Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Author Interview: Joanne Kennedy with Giveaway

A cowboy like that could break your heart...
Fleeing her latest love-life disaster, big city journalist Libby Brown's transition to rural living isn't going exactly as planned. Her childhood dream has always been to own a farm-but without the constant help of her charming, sexy cowboy neighbor, she'd never make it through her first Wyoming season.
But he could sure keep you warm at night, too...
Handsome rancher Luke Rawlins is impressed by this sassy, independent city girl. But he yearns to do more than help Libby out with her ranch. He's ready for love, and he wants to go the distance...
Then the two get embroiled in their tiny town's one and only crime story, and Libby discovers that their sizzling hot attraction is going to complicate her life in every way possible...

Hi Joanne! Thanks so much for taking the time to answer a few questions.
      Thanks so much for having me!

  1. Can you tell us what inspired you to write Cowboy Trouble?
First of all, I was inspired by Wyoming and the West. Since I grew up in New England, I felt like I’d come to an alien planet when I first moved out here. At one point in the book, my heroine says that seeing real cowboys in boots and chaps is “like moving to Austria and finding your neighbors decked out in Lederhosen.” That’s exactly how I felt. But I also fell in love with the wide-open spaces and the quirky individuality of the people out here.
Speaking of falling in love, I was also inspired by my own story. Like Libby, I met an irresistible stranger at the very moment I decided to swear off men forever. Since then, all my stories illustrate the point that no matter what’s happened in your past, love is always a risk worth taking.

  1. When did you write the book and how much research went into it?
Cowboy Trouble is the first book I ever wrote. I finished it almost five years ago, but everyone told me Westerns were out of style, so I put it away after a few rejections and wrote some other manuscripts. Then my agent found out Sourcebooks was looking for Western romances, and here we are! Cowboy Trouble is truly the book of my heart, and I’m so glad it made it to the bookshelves.
As far as research goes, everything I do is research. A stop at a bar on a road trip led to the Roundup. (All the guys at the bar really were named Mike.) Seeing beat-up piebald pickups parked at rodeos and ranches inspired Luke’s truck. The idea for Crazy Mike’s muskrats was sparked by a flea-market display, and Libby’s dogs are sitting beside me as I write this!
I love exploring the West, and writing gives me a great excuse to take road trips off into the hinterlands. Looking at everything as a potential story element makes the world a fascinating place, because small towns and barren landscapes that might bore other people become potential settings. I find myself imagining what it would be like to live there. What kind of people would my neighbors be? How would I make a living? What might be dangerous or difficult about living there? I talk to waitresses and shopkeepers, gas station attendants and strangers in bars. Everybody has a story.

  1. Which writers have influenced you the most?
That’s a tough one. As a bookseller, I probably approached writing a novel a little differently. I talk to a lot of readers, and I see what they enjoy and why, so lots of different writers have influenced me. I wanted to create a quick, fun read, so even though their stories are nothing like mine, I used short chapters like James Patterson and a clear, no-frills writing style like Jonathan Kellerman. Then I added zany humor in the style of Janet Evanovich, who is probably my favorite writer these days. In romance, I love, love, love Linda Lael Miller’s cowboys. I also love the way Susan Elizabeth Phillips addresses serious emotions with humor, and I admire Carolyn Brown’s Lucky series for its smart, snappy wit. I also enjoy light, humorous contemporary romances; a few recent favorites are Christie Craig, Elaine Fox, and Rachel Gibson.

  1. What book is currently on your nightstand?
I’m reading Doppelgangster by Laura Resnick. It’s a very funny and quirky paranormal mystery that involves Mafia hitmen, tough city cops, and a terrific heroine—and who could resist that title? And I just finished I’m With Stupid by Elaine Szewczyk, which is an anti-romance where the heroine is desperately trying to shed her clueless boyfriend. Very edgy and funny.

  1. Is there anything about Luke or Libby that only you know? (That isn’t discussed in Cowboy Trouble)?
·       Libby loves chocolate-covered pretzels and Cracker Jacks.
·       She tells everyone her favorite TV shows are Burn Notice and Lost, but she’s secretly addicted to Survivor.
·       Luke was an Eagle Scout.
·       Penny never really gets over her little problem of peeing when she’s excited.
·       That guy Libby dated before Luke? The one who was such a jerk? I dated him, too. (I think maybe we all did!)
·       There’s more about Luke, but I don’t kiss and tell…

  1. Is there anything else you'd like your readers to know? Are you currently working on another novel?
First of all, I just want to thank readers for sharing my world. Characters aren’t truly alive until they inhabit the minds of readers, and Luke and Libby thank you, too.
And I hope you’ll also like meeting Charlie and Nat!. Their story, One Fine Cowboy, will be released September 7th. Charlie Banks is a grad student from New Jersey who goes to a horse training clinic in Wyoming to study non-verbal communication. She’s an animal rights activist who thinks cowboys are animal abusers, but the man she finds at Latigo Ranch proves her wrong—and boy, does he ever excel at non-verbal communication!

Thanks again for stopping by Wendy's Minding Spot!
You’re very welcome! I love this blog; it’s so clear that you have a passion for books and reading, and you’ve found a great way to share it with people. Thanks for giving me a chance to connect with your readers!
Fleeing her latest love life disaster, big city journalist Libby Brown's transition to rural living isn't going exactly as planned. Her childhood dream has always been to own a chicken farm—but without the constant help of her charming, sexy, cowboy neighbor; she'd never have made it through her first Wyoming season.

Handsome rancher Luke Rawlins is impressed by this sassy, independent city girl. But he yearns to do more than help Libby out with her ranch…he's ready for love, and he wants to go the distance. When the two get embroiled in their tiny town's one and only crime story, Libby discovers that their sizzling hot attraction is going to complicate her life in every way possible…

Joanne Kennedy has worked in bookstores all her life in positions ranging from bookseller to buyer. She is a member of Romance Writers of America and Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, and won first place in the Colorado Gold Writing Contest and second place in the Heart of the Rockies contest in 2007.  Joanne lives and writes in Cheyenne, Wyoming. For more information please visit and

Giveaway Opportunity!
2 Lucky Winners will receive their own copy of Cowboy Trouble.
USA and Canada Only
Please leave a comment with your email.
Winners announced on March 12th.


  1. This looks fun! Please enter me!

    Great interview!

    BethsBookReviewBlog AT gmail DOT com

  2. Hi, Joanne! How lucky for us that you choose to write Western Romance! Let me say this from the heart: Western Romance will never go out of style! When a cowboy loves a lady, he loves with all his heart. He may not be much for words, but his feelings run deep and true.

    Please enter my name in the drawing. I am a follower and subscriber.

    gcwhiskas at aol dot com

  3. I loved this interview! Please enter me!! Many thanks!

    Mollydawn1981 AT aol DOT com

  4. Thanks, everyone - I wish I could give you all a book! And Virginia, I agree -- cowboy romance is the best, and I love writing about the West. People out here have a very simple but profound sense of right and wrong, and that makes for wonderful romantic heroes. (The chaps don't hurt, either!)
    Thanks again for the chance to talk about Cowboy Trouble!

  5. Nice interview :)
    Please enter me to win a copy of the book!
    baileythebookworm at gmail dot com

  6. I'm looking forward to reading this book!

    chey127 at hotmail dot com

  7. Please enter me for this one. I've been wanting to read it, since I first heard of it!! It looks great.

    mlawson17 at hotmail dot com

  8. Nice to meet the author!

    janemaritz at yahoo dot com

  9. Oh, this book looks like one I would really like! Please enter me.

  10. Great interview. Your book sounds good. I love cowboys.


  11. I love western romances, historical AND contemporary. A cowboy is sexy in any time period!

    Congrats on the release of your very first book! How exciting for you. I wish you great success!

    castings at mindspring dot com

  12. There is nothing better than sitting down with a modern romance with the "have to have" sexy cowboy. Oh I miss my days in Texas.
    msboatgal at

  13. Gah! i love cowboys. (I kick myself for not requesting this one....)

    enter me please!

  14. I would love the chance to read a good cowboy romance. :0) Count me in, please!

    librarygrinch at gmail dot com

  15. I love to read about cowboys so I know I would enjoy your book.Please enter me.

    seriousreader at live dot com

  16. I enjoyed the interview. I've always loved a good cowboy romance. There's something about those rugged men, their jeans, hats and horses that really appeals to me.


  17. Great interview. I love cowboys so this book is for me.LOL
    Thanks for the great giveaway.

    misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com


The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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