TAKING A BOW…Texas Ranch Women: Three Centuries of Mettle and Moxie. The History Press of Charleston opened the chute for this book of some 20 Texas women who, as one said of ranching, it takes, “a little bit of work and a whole lot of love.” The lives of the women in this book reflect that bit of wisdom from one of their own.
Beneath the sunbonnets, Stetsons or high-fashion couture, the women of the Lone Star carved out ranches, breathed new life into spreads and expanded acreage when husbands, sons and fathers fell. Throughout the centuries, women of Texas’s ranches defended home and hearth with canon and shot. They rescued hostages. They nurtured livestock through hard winters and long droughts and drove them up the trails. They built communities and saw to it that faith and education prevailed for their children and for those of others.
These women pioneered the reaches of Texas from the sand dunes of the coast to the timbers of the central region, to the mountains, plains and deserts of the west. The book explores their adventures, their individualism as rugged as any man’s.
Signing books after a program at the Daughters of the Republic of Texas in Arlington.
At Texas Book Festival with The History Press’ representative Bob Barnett.
ON BOOK SHELVES & IN DIGITAL FORMAT
“My son-in-law gave the book TEXAS DAMES to me for Mother’s Day. I just wanted to let you know how very much I have enjoyed reading and re-reading these stories! Thank you so very much for doing all this research and then writing this book.” (Sara Fulks)
"I loved Texas Dames! Reading it on a road trip across the Lone Star State was a perfect backdrop! My only complaint is that it ended too soon!"
— Melissa Swensen Martin
Texas Dames: Sassy and Savvy Women Throughout Lone Star History.The History Press of Charleston South Carolina https://www.historypress.net/. ISBN 978.1.60949.812.2) has published the collection of “Texas Dames” stories that ran in a couple of dozen community newspapers around the state. The book highlights the women whose lives, lived in uncommon times by today’s standards, nudged and sometimes yanked Texas and Texans into gentler, more enlightened ways. Without them—from the early Indian girl Angelina who greeted strangers and interpreted her Caddo language, French and Spanish for explorers and priests, to a tomboy from Port Arthur-Beaumont who set Olympic track records and then rocked the women’s golf world—Texas would not be the same. Stories come from these women as well as early pioneers, the “Old 300” of Stephen F. Austin renown, business women, doctors, educators, ministers and suffragettes. It’s a calico quilt of Texas history through the eyes and lives of women. The stories and a potpourri of pictures will show readers the grand state’s history and its high stepping women.
CHICKEN SOUP OF THE SOUL: Miracles Happen came out in February, this year, and includes the essay I wrote about a late night trip from Houston to Fort Worth and a “miracle” along the way. My story is called, “Night Bull.”
In 2012’s Chicken Soup of the Soul: The Magic of Mother’s and Daughters, my essay about my mother, our relationship and her last six months appeared. Titled “Burgers and Butterflies.”
A gentleman from the Sudan now living and working in Saudi Arabia wrote: “Your story might be the kiss from my father that God welcomed him in Heaven…the dawn of our loved ones has come no doubt.”
Reader comments…about Texas Ranch Women: Three Centuries of Mettle and Moxie AND Texas Dames: Sassy and Savvy Women Throughout Lone Star History.
“I love your books, both of them…have given them as gifts, loaned them to neighbors…I feel like you’ve connected me to the women you’ve written about.” (VH of Fort Worth)
“I bought books for my children, siblings, grandchildren, etc. Each story is so exciting—I’ve reread them. Thanks.” (RW of Dallas)
On the way…
IN MY WRITING MILL…
NOVEL: Beta readers have Whispering Spirits, the DeSpain Family Saga (Book 1) in hand, to reviewbefore final polishing and editing…and then…submitting this 1817 historical novel to editors and/or agents. It’s a family saga of young children surviving a voyage from Marseilles to Charleston, harried by those who would split them up and in the end, making an unusual choice.
ESSAYS: on travel, spiritual change, writing
SHORT STORIES: contemporary western, “Summer’s Kiln,” and a story or novella set at San Jacinto.
Other Works in Progress include:
- Three in the Despain Family Saga series—drafting
- Trapped, a mainstream novel about human trafficking, research and ideation