Writing historical western romance was natural for me. I began reading the old western love stories when I was a teenager, at the same time everyone was reading the Sweet Valley High books. Something about the past intrigued me, and when my grandparents would tell a story about how they’d lived, I couldn’t get enough.
The part I love the most about being able to write western romance is the time I get to spend researching. Sometimes, I can lose a whole day of writing because I’ve found something else fascinating that takes me off the path I was originally looking up.
I’ve recently started writing some contemporary stories too, but all of my books have a “western” or small-town, rural feel to them. That’s all I really know, so that’s what I like to write about.
When I was a little girl, I had a great uncle Rob who was the truest cowboy you could ever meet. He used to let me and my friend hang out in the stables with his horses for hours on end, and never once lost his patience with us. He had a smile for every one he met, and he had a soft, quiet voice you’d have to strain to hear. I always remember him with a cowboy hat on his head, and his dusty blue jeans.
So much of what goes into my books is taken from the people I’ve known and where I’ve grown up. Even though I’ve had stories take place in Montana, Wyoming, Oregon, Kansas, Texas…and now British Columbia and Yukon in the early 1900’s – I’ve never been to these places. I’ve had to research and learn, and spend some time getting a “feel” for the places I’m writing about.
But they all have a common element, and that’s family, small town, rural roots. Those are the virtues that have defined me as I grew up, and that’s what I know best. Something about the call of home and family, where neighbors look out for each other and life moves at a slower pace.
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What about you? Have you noticed how much of your own upbringing and the people and places you spent time around as you grew up has defined what you do today?
I’d love to hear your comments below!
For those who comment, Felicia Filly plans to draw one of your names
for this sweet giveaway offer from Kay P. Dawson!
Thank you to everyone – all of the authors of the Petticoats & Pistols blog and the readers – for letting me hang out with you all today!
I have a variety of books out at the moment – Mail Order Brides, Oregon Trail, and even a cattle drive romance! I also have some contemporary stories that take place in rural, small towns and a couple western time travel stories. (These I really enjoyed because it was so fun to imagine being able to actually travel back to the times I write about!)
You can find all of my books listed on my website or Amazon author page: