off.

parrot, Kauai, talking parrot, blog post“Bye sweetie!” JoJo squealed. Then her eyes turned to me. “Now, let’s talk about that novel you’re working on. You have a few plot holes in there.”

123 thoughts on “Parrot’s Plot Points

    • JoJo loves the room. Even on dreary cloudy days the sun brightens her disposition. And believe me, I need to keep her happy. I’m halfway through my book, thanks to her. 🙂 🙂 🙂


    • I gave JoJo an extra cracker for making you smile this morning, Sue. 🙂 She is quite a “character,” literally as well as figuratively. I love how my magical realism stories seem to take off on a life of their own. JoJo just might stick around. ❤


    • Hi Andrea – so great to see you here!! Yes, it’s a dilemma. JoJo’s smart as* remarks are rather challenging, and yet she has some great points about my plot. Could I handle her full-time as my muse?? Ack! 🙂

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  1. Oh…I’ve got the shivers. The voice from under the sheet, ‘he’s gonna die’. Ominous times a million. Waiting for more…but with a touch of anxiety. But it’s okay (self-talk right there) because I’ll distract myself with the tidbit that JoJo can change her colors. Yes, yes. I’ll focus on that…not the death and other-worldly intellect…from a bird. 😲😲😲

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    • Honestly, I could see you handling JoJo just fine, Jacqui. Me? Not so much. Not sure (in fact, I’m sure that I’m not sure) that I want to hear about future events, particularly from a parrot.
      On the other hand, I really COULD use the help with my plot….


    • Believe it or not, Jeanette, the prompt I followed for this story was “a friend must fly out to an ailing parent and asks you to sit her rather unusual pet.” JoJo flew into my imagination immediately.


  2. LOL. A parrot as a writing coach/beta reader/editor! I love it. I hope that’s all Jojo offers to help you with. Can you imagine if it had suggestions for fashion, cleaning tips, and cooking? A wonderfully fun post, Pam. Happy Writing and I hope those pot holes get filled.

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  3. A psychic parrot! What fun this story is. So many secrets he knows and will spill for just the right reaction. Love this. You definitely should take this and run with it. I’m going to giggle through breakfast with the old folks. Hugs.

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    • I love the idea of a creative hat – wouldn’t it be great if we all had one, and as we sat at our writing desks, when we put it on – WHAM – creative abounds. I have a feeling you don’t need one of those hats though, Balroop.


    • Oh, Bernadette, what a perfect quote. I LOVE it. Thanks!! JoJo says thank you too, in her squeaky voice, which I admit, is getting a bit annoying. She wants me to change my story from 3rd person to 1st. Sigh. 🙂

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  4. I need a bird that’s going to find my plot holes.

    I am thinking what a delightful children’s story this could make…without the warning of impending death, of course. JoJo seems like a lot of fun—I’m eager to hear more from you and her!

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  5. Jojo is hilarious. And scary. She’s worthy of a horror movie. She predicts death, and she knows things she couldn’t possibly know.


  6. A talking bird in itself would be unnerving but one that can communicate would be downright scary! I really liked the story! ❤


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