I love the start of a new year, but I also like to first take stock of the last one. In 2017 I had two Heartwarming books out—Last Chance Cowboy and Cowboy on Call, Books #2 and #3 in my Kansas Cowboys series.
The Reluctant Rancher is book #1.
Cowboy on Call came out in November while I was completing the fourth book in the series due in mid-December. During a short break from the writing, my husband and I spent a lovely Thanksgiving Day with our godson’s family in Atlanta. The following morning we flew to Boston to visit our older son’s group, and the holiday season seemed to be off and running. But, wait…
A few days after I sent the new book to my editor, hubby and I flew to Phoenix to see other relatives and friends and to get warm <grin>. Unfortunately, this time our plans didn’t quite work out. Oddly enough, it was freezing in Arizona. Then hubby caught the nasty virus that was going around there—and across the whole country. Oh, and we got into a minor traffic accident when a woman in the next lane suddenly veered into ours, denting our rental car. Thank goodness no one was hurt, but the holidays by now had threatened to become, well…different.
Boy, was I glad that, while I polished up Wannabe Cowboy (working title for book #4) I’d done most of my Christmas shopping online (e-tail is my new best friend). The packages were in the mail and some had even arrived at their destinations. At home in Tennessee, as I tended my sick husband and channeled my inner Nurse Ratched, I wrote a few Christmas cards then decorated the house—except for putting up the big tree this year. We made do with the smaller ones, a new, lighted wreath for the front door and a bowl full of sparkle.
Cozied up each night in front of the fire, with the mantel lights glowing, I settled in to (at last) enjoy the season. It was good to be home if not for long. We would visit our younger son’s family after Christmas but, as it turned out, hubby was still not feeling well enough to travel then and I didn’t want to leave him alone. I sure missed seeing the grandkids, though. I’m told his new furry beanbag chair was Jack’s favorite present and Lily, our gymnast, likes her folding balance beam and mats.
Still, other things worked out. As I pondered the Christmas lights, voila! A new story, to be the fifth book in my Kansas Cowboys series, came to life. In the last novel I introduced Nell Sutherland, the heroine’s friend, who is one tough cowgirl. Nell is determined to prove she can run her grandfather’s huge ranch. But Cooper Ransom still resents her; her family forced his parents to sell their adjoining property years ago and they moved away. So I’ve thrown Nell and Cooper together. I wonder what sort of trouble they can get into? Other than falling in love, I mean.
Wishing all of you a Happy, Healthy 2018! Here’s a toast to new beginnings. And, of course, to happy endings.