Sunday, October 21, 2012

What is Homesteader about?

I recently had a request for information on my available novels from Spirit River and thus found an interesting site. They have the names of several Peace River area authors, information and in some cases reviews of their works and its availability.
I spent several minutes, many more than I can actually afford, reading about immigrants, pioneers, the Alberta Provincial Police, Grande Prairie … the site is chock full of items to pique the interest of anyone regardless of location or age.
I spent several moments reading about the mass murder which occurred in June of 1918 North West of Grande Prairie. The late Wallace Lloyd Tansem spent several years compiling the facts of the multiple murders and they appear in his book, “Foulest of Murder” is coverage of that information.
Check out the blog at
There is a link to Tansem’s work and to many others.
Town Spirit River also asked for information on Homesteader which I repeat here;
            What’s “Homesteader” about?
     Yes, the story “Homesteader” takes place in the Canadian West of the late 19th century. However, that isn’t what it’s about
     Yes, the story relates how a horseman from west of the Rockies and his riding partner each take land under the Homesteader Act. However, that isn’t what the novel is about.
     Sure there are Colt, Remington and Smith & Wesson revolvers mentioned, along with a few rifles including two Winchester models. But that has little to do with the story.
     There are a diverse group of characters. There is a bully who, like most bullies thinks he is smarter than most and judges people by their appearance. There are some North West Mounted Police officers, some doing their jobs and others who only want the “Force” to look after them. There are hardworking, money-less families, widows, prospectors, Blackfoot, Sioux and the business people of Calgary.
     Several action scenes are included. There are bucking horses and broken legs, a stage coach robbery and murder. Fence posts turn to slivers from the impact of a 45-70 bullet and sculls that do little better.
     Let us not forget the weather. A horrendous winter is part of the story; a winter that eventually was responsible for changing the way the country handles livestock.
    What the story is actually about is a young man finding the woman he loves. About learning that what he has been taught all his life is not necessarily true; that what may appear on the surface may not be what is underneath. About keeping a good partner and gaining another even closer one.
And, of course, recovering.
     As with “Partners” there is a link to “Homesteader” on my blog and other sites listed below. Both are available as books and in a variety of digital formats. They can also be found at the following book stores or ordered from those that don’t have it in stock.
Audrie’s Books … Edmonton
Riverside Music and Books … Peace River
Beth’s Books … Grande Prairie
Read’s Books … Dawson Creek
Bills News … Dawson Creek
Online at my blog; (click on the images to the right)


Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Communication and Partners

            I was under the mistaken impression that most who read this blog or visit Facebook knew what my presently available novels are about. Apparently I have been mistaken. Therefore I will attempt to communicate that information.


Actually that is primarily what “Partners” is about; the inability of the young, physical and poorly educated to understand some one older, well educated, worldly and of a more mental inclination. Of course, there is a need for communication in the other direction as well.

Lack of communication is not a unique problem. The difficulty exists today between the young and old, educated and ignorant, men and woman. I believe that this is a problem that has existed that has existed since the dawn of time.

I also believe that we don’t do enough to overcome this lack of understanding. When we do make efforts to communicate we often make the problem worse. When we don’t make an effort to be understood this too may make the problem worse since a non-action may project a lack of concern.

Is it necessary that we do anything? Perhaps time and stable emotions on the part of both parties will solve the problem.

“Partners” explores this question and supplies a possible answer or result. The story begins in the Cyprus Hills of the North West Territories (we call it Saskatchewan these days) in 1866. Our two heroes (one young and one REALY old … well, half my age) try to stay alive as they travel west, through the Crows Nest Pass and end up in Barkerville.

Yes their most serious problem from the Prairies does catch up to them, but …. Well, things could always be better.

I try to have some actual history in my stories and novels. “Partners” and “Homesteader” are no exception. There are stories and small tidbits of information buried within the fiction, things that really happened or perhaps things that affect what we do today. Both these novels are also available for Kindle, iBook and Nook.

One can click on the cover images to the left and go to the SBP page or go to At the later site it is also possible to read a few pages before purchase by using the “Look in the book” feature.

I’ll be back soon with another post with some information about “Homesteader”.