Tenacity – The Stuff of Cowboys, Pioneers, and Persevering Women

The fillies welcome guest blogger Pamela Meyers!

The title may sound like a odd mix of people-types in the title, but think about it. The cowboys of old were a rare breed as they engaged in cattle drives while moving their herds to market. In the old west they had to deal with wild animals and attacks made by the area’s first dwellers, the American Indians. Today’s cowboys who rodeo (it’s used as a verb in the rodeo world) have to possess a lot of tenacity in all the events, but most of all, bull riding. They get on a 2,000-pound animal with nothing to hold onto but a loose rope tied around the bull. They have no idea if they will end the 8-second ride still astride the wild brute, or on the ground in one piece. And even if they are injured, they get back on a new bull the next week. I’ve seen cowboys ride with casted legs and arms. Tenacity at its best.

I can’t imagine the strength and tenacity that the pioneers of the past had to have to load their meager belongings in a covered wagon and travel west to begin a new life in a part of our country they had never experienced. Like the cowboys who drove their herds across the land, the pioneers had to face possible attacks along with bad weather that could delay them for days.

I’m currently writing historical stories set in my hometown of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin that used to bear the nickname “Newport of the West.” It sounds strange today to think of a small town and lake in southeastern Wisconsin as “the west,” but back in the late 19th Century it was considered our country’s west. At that time, only the bravest souls had moved on past the Mississippi to the far-flung actual west

My four-book series called The Newport of the West, follows a fictional family who is displaced by the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 as they move north to Lake Geneva, the same way many of Chicago’s wealthy did in real life after the fire.

Each book focuses on the daughter of the fictional couple in the previous book. Each heroine, beginning with Anna Hartwell in Safe Refuge (Book 1) possesses tenacity as they face obstacles, some real and solid ones as well as emotional ones. And along the way they come to lean on the Lord’s strength more than their tenacity to get them through. Anna had to deal with not only her family losing everything in the fire and having to start over in Wisconsin, but also faces the will of her parents when she was set to marry a terrible man in an arranged marriage.


The urgency of dissolving the arrangement before the nuptials take place is heightened by her falling in love with a wonderful God-fearing Irish immigrant. A totally unsuitable match in her mother’s estimation.

Is tenaciousness a trait you like to see in the heroines of the books you read? Can you share about a favorite fictional character that exhibits this trait in a way that has kept you turning the pages? Leave a comment below to be entered in a drawing for either “Safe Refuge” or “Shelter Bay”– I am absolutely delighted to hear what you think!

Pam Meyers has written most of her life, beginning with her first diary at age eight. Her novels, set in and around her hometown of Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, include Surprised by Love in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin, along with Safe Refuge, and Shelter Bay.(Books One and Two in the Newport of the West Series.) Tranquility Point, Book Three, will publish in April 2020.

Pam resides in northern Illinois with her two rescue cats, only an hour or so away from Lake Geneva where she often is found nosing around for new story ideas. 

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16 thoughts on “Tenacity – The Stuff of Cowboys, Pioneers, and Persevering Women”

  1. I have the most respect for our early pioneers. I can’t imagine what they were experiencing traveling to the unknown and the tenacity of took. As well as courage & determination. The West is their creation. If I had to choose a character it would be Jamie Fraser from Outlander. He wasn’t a cowboy but he showed the same tenacious attitude and strength. To me anyway. Thank you for your post. Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving .

  2. I love to see that tenacious spirit in a character. Scarlett O’Hara had it in Gone With The Wind. Thank you for sharing your great post.
    I hope you and your family have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

  3. Excellent blog. I have not had the opportunity to read one of your books and this series sounds awesome. I love for my heroines to have tenacity, spunk, a little sass and a mind of their own, even though that was not what was expected in those times. I hope you have a very happy Thanksgiving!

  4. Happy Thanksgiving. Your book sounds really good and I would love to read it. I have not read your books before so looking forward to it.

  5. Yes, I love to see a tenacious spirit in a character. Emeline Baratt, The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall, is a wonderful example.

    Happy Friday!

  6. Pamela, welcome to the Junction! We’re so happy to have you. I love a tenacious woman and try to put that into all my heroines. I like a woman with pure old grit who doesn’t quit when the going gets tough. I also like that in my heroes too. The West was a hard place and full of problems that were not for the feint of heart.

    Congrats on your new release! It and your series look like excellent stories.

  7. Thank you for this meaningful and wonderful post. Having the strength of character to withstand deprivation and hardships was a necessary ingredient for so many in life. Anne from Anne of Green Gables had the tenacity to continue to triumph over all.

  8. Heroines who can continue to strive interest me greatly. I think that women from that time knew that their survival depended upon their determination and strength. Your novels look memorable.

  9. Women who possess this innermost character trait can forge new trails and succeed. My ancestors had nothing yet never complained. They had to survive and the women made careers out of cooking and baking.

  10. You’re a new to my author! The book sounds great! I do like characters that have that tenacity, and the book I’m reading now has a heroine who is very tenacious! I’m reading Trail of Crosses by Jo Grafford.

  11. I absolutely adore historicals with the trope of a woman posing as a man. One of my favorites is Morganna by Jackie Ivie. I think it took real tenacity for these characters to find away to succeed in a system that was stacked against them. Stories like these–real or imagined–open the door for women to have even more exciting adventures.

  12. Welcome today. I love to see tenaciousness in the heroines. But I also love to see witty, smart, sensitive, hard worker etc. There is so much for a woman to be when in odds that she has no control over much. One that I keep going back and re reading is Jordana Baldwin in the series: Ribbons West by Judith Pella and Tracie Peterson. These three books are so well written. I feel like I am living life next to Jordana. Exciting.

  13. Hi, I think a tenacious lady was the mama from The Grapes of Wrath. Your book sounds intriguing and like a really good page turner!! Thank you so much for the chance. “Happy Thanksgiving” God Bless you all.

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