Saddle Up Heroes #4
We are closing in on the release of the box set of Tales From Big Country. It is always so surprising to me how authors got into writing westerns and why. The recurring theme seems to be heroes in the movies. Of course, John Wayne’s name always comes up and I understand why. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve seen McClintock or North to Alaska. I just love them. Today you’ll meet another batch of authors who have jumped in to help save the wild horse of the west. To me that makes them a hero too. If you want more information about who we are supporting, check out https://americanwildhorsecampaign.org/ Now let’s meet some of this week’s unlikely heroes.
I was raised taking care of cattle, riding horses and reading Louis L’Amour books. Writing western stories is as natural for me as pulling on boots. As Willie Nelson once said, “my heroes have always been cowboys.” I have always wanted to write, though it took me several years to find my stride in that area. I have done several different jobs over my life and most of them I have liked. Writing I love and will continue as long as God allows me to. I continue to want to be a better writer.
In The Footprints of My Father: The story of a son of a legendary “old west” marshal and lawman, who he knows little of. The son, Luke, takes his own journey and in the process sees his father through the eyes of those who knew him then. Even as the actual distance between them grows, he comes closer to his father as he learns about him.
Who is your favorite western hero or movie and why? Appaloosa – the job Robert B Parker did on the dialog is the greatest.
If you could have dinner with anyone in the past who would it be and why? The Texicans in the Alamo and the dinner set for March 5, 1836 as the Mexican forces moved into attack positions. I’d like to know their final thoughts.
Where is one of your favorite western locations. Explain. Anywhere along the Rocky Mountains. Every section of them that I’ve seen is breath taking. My favorite park is Yellowstone, Rodeo and horse shows and Idaho.
My family and I live in Southern Utah, USA. I grew up on horseback and treasured any time I could spend riding through the red sands and sagebrush. My husband, Randon and I have four children – including a set of twins. Nothing makes me happier than being a wife and mother…. but reading is a very close second! When I discovered I could tell a good story – and that I had a lot of fun doing it – I decided to write some of the stories swirling around in my head. It’s not work if you enjoy it, right?
The Stage Driver’s Daughter is my newest piece that is now available for pre-order in the Big Country Western Box Set:
After Winnifred Morgan loses her pa, she trades her dresses and bonnets for trousers and boots and beats the boys in a race for a position as Woodruff and Ennors’ newest stage driver. Teaming up with shotgun guard Benjamin Sharpe to protect the express box full of treasure, Winnie outplays several attempts to rob her coach. But trouble is waiting in the wings, for her pa carried a secret to his grave… and now those who seek it are coming after Winnie!
The Stage Driver’s Daughter combines the adventure and danger of a true western with the sort of romance that can withstand it.
My favorite western is the tv series Heartland. I love the Flemings, the countryside, the horses, and, of course, the romance!
I am absolutely fascinated with ghost towns. Each western ghost town I’ve visited has something unique to offer, a whisper of the way life was lived in centuries past. My imagination runs wild! That’s probably why all three of my books are set in real towns, now abandoned, during the height of their prosperity, and why I aim to visit many more!
In my work as a Psychologist and Corporate Compliance Officer for a mental health center, I had to make a lot of different kinds of decisions, and it comes naturally for me.
I’ve been retired for a little over two years now but writing for a lot longer than that. The first thing I had published was a poem in my church’s bulletin. That was just short of a hundred years ago. At least, it seems that way sometimes. I’ve been married to the same very patient woman for 48 years now. We have six grand kids that we try to spend a lot of time and money on.
Why do I write? I can’t not write! Simple as that. And westerns have always been my favorites. I grew up watching Saturday morning cowboy shows and still watch a lot of westerns. Unfortunately, there aren’t very many good ones now. That’s one reason I write westerns: To hopefully show they’re worth making into movies again. There’s something about a good guy (who may not be all good) going up against a bunch of bad guys over some issue or person that is worth fighting for. And the Old West is a part of our history that is just glossed over most of the time. We really did something when we made this country! Yeah, some of what we did wasn’t so good; but the outcome has turned out pretty well overall. If I weren’t a writer, I think I would like to be a retired lottery winner who still has most of the money left.
My latest book: TENNYSON ‘TEN’ ST. JOHN – THE SEARCHER is the first in a series. Ten St. John is searching for his father after the end of the Civil War. In the process, he’s finding out a lot about himself and about his father. Some of what he’s finding out about his father isn’t at all what he expected.
My favorite western hero? There really are too many to single one out. John Wayne, of course. He portrayed the west as it could have been, especially in THE SEARCHERS. Jimmy Stewart because he showed what an ‘ordinary’ man could accomplish in the west. Gary Cooper was just plain good in HIGH NOON. Henry Fonda could play good guys or bad with the same finesse. Kevin Costner in DANCES WITH WOLVES showed the human side of Indians. I could go on and on, but these are a few of my favorites.