New Release: JOY THAT LONG ENDURES by member Alethea Williams

Screen Shot 2018-09-17 at 9.11.02 PMIt’s never too late to bring a new release to our attention here at WWW. Member Alethea Williams released a book in May 2018, Joy That Long Endures, a western historical romance and the second in Williams’ Irish Blessings series.

Set in Wyoming Territory and focusing on the immigrants moving along the transcontinental railroad, Joy That Long Endures spins the tale of Devin Davanaugh, a former iron man who breaks his back daily as he labors to try to make his own way in the world. Meanwhile, the disreputable but extremely wealthy Dulcinetta Jackson profits from gleaning from men’s dreams and hopes. Still, she yearns to be considered respectable. What happens when the pair, with extreme ambitions of their own, decide to gamble together to achieve their disparate goals?


About Alethea

Screen Shot 2018-09-17 at 9.23.04 PMAlethea Williams grew up in southwest Wyoming. Her second novel, Walls for the Wind, is a WILLA Literary Award finalist, a gold Will Rogers Medallion winner, and placed first at the Laramie Awards in the Prairie Fiction category. She also has a collection of newspaper columns in print. Twice president of Wyoming Writers, Inc. she lives in her native state with long-time friend, Amazon parrot Bob. For more, visit


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What’s Happening with WWW Members? Fourth Quarter Report

Our WWW membership never ceases to amaze. From appearances to events, book signings to awards, our members continue to blaze ahead on their careers and telling stories about the beauty of the west.

I’m a Wisconsinite (born and raised and still living here), but I too know the call of the west, and spend as much time on the other side of the Mississippi as I can. As the start of the fall and the crisp edges of winter seep into the fogs of the morning and the tips of the trees, my thoughts turn to curling up with a good book. I’m sure I’ll find one or many out of the releases our WWW members have created over 2018.

Here are the updates for the fourth quarter. If you live near some of the events, pop in and share some joy with one another. And congratulations to all awards, finalists, and here’s to the continuing success of all of us.

Fondly, Sara Dahmen, WWW blog coordinator

(If you want a Sept – Dec event or award or activity added here, please email me at


September 14 – 15: President Carmen Peone is holding a workshop during the Idaho Writers League Conference in Moscow, ID on Self-Editing into Publication.

September 15: WWW Member Jane Kirkpatrick will be speaking and signing her new release, Everything She Didn’t Say (Revell Publishing) at 7:00PM at Auntie’s Bookstore in Spokane, WA.

September 23: Word Walk in Longmont CO is an event organized by WWW member Kayann Short. The event will include word games for all ages, bilingual storytelling, redacted poetry, author readings, calligraphy bookmark workshops, children story time, writing words on quilts, and many other word-related excitement and interaction.

November 4: Member Suanne Schafer will be signing her Nov 1 new release, A Different Kind of Fire, at a Book Signing at The Twig Book Shop in San Antonio TX from 10am – 2pm.


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Fall into Fourth Quarter with WWW!

Hi everyone!

With the upcoming harvest and holiday season now approaching, it’s time to highlight our WWW members who have upcoming book signings, promotional events, appearances, and awards!

If your book has been selected as a finalist or if you will be doing a reading, or anything in between, please send me, your blog coordinator, an email at this week to be highlighted in next week’s Fall / Fourth Quarter member news and updates post!

Let’s support each other and make these next few months shine!

Many cheers – Sara


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WWA Meeting Recap: Panel Discussion on Longmire

by Natalie Bright

The Western Writers of America held their annual meeting in Billings, Montana in June of this year. Throughout the four-day conference, attendees could choose between discussion panels and field trips covering a wide variety of interesting topics. In this blog post, I’m reviewing the panel which focused on the hit show Longmire, a modern western crime drama first airing on A&E, and then picked up by Netflix which released two additional seasons. Episodes of all six seasons are available through Netflix in North America.

Personifying Longmire

Moderated by WWA President Kirk Ellis, the panel featured WWA Board member Craig Johnson, best-selling author of the Walt Longmire mystery series, Marcus Red Thunder, technical adviser, Craig’s good friend and inspiration for the character Henry Standing Bear, and A. Martinez, who plays Jacob Nighthorse in the series. (Of course you remember A. from Santa Barbara and as Cimeron in John Wayne & The Cowboys, among other things. And yes, there were several fan girl moments among the crowd and numerous selfies. Mr. Martinez  and his wife were so very gracious and kind to be a part of our conference and give up their weekend for WWA.)

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As Technical Advisor, Marcus makes certain that the Native American elements of the series are depicted accurately. He noted, “I had to remind myself that it’s not a documentary. It’s art.” Marcus started his work by conducting prayers and ceremony at the very beginning of the project. Ceremony and rituals have played an important part in Native American spirituality for generations and continue to be an integral part of their culture today.

In answer to a question about his character, A. Martinez explained how he worked to create Jacob Nighthorse into a memorable character for television. “I was drawn to the poetry of language for Jacob,” he said. “I was intrigued by the character as a ruthless business man mixed with a political radical.” It is later revealed in the series that Jacob is a dog soldier and that is what he is honoring. Cheyenne Dog Soldiers were the elite fighting societies of the tribe.

Complex, troubled, obviously a brilliant business man with a good heart, Nighthorse is definitely one of my favorite characters from the show. You may not realize that Nighthorse does not exist in the books by Craig Johnson. No question that A. Martinez has made that roll his own, taking the character from a bit part to becoming a force in  Absaroka community as entrepreneur casino owner and Walt’s antagonist in the TV series. Craig mentioned that his favorite scene when Nighthorse seems to emerge as a significant part of the cast is the basketball scene between Walt and Jacob in Season 2.

In response to a question on how the creation of television is a different from writing a book, Craig Johnson explained that television is very much a group effort. “I was a cowboy writer from a town of 25 and I kept wondering, why did they want to do this?”  Making a television show is much like ranching, he noted. “You get the very best people you can to work with and leave them alone.” The process of turning written words into a television show is complicated and obviously a huge undertaking. “I asked my agent, ‘what can I do?'” Craig said. “Write a good book, is what I was told. The one thing we, as writers, have control over is the writing. Never underestimate those characters.”

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Buy the books and learn more about author/creator Craig Johnson Click Here.

The challenge for actors is to “bring everything off the page” of the script and make it real A. Martinez told us. There is a large following of both the books and the show among the Native Americans. “I tell kids to get into the books. They are a hell of a lot better than the TV show,” said Marcus. At this point in the panel discussion, Craig slowly pulled his wallet from his pocket and handed Marcus money. The room erupted with laughter. Marcus continued, “There is a satisfaction and validation in being humans. We are just like everyone else. Native Americans have a way of life that is strong and beautiful. Characters that focus on healing remind us what we have in common versus what divides us.”

The panel members displayed a genuine respect and sincere admiration for each other. What surprised me is the conviction and dedication they continue to hold for their work on Longmire.  Their efforts changed people’s perspectives and even today, continues to make a difference. There are new generations discovering the show. My 21-year-old son is hooked and almost through Season 1. “Have you seen this show?” he asked me and was surprised when I handed him several Walt Longmire books.

While listening to the panel, I never realized what a complicated process and emotional commitment is required of actors who become part of a mega hit show. It’s not just another Hollywood production as you might think, but their work obviously consumes them and becomes their life’s passion. That work lives on as new fans discover it every day.

“You judge a man’s strengths by the strengths of his enemies,” said Marcus, a quote he believes is from the Cheyenne. “If you see only beauty and goodness in your heart, then that is what you will create and receive in return.”

Major kudos to Mr. Ellis for putting together this panel and moderating a fascinating discussion.

About Natalie

Screen Shot 2018-07-23 at 11.08.33 PMNatalie Bright is an author, blogger and speaker. She writes stories set in the west for children and for adults. She blogs every Monday at about story craft, and for articles about the Texas Panhandle and writing life check out her blog Prairie Purview, located on the home page of her website



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WILLA Award Winners & Finalists to be celebrated at this year’s conference.

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As many of you know, we have a raffle at the conference to raise funds to support the WILLA Literary Awards.

The WILLA Literary Awards honor outstanding literature featuring women’s and girls’ stories, set in the West. Women Writing the West  underwrites and presents the nationally recognized award annually. The award is named in honor of Pulitzer Prize winner Willa Cather, one of the country’s foremost novelists. The Finalist awards will be presented at the Saturday WILLA Awards Luncheon, and the Winners will be presented with their awards during the Saturday evening WILLA Awards Banquet.

Among the items that will be up for grabs at this year’s conference is this beautiful print by Joe Beeler, matted and framed in barnwood.

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The Long Winter was the Tucson Festival Society’s limited edition print in 1981 when Beeler was selected as the Festival Artist of the Year. Beeler (1931-2006) was an American illustrator, artist and sculptor who specialized in the field of Western art. In 1965, he was a co-founder of The Cowboy Artists of America.

The Tuscon Festival Society, founded in 1950, was dedicated to celebrating and preserving the unique heritage of the Tuscon community. The month-long festival of Native-American, Spanish, Mexican, and Pioneer aspects of the city’s heritage took place annually in the spring until the non-profit organization disbanded in 1996.

The donation of the print includes shipping, in the event the winner is flying home.

If you have an item you’d like to donate to the raffle, please contact Pam Tartaglio, Raffle Coordinator, or Shanna Hatfield, Conference Chair. (Items that can be tucked into a suitcase are fabulous to contribute but please, no books.)

Our hearty congratulations to this year’s WILLA winners and finalists!


WINNER – Zetty by Debra Whiting Alexander
Luminare Press

FINALIST – Desplazado by Bev Magennis
Bosque Press

FINALIST – Burials by Mary Anna Evans
Poisoned Pen Press



WINNER – Stranded, A Story of Frontier Survival by Matthew P. Mayo
Five Star Publishing

FINALIST – Dry Run, Oklahoma by Lucinda Stein

FINALIST – Mist-Chi-Mas: A Novel of Captivity by J. L. Oakley
Fairchance Press



WINNER – Hidden Ones, a Veil of Memories by Marcia Fine
L’Image Press

FINALIST – Light of the Northern Dancers by Robin F. Gainey
Untreed Reads

FINALIST – All She Left Behind by Jane Kirkpatrick



WINNER – Women Artists of the Great Basin by Mary Lee Fulkerson, photographs by Susan E. Mantle
University of Nevada Press

FINALIST – Ordinary Skin: Essays from Willow Springs by Amy Hale Auker
Texas Tech University Press

FINALIST – Rough Crossing: An Alaskan Fisherwoman’s Memoir by Rosemary McGuire
University of New Mexico Press



WINNER – Peace Weavers, Uniting the Salish Coast Through Cross-Cultural Marriages by Candace Wellman
Washington State University Press

FINALIST – Dust Bowl Girls: The Inspiring Story of the Team that Barnstormed its Way to Basketball Glory by Lydia Reeder
Algonquin Books

FINALIST – America’s Best Female Sharpshooter: The Rise and Fall of Lillian Frances Smith by Julia Bricklin
University of Oklahoma Press



WINNER – Rock Tree Bird by Twyla M. Hansen
Backwaters Press

FINALIST – Indian Love Poems by Tenille K. Campbell
Signature Editions

FINALIST – Pondering by Sally Harper Bates



WINNER – The Tragically True Adventures of Kit Donovan by Patricia Bailey
Albert Whitman and Company

FINALIST – Lily’s Mountain by Hannah Moderow
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

FINALIST – Bold Women in Montana History by Beth Judy
Mountain Press Publishing Company

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WWW Conference News: Meet the Agents & Editors Attending!

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We have a wonderful group of Agents and Editors attending the conference in October.

Editor & Agent Panel – October 26

Agent Panel:  Sandra Bishop, Maryann Karinch, Elizabeth Kracht, Elizabeth Trupin-Pulli

Editor Panel: Hannah Braaten, Erin Turner, Grace Menary-Winefield

 They will also be available for pitch sessions throughout the weekend.


Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.16.12 PMSandra Bishop is a partner and Senior Literary Agent at Transatlantic Agency of Toronto|New York|Nova Scotia|Vancouver|Portland. She is a former Marine, and a Portland, Oregon native who relishes every opportunity to enjoy live music, sunshine, star gazing, and hiking in the Columbia River Gorge. A literary agent since 2008, she specializes in developing books and content with bloggers, media personalities, and television & online personalities she admires, including; The Salmon Sisters , Emma Teal Laukitis and Claire Neaton’s book about growing up commercial fishing in Dutch Harbor and living on a remote homestead in False Pass, Alaska, and Jessica Long, world’s top medalling Paralympic swimmer, author of UNSINKABLE, June 2018. Sandra also proudly represents a select list of fiction authors including: 5-Star Romantic Times author Joanne Bischof, YA historical novelist and founder of Stephanie Morrill, and two time RITA winning romance author Wendy Warren.

Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.16.21 PMMaryann Karinch founded The Rudy Agency in 2004 and specializes in non-fiction for adult audiences. Of interest are projects covering advice/relationships, biography/memoir, business/investing/finance, cooking, diet, health/fitness, history/ politics/current affairs, how-to, lifestyle, narrative, pop culture, science, sports, and true crime. The agency represents only a small number of fiction titles and does not represent children’s literature, poetry, or religion books. Maryann is also the author of 28 books, most of which focus on human behavior. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Speech and Drama from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. She is also an ACE- (American Council on Exercise) certified personal trainer, and former competitive athlete in gymnastics, endurance racing, and bodybuilding. For additional color, please visit and

Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.16.28 PMElizabeth Kracht joined Kimberley Cameron & Associates in the fall of 2010 as a literary agent and also works as a freelance developmental editor coaching authors. She represents both literary and commercial fiction, as well as nonfiction, and brings to the agency experience as a former acquisitions editor, freelance ublicist, and writer. In fiction, she represents thrillers, mysteries, literary, commercial, women’s, and historical. In nonfiction, she is interested in finding true crime, investigative journalism, narrative/creative nonfiction, prescriptive, voice- or adventure-driven memoir, high concept, science, spirituality, sexuality, self-help, and pet stories. She does not handle children’s, poetry or short story collections, screenplays, and previously published works.

Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 11.28.56 PMElizabeth Trupin-Pulli had every intention of becoming a college professor, having received an M.A. in English Literature. Instead, through a slightly circuitous route, she got involved in publishing and has remained happily engaged with it for the past forty-seven years, beginning in the contracts department of New American Library, followed by a brief stint as an editor at Fawcett’s Premier Books. In 1975, she and then-husband Jim Trupin founded JET Literary Associates, Inc. in New York. As of 2002, their offices relocated to Santa Fe, New Mexico and Vienna, Austria. JET has had great success in the mystery/suspense market, including award-winning writers: Robert Campbell, Harry Whittington, Charles Willeford, Beverly Bird, Gennita Low, John Fortunato and Anne Hillerman. In addition to suspense, Liz is looking for commercial and literary fiction as well as strong narrative non-fiction. She does not handle sci-fi/fantasy, poetry, how-to books or material for the children’s or YA markets. Most recent bestseller: CAVE OF BONES by Anne Hillerman.



Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.16.45 PM.pngHannah Braaten is an Editor at St. Martin’s Press, where she acquires and edits mysteries and a wide range of narrative nonfiction. Before starting at SMP in 2011, she received her certificate in publishing from the Columbia Publishing Course, and graduated from Wellesley College. Some of her authors include Tan France, Ellie Alexander, Carolyn Haines, Paige Shelton, Amber Rae, Sheila Connolly, Linda Greenlaw, and Liz Plank. The books she most wants to publish address issues of gender, race, relationships, careers, etc.—she likes to call her list “Smart Books for Smart Women.” She does not acquire children’s, YA, or sci-fi.

Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.16.53 PMRobert A. Clark is Editor-in-Chief of Washington State University Press. He previously was president of the Arthur H. Clark Company, a Pulitzer Prize-winning publisher of American historical research and reference works. The firm was acquired in 2006 by the University of Oklahoma Press, where Bob served as assistant director and publisher of the Clark imprint. Joining WSU Press in 2012, he has continued his commitment to the development, editing, and publishing of materials on the history of America, and particularly the West, begun in 1970. Over the course of his career he has served as editor, designer, and publisher of several hundred books and journals. An active member of a number of historical organizations, Bob and his wife, Sheila, also share a long history in the collectible book world, specializing in the history of the American West.

Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.17.00 PMErin Turner is the Editorial Director for TwoDot Books, an imprint of Globe Pequot. For the past twenty years she’s been acquiring and editing books on the American West, on topics from the famous sharpshooter Annie Oakley to the ghost town of Zortman, Montana. She lives and works in Helena, Montana. She is currently acquiring biography, history, some travel, cookbooks, lifestyle titles, celebratory books on the American west, and a limited number of children’s titles that fit into those categories.

She is not acquiring fiction or memoir.


Screen Shot 2018-08-14 at 3.17.06 PMGrace Menary-Winefield joined the Sourcebooks editorial team in 2015 after working at London’s Little, Brown Book Group, Pan Macmillan, and Palgrave Macmillan. In her current role as Associate Editor she champions New York Times bestselling authors and Indie-Next Picks such as The Radium Girls and The End of the World Running Club, and loves to discover and encourage new, rebellious voices in non-fiction with narrative history, science, personal development, and illustrated gift. Her fiction passion lies in the speculative with human stories that twist both your mind and your heart. She believes wholeheartedly in her publisher’s motto: “Books change lives.”

Stay up-to-date on plans, details, and fun facts, by joining the 2018 WWW Conference group on Facebook.

Can’t wait to see everyone in October!




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New Release: MURDER IN THE MELTING POT by Jane Isenberg

Screen Shot 2018-08-01 at 3.30.51 PMMiranda Breitner thinks her past is behind her when she opens the B&B in the Yakima Valley that is meant to be the start of her new life, but murder and her long-ago secret threaten everything–including her life! Murder in the Melting Pot is a riveting tale from WILLA Award Winner Jane Isenberg

This mystery has been praised for the combination of cozy vibes, grittiness, and literary tones and includes the realities of the contemporary west.


About Jane

Screen Shot 2018-08-01 at 3.31.07 PMJane Isenberg wrote the prize-winning memoir Going by the Book, The Bel Barrett Mystery Series, and the WILLA Award winning historical mystery The Bones and the Book. She taught English for nearly forty years, first in high school and later in community college. Now retired from teaching, she writes in Issaquah, Washington where she lives with her husband. For more about Jane, visit

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