Tuesday, 13 July 2010
My Passion for Westerns by Barri Bryan
Spotlight week continues with author Barri Bryan who talks about her passion for Westerns.
I grew up during the Great Depression. My family was poor, even by 1930's standards. However, once a week my mother managed to find twenty cents for my brother and me to go to the movies. Yes, back then it cost a whopping ten cents for a child to go to a movie. Each Saturday that thin dime bought my ticket to a world of imagination and dreams. That world was replete with dastardly, devious villains, fair young maidens in distress, and best of all, strong and stalwart cowboy heroes.
I can't remember a time when I wasn't attracted to stories about the old west.
My dad was a great story teller. In the evenings after he came home from work and we'd had our evening meal, he would spin yarns -- facts that, I suspect now, were laced with liberal amounts of fantasy -- about 'the ole west.' He told of things he remembered. He's worked during his teens as a cowboy on a ranch in West Texas. He'd once gone on a cattle drive, of sorts. He also passed on stories he'd heard. His uncle, who was a barber, once shaved Frank James. That seems to me now, to be a dubious achievement at best; but Dad thought it to be quite an honor. His ranch foreman had once witnessed, first-hand, a battle-to-the-death gun fight. I learned, over the years, to take my dad's stories with a grain of salt, but they always fascinated me.
So, you see, my heroes have always been cowboys. When I began to write, I wrote about, what else but stories that reflect my love of romance and happy endings, and my passion for the Wild West and cowboys.