I’ve always written research articles for Cowboy Kisses, but this time not. Why not? Because I’ve been busy writing stories and books — lots of them. That’s why I now have three new releases in just three weeks. So today, I’ll tell you about them.
Christmas spirit, anyone?
Both Western Fictioneers and Prairie Rose Publications invited me to contribute to their Christmas anthologies. It’s a pleasure and an honor to be included with such terrific writers.
Wolf Creek, Book 9:
A Wolf Creek Christmas
This is a traditional western. I mostly write western historical romance and this is only my second trad western story, but have always loved reading westerns so it’s only natural that I’d eventually end up writing them. And of course I love Christmas stories; hence, two of them in one year.
The other authors in A Wolf Creek Christmas are Pulitzer Prize nominee Jory Sherman, Spur winner Meg Mims, Jerry Guin, Peacemaker and Spur winner Troy D. Smith, and James J. Griffin. Here’s my story:
’Twas the Fight Before Christmas
by Jacquie Rogers
Gib Norwood owns a large dairy operation outside town, along with his brothers Peter and Paul (whom his late father conceived with a slave, Glory, who also lives with them.) Christmas finds them in a dispute with the troublesome ranch hands of cattle baron Andrew Rogers — a dispute that involves a wagonload of prostitutes from Abby Potter’s School for Wayward Girls, including Miss Abby herself.
When I came up with this idea, the notion of a Confederate veteran, a fifth-generation slave owner, whose only remaining family was his half-aunt, a quadroon who was his father’s and his slave, and her twin sons, who are also Gib’s half-brothers. So here we have a man who fought for the South, but now his family are all considered “colored” even though the octoroon twins look Caucasian as long as they keep their hats on. Gib sees the injustice here, and his goal is to create a prosperous living for his family, even though he knows they’ll never be accepted in white society. But money always talks.
Abby Potter is the madam and owner of Miss Abby’s Boardinghouse, the high-class brothel in Wolf Creek. She’s short in stature but tall in business acumen. No one puts anything over on Abby. And no one needs a Christmas more than her, either.
Amazon and soon at other online stores and in print.
Wishing for a Cowboy
The other story is in the Prairie Rose Publications anthology, Wishing For a Cowboy, and these stories are western historical romances—eight of them. The other authors are Phyliss Miranda, Cheryl Pierson, Sarah J. McNeal, Kathleen Rice Adams, Tracy Garrett, Tanya Hanson, and Livia J. Washburn.
A Gift for Rhoda
by Jacquie Rogers
A mail-order bride disaster!
Rhoda Johnson is stranded in a lonely cabin without a groom. The townsfolk say she's better off without him, but her drunken groom sends a message that he'll claim her as his Christmas bride. Gunman and ex-Confederate soldier Nate Harmon comes to Idaho to make peace with his abolitionist preacher father. When half-frozen Nate reaches the cabin on a snowy Christmas Eve, instead of finding his folks, he's greeted by a pretty blonde with a shotgun who keeps calling him Mr. Snyder. Will she shoot him, or melt his heart?
My first vision of this story was a huge bear of a man, Nate, huddled over from the cold, trudging up a mountain trail leading his tired horse. What I didn’t know was why Nate would endure so much to get wherever he was going — but I knew his personality and how much he hurt inside. I wrote the first scene and before I finished it, I saw Rhoda peeking through the cabin window. She’s of mostly Swedish ancestry, a natural blond, but has had little available to eat so is thinner than she’d normally be. Once I saw her, she jabbered in my ear to convince me she was the right woman for Nate — because I had my doubts. She did sway me to her side, and I think Nate and Rhoda complement each other very well.
Bonus! Each story in Wishing for a Cowboy is accompanied by a recipe — yes, eight delicious recipes! Mine is Rhoda’s Wedding Custard. And if you’re gluten-free, try my grain-free crust. Yum.
Amazon | Smashwords | Print
And then, not Christmas related, I have a new western historical novel out, Sleight of Heart.
Sleight of Heart
A Straight-Laced Spinster
Lexie Campbell, more comfortable with neat and tidy numbers than messy emotions, is determined find the sharper who ruined her little sister and make him marry her. When his lookalike brother Burke appears, she greets him with a rifle and forces him to help her. Can she resist his magic charm?
A Gambler With Magic Hands
To claim the family fortune, smooth-dealing Burke O’Shaughnessy has to find his brother Patrick, despite being saddled with an angry spinster. But when Lexie shows an astounding talent for counting cards and calculating odds, he figures she might be useful after all. Can he draw the queen of hearts?
Recipe for a hero: Take one Maverick, add in a little Remington Steele. Blend. Maybe throw in a little James Bond (shake, don’t stir), and mix in some of my dad’s unique brand of humor. Go off half-baked, and there you have it — Burke O’Shaughnessy, a ramblin' gamblin' man.
Available on Amazon (and other stores soon!)
Where to find Jacquie Rogers