I’m excited to welcome LORI WILDE back to RU. Most of you associate Lori with books like her Stardust, Cupid, Jubilee and Twilight, Texas series, so you may be surprised to learn about her latest venture. Don’t forget to scroll down to the end of Lori’s post to find out about her GIVEAWAY!
If you’d told me three years ago that I would be co-authoring a series of children’s books, I’d probably ask you how much you’d had to drink.
Ever since I got published, people have been asking me why I don’t write for children. It’s not that I had anything against writing for children. It just wasn’t my wheelhouse. I write contemporary romances, generally featuring cowboys.
That question was always a head scratcher because:
1) It suggests that writing for children is a more noble endeavor than writing adult novels.
2) I don’t have children.
3) By and large children’s books make a whole lot less money than books for adults.
4) It assumes that if you can write an adult novel, writing for kids must be a cakewalk. It’s not. Totally different skill set. In fact, I’d venture to say it’s harder to write for children not easier.
My answer to those inquisitive folks? What on earth would possess me to shift gears and learn an entirely new genre when my romance career was going great guns? It’s like asking a policeman why he doesn’t become a fireman.
Nope. Never entered my head. I’m in introvert. I spend all day in my office making up stories. Nothing about that screams “team player.” And let’s be honest, I’m a bit of a control freak. Give up full control of a creative project? Not happening.
And yet, it did.
So how did a doesn’t-play-well-with-others romance writer content with her career path join forces with a cowboy to write a middle grade chapter book for children?
Well for one thing, I’m a sucker for cowboys. Who can resist their polite “yes ma’am” and their courtly ways and their code of honor?
Plus, this particular cowboy, Michael Rountree, had a burning story to tell. His dad, Conrad Rountree, was a farrier and a horse trainer and he grew up deep in the heart of Texas. After Conrad literally died in the saddle, Mike wanted to write a children’s book as a tribute to the man he loved and admired.
Now Mike is a schoolteacher—besides being a cowboy—and he has a son who was just learning to read chapter books at the time inspiration struck.
But Mike was no writer, so he asked me to take a look at his manuscript.
Normally, I don’t do this kind of thing, but Mike is a good guy and he was so earnest about his project, and I admired how he wanted to honor his father, so I thought, what the heck? It’s only a couple of hours of my life.
Yes, the book needed work. Yes, I didn’t know much about writing for kids. Yes, I knew how hard it was to sell children’s books.
But that voice—that elusive, can’t-be-taught, something special that makes people sit up and take notice—jumped right off that first page.
From the moment I met Gunpowder the Cowpony, I was captivated, and I knew I had to work with Mike to bring Gunpowder to the public.
The first book was all Mike, with some input from me. But now we’re working as a real team to complete the second book in the Gunpowder series and we have ten more books planned.
Here’s how we manage the co-author thing. We brainstorm a plot and then Mike gets busy writing, focusing on speaking through Gunpowder’s authentic voice only the way Mike can. Then I come along and put structure to the narrative. And it’s working out grand.
The first book in the series, Gunpowder: Tales of a Wise-Cracking Cowpony is available now through Amazon. We hope to have Gunpowder Goes to Cowboy School out this summer.
What I learned from this experience is to never say never. Who knew all those people pestering me to write children’s book would get their wish?
Do you read children’s books or have children in your life who read? Tell me about them. Leave a comment. I’m giving away two copies of my upcoming romance, LOVE OF THE GAME, on store shelves April 26th.
A sexy sports superstar discovers his body isn’t the only thing that needs healing in this newest Stardust, Texas novel from New York Times bestselling author Lori Wilde.
With major league good looks and talent, Dallas Gunslingers relief pitcher Axel Richmond was living the good life. Even if the roar of the crowd could never distract him from the loss of his young son. But now with an injured shoulder and his career on the line, Axel is stuck recuperating at a ranch in Stardust, Texas . . . striking out only with his gorgeous physical therapist.
Kasha Carlyle has one week to get Axel back in action or she can kiss her much-needed job with the Gunslingers goodbye. And any chance to seek custody of the orphaned half-sister she never knew existed. She quickly learns that Axel’s guarded heart also needs healing . . . requiring all kinds of sneaky plays and sexy moves in extra innings.
New York Times and USA Today best selling author, Lori Wilde has sold seventy-eight works of fiction to four major New York Publishing houses. She holds a bachelor’s degree in nursing from Texas Christian University and a certificate in forensic nursing from Kaplan University. She is a member of the Internal Association of Forensic Nurses.
Her first NYT bestseller, the third book in her Twilight, Texas series, The First Love Cookie Clubhas been optioned for a television movie.
A popular writing instructor, Lori is a three time RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award. She’s won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Golden Quill, the Lories, and The More than Magic. Her books have been translated into 26 languages and excerpted in Cosmopolitan, Redbook, Complete Woman, andQuick and Simple magazines. She lives in Texas with her husband, Bill.
- Grabbing Your Reader with the First Line by New York Times Bestselling Author Carolyn Brown
- Second Chance Romance by LuAnn McLane
- The Pros and Cons of Self Publishing
- 8 Tips for a Successful Co-writing Partnership by Kelsey Browning
- Congratulations Winners!