Tag: john d nesbitt (page 1 of 5)

Leaving the Lariat Trail Commentary

“Leaving the Lariat Trail” is a novella, or short novel, that is a little less than half as long as a traditional western novel. It has been published as an e-book by Sundown Press, a division of Prairie Rose Publications, and at some point in the future it may appear in print form with one or more other selections.

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Meeting the Governor, his wife, and Baxter Black

In the fall of 2009, the president of Eastern Wyoming College surprised me with a small tribute. He told me that the governor of our state was going to be visiting our campus on October 16 as part of a visit to the new corrections facility being built near our town. The governor was going to stay for the Baxter Black show, and there was going to be a reception before the program. At the reception, said the president, he planned to present the governor with a collection of four of my books that he, the president, had found in the college bookstore. The president said that if I liked, I could attend the reception and present the books myself. I was quite honored by the invitation, and I said that I would have to make sure I didn’t have a conflict. I added that if I thought I had a small conflict such as elk hunting, my wife would make it quite clear that meeting the governor was much more important.

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At the End of the Orchard Commentary

“At the End of the Orchard” is a story of mine that originally appeared in a magazine called Hardboiled in May 2009. This story is a little under 10,000 words—not quite in the novella range but longer than most short stories. It is representative of one kind of fiction I have worked on in recent years. After its publication in Hardboiled, it went on to win the Western Writers of America Spur Award for best western short story in 2010.

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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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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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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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