Tuesday, May 19, 2009

My First Western Novel...

To kick things off, I thought I'd tell you a little bit about how I came to write my first Black Horse Western - Gun Law - which will be released by Robert Hale Publishing in December of this year.

Before I left my home in Lanark in Scotland last May to work in Kuwait, I belonged to a lovely group called the Lanark Writers. We met every Monday night to share our enthusiasm for writing and it was a great opportunity to review each others 'work in progress.' Sometimes, a guest speaker would be invited and one particular night, Tom Bryant, who was the current writer in residence at Brownsbank Cottage came along. He spoke about ways of getting our work into print; and one of those ways was writing for specific genres like Mills & Boon or Black Horse Westerns.

His words struck a chord that night (thanks Tom) and the next day I went to the local library and borrowed a handful of BHW's. I quickly read them over the next few days and once I had got a handle on the required style, I set to work re-writing a cowboy novel I had started and then abandoned (as usual) a long time ago. After a few weeks I had something I wasn't too ashamed to send off. Mr John Hale took pity on me and decided to publish the book, which I'm not afraid to admit, was a real thrill!

The point of me telling you this is that I know some aspiring writers may not want to be pigeon-holed into a specific genre or house style like BHW or Mills & Boon. For some, they may feel that these genres are somehow 'beneath' them (they're the ones who probably haven't finished a novel yet) but for a beginning writer like me, it's been a great experience. It proved that after starting and abandoning at least half a dozen other books, I could apply myself and finish a full length work. It made me get organised in terms of planning plot, structure and characters and researching historical facts (more of all that in later posts) and last but not least, it's given me a massive boost of confidence -so much so I'm now working on my second novel (working title, Gold Fever) and the ideas for more are piling up quicker than I can write them. Plus the fact, I'm now part of a great community of fellow Western writers (again, more on that in later blogs!)

Bottom line, anyone who feels that they have a book in them, they could do a whole lot worse than cut their teeth on a Black Horse Western! So get going and WRITE THAT NOVEL!


  1. Welcome to the BHW blogisphere, Ed / Lee.

  2. Good start. Keep up the good work.

  3. Very interesting opening piece. Looking forward to more from you.