I never thought I’d be a writer. As a child, I had an active imagination and did make up stories. I had friends for whom writing was a cherished pastime, but it wasn’t something I was interested in.
I was a reader, and books were one of my favorite gifts. I was also crazy about horses. Since I was born and raised in the middle of town to parents who had no use for equines, getting a horse of my own was a fantasy.
I hounded them year after year, for birthdays and Christmas and cleaned stalls at a nearby stable to pay for riding. Every time they’d ask what I wanted, I’d answer, “A horse.” They were all-mighty sick of hearing about my dream, but being my parents, they loved me anyway. They bought Breyer toy horses, cowgirl outfits and all the western books they could find in an effort to appease me.
When I was fifteen, I wore them down. My dad came home with an appaloosa—quarter horse cross that I named Gypsy. He was a two year old, unbroken colt. The fact that I didn’t have a clue how to train him didn’t make any difference.
I had a horse and life was great.
Over the next thirty years, I learned from two of the best barrel horse trainers in the country, Larry and Kay Davis. I was fortunate enough to have some great horses that made me look good. I married a cowboy. Didn’t get much better than that for this girl.
Through everything, I was a reader. A romance reader, and I devour books like chocolate chip cookies. Well, I did until I started writing them. One day about seven years ago, I read a Western Romance where the main character was a barrel racer. As the heroine was preparing to go to the National Finals Rodeo, she fell in love with the hero, a man who knew nothing about rodeo.
The author also knew nothing about rodeo and hadn’t bothered to do her research. The romance part of her book was well written, and I’m sure to someone who hadn’t rodeoed it was fine, but to me, it wasn’t authentic. What I couldn’t get past was the way she portrayed the horse training, barrel racing and rodeo scenes. They couldn’t have been more unrealistic if she’d tried, and really, all she needed to do was ask. Most barrel racers love to talk about their sport and their horses.
Well, really, how hard can it be to write a book? I decided to write one the way it should be done. That first book was read by my mother and only my mother—she loved it by the way. With that book, I discovered how hard it is to write well.
There’s an old cowboy saying. “Training a horse is like looking at a solid wooden fence. Good trainers find a knothole, look through and discover all they’ve got left to learn. Most people don’t even find the knothole.”
The saying applies to writing, too. Many years later, after countless classes, with seven books written and four published, I think maybe I’ve found the knothole. Now to learn more about what’s on the other side of that writing fence.
In most of my books, either rodeo cowboys or ranchers play a featured role. They’re filled with small towns and quirky characters. Radio Rose is still my favorite. The hero, Adam Cameron, is a Bareback Bronc rider and the heroine, Rose Wajnowski, is an all-night DJ at a small radio station. They work together to save their town and themselves.
Have you ever been to a rodeo or watched one on TV? For a chance to win your choice of any of my books, tell me your favorite rodeo event.
Radio Rose knows Martians aren’t real.
As a DJ for a late night talk show about aliens, she’d never admit to being a non-believer. Talking to crazies all night isn’t the perfect job for most people, but she’s happy with her solitary life. Until a middle of the night car crash and a blow to the head has her mistaking a stranger for a real life extra-terrestrial.
Adam Cameron, raised by his narcissistic grandfather for most of his childhood, made his escape from Tullyville, Colorado the day he turned eighteen. Forced to return ten years later for the reading of his grandfather’s will, he’s about to be pulled into a contest for a vast fortune and the future of a town he’d just as soon forget.
The small town of Tullyville is right next to Trinidad, Colorado, known as the sex change capital of the world, something neither Rose or Adam realized, but use to help their cause.
Relationships aren’t one of Rose’s strong points. Hell, she mistook the hot stranger for an alien the first time they met, but Adam needs help and she’s the woman to help him–maybe. In a town filled with new- found friends, Rose has to decide how far she’s willing to go to trust the loner.
I’m working on the sequel, but for now, Radio Rose is on sale for only 99 cents right now.