August 8, 2011

Guest Blogger - Vonnie Davis

Anna Kathryn, thanks for having me here today. You’re so sweet to open your blog to a fellow Rose. I’m here today to talk about cowboys. Yee-haw!!!

My husband and I were being interviewed last week for our local newspaper. The reporter was focusing on the angle of a local husband and wife writing team. Not that we work together on the same book, but we do read, critique and cheer each other through the rough spots of our writing projects. Our talents are different: Calvin painstakingly paints sentences with vivid colors and I brush stroke emotions.

 The reporter and I were talking about alpha males. He asked me WHY a cowboy since Storm’s Interlude is set on a ranch in the hill country of Texas. I replied that for me, when one mentions an alpha male, a cowboy gallops across my mental sky, hat riding low over his eyes, muscles bunched, worn jeans and leather chaps hugging his thighs like a pair of lover’s hands.

The reporter blinked at me a couple of times.

He just didn’t get it.

But we ladies do.

There’s just something about a guy on a horse. I don’t care what age he is.

Cowboys exude a rugged potency, a strong sense of self, a history of hard work and an understated sense of sensuality. He seems to command our attention. Our eyes are drawn to him. We wonder what stories he could tell. What would it feel like to have him come charging to our rescue? Would he stand by us through thick or thin?

I grew up watching Westerns on TV. There was no canned laughter to tell us when something was funny, as if we’re too dumb to judge that for ourselves. What those Westerns did have was a sense of history, a spirit of adventure and a code of honor. Gene Autry put that code into words.

The hero in Storm’s Interlude is a rancher, born and bred. Storm Masterson is an alpha male with a soft spot for his family. His twin sister has leukemia, and her cancer is eating him as much as it is her. His nephew, an energetic three-year old, is the light of his life during this dark time. Enter one blue-eyed, determined nurse who turns his orderly world into one gigantic sexual knot.

 I’d like to share an excerpt:

The sun gentled the Texas sky awake with her show of pinks and oranges intermingled with the dark grays of dawn, promising another hot day. Storm was talking to Red Pelton, his foreman, and three ranch hands, Ben, Eduardo and Randy, giving them orders for various projects.

Suddenly the crew’s heads collectively swiveled to the left. Low whistles and snide remarks warmed the air already heating up for the day. Even Pistol panted louder than normal.

Storm narrowed his eyes. Rachel was jogging down the driveway wearing a tight red midriff top and black running shorts that should have been declared illegal. Damned if he could figure how a woman so short could have legs so long.

“Gentlemen, the woman you’re gawkin’ at is Sunny’s new nurse. I’ll expect you to keep your distance. She’s here to take care of my sister.” Their lewd responses did nothing to improve his mood.

Nor did hearing Jackson give a wolf whistle. Storm’s narrowed eyes ricocheted off Rachel to his best friend. Minutes earlier, he’d seen Jackson stumble out of the house, grimacing at the sunlight and holding a hand over each ear, probably in an attempt to keep them from falling off his hungover head. Now Jackson’s arms were extended across the roof of the cruiser, and he sported a mile-wide grin as he ogled Rachel, obviously enjoying the view.

Storm turned his irritated attentions back on his men. “Stop drooling over Rachel and get the hell to work. You’re burnin’ daylight.” At their raised eyebrows, he barked, “Go on, now. I’m in no mood to be fooled with today.”

Storm headed for Jackson and shot a dark look down the long driveway. He had tossed and turned most of the night thinking of Nurse Rachel and that lush body of hers. Those eyes, those lips, and that long silky, curly hair had haunted him in his sleep. Strange part of it all was she wasn’t his normal type. He usually preferred tall, slender women; women more likely to do his bidding.

Rachel, the spirited little minx. He snorted. Imagine that spitfire shaking her fist under his nose, warning him to stay away. This was his ranch, by damn, and he’d do what he pleased. He’d never met a woman that both irritated and intrigued him from the instant he set eyes on her—until Rachel. He didn’t like it one bit.

Jackson turned at Storm’s approach. “Who the hell is that?”

“Sunny’s new nurse.” He stood next to his best friend.

“Damn. Makes a man want to get sick just so she can nurse him. She’s one fine lookin’ woman.” Jackson’s eyes narrowed. “What’s got a burr under your saddle? You’ve got that look.”

“What look? How’s your head? Figured you’d still be in the den, sleeping it off.”

Storm’s Interlude received a 5-Star review from Single Title Reviews. Here’s part of what the reviewer had to say:

Loved every morsel of this story. Each chapter brought a smile to my face, the chemistry between Storm and Rachel is a barn burner. A compassionate story that takes a difficult subject and brings hope to a family struggling to figure out what will happen next. When they begin to live day to day, the love of each person in this story brings a warmness to every page. A wonderful book.

BUY LINKS:
Amazon: http://amzn.to/pkkcLq
Barnes and Noble (Nook version only): http://bit.ly/pb9DQd
The Wild Rose Press: http://bit.ly/rcCIMa

I blog at Vintage Vonnie — http://www.vintagevonnie.blogspot.com
My website is – http://www.vonniedavis.com

29 comments:

Anna Kathryn Lanier said...

Hi, Vonnie. Welcome. Great post and excerpt. Thanks for being my guest today.

marybelle said...

There really is something about a guy on a horse or with a horse. There is a scene from the funny movie GEORGE OF THE JUNGLE where Brandon Fraser works with a horse - beautiful.

Vonnie Davis said...

Anna Kathryn, thanks again for having me.

Vonnie Davis said...

Marybelle, I love watching horses and their riders. Have you seem "Cowboys and Aliens" yet? We went the day it opened. How nice to see cowboys in action again. The alien part wasn't so enjoyable, but seeing Daniel Craig in leather chaps? Oh, yeah....

Anna Kathryn Lanier said...

Vonnie, I'm visiting my sister with my mom and the whole family went to see Cowboys and Aliens yesterday. It was great! And you're right...Daniel Craig in those chaps...YUMMY!

Melinda said...

Vonnie,

I know what you mean about a cowboy. There is a wonderful show that started coming on called The Heartland Ranch, there is a website too http://www.cbc.ca/heartland/,

It is a great show. Thanks for sharing and I bet the interview was great When it comes out in the paper if you could mail me one that would be great

Again I understand about a cowboy on a horse

Walk in harmony,
Melinda

Misty Dietz said...

Hi Vonnie! I too love cowboys! For me, they are just part of the earth. They have a wisdom about nature & animals that is both ancient and sensual. The real ranch men I know here in North Dakota are humble, hardworking, and fearless. They scamble down slick gumbo crevaces when a baby calf has fallen into one and stay with it through a raging storm to protect it. They aren't afraid to get dirty, use their brains AND their brawn (wrangling cattle & breaking a horse requires both!), or roll out the red carpet to welcome a perfect stranger into their home. Yeah, cowboys are sexy for way more than their wranglers and chaps. :)
BTW, everyone should get a copy of Storm's Interlude. It's a fantastic read!! :)

Vonnie Davis said...

Oh, Anna Kathryn, did you notice how Daniel Craig's hat stayed on for all the action scenes, except one, and he snatched it up, slapped it against his thigh and socked it back on his head. For some reason that simple act made me laugh, but then I've got a simple mind.

Vonnie Davis said...

Melinda, I really miss the Western on TV. Each had an understanted moral to it...and oh those cowboys. Thanks for stopping by.

Vonnie Davis said...

Hi Misty, cowboys are hard workers, that's for sure. And thanks for the "shout-out" about my book. I loved writing it and am so utterly pleased when someone says they enjoyed it.

Anna Kathryn Lanier said...

What the hat reminded me of, when he and Harrison Ford were running out of the cave, when he lost the hat, Indiana Jones and his hat. I laughed then, because of the it! Daniel (Luke) was forever grabbing that hat.

Lynne Marshall said...

I love the cowboy code, and agree, there's just something about a man in a hat. However, lots of guys wear hats and are real cowboys. I have your book in my Kindle TBR. Looking forward to finding out what a true cowboy hero is to Vonnie Davis.

Great going on getting an article in your local newspaper.

Wishing you great success.

TessStJohn said...

Great post, Vonnie!

Caroline Clemmons said...

Great interview, Vonnie. Maybe guys don't get the appeal of a cowboy hero, but we ladies do! By the way, I see you're a Gene Autry fan. I was a Roy Rogers fan. Can't tell you on how many adventures I rode the range with Roy...in my kiddie mind. LOL

Jennifer Jakes said...

Ahhh, cowboys. My favorite subject;)
And I'm going to see C & A just for the sight of Daniel Craig in cowboy gear. Yum.
I think I'm going to die if the mailman doesn't bring my copy of STORM soon!!
Great post, ladies!

Vonnie Davis said...

Lynn, thanks for stopping by. I can't wait for you to visit Vintage Vonnie tomorrow. What great things are you going to talk about...a new book, perhaps?

Vonnie Davis said...

Tess, thanks for leaving a comment. Have a great Monday. I should be writing, but am putzing around the house instead.

Vonnie Davis said...

Caroline, I saw Gene Autry as a little girl. He and Champion were performing at the Hershey Arena in PA. What a fabulous show. I was starry eyed.

Vonnie Davis said...

Keeping my fingers crossed, Jennifer, that your copy arrives today. Keeping my fingers and toes crossed that you'll enjoy the book.

Barbara said...

Hi Vonnie,
Cowboys--of course. What gal doesn't get it? The strong, silent type, radiating self-sufficiency and lonliness that makes us want to both cuddle him and cure him.

I'd never seen Gene's cowboy code. I loved both him and Roy. Except Roy already had his girl :)

Great post, Vonnie and Anna Kathryn.

Vonnie Davis said...

Barbara, now there's a nice visual: cuddle a cowboy. Should be a special day, don't you think? National Cuddle a Cowboy Day...hmmm...the idea has merit.;-)

Roni Denholtz said...

I think part of the appeal comes form the old westerns, with the good-guy heroes who would sacrifice themselves to save those they love if they were forced to. Long live the cowboy!

Vonnie Davis said...

You are so right, Roni. In those old Westerns, we knew who the good guys were. Now, we're often not quite sure...

Paisley Kirkpatrick said...

Hi Vonnie, Your story sounds wild and fun. I grew up watching cowboys and have always been drawn to them.

Vonnie Davis said...

Paisley, there are moments of humor and flashes of wildness with deep emotion. Yes, there is something about a cowboy.

Lynnette Hallberg said...

Great blog. I love the idea of a Cuddle a Cowboy Day, Vonnie!

Mona Risk said...

Vonnie, I hope it's not too late to tell you how much I enjoyed your post and yummy pictures. I want a cowboy like that!

lisekimhorton said...

A great explanation of why the rugged cowboy is a perennial favorite. I always think of them as so much more "in nature's face", one with nature. No businessman in a suit - even one with a million bucks - can compete with that. Good luck with this latest title!

Linda Warren said...

Vonnie,
I grew up watching westerns with my dad. Ever since then I've been hooked. It's not only their mystique, but their code of honor. We watched the movie Wyatt Earp the other night and I loved Val Kilmer as Doc. He was always there for Wyatt. I think that's their appeal - the ruggedness, the do-or-die personality, and the surety that no matter what the cowboy is always there.

Loved your excerpt.