Donna Rawlins is an animal-lover, writer, voice actor, singer, and songwriter whose songs have appeared in network television shows and major feature films including Mr. Woodcock, The Bold and the Beautiful, The Unit, The Shield and Dawson’s Creek.
Donna’s abundant national television commercial credits include Sears, United Airlines, Macy’s, Suzuki, PetSmart, Hillshire Farms, Birds Eye, Tilex, American Century Investments, and the American Clean Skies campaign. She is the voice of numerous audiobooks such as Jane Jacobs’ The Death and Life of Great American Cities (50th Anniversary Edition), Sidney Sheldon’s Tell Me Your Dreams, Tami Hoag’s, Taken by Storm, Margaret George’s Memoirs of Cleopatra, Laura Zigman’s Animal Husbandry, and Jane Heller’s Female Intelligence. Donna was also featured as the character BT in the premier season of the Japanese anime series .hack//Sign.
Originally from the small town of Lancaster, Ohio, the Los Angeles–based writer comes from a family of five musicians and currently resides in Venice Beach, California with her husband, Robert Feist, owner of Ravenswork Studios, along with their seventeen-year old cat, Bhava, newly adopted Maddie, and of course … the rest of those crazy cats.
I was in the middle of writing my first novel when Skinny appeared in my life and as we accumulated photos of Skinny making such a positive impact on Bhava, my husband Robert actually came up with the “skinny as a verb” model. One night at dinner he told me he had “skinnied” one of his clients that day. Confused, I inquired further. He explained that a guy had come into his studio in a terrible mood, but Robert, determined to emulate Skinny the Cat’s behavior, simply kept being super nice to him. After a while, his client’s mood had taken a 180 degree turn for the better! Immediately when I heard the word in that context, I understood what had happened to Bhava, and from that moment on, “skinnying” became a personal mission.
Earlier I had written a short story about Ichi called, “The Cab Can Wait,” which served as a starting place for the book and eventually became Chapter Four. So in other words, I wrote backward and forward from Ichi’s passing to form the book and fully develop the “skinnying” concept.