We wish everyone a most joyous and wonderful Thanksgiving filled with fine food, superb drink, and the heartiest of fellowship. For us, we just wanted all of you to know that we are supremely thankful for our readers. All of you who have purchased our books over the years have allowed us to do what we enjoy doing best: writing novels about peoples and places, exploring new ideas, and sharing some of our wonder about the world around us. To each and every one of you who has helped to allow us this magical pursuit, thank you and bless you.
We just put the ranch up for sale: http://www.farmandranch.com/property/plenty-of-privacy-plenty-of-water-red-canyon-ranch.
No, we’re not getting out of the buffalo business, just looking for a little smaller place that’s easier to take care with our other careers. The buffalo will go with us wherever we end up. We’d never trust anyone else to give Pia her dose of meloxicam when her arthritis is really acting up, like it is on this gorgeous, snowy, Wyoming day. We have several older buffalo who have special needs. One of our cows is 23 years old, and another is 20. We’ll take care of them until their natural end.
Happy upcoming Thanksgiving!
Mike and Kathy
At Thrillerfest last July, Kathy participated in an interview with Zachary Petit of Writer’s Digest. The article, “The Power of Pairs: A Roundtable,” is in the January, 2014, issue of Writer’s Digest. Special thanks to Zachary Petit. It’s not easy sifting through the ramblings of four writers who are all talking to him as well as amongst themselves! Great job, Zach.
Anyone interested in how to co-author a book, please read this article. We think you’ll enjoy it!
Mike and Kathy
We’re finishing up the page proofs for the new trade edition of THE MORNING RIVER, which Tor/Forge Books will be releasing in May. It will be followed by COYOTE SUMMER, also coming in trade format. It’s been fifteen years since we’ve read THE MORNING RIVER, and it’s a curious delight to go back and spend time with Richard, Travis, and Willow again. What a charming story. We’re reminded about why Tor/Forge submitted THE MORNING RIVER for both the Pulitzer and National Book Award competitions. There’s never been anything quite like it in American letters.
From the perspective of a decade and a half, Travis Hartman remains one of our most beloved characters for his wit, wisdom, and soul-deep grit. Richard continues to be a long-shot for survival, and Heals Like A Willow–the Dukurika Shoshoni woman taken slave by the Pawnee called Packrat–takes a superlative revenge on her captor. Over time we’ve forgotten many of the twists and turns. We catch ourselves laughing aloud at Richard’s pratfalls and Hartman’s acerbic comments. What a delightful way to become reacquainted. If you haven’t read THE MORNING RIVER in awhile, pull it off your shelf, settle back, and rediscover the delight!
In the run up to PEOPLE OF THE MORNING STAR we’ve just finished and delivered a 15,000 word novella entitled ”Copper Falcon” to our publisher at Tor/Forge Books. The novella is set just months before the opening of PEOPLE OF THE MORNING STAR. Set in AD 1050, the story is about a young war chief and his father, leaders of Copper Falcon town, a Cahokian settlement on the Tennessee River. For Flint Knife, the arrival at Cahokia is mind-boggling. Raised as he was in the hinterlands, the sheer size and scope of Cahokia is beyond comprehension. His father, Red Mask, however, knows Cahokia all too well. His interest in another lord’s wife led to his divorce and banishment from the city over thirty years earlier–and returning in violation of an exile ordered by the Morning Star is a death offense.
The plan is simple: Get in, plead for a squadron of warriors to be dispatched by Red Mask’s relatives in Horned Serpent House, and get out before anyone is the wiser.
But in the seething stew of Cahokian politics, Horned Serpent House is vulnerable, and the Keeper of the Four Winds Clan sees not only an opportunity to put Horned Serpent House in its place, but a chance to pay back an old betrayal. Before Flint Knife can catch his breath, he and Red Mask are cast into a political maelstrom from which they will be lucky to escape with their lives, let alone with a precious sculpted copper falcon that would be worth a chief ransom in trade…
Copper Falcon is coming soon in e-format for most electronic readers.
We’re celebrating here at Red Canyon Ranch. On Saturday the 11th we finally shipped PEOPLE OF THE SONGTRAIL off to our editor Melissa Singer and the good folks at Tor/Forge Books! As always we will keep you appraised as SONGTRAIL goes through the editing and production process. We don’t have a pub date yet, but will post that as soon as we hear.
PEOPLE OF THE SONGTRAIL is our novel about Norse/Viking explorations of North America. The discovery of Native American mitochondrial DNA that goes back a thousand years in several Icelandic families triggered our interest in the book. What we didn’t anticipate was the amount of research we’d have to do on Vikings, or the snarls it would lead us into. It’s a simple story, right? Eric the Red is tossed out of Iceland for murder, finds Greenland. His son Leif wonders what’s beyond the horizon and goes to look–and bingo! He’s found Vinland.
Um, wrong. England, Norway, and Denmark, the major players, are embroiled in a brutal civil war, religious persecution is rampant between the Christians and the traditionalists, and the politics make GAME OF THRONES look mild, with everyone cutting everyone else’s throat.
And then we had the problem of Seidur magic. This is what the Odin worshippers believed, and it has become the vibrant core of modern literary fantasy: wizards, magical swords and staffs, spells, glowing orbs, shape-shifting and magic animals. So how do we portray that in a historical novel without sounding cliché to the fantasy audience?
Hopefully you’ll find as fascinating to read as we did to write. In the meantime, read in health!
When we were recently in south Texas, we visited our old and dear friends, award-winning writers W. C. Jameson and Laurie Wagner Buyer Jameson. Laurie made us the most delicious sweet potato-chili soup for lunch. For those of you who like hot food, try this recipe. It’s easy to make and just wonderful! But test your jalapeno first, so you can adjust the “hotness” to your taste.
In a sauce pan, place:
Two medium sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks.
One jalapeno, diced.
Add enough vegetable broth to cover vegetables. Simmer until vegetables are soft. Throw in the blender and blend until smooth. You may want to add more vegetable broth if you like thinner soups. Serve hot!
We hope you’re thinking about how to protect yourself during the upcoming All Hallows Eve, when the ghosts rise to walk the earth. (Personally, we’re thinking of gorging on lots of Snickers bars).
Mike and Kathy
Just wanted to add a quick announcement. We will be participating in a reading and signing at HASTINGS BOOKSTORE in Laramie, Wyoming, on November 2 between 2 and 5 pm. Hastings is featuring PEOPLE OF THE RIVER, PEOPLE OF THE LONGHOUSE, THE DAWN COUNTRY, THE BROKEN LAND, and PEOPLE OF THE BLACK SUN.
We will be reading from PEOPLE OF THE MORNING STAR to whet your appetite for the May 2014 release. This will be your first time to experience some the suspense, humor, and action in our newest book on Cahokia.
Missing a couple of titles from your collection? Please give Hastings a call and ask them to preorder any of our backlist titles that you’re missing. We’ll be delighted to autograph them for you.
Bring your personal copies, even entire collections, and we’ll be honored to sign them. If you do, however, we ask that you buy something from Hastings to support the store and make their signing a success, too.
We hope to see you there!
Well, it’s been an exciting week of power outages, winds of over 60 MPH, and so much heavy wet snow that when we finally dig out, we’ll need to spend several days with the chain saw removing all the downed tree branches. Our road is still mostly snowed closed, and where it isn’t, it’s an impassable mud bog. Ah, life in the backcountry. Never a dull moment!
Mike and Kathy
Sheesh, Pinterest.com is really downright fun. For those who might be interested, we’ve added a new board on writing tips and advice. Please check it out and give us your feedback. We need ideas to make it better.
Cheers! Mike and Kathy