Romancing the West Blog Hop!


Why do we enjoy writing and reading about the West? What is it about cowboys that is just plain irresistible? Over thirty authors and bloggers tackle these and other questions by explaining why we love Romancing the West.

But that’s not all, as you enjoy some awesome blogs and find fantastic books, for every post you comment on with your email address, you will be entered for some amazing prizes.


Grand Prize: A swag pack which includes books (both ebooks and paper), Amazon gift card, custom made butterfly jewelry, book cards, magnets and much more all tucked away in a keepsake box. (Available to US residents only. Winner will be announced on February 26 at 10 PM EST)

And, as an added bonus, enter the Rafflecopter below for a chance to win my book Paradise Valley (due July 2, 2013)!
* * * * * Here's My Post on Cowboys! * * * * *

No matter how you look at it, cowboys have always been popular. You can barely count the number of western movies that have been produced over the last 50 years, the biggest share of them in the 1950’s and 60’s. Lately, remakes of famous old standards like TRUE GRIT and 3:10 TO YUMA, have done well. Then there are the famous “big screen” favorites like DANCES WITH WOLVES and HOW THE WEST WAS WON – and of course there are the unforgettable Clint Eastwood “shooters.” My favorites are THE GUNS OF JOSIE WALES, PALE RIDER and TWO MULES FOR SISTER SARAH. Then there is the name known world wide for his western films – John Wayne. Actually, my favorite John Wayne movie is THE SHOOTIST – his very last film. It’s so touching to know that was the last movie he made before he died from cancer, when in the movie he was an old gunfighter – also dying from cancer. In the movie he went out of this life in the way only an old gunfighter should go – he “went down shooting.” I, of course, cried my eyes out. 

TV got into the act during the popularity of the mini-series with LONESOME DOVE and CENTENNIAL. And of course few people are unfamiliar with the numerous TV half-hour and hour-long westerns like HAVE GUN/WILL TRAVEL and GUNSMOKE, the most famous of them all. I sure hated to read about the passing of James Arness, but he will live on forever in the form of Marshal Matt Dillon.

As far as books, few authors helped keep the genre alive like Will Henry and Louis L’Amour did. Dee Brown did a fabulous job of enlightening readers to the truth about the gradual demise of the American Indian way of life in his book BURY MY HEART AT WOUNDED KNEE.

There is something about the American western frontier that fascinates, something about those pioneers that makes us proud and makes us want to keep the “right to bear arms.” We are even fascinated and in a strange way “proud” of our infamous outlaws, like Jesse James and Butch Cassidy. Even more fascinating is that there was a very fine line back then between outlaw and lawman. There were those who couldn’t say which Wyatt Earp and his brothers were … good? Or bad? How many books have you read, or movies have you watched, in which the “bad guy” was really good at heart?

Ah, yes, the American cowboy … restless, wild, roving, hard-drinking, ready for a fist fight, quick with a gun, tough, brave, rough looking yet handsome – even those who weren’t all that good looking were handsome in their own way when they wore those great hats and smoked that cheroot and stood their ground. I think the western hero has remained popular because we all identify with some part of their personality … perhaps we all daydream that we could be that rugged, that brave, that quick with a gun, that much in charge of our lives and ultimately that “free” to be whoever we want to be … that much “in control” of our own destinies and “unchained” from rules and responsibilities.

I truly believe there is a little bit of “cowboy” in all of us … and so I will keep writing books about men like that and the equally brave and tough women it took to keep up with them … or tame them … whichever they were brave enough to try. I love the American West, the American cowboy, and the American dreams they represented. It was an era when there were still frontiers to conquer, still places where man had never stepped, still gold and silver and oil to be found, still free land as long as you were willing to homestead that land, still endless horizons with no skyscrapers or smokestacks to mar the landscape. It’s the “cowboy” in Americans that makes them dare to try new ventures, dare to leave the familiar and take a new job or start their own business or move to a completely new area of the country. There is a little bit of “cowboy” in our armed forces, in that devil-may-care attitude of our veterans who fought world wars, in those who dared travel into space, in a boxer, a football player, a race car driver, even a reckless investor who risks it all on a hunch. It’s the American spirit, and a whole lot of that spirit can be identified as the “cowboy” in us. If you have a dream, if there is something you want to try but have put it off, if you want to stand up for yourself but are afraid to, if you have a good idea but haven’t put it out there into the real world, you need to “cowboy up!” Think like a cowboy, and you might be surprised where it can take you! I hope to keep that kind of spirit alive in my writing … and even though I’m told western history isn’t popular right now, I intend to “cowboy up” and keep writing what I love, because what goes around, comes around. Cowboys have always been a favorite, and although that genre isn’t the most popular right now, it will come back, and I’ll be ready!

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  3. You still amaze me Rosanne! I may read my books about cowboys, but my hubby and I share the same interest as you do in all you write above^. I love John Wayne! I think I have watched all his movies! Please continue to write about the old days because I couldn't live without your books!
    zipstersclue04 at gmail dot com

  4. Grew up watching Bonanza and Gunsmoke, I never get tired of watching John Wayne's movies. Like the saying goes, my heroes have always been cowboys.
    skpetal at hotmail dot com

  5. I enjoyed your post on cowboys!

  6. I grew up with John Wayne and Clint Eastwood. They are still the measure with which I use for my Western heroes.
    bournmelissa at hotmail dot com

  7. Hi Rosanne,
    I was thinking the same thing -- the cowboy spirit is bred into every American. It makes sense that a majority of the men and women who join our armed forces are from cowboy country -- the West and the South. They have a love of country that, I am ashamed to admit, us on the east coast don't show. I'm afraid that many filmmakers and television producers today don't make modern cowboys look like heroes. It seems to be an image lost in the past.
    susan_francesny [at] hotmail [dot] com

  8. Great cowboy post!

  9. like the cover thanks for the giveaway - regnod(at)yahoo(d0t)com

  10. I don't think I'll ever get sick of cowboys! I like them all :)
    GFC: Na

  11. I grew up reading The Sacketts and Janet Dailey and watching Lonesome Dove! Thanks for the giveaway!!


  12. I grew up watching westerns and still love them.


  13. I write western romance- it's all cowboy every day

  14. Nice post. I like cowboys.

  15. Cowboys are so hot in their tight jeans and cowboy hats. I can't get enough of them.

  16. I love cowboys in tight wranglers. Thanks for the great giveaway!

    thompsonem3 at aol dot com

  17. This sounds so good! Love the sound of your book! Great cover too! Makes me want to reach through the screen and snatch it! Thank you for the awesome hop and giveaway!!! :)

  18. Hi Rosanne. You won't remember me but we've met, at the Chicago conference, I think in 1999. The year none of the Kensington books arrived and my book the Scent of Roses came out. You gave me a quote on it. I loved your work then and still do.

  19. Thanks everyone for stopping by and entering the giveaway!!!