For as long as I remember, I have loved cowboys and horses. Growing up on a farm in the middle of nowhere – my choice of leisure was to ride my horse and pretend I was a cowboy. I wasn’t interested in housework and I wasn’t interested in farming.
When I was older and reality stuck me in a city (at least my choice was good – Calgary – cow-town – did offer much to keep my thoughts alive when trying to capture the illusive nature of a cowboy). As a child I wrote stories of cowboys and delved into the concept of combining cowboys and romance when I was a teen. I listened to music and I played one song ‘Momma Don’t Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Cowboys’ by Waylon Jennings in particular. Why not? I wanted my babies to be cowboys – they were so fascinating and so perfect – that is a real cowboy – not a cocoa cowboy (there is a song for that too). But I needed to study their flaws too to make them right.
I found horses fascinating as well and I started painstakingly drawing – until I could say I was drawing a perfect horse. (Never happened – yet).
As I listened to George Strait or Alan Jackson the concept of a cowboy nature took hold. I was ready to develop my characters.
Now to keep my love alive I have a new cowboy in my life. Viggo Mortensen in Hidalgo is my new study. I love that show. I have written two stories using a Metis as my hero (Indians make wonderful cowboys). Mortensen’s character is a Metis (If Americans called them Metis – which they don’t – Canadians do though). He is half native and half white in the story. Perfect for my ideas and I can only admire the man and cowboy in this show.(not to mention Hidalgo).