Thursday, July 28, 2011

Changing Horses by Leslee Breene, Guest Blogger

I am so pleased to present Leslee Breene, one of my writerly Colorado friends. We first met because we had the same publisher, Five Star/Cengage, back in the days when they still had the Expressions line for romance and women's fiction. Since Five Star no longer produces novels in that genre, Leslee has moved on. Today Leslee is talking about changing horses, but she's not referring to publishers.


Changing Horses by Leslee Breene, Guest Blogger

“Don’t be afraid to change horses midstream,” a college professor told me one day in Advertising class. The art project I’d been working on wasn’t going in a desirable direction.

What, I thought, does that mean?

“Don’t be afraid to jump on another horse if your project’s not going where you want it to,” he emphasized.

His timely advice came to mind with the idea for my (August 2011) release, Starlight Rescue, when I decided to stop writing historical romance and change over to contemporary. After all, I could still take those road trips that produce fascinating research, only for a present viewpoint instead of one in the past. Let me keep the western setting, though. Don’t ask me to leave it behind. The magic is there whether in the past or present.

What is it about the West that excites you as a writer? I’ve been asked. My response: All those sexy cowboys! Other reasons too. The magnificent mountain sentinels, the vastness of the place, the open, endless sky, the heart and the guts it took for those women and men to stake their lives here.

I’ve been privileged to have published two well-received hardcover historical novels through Five Star Expressions: Leadville Lady in 2006 and Hearts on the Wind in 2008. Colorado Five Star authors, including Pat Stoltey, shared with me many a fun author open house as the “Five Stars.” The Tattered Cover (Highlands Ranch, CO) remembers us, I’m sure!

My love of animals must have influenced the storyline of my upcoming fourth novel, Starlight Rescue. Wyoming veterinarian Kimberly Dorn must fight to keep her rescue ranch from persistent land developers. She harbors a lingering guilt from a childhood tragedy that can only be eased by rescuing abused and abandoned animals. Horses, llamas, emus, goats and puppies among them.

Gabe Trent, an adventurous wildlife filmmaker, offers her a profitable opportunity to save her ranch. But can Kimberly trust him with her four-legged critters…and her heart?

Starlight Rescue will make you smile, sigh, and fall in love—not only with the heroine who has a heart as big as the mountains she calls home, but also with the animals she rescues. Don’t miss this keeper!” ~ Deb Stover, Award-winning author of The Gift.

“Kimberly’s stubbornness is matched by Gabe’s patience in this story of saving the family ranch from greedy developers. Starlight Rescue is a wonderful story of determination, love and forgiveness.” ~ Linda Wommack, contributing editor and writer, True West Magazine, Wild West Magazine.

I’m a strong believer in writers joining writers’ groups. My memberships include Colorado Romance Writers, the Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, and Women Writing the West. I love to speak at Colorado and Wyoming events such as book clubs, social and business groups, libraries and fundraisers. Please visit me on Facebook for my latest activities.

Thank you, Pat, for introducing me and my work to your faithful followers!


Leslee, it was my pleasure. We did have a lot of fun at those "Five Star" signings, didn't we? Do you remember the event at Barnes & Noble Centerra with Beth's birthday cake? I still get a chuckle every time I think of the young fellow who scooped up a handful of cake and frosting as he moved past.

Starlight Rescue is an upcoming release from Treble Heart Books and will also be available at Leslee's website. Softcover ISBNS: 978-1-936127074-0, 1-936127-74-1. Ebook listing is forthcoming at in worldwide, all format distribution (including Kindle).

Foxfire, Leslee's first award-winning historical romance is discounted and still available as a POD at Author House.


Margot Kinberg said...

Pat - Thanks for hosting Leslee.

Leslee - Thanks for sharing your own experience at changing horses. I think it's important to really re-evaluate ourselves from time to time and ask if we're really doing the kind of writing we want to do. Good for you!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Hi Margot, thanks for coming by this morning. I'm another one who's trying to switch genres these days, so I enjoyed Leslee's post very much. Some of us want the chance to try new stuff, and if we're not too focused on building a career in one tiny niche (such as amateur sleuth mystery) we can explore and experiment a little. A lot depends on our goals for the future.

Jacqueline Seewald said...

Hi, Leslee and Pat,

I also found this an interesting post. I've been able to move my Kim Reynolds librarian sleuth series from Five Star Expressions to Five Star's Mystery Line. They are romantic mysteries, not romantic suspense novels so it wasn't that difficult. But I stil want to sell some of my historical romances. Mentally, it's good to try a variety of genres.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm not ready to jump horses yet, but I can see it happening eventually.


greetings, ladies both - while i've not yet jumped horses in terms of my writing i have certainly never feared nor hesitated to do it in my former professional life nor in my personal life - variety being the spice of life for me notwithstanding there is something to be said, i'm sure, for consistency in some cases - but i digress - wonderful post - and it's always such fun to drop by your western world here for trips down my own memory lane in the wild wild west -

lbreene said...

Hi gals,
So nice to have your input on "changing horses." My latest good news is that STARLIGHT RESCUE is now available at The ebook is also first! will have the ebook by week's end. Enjoy!

Patricia Stoltey said...

Thanks, Leslee. I'll stop saying upcoming release and start saying "buy now."

Marlena Cassidy said...

Hi, Patricia! Thank you for hosting Leslee!

I've been learning so much from reading these guest posts, both about publishing and about romance writing, and I just want to give a collective thanks for all of them. It's been a life-saver.

Heidiwriter said...

Great post, Leslee! I'm looking forward to reading your new book!

Terry Wright said...

Hi Leslee... I'm happy you have another book out. You go, girl.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Leslee, thanks again for being my guest today. I wish you all kinds of success with Starlight Rescue.

Dean K Miller said...

Love your guests on Thursday. So many good stories to follow. Thanks.

Edna Pontillo said...

Leslee, I so enjoyed your post and always apprciate the pearls that Pat brings our way. Thanks to both