Petticoats & Pistols

I will be blogging on Wed. March 11, 2015. The subject is “The Way We Were.” I’ve got deep roots in the romance novel industry and the documentation to go with it. Pull up your wagon and take a look at where we began.

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Good news! The Healer is finished–finally. This book was a real trial for me; I struggled with several things, the ending being the most difficult. But at long last, it is done, done and done. I don’t have a release date yet, but it has been sent to the agent/publisher. I’ll keep you updated.

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El Camino Real

Photo: Mission San Antonio
The Jan/Feb 2006 issue of True West Magazine will carry an article I wrote on the California Missions, called El Camino Real.
Visiting the missions was a real adventure, especially this one. It’s out in the middle of nowhere, sitting all alone. Of all the missions, it has the greatest sense of history and I felt as if I had stepped back into time.Reaching this mission is an adventure in itself. The signs are few and far between. The roads are good but truely California back roads and you’re lucky if you see another car. There are other ruins along the way that make for a great photo opportunities. There are few food or bathroom stops but that’s kinda nice, too. If you visit the mission using those back roads, you will see California as you have never seen it before.

Please pick up a copy of True West and read my story on the El Camino Real. I think you’ll be glad you did.

There are many books about the history of the California missions, which, in all honesty, I had never read until I got this assignment. It’s a sad history because it started out with such good intentions and ended up very badly for the Spanish fathers and for the California Indians. Yet, some good did come out of it. The missions made California exploration much easier and exploration brought people and commerce.

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Writing, Writing, Writing

I’m well into the new book but still no title, not that it matters much anyway, since I’ve yet to have a publisher go with the title I picked. It’s a marketing thing, I’m told.

I came across some interesting research information about some very special horses in Arizona. They are called the Wilbur-Cruce horses and are descended from the Spanish barb horse herd that Jesuit Father Eusebio Kino established at Mission dolores at Magdalena, Sonora, in the late 1600’s.

In 1885, Magdalena horse trader, Juan Sepulveda, drove a herd of Mission Dolores horses north, selling them to ranchers along the way. Twenty-five mares and a stallion were bought by Dr. Rueben Wilbur, whose ranch was located between Arivaca and Sasabe, AZ.

The horses lived “naturally” and thrived in this area, undisturbed by man for over a century. In 1989 the herd was rediscovered by geneticists and heritage breed enthusiasts, and in 1990 they were sold off to people who promised to preserve their blood lines.

I just stumbled across this information while researching the book but it caught my attention and made we ask that old writer’s question “WHAT IF?”

What if the hero was trying to save these horses? What is modern-day rustlers were trying to steal them, kill them? What if, what if, what if? I guess we’ll find out in about 100 manuscript pages from now. Stay tuned….

Photo: Cave Creek, Arizona

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Stella Stevens–Silver Spur Honoree

Stella, dressed in black, wearing a holster and packin’ a pistol took the stage and regaled the audience with some of her movie-making adventures.In recent years, Stella has been writing and producing her own Westerns but it appears they haven’t had much success. She made no bones about wanting the genre back and wanting to be a part of it.I’m with her. I love a good Western be it a book or a movie. And, you have to admit, there’s nothing so fine as a man in a startched long-sleeved white shirt, Wranglers, cowboy boots, a Stetson and chaps!

Long live the Western where the code of the West is all the law we need.

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