NEW RELEASE: Cholama Moon by Anne Schroeder

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 9.59.38 AMWWW member Anne Schroeder’s historical novel, Cholama Moon, was re-released with a new publisher on October 12. Check out the new cover, too!

In Cholama Moon, we are introduced to Virginia Nugent, a privileged young woman whose life of ease comes to a tumultuous end when her mother’s death sends her guilt-ridden father into a maelstrom of addiction and hopelessness. While she loves the ranch she’s known all her life, the despair of her situation has Virginia looking to the horizon for escape. Her plans are upended, however, when her mother’s Southern friend arrives unexpectedly, challenging Virginia to consider another plan – one that may just change the entire course of her life.



About Anne

Screen Shot 2018-10-09 at 10.06.09 AMAnne Schroeder was born in California, and now lives in Oregon with her family. She writes both fiction and non-fiction/memoir, and has won numerous awards in both categories. Anne is the 2015 past-President of Women Writing the West. For more, visit:

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New Release: GOOD NIGHT, OREGON by B.K. Froman

Screen Shot 2018-09-17 at 9.05.57 PMB.K. Froman’s newest release, just out on October 1, 2018, is a novel of growth, renewal, and finding oneself within the maelstrom of life.

In 1997, Rain, Oregon native Sophia Bolton still wants to fulfill her lifelong goal of saving humanity. To do so, she knows she needs to escape Rain, and it’s quirky collection of buried secrets, the convent, a jailbird, a buffalo, and crazy neighbors. Though her family–and their collective, perpetual messes–keeps trying to pull her back to Oregon, Sophia is certain she can overcome both her family needs and the obstacles in her way to finally finish a college degree.

To vent her frustrations with the constant struggle she must walk, Sophia creates a covert secret broadcast one night on the campus radio station. The secret becomes an obsession, and the airwaves soon become her own verbal diary, offering unseen listeners advice on how to survive the crazy, comical endeavor to grow up into a functioning adult. What does it mean? Why can’t she stop? And what will come of it all?


About B.K.

Screen Shot 2018-09-17 at 9.06.10 PMB.K. Froman is an award-winning writer, radio/TV talent, and university educator who lives in Oregon after spending several decades in Oklahoma. She’s a 2018 Laura Award finalist, 2016 National Willa Award finalist, and 2013 Clackamas Literary award winner in Short Works. To learn more, visit

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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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