A Special Kind of Crazy


Please welcome our guest Laura Drake. 

Laura is giving away three eBook copies

of When Things Got Hot in Texas in Kindle or Nook–winner’s choice! So be sure to leave a comment.

(Contest guidelines apply)



Hey y’all!  For any who don’t know me, I’m Laura Drake, a Contemporary Western Romance author. But I mostly write about a specific kind of cowboy – the crazy ones – bull riders.

I’m a city girl from Detroit, but I married a Bigger-than-life Texan. On my first trip to Texas, he took me my first rodeo and I fell in love! Then I found out bull riding was on TV every Saturday and I was hooked! There’s something about a guy having the courage to get on a one-ton animal that wants to stomp his guts out that gets me. I’ve met a bunch of them, and my faith in the younger generation was bolstered; they’re down home country boys who still say ma’am and sir, and use the manners their mamas taught them. Well, and then there’s always the Wranglers in chaps!

I tend to jump in with both feet, but even I admit, I got carried away. I’ve been to ten regular events, and four World Finals in Vegas, one after breaking my leg in a freak fly fishing accident. Hey, I’m a dedicated fan….and it was a bonus that the handicapped staging area was right outside the guys locker-room!

A couple years later, I was writing a Women’s Fiction about the first woman bull fighter in the PBR (there’s never been one in real life). I felt like I should have more of an insider view of the skills involved, so I went to bull fighting School! No, I didn’t get in the arena with a bull, but if I’d been ten years younger, I would have!

I wrote a three-book series set in the world of pro bull riding. When the first one came out, I called in all my markers, and got with Jory Markiss, who at the time, was the #10 bull rider in the world (and he’s pretty darned cute, besides).

Speaking of seriously cute, for the model for my last hero in the series, Cam Cahill, I used the bull riding legend, Chris Shivers. I mean…whew!

I recently released a novella, Cowboy Karma, in the, When Things Got Hot in Texas anthology. I wanted to explore what would happen if an arrogant love-em-and leave ‘em bull rider tried to reform his bad boy ways.  Meet Stead James:

The When Things Got Hot in Texas was my idea – all five novellas set during a Texas Heat Wave. I contacted my Western Romance buds, and Lori Wilde, Christie Craig, Katie Lane, and Cynthia D’Alba took me up on it!

So, bottom line, yes, I’m a bit obsessive about bull riding. And I haven’t even talked about the bulls! Yes, many fans are there to cheer for them! But that’s a subject for another day.

So tell me, P&P readers – have you ever been to a bull riding event? Do you believe an arrogant man can change, given enough incentive?


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25 thoughts on “A Special Kind of Crazy”

  1. I went too one here. They are fascinating and I really enjoyed it. I do think an arrogant man can change.

  2. I live 5 minutes from a huge rodeo arena and have never been. I want to go but I have no one to go with (and I don’t like doing things alone). And we have a ranch right around the corner that raises rodeo bulls used across the country at events. I do not believe an arrogant man can be changed. They are pretty much set in their ways.

  3. Good morning, Laura…..Welcome to P&P! We’re so happy to have you. I love your post. Rodeos are a big deal here in Texas. I just love them. And bull riding is in a class by itself. The danger. The excitement. The cowboys!!! They sure make my heart beat faster!

    I love those covers! Oh my!!

    Wishing you tons of success and happiness.

  4. One of my favorite subjects! I grew up on a dairy farm here in Michigan and my brother tried rodeo for a few years. We loved to go when they came into town! It is an adrenaline rush to watch the bull riders.

  5. I don’t think I have ever been to a rodeo except I might have went to one as a kid at the fair. I can’t really remember. When it comes to men changing you can change them some but not always.

  6. Ah another hobby – quilting! I love bargello quilts and have made several. As long as it’s machine quilting, I’m fine – just don’t have the patience (or, frankly, the skill) to hand quilt. You?

  7. Hi Laura

    It’a great to learn a little more about you on the blog!! I’m with you, I’m a city girl from New York, a transplanted Californian and love to read and write about contemporary cowboys! My first rodeo, really inspired me and I love going and of course, bull riding is the scariest and the best! Happy Blogging!

    • Charlene, So great to ‘see’ you here! I love my new home, but miss everyone in So Cal so much! Well, that and the weather, and the great bicycling roads, and, and, and . . .

  8. Hi Laura,

    No I’ve never been to a bull riding event or even a rodeo. I’m not sure we have any in Wisconsin definitely none where I grew up.

    I believe anyone can change IF they want to. You can’t force people to change.

  9. Hi Laura! Welcome to Wildflower Junction here at Petticoats and Pistols! When I traveled west across the country many years ago with my family, it tickled me to find that high school football stadiums gave way to rodeo arenas when I hit Wyoming. I live in northern Illinois and we have an annual rodeo here in February. I’ve been one time and really enjoyed it.

    • I know what you mean, Kathryn – our colleges and community colleges have rodeo teams in Texas.
      Of course, they don’t take the place of ‘Friday night lights’!

  10. Anyone can change, even arrogant bull riders, if it is important enough to them.

    I have been to rodeos and several PBR events and cheer for both the riders and the bulls. The last PBR event we went to and a few more injuries than usual. They all walked or limped out of the arena, but one was later taken out on a stretcher. It is an intense 8 seconds, or shorter. The bulls that night were definitely ornery. Most times they go right out the gate. There was one that would not cooperate at all. He charged the safety riders and horses multiple times and hurt one of the horses before they could get him out of the ring.
    The bulls are valuable stock and in professional events they are well taken care of. The rope they use is an irritant and a sign to them that it is “show time.” A bull got tangled in the fencing at one of the events I attended. There were at least a dozen cowboys there in seconds to get it free and make sure it wasn’t hurt. I am an animal welfare advocate, but the bulls are in less danger of being hurt than the riders are. No reputable stock provider would let their animals be mistreated. Not only are they valuable as bucking stock, but a good bull is valuable at stud.

    • Patricia, Thanks for posting that. It bothers me that some people are uninformed, and think that the animals are harmed. I always tell people – even if you didn’t care about your animal (I don’t know any owners like this), would you allow your investment (can be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars) to be harmed? Especially by a rope that would damage the bull’s reproductive parts – which are THE most valuable, because a good bucking bull’s semen is worth a BUNCH!

      Fellow animal advocate there. I cover this in my RITA winner, The Sweet Spot, which is about the bucking bull industry. Thanks for commenting!

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