Thursday, July 20, 2017

A Day in My Life by Paty Jager

Last Friday was an interesting day. It started the night before when hubby went to check on the irrigation pivots before dark and him returning after I'd texted him to see if he was okay. It turned out one of the pivots had stopped and when he drove the pickup out to shine lights to see if it was stuck, the pickup became stuck. His words to me before he showered and went to bed were, "I'll need your help in the morning."

Friday morning I crawled out of bed when he woke, asking if he needed me now. He replied, not yet. I slid back into bed for another hour of sleep. ;)

After breakfast we doctored Apollo the pony and we all, Tink, Mikey, hubby and I, climbed into the backhoe, which hubby had loaded with small rocks while I was sleeping, added a pivot drive box, and headed to the alfalfa field.
Mikey and Tink in the backhoe
Twisted drive line
At the pickup, sunk up to it's back axles in a deep pivot track, I jumped in the pickup and hubby pushed with the backhoe bucket against the tailgate of the pickup and that vehicle was out of the track. We dumped and tossed the rocks into the pivot track to not have a repeat vehicle sinking since that was the route used quit often to un-stick the pivot. (forgot to take a photo of the stuck truck)

What he'd thought was a worn out drive box on the fourth tower from the end turned out to be a twisted and snapped drive line. A bolt had worked loose from one end, making the drive line bind up and eventually twist apart. We took off the broken drive line and headed back to the shop for a new drive line. Back at the field we installed the new drive line. While out there the farrier, the vet had called expressing that our pony needed his feet tended immediately, called. He wanted to know if we'd be home around noon. I said, yes.

new drive line installed
With the pivot back moving we returned the backhoe to the shop and brought the dogs and pickup to the house for an iced tea break. Did I mention it was hovering around 90 degrees at 9am on Friday?  During our tea break as we sat on the porch facing the alfalfa fields, two covey of quails came up over the slope and crossed the other end of the porch.

While waiting for the farrier to arrive, I cleaned the inside of the Dodge one ton. We were using it the next day to haul hay to Central Oregon and bring fertilizer and bluegrass straw back.

Noon rolled around and we were still waiting for the farrier. We had lunch and hubby hooked up the Dodge to the flatbed trailer.

The farrier arrived. He was new to us and we had several conversations while he worked on Apollo's hard as rock hooves. He suggested we water down Apollo's pen a couple days before he comes back so that his hooves will be softer. George also had his hooves trimmed and he was one happy burro! The farrier was also please with how polite George was and easy to trim.

The farrier was talking construction with hubby, who, invited him up to see the house. Finally by three, I had alone time but I was hot and not in the mood to write so I worked on the business side of things, with promotion and updating things. I forgot hubby had told me to come pick him up at the shop in 30 minutes. An hour later, he text asking if I remembered to pick him up. oops! I jumped in Sami and rattled down to the shop. Then we went out to the North pivot's control box and he sped up the pivot so it would get by the area in the field it tends to get stuck over night and he wouldn't' have to worry about that while we were in Central Oregon on Saturday.

I cooked all of dinner outside on the barbecue to keep the house cool. It was sirloin steak, roasted potatoes and roasted brussel sprouts. Turned out pretty darn good!

After dinner I packed the clothes we'd need for one night and the reunion dinner and went to bed early. 

Monday, July 17, 2017

Covering a Romance Book

I would have to say I spend a quarter of my online time looking at covers on books of the same genre I write and looking for photos that I think will work on my book covers.

Over the years, I've heard many authors with big publishers say, I gave them the descriptions of my hero and heroine and my blonde heroine has black hair and my cowboy has on sneakers.

It is hard to find the photos that depict a story or the characters to put on a cover. Especially romance books. You want people who look like the characters, but you don't want to make them so distinguishable that the reader is thrown off by something you describe in the book that doesn't match the people. I've heard many readers say they like to visualize the characters in their mind and sometimes their depiction isn't anywhere close to the models on the cover. I like to use the pose that to me shows the character(s), then make sure they have period or vocation clothing and the same color hair as my hero or heroine. Their features don't have to be distinctive because those small things are what the reader adds to their perception of the couple.  Am I right readers?

Lately, for the romance covers, as soon as I get an idea of the hero and heroine, I start scouring the stock photo sites, looking for the perfect hero, heroine or couple in a poise that shows the heat of the story.

I was happy with the couple for Catch the Rain which you can find in the Cowboy Six Pack box set:

Running from her past, Kitty Baxter catches a glimpse of her future—if she’s brave enough to believe in herself and the kind-hearted stranger who claims she deserves love. 
Focused on setting up his new veterinarian practice, Zach MacDonald becomes sidetracked by a karaoke singing beauty with a secret. He sees what others don’t, and becomes determined to make Kitty see that anyone can learn to catch the rain.

Period Images sent out an email saying they had some new Victorian images and I found the heroine for Savannah the first Silver Dollar Saloon book.

Savannah Gentry has lost everything due to her mother’s greediness. Her father is dead, their mansion and everything in it is now owned by a banker twice her age who wants her for his wife. Knowing her only chance is to find the half-brother she only learned about at her father’s death, she sets out for Shady Gulch, Dakota Territory.

After hiding in an outhouse to keep from being killed by his own gang and the law, Topeka Kid died and Larkin Webster was reborn.  When Savannah Gentry, sister to the owner of the Silver Dollar Saloon, stumbles off the train and into his arms, he chases the excitement he once knew as an outlaw. This time, his heart won’t listen to his head.  Loving this woman may end his career as a preacher, but it will make his life a challenge until the day he is put in the ground.

I'll also have another contemporary western novella, Eight Seconds to Love, coming out in September. I found the perfect couple and pose for this book also at Period Images.

Jared McIntyre can’t believe his eyes. The bull rider brought into his ER is none other than his best friend’s tomboy cousin, Lacey Wallis. The girl he couldn’t get out of his head the last fifteen years. During his tour in Iraq he lost another thrill-seeking woman and he isn’t about to let this one destroy her life. 

Lacey Wallis is injured during the bull ride that moves her up in the rankings to go to National Finals Rodeo.  Her dream. But the guy she had a crush on when she was thirteen is back in her life, and trying his darnedest to make her give up on the bulls and get her adrenaline rush from him.