I wrote a blog several months ago titled “PAGE ONE.” It was about how intimidating Page One can be when starting a new book. Well, I am having the same problem with Book #75, which I have started (and did already write Page One). However, every chapter – every page - feels like “Page One” to me – i.e. – the whole book is intimidating because it’s my first big contemporary story. I have a title but won’t give it away yet, so I’ll just call it Book #75.

        Mind you, in today’s times a writer has to be aware of all that’s going on “out there” as far as everybody being offended by just about anything and everything. When you consider the fact that Book #75 contains a host of themes/subject matters/emotional baggage/etc. that could “offend” others, I am a nervous wreck. I don’t even know what genre this story fits. It’s a mixture of murder mystery, faith/inspiration, American Indian customs and beliefs, culture clash, divorce, drugs, hot sex, violence, assassination, Native American fancy dancing, and an Indian/white romance – and oh, did I say culture clash? Yes.

        Book #75 is a romance beyond romance, a love story between two people who never, ever, ever should have thought they could live in each other’s worlds, let alone make it work for the rest of their lives. The hero’s Lakota family and friends insist he needs to leave things alone and stick with the world he knows best – and not mess with a woman who not only belongs to a whole different world, but who doesn’t know beans about American Indian culture. And the heroine’s family and friends feel the same – she has no business loving a man who could never fit into her life, nor she into his.


        Ahhh, but we all know that “love conquers all,” doesn’t it? That will happen in Book #75, but not without a LOT of conflict! Bringing these two together might “offend” some readers because of the realistic way I will make it happen. It’s the culture clash that worries me. I am going to be truthful and honest (to the best of my ability and with what I know from years of studying Native American culture, especially the Sioux and Cheyenne). At the same time, I understand all the misunderstandings harbored by many of those who have lived only in the white world – those who have never studied our American Indians, about reservation life, ancient customs and beliefs, and problems today’s Indians have with our government (little has changed in the last 250 years!). The heroine in Book #75 is a blond, blue-eyed New-Englander who is, of all things, a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution – i.e. a descendant of original pilgrims! I mean, really? These two would have been enemies 250 years ago, and that is what will make this a very powerful love story. They absolutely do not belong together.


        This will not be an easy book to write, but I have published numerous Indian/white romances over my 40 years of writing. However, they were always set in the 1800’s, an era I am comfortable writing. It’s all I know, so moving into contemporary is not easy for me. As I do so, I guess I just have to take my chances as far as worrying about offending readers. I don’t consider writing the truth and honest emotions and typical misunderstandings offensive. We all struggle with such things, and it’s not our fault. All races and cultures have so much to learn about each other’s beliefs and religions and basic makeup, and the more we learn, the more tolerant we become. No one changes overnight, and not all people are willing to accept differences. It’s a sad statement to make, but that’s how it is, and showing that in a story is just part of real life.


       Wait until you find out how the hero and heroine meet in this story! It’s unusual and exciting, and it’s instant high voltage. Although it’s not noted verbally, it’s damn well felt physically and emotionally. BOTH will be thinking – “Good God, now what do I do? I’d better get the hell out of this as fast as I can.” But neither can let the other go. And BOTH come with a busload of personal baggage that just makes it all even more difficult. The hero has been through hell from losing his wife and her unborn baby to an assassination he is sure was meant for him. He was gravely wounded and fought to get off opioids, and he is possessed with a determination to learn who did this to him. He’s a grieving widower who has no desire to find another woman … until he meets the heroine, who in turn is NOT looking for another man after a really ugly divorce from an ex who physically and mentally abused her.


        And so, the story begins. I have put this off for too many years, so I’ll take the risk of “offending” someone and write it. I think the theme of “love conquers all” is always a winner. I hope you do, too.




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