07-21-18 Patricia Sargeant

Saturday, September 22, 2012

The "Draw" of Westerns by Paty Jager

I'd feel lower than a snake's belly if I didn't inform you all about the charm of western romance novels whether they're historical or contemporary.
We've all felt that visceral pull when a man in tight blue jeans, cowboy boots, T-shirt or a long sleeved work shirt, and a cowboy hat came into view. Before you even see the face, you sigh. We all watched Bonanza, Gunsmoke, and The Virginian growing up. Or the western movies with John Wayne, Tom Selleck, Sam Elliott… I could go on and on.

In our culture the cowboy means chivalry, honor, duty, loyalty. Traits we all cherish in a hero. That's why I like to write westerns- historical or contemporary. The cowboy way of life and spirit is embodied in the heroes I write.  My Halsey brothers while they're more miners than cowboys, they have the mentality to fight for what's right, treat a lady with respect, and love children and animals. The hero, Brock, in Perfectly Good Nanny owns a ranch.  And while he'd do anything to keep his family together, he won't compromise anyone to do it. He battles the land to keep his family fed and clothed and he battles his own demons while helping the heroine conquer her own.

And the great characters in the secondary western characters… Gabby Hayes, Tonto, Festus, Trampus.  I use the secondary characters I've loved in movies and TV shows to make my secondary characters in my books.  In the Halsey books, I have a widowed woman who takes the Halsey brothers under her wing when their parents die. She's a bit nosey but only because she cares. And though she's a tiny thing she doesn't think twice about taking one of the grown brothers by the ear and making them do what's right. And they listen to her because she is their elder and a woman. A cowboy trait.  In Perfectly Good Nanny the sidekick is an elderly Klamath Indian who helps the hero's daughter order a nanny online, sets the hero straight when he needs someone to vent to, and finds a way to disappear when trouble is brewing. A good secondary character gives levity to a story in my opinion.

Another reason I write westerns could be the fact I grew up riding horses on a 200 acre ranch and exploring the mountains around our house. The early 1900's ranch house we lived in had a wood cookstove, an outhouse, and a woodshed, also an earth cellar. We butchered chickens and rabbits, made butter and ice cream. I lived a life similar to the lives of the characters in my historical books. Owning 350 acres raising hay and cattle, I live the country life that I put into my contemporary westerns.

Western romance books whether they're historical or contemporary are about the lifestyle and the cowboy way of life that we all love: God, country, respect, honor, loyalty, and duty. And that's why I write westerns.

Why do you like westerns?  Who is your favorite western character either in a book, movie, or TV show? Why?

Bio: Wife, mother, grandmother, and the one who cleans pens and delivers the hay; award winning author Paty Jager and her husband currently farm 350 acres when not dashing around visiting their children and grandchildren. She not only writes the western lifestyle, she lives it.

Paty is a member of RWA, EPIC, and COWG. Wild Rose Press has published nine of her books. Spirit of the Mountain won the Lorie Award for Best Paranormal. Spirit of the Lake was a finalist in the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence contest.  Perfectly Good Nanny, won the 2008 EPPIE for Best Contemporary Romance. 

You can learn more about my at my blog; www.patyjager.blogspot.com website; http://www.patyjager.net on Facebook or you can read three of  my short stories at


Marian L said...

Wow, love the pic. Can't wait to read your book.

Kai Strand said...

Sounds so compelling, Paty. Nice post! Oh and yes, love the pic, too.

LisaRayns said...

Nothing wrong with a good cowboy. Great post.

Paty Jager said...

Thanks Marian, There are several out there.

Hi Kai! Thanks! I thought he was a worthy cowboy.

Hey Lisa, Thanks. I agree, there is nothing wrong with a cowboy.

Gerri Bowen said...

Great post, Paty. Cheyenne Bodie was/is my favorite. He was honorable, listened to other points of view before coming to a decision and took the side of the less powerful. And he was a handsome hunk, too.

Anonymous said...

My favorite "cowboy" TV show growing up was Bonanza. I still like watching the reruns because the line between right and wrong is so clear and the Bonanza kids always make the right choice in the end. I also LOVE your books, Patty. I wish someone would pick them up for a Cowboy TV series again. I'd love to see cowboys return to series TV instead of another reality show or show about greed.

Judith Ashley said...

Hi Paty,
I like Rawhide and The Virginian best but seldom missed an episode of Bonanza.

Great picture. I think my head would swivel whether he had his hat on or not! lol

And I agree with Maggie - another western/cowboy series on t.v. would be an improvement over the slew of reality shows.

Sandra Dailey said...

I love cowboys! Thanks for the free reads and yummy eye candy.

D. McCollum D. McCollum said...

Love the picture! I don't write westerns but I do love to read a good novel with cowboys as hero's. I watched all the same cowboy shows you did. But I will add one more. When I was very little and all t.v. was black and white, I loved watching Hoppa Long cassidy. You new he was the good guy, white hat, and white horse.

Paty Jager said...

Hi Gerri, Thank you. I'm going to have to google Cheyenne Bodie. I don't know who he is.

Thanks for stopping in Maggie. I agree about Bonanza and needing less reality tv and more of the good westerns. And thank you for your kind words about my books.

Hi Judith. Rawhide was my hubby's favorite western. Thanks, I thought that picture might get attention. ;0)

Hi Sandra. You're most welcome!

Hi Diana! Did you see your name is stuttering?? Hoppa Long was the undeniable picture of good with all the symbolism in the staging.

Sarah Raplee said...

Hi Paty,

My all-time favorite cowboy character is Quigley, played by Tom Selleck in the movie Quigley Down Under.

He's an american cowboy in Australia and a hero through-and-through. Plus, the story is a Romantic Adventure.

Paty Jager said...

Sarah, Quigley is one of my favorite western characters. Not to mention it was when Tom was in in his yummy prime. I love the twinkle in his eye.