Thursday, November 10, 2011

Are Westerns Finally Trending?

Jennifer Conner
 by Jennifer Conner
Copyright © 2011 Jennifer Conner

Are the new trends in Westerns changing from what has always been considered the ‘traditional’ Western story line? This is part of being an author. Taking traditional Westerns and adding my own spin, or as they say on Glee, a mash-up. With Rush of Love and Fields of Gold the Western is a changing.

We can head 'em up & move 'em out last summer with movies hitting the big screen such as Cowboys and Aliens (come on, Daniel Craig in chaps was the best part of the movie) and last year's True Grit. These are two movies in complete contrast. True Grit—totally traditional, Cowboys and Aliens...well from the title alone, we know that the showdown at the O.K. Corral will have someone green...from a spaceship.

Did this mark the comeback of the Westerns? And more so, will it transpose over into books and readers? We’re told the hot new genre will be the comeback of Westerns in fiction.

Cowboys are always good, right?

Klondike Gold Rush
Historical Park Museum
Neither of my new releases are tradition western. They take place in Seattle in 1898, during the Klondike Gold Rush. The idea came to me while watching a History Channel show on ghosts. Underground Seattle is the ‘old part’ of Seattle that they rebuilt on top of after the great fire of 1889. Supposedly it is haunted by a young man who they think had his fortune stolen after hitting a big gold find.

A ghost wasn’t going to work for my plot (though ghosts are sexy) so in Rush of Love I made it a young man who makes a few bad decisions and loses his wealth, but will he find love in return?

The second in the series, Fields of Gold is based in the same time with a photo of my husband’s great grandfather who owned a Seattle mercantile on the cover. It has been a fun experience. The research has been equally fun. I went to the Klondike Gold Rush Museum in Seattle and picked the ranger's brains. I was told a big gold pay out in 1898 was $20,000. Can you imagine! That would be millions in today’s rates. That was a lot of money, no wonder they all headed to Alaska.

I’ve never written to the market, I write what story ideas come to me, but. Lordy, I’m gosh darn happy the Westerns are making a comeback! Take a chance and change up your idea of what a cowboy should be!

Enjoy the adventures of Samuel and Theodore Cooper in Rush of Love.
Other books and short stories by Jennifer Conner (all available at Books to Go Now):
Kilt by Love (a novel) 
Christmas with Carol
Christmas Chaos
The Music of Christmas
All I want for Christmas is You
Auld Lang Sigh
Do You hear what I Hear
The Duke and the Lost Night
The Reluctant Heir in the Regimental Heroes Series-
Cupcakes and Cupids
Valentine Encounter


  1. Plus there's talk that the new hot trend in tv is westerns as well!!! Just about every top network currently has one in production. Watched the premeiere of AMC's Hell on Wheels and loved it!!! Long live the western in fiction, movies, and fiction!

    Just bought both of your Gold Rush books, Jennifer!

  2. I hope so! I've been hearing that westerns are coming back since I started writing them many moons ago.

  3. These sound like great books! I sure hope there is a trend toward westerns and I like to do different too. That's why I have a historical trilogy set among the Nez Perce.


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