Category: Uncategorized (page 1 of 5)

Dusk Along the Niobrara Commentary

Dusk Along the Niobrara is my twenty-eighth western/frontier novel, my ninth book with Five Star, and my fourth Dunbar novel. I wrote it in 2017-18, and it came out in June of 2019. As of this writing, in July of 2019, it has received good reviews. When I did the proofreading on it about five months ago, I thought it held together pretty well.

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Castle Butte Commentary

Castle Butte is my twenty-seventh western/frontier novel, my eighth book with Five Star, and my second young adult novel. I wrote it in 2016, and it came out in May of 2018. During the time I was working on this novel, I did the proofreading on Good Water, my previous YA novel, which went on to win a couple of small awards, and I felt encouraged to write another story in this line.

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Destiny at Dry Camp Commentary

Destiny at Dry Camp is my twenty-sixth western/frontier novel, my seventh book with Five Star, and my third Dunbar story. I wrote it in 2015, and it came out in April of 2017. By the time I wrote this novel, I had a decent track record with Five Star. Both Dark Prairie and Death in Cantera had done well with reviews, sales, and a small award each, and the editors at Five Star were happy with the prospect of another Dunbar novel. So was I.

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Blue Springs Commentary

Blue Springs is a contemporary western mystery novel with Wilf Kasmire as the protagonist. It was published by Fire Star Press, an imprint of Prairie Rose Publications, in November of 2017. As with other works, this one evolved in a roundabout way.

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Shaping the Story Commentary

Shaping the Story is, as the subtitle says, an introduction to writing fiction. It was published by Sundown Press, an imprint of Prairie Rose Publications, in January of 2019. It is a little over 100,000 words all together, with 68,000 in the main text and 36,000 in a short anthology of out-of-copyright stories to illustrate many of the elements and principles discussed in the main text. I hope it is useful to people who want to learn on their own as well as to those who might end up taking a class or workshop with me.

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In a Large and Lonesome Land Commentary

In a Large and Lonesome Land is a CD of western songs recorded by the great W.C. Jameson. I wrote the lyrics to all the selections on this CD, and WCJ brought them to life as songs. This project evolved over a period of several years and materialized as a CD in November of 2018.

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Good Water Commentary

Good Water is my twenty-fifth western/frontier novel and my sixth book with Five Star Publishing. I wrote it in the first part of 2015, and it came out in the latter part of 2016. For this novel, I tried a couple of approaches with which I had not done much, and so it took me a while to get the plan ironed out.

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Death in Cantera Commentary

Death in Cantera is my twenty-fourth western/frontier novel, my fifth book with Five Star, and my second Dunbar story. I wrote it in 2013, and it came out in early 2016. By the time I wrote this novel, I had an established relationship with Five Star, so I could think about writing a story with that publisher in mind. Also, because Dark Prairie had done well with reviews, sales, and an award, and because the people at Five Star liked Dunbar, I had encouragement to write another novel with him as the somewhat mysterious sleuth.

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Justice at Redwillow Commentary

Justice at Redwillow is my twenty-third western/frontier novel and my fourth with Five Star in its hardcover frontier line. It was published in August of 2015.

I began working on ideas for this story line in 2011, but I struggled quite a bit with some of the elements. I think some of my uncertainties may have come from my status, as this was the period between the time when Dorchester ended its western line and the time when Five Star began its frontier line. As mentioned in other commentaries, I had begun working with an agent, but the various commercial publishing companies were wary of taking on new writers, and some of them had a rather narrow idea of what kinds of stories they wanted. I came to appreciate Dorchester, who, in spite of wanting things to be recognizable traditional westerns, was willing to accept stories that were a bit atypical and varied.

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Don’t Be a Stranger Commentary

Don’t Be a Stranger is my twenty-second western/frontier novel, published by Five Star Publishing in February of 2015. It was published before Justice at Redwillow, although I wrote them in the opposite order. I wrote them both while things were getting under way with Five Star and its frontier line. During that time, Dark Prairie was going through the acceptance, editing, and production process, and Across the Cheyenne River was making its way onto the list.

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