A while back I went to a talk given by a well-known acquiring editor who during the course of her talk mentioned about having to write for a global market. She made a comment that was a little disheartening for me. She said that cowboy stories didn’t sell. Having just sold TEXAS TANGLE to Carina Press, I was a little worried that maybe my sales wouldn’t be very good. Not two days later, I read an article about what book titles caught a buyer’s eye. In that article, a different editor gave a list of words that, if they’re in a title, are golden. Two words jumped out at me. Texas. Cowboy. Well, between my book Texas Tangle and today’s guest blogger Abby Wood’s Consent to the Cowboy, I’d say Carina’s covered both their bases, haven’t they?
You might figure that with having an erotic contemporary western book that I would chat about those sexy cowboys and spunky women who love them, right? Maybe, I’d even talk about the country lifestyle of driving trucks, ropin’ cattle, and the rodeo…nuh uh. There’s something right up there in the order of importance as big belt buckles and well-worn hats, and that is animals.
Doesn’t matter if you’re a cowboy with a horse, a rancher with cattle, or a farmer with chickens, we all know that if you love the country life, you also love animals. I know with living in the country, I can tell the worth of a man by the way his lips curve when he eyes a newborn calf or the way he can pick up a puppy and pepper its face with kisses. If that happens, you’ve got a good guy right there!
When I began writing Consent to the Cowboy, it wasn’t enough that my hero had a horse. Nope, this was no ordinary cowboy. I had to give him something special. A dog. Not just any cattle dog or ol’ mutt that lays on the porch. A St. Bernard. A big, furry, droolin’ mountain of a dog with a very special characteristic. He’s a kleptomaniac.
How did I come up with that idea? It just so happens that I own the dog in the story. Oh sure, in real life, he’s a mix. Half St. Bernard and half who-knows-who-his-daddy-is dog. The kleptomaniac idea also came from him. Yes, he carries our chickens into the dog house and keeps them there by blocking the door with his big furry body. He’s rescued birds and taken them home. Heck, even our firewood is not safe. I can go out at anytime and find shoes, buckets, tools, cats, and clothing piled in the corner of his dog house. He’s a gentle giant around the other animals, but if they are dumb enough to let him pick them up, he tries to take them into his house.
That’s not the only animal that is taken from my own life. The geese in the story…mine. What they do to the heroine…that’s happened to me. What do the geese do? Well, you’ll have to buy the book to find out.
Of course, Consent to the Cowboy has plenty of sexy cowboys and a spunky heroine that you’ll fall in love with too. Lol
Do you have a pet that’s a unique character and should have a small part in a book? Tell me about him/her…
Surrounded by beer-swilling, skirt-chasing cowboys her whole life, barmaid Daphne Norris has no intention of ever settling for any of the men in her Podunk hometown. So when bronc rider Will Hanson sends shock waves to her core with just one glance from his striking green eyes, no one is more surprised than her.
But Will is no ordinary cowboy, and he can see that Daphne is no ordinary small-town girl. He can sense in Daphne the quiet strength and devotion needed to satisfy a man like him, a man who needs to be on top, in every aspect of his life.
Daphne hasn’t ever succumbed to her submissive desires before, and Will awakens her in ways she never imagined. While she’s not prepared to give him her heart, she agrees to Will’s offer of three days of intense pleasure, and then she’s walking. But Daphne falls hard and fast, and now she has a decision: return to a normal life, or give up everything for Will…
“What can I get you?” She stared at his chest, unwilling to face those green eyes. Any contact sent her stomach into a tailspin.
“Look at me, sweetheart.” He issued a soft order but one that left her struggling for breath.
Why did he order her to do things in such a way that she wanted to do anything he asked? She debated whether to deny him the pleasure but in the end, her body cried out for her to do what he asked. She raised her gaze, her lower lip trembled and she caught it between her teeth.
“Aw, there’s your pretty face.” He lifted the corner of his mouth. His eyes narrowed in amusement. Lines crinkled at the corners and she melted. “I’ll start with a beer.”
She moved her head in a tight nod to let him know she heard and turned to go get the drink.
She stopped, turned and raised her eyebrows.
He leaned forward, his elbows on the table. “Do you work tomorrow?”
She shook her head.
“Good.” He leaned back. “What time do you get off tonight?”
“Seven. I worked a short shift.” She glanced down at her watch. Only thirty minutes remained and she’d have the next three days off.
“You’ll meet me out at my truck?” He raised one eyebrow, challenging her to say no.
No. “Yes.” She turned this time to escape the satisfied smile gracing his handsome face and to hide the evidence of her excitement. Oh sweet Pete, I’m caving.
She didn’t stop at the bar to pick up his order. Instead, she pushed through the swinging doors into the back of the bar where she hid from the truth. Her body warmed and her insides trembled at the thought of what tonight meant to Will. Did he want to sleep with her? What if he ordered her to fuck him?
The doors swung open and she jumped back. She blew out a breath. Ana must have watched the whole exchange between her and Will.
“I’m meeting him after work.” She grabbed Ana’s hands and squeezed. “What the hell did I agree to? I know nothing about him.”
“Relax. Breathe in.” Ana imitated a Lamaze coach. “Out. Good. Go with the flow. Maybe he wants a few dates. He could also be looking for a wife. Who knows, but you’ll never cure your curiosity if he shows up all the time asking for a little time with you and you keep saying no.”
She nodded. “You’re right. I can do this. It’s not as if I have to have a relationship with him. I’ll meet him, find out how horribly right I was, and that will be that. We’ll go our separate ways.”
“Thatta girl!” Ana pushed her toward the doors. “Now, go serve drinks, and skip out of here five minutes early and tidy yourself up.”
She swung back around. “Oh God, do I look terrible?”
Ana laughed. “No, but a spritz here or there will disguise the beer and smoke scent. Although, sweetie, if anyone’s going to make that the scent of the year, it’ll be you.” She grinned. “Can you see women in New York trying to bottle that?”
Daphne groaned and curled her lip. “I am a barmaid.”
If you want to read more of Abby’s Consent to the Cowboy, you can download the entire first chapter here. (right clicking and choosing “Save Link As” works best.) Or you can buy it here. (Like Texas Tangle, Consent to the Cowboy won’t be available to download until Monday, but you can still pre-order it.)
**Edited**totally forgot to mention, today’s a true blog hop — I’m over at Abby’s today talking about how real life incidents ended up in Texas Tangle.