Sunday, December 30, 2012

New books and stories by Western Fictioneers

Author-members of Western Fictioneers continue to publish Western novels galore (no pun on the famous Ian Fleming character whose first name was Pussy). Below please find the latest. If something looks good to you, push a button and make a purchase. These days, that’s all it takes.

Pete Peterson
Avalon/Encore: The Relentless Gun, A Dark Trail Winding and Reckoning At Raindance, all in both paperback and Kindle... and one crime novel from Melange Books: All The Sad Young Savages, in paperback and ebook.

Dave Fisher
My latest release is The Turning of Copper Creek.  By the end of January I will have two new novels coming out, Zak Doolin's Gold and We Never Back Down, Book 4 of The Poudre Canyon Saga.  The Poudre Canyon Saga is proving to be a very popular series.  Information can be found on my website.    All these books and those that have been out for a while can be found on my Amazon Author Page .

Troy D. Smith
Lines of Blue and Gray: Tales of the Civil War is up for kindle, and paperback should be up soon as well (final proof approved.)  Also short story "Christmas Comes to Freedom Hill" is on amazon. 

Jory Sherman
The Baron Decision from High Hill Press (or maybe Cactus Country). Another western is due out from there, Deadly Duel, but don’t know if it’s available yet.  Sidewinder series, entitled Nest of Vipers

Phil Dunlap
AmazonEncore just published the fifth book in the Marshal Piedmont Kelly series, Apache Lawman. It continues the series started by Avalon Books. It is available in Trade paper and ebook formats from Amazon only. My next in the Cotton Burke series is Cotton's Devil from Berkley. It debuts January 1.

Matthew Mayo
Tucker's Reckoning (Ralph Compton series, Penguin/NAL), and Hot Lead, Cold Heart (Gritty Press).  And coming soon, a pair of short stories under the title Two for the Trail (Gritty Press). .

Cheryl Pierson
Christmas anthology that released not long ago with 4 of my western/Civil War short stories in it called A Hero For Christmas. Also had a couple of single sell short stories that released (Christmas theme) separately-- A Night for Miracles  and Meant to Be. A few weeks ago, I had a cont. rom. sus. book, Temptation's Touch that released.

And of course, my story in Six Guns and Slay Bells, and my part in Wolf Creek

Keith Souter
Medical Meddlers, Mediums and Magicians - the Victorian age of credulity (The History Press) hardback and ebook. The Classic Guide to King Arthur (Golden Guides Press) hardback and ebook. The Little Book of Golf (The History Press) hardback and ebook. The Pocket Guide to Dice and Dice Games (Pen & Sword) paperback and ebook, and due out in USA by Skyhorse 1st Jan 2013. How You Can Talk to Anyone:Teach yourself ebook: Never be lost for words (Hodder Educational) previously out in paperback.  The Curse of the Body Snatchers, the first YA novel in the series The Adventures of Jack Moon (G-Press) paperback and ebook  And in the process, due out in summer 2013. Understanding and Dealing with Stroke (Summersdale) paperback and ebook. Understanding and Dealing with Depression (Summersdale) paperback and ebook. The Tea Cyclopedia - a toast to tea (Skyhorse). Death in Transit (Hale Crime) the fifth in the Inspector McKinnon, West Uist series of crime novels - hardback. More details are on my website if needed.  

James Griffin
Death Rides the Rails has just been released by Solstice Publishing. Ebooks are available now through Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and the publisher, or through my website. Print copies will be available within a week or two.

Meg Mims
My large print edition of Double Crossing is out now!! From Center Point Publishing -- it's GORGEOUS! and it was chosen a Finalist in the Best Books for 2012 by USA Book News besides winning the '12 Spur for Best First Novel!  The sequel, Double or Nothing, will be out in 2013.

James Reasoner
The Silver Alibi (A Judge Earl Stark Western)
James is a man of many words, but few words, if you get what I mean.

Charles T. Whipple
Writing as Chuck Tyrell, other than Western Fictioneers' Six-Guns and Slay Bells and 2012 Christmas Selection from Victory Tales Press, I published only two Westerns in 2012. Dollar a Day, and Road to Rimrock. Both are hardback from Black Horse Westerns and will not hit the eBook circuit for some time. 

Writing as Charles T. Whipple, I've introduced novellas about the Masacado Scrolls, a fantasy saga that is set in ancient Japan. So far, four novellas are out. The Fall of Awa, The Shadow Shield, The Road to Kio, and The Horse Soldiers.

After a look at all the credits above, just tell me the Western is dead. Ha.

Livia Reasoner / Charlie Whipple

Monday, December 24, 2012

Meet Western Fictioneer Matthew Pizzolato

1. What was your first Western novel or story and was it published? 
My first published work was a short story titled "The Old Outlaw" and it was accepted by a small press magazine called The Storyteller.

2. What Western writer or writers of the past were the biggest influence on your work?
I grew up reading Louis L'Amour novels and quickly accumulated everything he had written. I not only enjoyed his writing for the entertainment value but I gleaned a lot of life lessons from his stories that shaped me into the man that I am today. His stories always started fast and contained a lot of action, and I suppose that subconsciously, I've tried to begin my stories the same way.

I also enjoy reading Don Coldsmith, Loren D. Estleman and Elmore Leonard.

3. Is there a particular scene from a Western novel that was so powerful when you read it that it stuck with you? Perhaps has become a scene you've tried to live up to/equal in your own writing?
I'd have to pick a movie for that one. The most powerful scene I've ever watched was the ending of the Clint Eastwood film, Unforgiven. Seeing it for the first time gave me chills and goose bumps. Eastwood's character in that movie was part of the inspiration for Wesley Quaid, the antihero protagonist of my latest release, OUTLAW.

4. What's the first Western you remember reading from cover to cover?
I'd be hard pressed pick out one in particular because I've been reading Westerns for as long as I can remember. Most likely, it was something by Louis L'Amour.

5. Who is your favorite historical Western figure, and why?
Wild Bill Hickok. I've always been fascinated with his life and the tragic events of his death.

6. How much historical research do you do, and how do you go about it?
I've accumulated several shelves of historical books and I turn to them as I need to look up something. I do a lot of research online as well and on occasion, I'll visit the library.

7. How important is setting? How important is it to get setting right? What's the best use of setting in a Western as far as you're concerned?
I think that setting can be critical in a Western, as vital sometimes as a character, but a lot of it depends on the story. Louis L'Amour always used setting well in his stories.

8. How do you choose where to begin your story? Do you use prologues?
It depends on the story. I've used them before, but most of the time I don't. Usually, I start with an idea see where it takes me.

9. Do you do all your research ahead of time, or as you go along?
I research as I'm writing. If I come across something I'm not sure about I'll look it up online or in one of the historical books I have. Then I'll do a fact check again as part of the editing process.

10. Which of your characters do you identify with the most, and why? Was there a role model for this particular character?
My Texas Ranger character, Jud Nelson, would probably be the one that I identify most with, but I have put part of myself in all of the characters that I write, whether they are heroes or villains.

11. Do you outline and plot your story or do you write as the inspiration or MUSE leads?
Sometimes I write a general plot summary to serve as a sort of road map, but I never outline an entire story. For me, doing so would take the fun and enjoyment out of writing. Like Louis L'Amour said, I write because I want to see what happens next.

12. Are you a conservative in your writing and stick with traditional ideas for your characters and plots or do you like to go beyond the norm and toss in the unexpected and why?
I like to go against the norm and to create characters that don't fit the mold. Whenever I read fiction, I like to find characters that I can identify with, or in other words, characters that are flawed but are inherently good like antiheroes.

13. Do you need quiet when you write, listen to music, or have the TV on and family around?
I prefer it to be quiet, but I can write with noise going on around me.

14. Have you experienced the "dreaded" writer's block and how did you deal with it?
I don't believe in writer's block. Like Robert B. Parker said, I think that writer's block is another word for lazy. Whenever I get stuck on a story, I put it aside and work on something else. I've found that letting something simmer in my subconscious for a short period allows me to return to it with a clear mind.

15. Who is your favorite fictional character that you have created?
The protagonist of OUTLAW, Wesley Quaid, is my favorite character because for me, writing an antihero is a lot of fun. Instead of being limited by the moral absolutes that the traditional hero an villain stories require, I find that writing an antihero allows me to explore the gray areas of morality.

16. Who is your favorite fictional character that someone else created?
William Tell Sackett by Louis L'Amour. There was a lot of the loner aspect of Tell Sackett that I found myself identifying with as a young man.

17. Do you address "modern" issues in Westerns? Racism. Feminism. Downs Syndrome. Mental disabilities. Genetic disorders. Sociopathy. Immigrant questions. Brutality. Pedophilia. Any more?
I have addressed racism and bullying in a couple of my most recently published stories, "Day of Reckoning," and "Sixguns and Pitchforks," that were published in online magazines.

18. Have you found that being able to self publish through Kindle and Nook, that you find yourself writing more of what you want rather than what the agent, editor, and publisher wants?
Apart from my short stories published in print journals and online magazines, I have always self published, so I've never had to deal with having anyone else tell me what to write.

19. Do you make a living writing? If not, what is your day job?
I don't yet make my living from writing, but that is a goal that I am striving toward. In the meantime, I work as a meat cutter in a grocery store.

20. What are you writing right now?
I'm working on a series of short stories that is a sequel of sorts to my latest release, OUTLAW. I will be publishing them as a collection the first part of next year.

21. What do you plan to write in the future?
I'll always be writing Westerns because I think the potential of the genre is endless.

22. What made you decide to write Western fiction?
I decided to write Western fiction because I've always loved reading Westerns. I always said that I was born in the wrong century and writing allows me to go back in time and live vicariously through my characters.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Excerpt of Wolf Creek Book 3


Laird Jenkins had been in so many saloons, gambling dens, and houses of ill repute across the West that he couldn't even begin to remember all of them. Sometimes it seemed to him that he had spent his entire life breathing in the distinctive yet dubious perfume blended from tobacco smoke, stale beer, whiskey, piss, unwashed human flesh, bay rum, and cheap lilac water.
One thing he knew: the dens of iniquity here in Dogleg City, the less savory area of the settlement known as Wolf Creek, weren't any different from the ones he had visited elsewhere, with one or two exceptions.
The place he was in at the moment, Asa's Saloon, was one of those exceptions. It was owned by a black man, something you didn't see every day. Many of the clientele were black as well, but not all—there were a handful of Mexicans and a few white men who looked down on their luck. Not the sort of place Laird would normally choose to drink in, but he wasn’t really there to drink. He was there to do a little business with Asa Pepper. That business wasn't concluded yet, but Laird thought he had made a good start on it.
Without saying good night to anyone – there wasn't anyone in here that he would want to strike up a social conversation with, as Asa’s customers tended to be the dregs of the town – Laird left the saloon. He paused on the boardwalk just outside to take a deep breath of the night air and clear some of the saloon fumes from his lungs. He was about to head toward the Imperial Hotel, ready to turn in for the night, when an overpowering urge struck him. He turned the other way, toward the nearby alley, and started fumbling with the buttons of his fly.
Damn, he told himself, he wasn't old enough to be plagued like this. He ought to have a few years left, at least, before he started having to hurry these things or else he'd piss his britches.
The darkness of the alley folded around him. He got himself set, ready to relieve his bladder. And then, wouldn't you know it, the blasted thing went balky on him and refused to do anything.
With that to worry him, he almost didn't hear the faint noise of someone moving behind him. Laird didn't particularly like the idea of being disturbed at his personal business like this, and he knew as well that robbers often lurked in alleys near saloons, lying in wait for unwary drunks. His hand moved slightly toward the butt of the Colt on his hip.
But maybe it was nothing. A cat or a rat. Or maybe Asa Pepper had followed him from the saloon, deciding that he wanted to hear more of what Laird had to say about how they could both make some money.
“Mister Pepper?” Laird said without looking behind him. “Is that—”
The muzzle flash split the darkness. A blink of orange flame, there and then gone, and as it lit up the alley something smashed into Laird's back, a hammer-blow almost perfectly centered between his shoulder blades. It drove him forward off his feet. His face smashed into the hard-packed dirt of the alley floor. A fierce pain expanded through him, followed by an even more terrifying numbness. In that brief moment while Laird's muscles still worked, he managed to roll onto his back. Dying in an alley behind a saloon was bad enough. Dying with his face in the dirt and shit and trash of that alley was worse.
Laird tried and failed to draw air into his lungs. Everything was slipping away from him, and he wished he could breathe in that heady saloon fragrance once again, just one more time, just . . .

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Now Available on the Nook

Wolf Creek: Murder in Dogleg City Now Available at Amazon

Welcome back to Wolf Creek.

Here you will find many of your favorite authors, working together as Ford Fargo to weave a complex and textured series of Old West adventures like no one has ever seen. Each author writes from the perspective of his or her own unique character, blended together into a single novel.

In our latest adventure: Dogleg City is what folks in Wolf Creek call the seedy part of town. Life is cheap there, and death is common. At first this murder seemed like any other –but the more Marshal Sam Gardner and his deputies learn about it, the more it seems this death will blow Wolf Creek wide open…

About the author: Beneath the mask, Ford Fargo is not one but a posse of America's leading western authors who have pooled their talents to create a series of rip-snortin', old fashioned sagebrush sagas. Saddle up. Read ‘em Cowboy! These are the legends of Wolf Creek.

Appearing as Ford Fargo in this installment: L. J. Washburn, Matthew P. Mayo, Phil Dunlap, Chuck Tyrell, Jerry Guin, & Troy D. Smith

    Coming soon for the Nook at Barnes and Nobles