Western Romance discussion

Favorite things about the west

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message 1: by Julie (last edited Aug 27, 2009 10:20AM) (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
My favorites are horses--I've always had a love for horses--cowboys, stagecoaches, ladies in long gowns, and a simple, yet enduring, way of life. I grew up watching western movies on Sunday afternoons with my dad and always thought I should have been born in that era.

What are some of the things you like about the 'old' west?

 Danielle The Book Huntress  (gatadelafuente) Hello, Julie. I just found this group. Thanks for starting it. I love western romance. What I love about the west:


Those are the main things.

message 3: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Hi Danielle:
I love the simplicity of life back then. Though it was hard, it was honest and real. Men were men and women were women and children had a respect for everything. But, I'm also partial too tall, dark and handsome cowboys, horses, and stagecoaches.
If you're interested, check out my blog I just started. Today I posted about coming west in a covered wagon.
It's a pleasure to meet you you and find another fan of the west. Have a great day.

message 4: by [deleted user] (new)

Hi Danielle and Julie, some of the things I like about the West are, the way that familys stuck together no matter the problems. I love horses, always have. I am of native american decent and I think that has a lot to do with my love of the old west. I also love the mysterious cowboys, they are my favorite.

message 5: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Hi Stephanie:
That's what I write about--rugged, loyal cowboys and the women who have the courage to love them.

I've always loved the cowboy ever since I saw my 1st John Wayne movie.

message 6: by Jayne (new)

Jayne Have loved cowboys and native americans since I was a little girl. Played with my cousins all the time, but I was always the american native princess. When I grew up was always looking for a cowboy to be with. Found one and married him. Did the rodeo thing for a number of years. Talk about real hot cowboys!!! But not so much anymore.
Still love a man in boot and a cowboy hat.
Had my share of horse, they are alot of work or the return. But love them.
Lived in alot of western state, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho and Arizona. Guess I will always be a cowgirl at heart.

message 7: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
There's something to be said about a man in boots and a cowboy hat. And his quiet mannerisms.

message 8: by Jayne (new)

Jayne Like the tight jeans on the back side too!!! Plus there is just a look in their eyes, and the way they carry themselves. Very appealing.

message 9: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
I agree completely.

message 10: by Jayne (new)

Jayne Plus it seems that most of the western heroes have a no BS attitude about them, with a touch of dominance.

message 11: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
They do, which is why it is fun to write about them.
I'm doing a series right now with outlaws as heroes and they are fun to work with, too. I love working with their devil-may-care attitudes and how watching them bow to the women who tame them.

message 12: by Jayne (new)

Jayne That does sound intriguing. I love a bad boy!!

message 13: by Lisa Kay (new)

Lisa Kay (lisakayalicemaria) Julie wrote: "There's something to be said about a man in boots and a cowboy hat. And his quiet mannerisms."


message 14: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Hi, I've just joined the group & thought I'd add my 2-cents worth to this chat.

I wanted to be a cowboy when I was growing up in GA. I was in love with the Marlboro Man. Even though I'm now a grandmother and still living in the south, I still love cowboys and anything about them. There's a serious flip-flop in my chest when I see a man on a horse, especially if he has a Stetson pulled down over his forehead. If he's wearing tight jeans over a tight behind...well, be still my heart!

Aside from that, I love, love, love the west. I've been through most of the SW and would move there in a heartbeat if not for family in the south. Desert, mountains, prairie or hills of Texas, I'll take the wide open spaces of the west and find myself drawn to any book that sports a cowboy or horse on the cover. Historical or contemporary, it doesn't matter. Guess I'm a bit partial to the old west with a Native American or two thrown in to spice up the works.

Did I mention that I'm also a writer of western romance novels. Not published yet, but have plans for the not too distant future. I'll be posting some questions for you gals, if that's okay to get your take on a few things to see if I'm on the right track with what I'm doing. I'm a bit biased, you see.

Thanks for having this spot where I can sound off. And especially thanks for having me. Till later.

message 15: by Lisa Kay (new)

Lisa Kay (lisakayalicemaria) Welcome, Harriet!

message 16: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Hi Harriett:
Welcome. We love to chat about cowboys, horses and all things western. Any questions you have, ask away. I'm sure someone will have an answer.

I count myself fortunate in that I live out west and get to see the mountains every day, er, that is when the clouds aren't hanging low and hiding them, like today.

Keep us informed of how you're writing is progressing.

message 17: by Harriet (last edited May 11, 2011 12:38PM) (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Thanks for the warm welcome, Julie. I'm excited about finding this group so I believe I'll go ahead and post my question. The books I've written (and polishing) are done in a lengthy series. It is set in Texas and the first volumes are pre-Civil War. The story spans two generations and has a large number of characters.

The Cottonwood Springs Chronicles are tales from my heart and I've worked on the ten volumes (lengthy volumes) for several years. My critique partners, btw, are very excited about it.

My question is:

Provided you enjoy the first volume in the series, would western romance readers enjoy following through with the remaining volumes as they are published? FYI--there is a mystery thread that runs from the early part of the story to the last volume but the individual books could stand alone also. I'd love to hear from any followers of this site as to whether or not this idea would fly with you. If anyone is interested I will be happy to post a short synopsis. Thanks sincerely for any comments.

message 18: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Harriet, In my experience both as a writer and a reader, people love a series. Brothers, sisters, children who grow up; it is nice, and expected in romance novels, to see the hero and heroine end up happy ever after in book 1. But lots of folks like to revisit with these people in other books to see what their lives have turned out to be. I, for one, am hooked on Johanna Lindsey's Mallory family series. James is my favorite and I love it when he reappears in other books, along with his wife. My 3 books are like this--they follow the Weston brothers. Book 1 and 2 take place in 1860. Book 3 takes place in 1874, so it gives readers a chance to fall in love with the adult version of the youngest brother and too see how they older brothers have grown and prospered.

As for the mystery--some folks won't care. Others will. As long as the books are stand alone and the mystery isn't a Big part, I see no reason why that can't be a good thing. Linda L. Miller did it with a 3-book series with sisters as heroines. Some liked it--others didn't care. So it's all in how you feel--write what you like and what you know. You won't be happy writing to please someone other than yourself.

message 19: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Thanks for your comments, Julie. I am definitely a happily-ever-after kind of writer because I'm never satisfied reading a book without one.

Each separate volume singles out a character or two and the focus is on them--always a love story that helps to move the story forward. As in any place, new people move into the picture and become vital to the story as the country around the town of Cottonwood Springs develops into rich ranching empires.

I've read almost all of LLM's books starting way back with the Primrose Creek gals. Mine are similar in that the same characters are featured throughout. Mine are much more intricate with multiple characters, each with his own story. My hope is that the effort made toward leaving the reader wanting to move on to the next novel to see the tale in its entirety.

I've done extensive research even to the point of traveling to the area of my setting. With so much time and work invested in this venture, I've gotten enough satisfaction from living through my characters that if I never sell a single copy it will never be a loss to me.

I've read hundreds of books through my years and know a good book when I read one. I know my books are good. I've just got to get them out there and let people know they are there. I'll probably self publish as e-books to start with and hopefully move on to printing after a while. I'm open to any and all advice. Thanks for listening.

message 20: by Lisa Kay (new)

Lisa Kay (lisakayalicemaria) I just started Texas Destiny, Texas Glory, Texas Splendor by Lorraine Heath and finished the first book. It was wonderful. It is my understanding that this trilogy takes place over quite a span of time, which is fine with me as I love the characters.

message 21: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Looks like my kind of books, Lisa. Thanks for recommending it.

message 22: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Have you thought about submitting to an ebook publisher who also publishes in print? This is the way I went and never regretted it. There are many good ebook pubs out there, and quite a few who publish western romance. Many are members of the internet romance community, such as Coffeetime Romance, Love Western Romances and The Romance Studio. It's worth looking in to and saving yourself some of the hassle associated with getting a book out to the public.

Lisa Kay--thanks for the tip on this series. I'm always on the lookout for something good to read.

message 23: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Thanks for the suggestion, Julie. I'll definitely look into that. My only apprehension is the length of my books. Might be a problem for them. That's my main reason for thinking self-publishing would be my best bet. I'll put a lot of research into this idea for sure. Thanks again.

message 24: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Harriett: You're welcome. BTW, how long are the books?

message 25: by Mar (new)

Mar | 7 comments having read romance novels since my late teens, i'd love to write one. But, i can't seem to get started. it's easy for me to be an arm chair critic. scared spitless to move forward....

message 26: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Julie, the first volume is almost 134,000 words. I've tried dividing it and still might consider it. The others are not as long, varying in length. It's that first one I'm worried about.

message 27: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Marmar, wish I had a magic word or two to get you going. I've always loved to write and as a child always had some sort of pretend world going with stories of adventure and beautiful people running through my head. Always a romantic, I've loved romance books, especially western romances, the best, though I read a wide range of genres. For some reason once I sat down at my computer and began to write, the words just flowed for me and never stopped. My only regret is that I didn't sit down sooner. My advice to you is to sit down and start, pretending you're writing the script for the movie you wish would be made. That first effort may not be much but you can keep it private. Remember practice makes perfect (hahaha) but Who knows it might be the kick in the pants you need. Give it a whirl and let me know how it goes. Good luck and feel free to visit me for encouragement. I can recommend some good books on writing that might help you.

message 28: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Marmar: Don't be scared to write. The first 2 books I wrote were contemporary romances and not worth a darn. They're in a box in the basement. But that's where I got my start, and once I fell into a routine of writing every night after work, I loved it. The ideas flowed, the characters and plot came to life and it was fun. No one has ever read those 2 books and never will but I'm thankful I wrote them.
From there I chose western romance, because I know about the west and I love cowboys and horses and ranches and old western towns, stage coaches, women in long dresses, the list goes on and on. Start with somthing you like, or know and go from there. I suggest world building first. That is a lot of fun, to make your home, streets, mountains, ocean--anything you want. My kiddie builds a lo of stuff on his xbox games--towns, ships. Once you have an idea of the setting/world you're in, the characters and plot will follow. Give it a try and let me know how you do.

message 29: by Mar (new)

Mar | 7 comments Thanks Harriet and Julie. I think I will. My Thirties filed for divorce in January and it'll be final in July. I think that's what i'll do for myself as I enter into the next decade..... piss or get of the proverbial pot.

Your support and encouragement is greatly appreciated! I'll try to get something on paper this weekend and see what happens next.

Have you been published Harriet? Julie? I'll touch base for encouragement and guidance now and again..... lol!

message 30: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Hi Marmar: Yes, I am published. I have two western historicals with AsylettPress.com. Both are available in Ebook and print versions. They are part of a series and the third installment is due out soon. You can visit my website, julielence.com to read an excerpt from both. The covers are posted here on my Goodreads profile.

You should get started writing, do something for yourself. Writing is very theraputic, and once you get going, you'll have fun escaping into a whole different world. When I'm in the zone, I tune out everything. The house could be burning and I wouldn't know.

Contact me anytime with questions or just to chat. And let me know what you get accomplished. I always enjoy hearing how other people's minds work.

message 31: by Harriet (new)

Harriet (art1write2) | 8 comments Marmar wrote: "Thanks Harriet and Julie. I think I will. My Thirties filed for divorce in January and it'll be final in July. I think that's what i'll do for myself as I enter into the next decade..... piss or ge..."

Julie wrote: "Marmar: Don't be scared to write. The first 2 books I wrote were contemporary romances and not worth a darn. They're in a box in the basement. But that's where I got my start, and once I fell into ..."

I'm not published yet, Marmar. I'm putting a bit of thought into e-publishing to start with. I don't know if I'm up for all the stuff that goes along with promoting a book the traditional way. If I was younger, yes, I'd go for it in a minute. I just love writing and want to share my tales with folks interested in giving them a try.

I'm so glad you're thinking of taking the plunge with your own manuscript. Bet you have stories all stored up in your head ready to be put together into novel form. Perhaps other members will join Julie & me to help keep you pumped up and motivated. Bravo!!!

message 32: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Don't let the promo work hinder you. A lot of authors nowadays, unless you're Nora Roberts, have to some kind of promotion work. Even some of the big ones. I find, with a small ebook and print publisher, the easiet way to do promo is use the internet and the romance sites available. It can be costly, so suggest using just a few. Cover and banners cost a small fee; interviews and reviews are free. A must have is a website for yourself, and places like Goodreads and Facebook are great tools for meeting other readers and writers in the genre. I hated promo when I started, but now have met some womderful ladies who runt hese sites whom I consider friends and couldn't get along without.

message 33: by Mar (new)

Mar | 7 comments shopping for a lap top...... gonna try to take the plunge prior to July and start typing...... not sure if it'll be set in historical london or the west. Theres's something about a nobleman riding to the rescue or a rugged cowboy being a reluctant hero....... lol! thanks again, everyone. ya'll are amazing. :)

message 34: by Mar (new)

Mar | 7 comments @ Julie - Good stuff! went to your site. Thanks a million. I've got stories in my head. we'll see how they come out of my head and onto a computer screen.

message 35: by Julie (new)

Julie Lence (bettysbassboat) | 145 comments Mod
Thank you for visiting my site. Glad you liked it and found some helpful information.

Take your time and don't get frustrated. Set a schedule for writing time, be realistic when doing this with your own daily schedule and once you begin writing, stick to your schedule as best as you can, even if it's only 30 minutes a day. Before you know it, the scenes and chapters will be filling up the computer screen.

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