Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Start of Something -- Anne McAllister

Last year right about this time, I published a book called Last Year's Bride.  In it was the first cowboy hero I'd written in a dozen years.  I missed them badly. Turns out at least one missed me.  Once I opened the flood gates, Montana cowboy Cole McCullough -- not known for his loquaciousness -- never shut up.

His story was one of several in Tule Publishing's Great Wedding Giveaway set in and around fictional Marietta, Montana.

All the books had something to do with Marietta's hundredth anniversary of the first Marietta Wedding Giveaway back in the town's heyday.  It was great fun to write about the town and its people some of whom actually got speaking parts in Cole's book.

One was Jane Weiss, the head of the Chamber of Commerce.  My heroine, television director, Nell, had business dealings with her as Nell and her boss realized their plan to shoot a couple of episodes of the reality TV show, The Compatibility Game, on a ranch near Marietta.  Cole's family's ranch, as it happens.

And Cole and Nell have a history ... one that they needed the book to get sorted out.

While they were doing it, Jane was busy, too. I had no idea she had her own story line. And I particularly didn't imagine who her hero was going to be!  Characters surprise you when you least expect it.

I'm thinking I might give Jane and her hero a chance to share their own story later this year. But right now I'm dealing with a character who was only mentioned in Last Year's Bride, Cole's older brother, Clint.

Clint was so far off the page as to be virtually non-existent then. He'd left Montana years before and he'd never looked back.  Certainly he'd never planned on coming back.

Now he's pacing around my office, muttering and trying to pick up the pieces of his life.

And he isn't the only one.  It's a regular mad house in here.

There's a friend of his, Quinn, whose own life is going to get shaken up around Christmas time.  And a couple more of their pals -- Adam and Shea -- who are by turns nervously cracking their knuckles and demanding that Clint and Shea hurry up and sort their lives out so they can have a turn.

I've never dealt with such an impatient -- and, frankly, just a little unruly -- bunch of heroes before. They knew each other in college.  A dozen years later their lives have gone in very different directions.  Now they are back in Montana. Well, one, Adam just pointed out that he'd never left. (See? They even read over my shoulder!)  Anyway, they're here now, one way or another trying to turn around their lives -- and the legacy of the ranch at Hard Broke Creek.

I had no idea all this was going to come out of Last Year's Bride -- but I'm super happy that it has.  I love these guys -- when I'm not wanting to bang their heads together.

If you haven't read Last Year's Bride, it's available now. Later this week (by Saturday, I'm told) it's going to be FREE  until June 18th.

So if you already have a copy, bless your heart. If you don't, grab it now or when it's free.  If you like it, tell your friends and they can grab it while it's FREE!

And keep an eye out for those Men of Hard Broke Creek who will begin turning up this fall.  Clint's first, then Quinn, then Adam and finally Shea -- if he can be patient that long or if I don't kill him first!  I'll keep you posted.


dstoutholcomb said...

loved this story!

Anne McAllister said...

I'm so glad you did! Thanks for letting me know!