Cowboy Culture

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In honor of my new release, Cowboy Heat, an anthology featuring stories from 14 other authors with fierce cowboys and the women strong enough to tame them taking the lead, we’ll walk in the boots of a cowboy for the next few Tuesdays and explore interesting facets of his life in the blog series, Cowboy Culture.

The cowboy is so much more than a herder of cattle. His roots trace back to Spain and the first European immigrants who settled the new world. Though known today for his loyalty and hard-working spirit, his early expeditions recognize the occasionally savagery of his conquests in the frontier. His persistence and ability to thrive with little but the horse between his strong legs helped make him the backbone of the America West. It’s no wonder Hollywood, literary and popular fiction have centered hundreds of thousands of works on the icon.

Today we’ll look at the animal that made the cowboy’s position in history possible. The horse.

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Scientific name Equus ferus caballus. Measured from the crest of the withers, where the back and neck meet, a horse stands 14.3 hands (hand = 4 inches) or taller of lean muscle and thick bone. Anything shorter is considered a pony. The tallest horse ever recorded was 21.2 and 1/2 hh! That’s seven feet, two and a half inches at the withers. As you can see, they come with a unique set of vocabulary terms. Also, an unbound spirt and grace, though, like the rest of us they have their clumsy moments.

Archeological discoveries show horses were first domesticated around 3500 BC. There are over two hundred unique breeds in the world that vary by gated, color, blood and body type. Historically horses have been used as the primary source of transportation, but in today’s world of motor vehicles they are used for a variety of pleasure sports, work herding  cattle, as well as therapies for people with physical and mental disabilities.

A horse’s stamina and highly trainable nature have made them a tool of war and work, but they are known by horse-lovers for their honest emotions and open hearts. Cheers to the magic of horses who have enriched our lives and made so many things possible!

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Each like, follow, friend or review will enter your name in the drawing for a $10 Amazon Gift Card in the following increments.

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Review of any of my three titles Cowboy Heat, High Octane Heroes or Wild At Heart Volume II (PG-13 rated anthology benefiting Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge) on Amazon or Goodreads = 3 entries

Contest runs from March 18 – April 18th. Winner will be chosen using random.org and notified by April 21st. Shoot me a message on Facebook, Twitter, my Blog or Website letting me know your email address (used only for notification on this contest) and how you entered, and I’ll add you the appropriate number of times to my tally sheet!!

Let’s Party!

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It’s, March 18th, release day for Cowboy Heat! In celebration, the contributing authors are giving away books and other swag all day long (8:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m central time).

Come Join

Randi Alexander
Cheyenne Blue
Michael Bracken
Layla Chase
Cynthia D’Alba
Delilah Devlin
Shoshanna Evers
Mia Hopkins
Myla Jackson
Emma Jay
Cat Johnson
Amber Lin
Robie Madison
Megan Mitcham
Sabrina York

…on Facebook for all the fun and prizes!! I’m hosting from 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. central time and giving away an Amazon gift card!!

Cowboy Heat: Western Romance for Women

I interrupt our previously scheduled Zimbabwe posts (which we’ll complete in May) with some exciting news. Cowboy Heat‘s release date jumped from June to March 18! Cowboy Heat: Western Romance for Women is another Delilah Devlin Collection which gathers short stories from fifteen talented authors, many of whom are NYT & USA Today Bestselling authors.

I have tons of neat things to share with you in this next series about the iconic heroes. We’ll discuss (my favorite) the horses, the chow, the tools of the trade, The West and the men who helped shape it.

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For now, I’ll give you a sneak peak at my story.

Coming Home

 A busted-up rodeo champion finds the squirt he tormented in youth transformed into a fiery woman challenging him to become the man she deserves

Excerpt

Gravel crunched under the massive pickup’s tires as it left smooth pavement behind. Barrett’s chest constricted in response. Breathing became hard. Hell, the rebellion his insides pitched was close kin to a panic attack, but cowboys, whole or broke down, didn’t have such weak-kneed reactions. The panorama before him of vast rolling hills, green, cow-sprinkled grass and wide-open sky was home. Six years away hadn’t dimmed its beauty or his affection. Barrett rolled his shoulders and shrugged off the vibe. Nothin’ to get riled about.

Barrett crested the first hill and knew he had every right to feel screwed up inside. Two sorrel mares, one a good hand taller and three hundred pounds stouter than the other, blocked the gravel driveway. A petite woman with long, strawberry, wind-whipped hair, wearing boots and chaps, sat astride the smaller horse. Her elegant jaw set in a familiar expression of stubborn rage.

“Holy shit!” The words left his mouth in a drawled whisper.

He halted the pickup and confronted her fierce gaze with his own. The air between them grew thick with tension like an ol’ western draw. Finally, she swirled a finger in the air, signaling him to roll down the window. Being a gentleman, he obliged.

She planted a delicate hand on her hip. “You didn’t really think you were gonna sneak back home while everybody’s gone to auction, did you?”

The air blew crisp and clean in his face as he draped one arm on the door. “Yeah, I’s countin’ on it actually.”

“Anyone you lookin’ to avoid?” she asked, straightening, her silky pink lips tightening.

That face, part angel, part nymph, never ceased to amaze him. Neither did the rest of her. His eyes dropped to her bite-sized breasts and his cock saluted, thickening in his jeans. “Naw.” His lips parted again, but the words died in an expelled breath. Too soon for all that.

Pale lids narrowed around flame-green eyes. Her nose twitched, drawing his attention to the spray of freckles that ran across its ridge and over delightful apple cheeks. Then her lips moved. “A wise man would, but since you aren’t—lookin’ to avoid anyone, that is—git your tush out of that truck before my panties melt off.”

Damn, if his chest didn’t tighten again. He pounded his fist against the sensation, adjusted his hat, and leaned closer to the fiery woman. “Excuse me?”

“That is the point of that sexy machine, to make women drop their drawers?”

The laugh came from deep inside, from a place so hidden light hadn’t touched it in years. “Sassy Britches, it’s been a while. You’ve changed, and then you haven’t.”

“Barrett Whitman, if you wanna make it home, you won’t call me that again. I don’t care if you are ‘The Bear,’ four-year-reignin’ National Rodeo Champion. Get your ass out the truck and on this horse.”

“Scarlett, you keep talkin’ like that, and I’ll be forced to tell your daddy. I’d hate for him to have to paddle your sweet bottom.”

She gave a girlie, “Huh!” and then wiggled narrow hips as she spoke. “If you’d been around, you’d know my daddy’s retired back home to Texas and your parents saw fit to put me in charge of the ranch. Now, scoot. Daylight’s wastin’, and we got some ground to cover.”

Join The Fun

1) Subscribe to the Cowboy Heat Blog. To sign up click the Cowboy Heat Blog link. Look to the right side of this screen below the carousel of books. Enter your email address where it says “Subscribe to Blog Via Email.” That way, every post describing the exciting things we have coming will be delivered right to you inbox. You won’t miss a thing!

2) Go like our Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/CowboyHeat. We’re busy planning events to tempt you to play. And again, there will be prizes involved, I know you don’t want to miss those either.

– With –

Randi Alexander
Cheyenne Blue
Michael Bracken
Layla Chase
Cynthia D’Alba
Delilah Devlin
Shoshanna Evers
Mia Hopkins
Myla Jackson
Emma Jay
Cat Johnson
Amber Lin
Robie Madison
Megan Mitcham
Sabrina York

Wild Wonders of Zimbabwe

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More than a mile wide the Zambezi River careens off the side of the earth, falling more than three hundred feet, slowly carving the basalt plateau in Matabeleland North, Zimbabwe. Ancient stone artifacts dating back two million years to the time of Homo habilis have been catalogued by its shores.

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Zimbabwe is home to countless species including the ever popular elephant, rhinoceros, lion, cheetah, wildebeest and hyena. But did you know, in this country even the birds are outrageously beautiful?

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My short story in the Wild at Heart Anthology benefiting Turpentine Creek Wildlife Refuge in Eureka Springs, AR, Fierce Wild, takes place near Matusadona National Park. Below is an example of the eclectic mix of creatures it protects. Enjoy!