Shey’s Story

I have spent a little too much time ‘researching’ online.   In fact, I spent the entire weekend researching for Shey’s book, my Texas book, and I didn’t know that I actually went a little crazy at Amaon and eBay tracking down history books, cook books, memoirs, biographies,  and more until the books started to arrive in today’s mail.  

I ordered a lot of books.   A lot, a lot.  The good thing is that I found some really cool books.  The bad thing is, now I’m going to want to read them all which means I won’t be doing quite as much writing as I should be.   But oh, I love history books and historical accounts and pouring over old black and white photos of a time long gone. 

Some of the books that have already arrived include:  Texas Women on the Cattle Trails; Grace & Gumption:  Stories of Fort Worth Women;  Between Sun and Sod, An informal History of the Texas Panhandle; Whatever the Wind Delivers; Palo Pinto County History; Painted Post Past:  A 150 Year History of Palo Pinto County, Texas; More Than Petticoats:  Remarkable Texas Women—and I have probably another 10 books still coming.

 Now will all that history go into Shey’s story?  Nah.  But I, the writer, need a rich world to draw on, and the more I know about Shey and her family, and Shey and her ranching neighbors, and how these families got to Palo Pinto County, and what their dreams are, and what their reality is, the more real and interesting the story is for the reader.

People have asked me recently why a Texas set story, concerned I think that I don’t know enough about Texas to set a story there.  I just shrug a little at the questions because I love Texas.  My mom’s dad was from El Paso and I used to work for AMR Corp and they’re headquarter in Fort Worth and a couple of my very good high school friends married guys who make their home in Texas and every time I can visit them, I do.

 But a ranch story…a story that returns Shey to her family property is actually closer to my heart than most people know.  My grandfather, after finishing college at Purdue, moved to California.   Although he was a civil engineer by profession, his passion was cattle and land, and I grew up spending vacations on one of the three cattle ranches he owned at the time of his death.  The ranch I visited with my family was just called ‘the ranch’ and the property is a couple hours from Fresno heading west towards the coast, but about 40 miles before you hit Paso Robles.  

Life on the ranch was simple.  The cabin was just a beaten up trailer turned into a bunk house and painted a dark barn red.  We got our water from the windmill.  We kids played in the old corrals and silos and feedlots.   As we headed off every day, mom would remind us not to get trapped in the grain in the silo–we’d suffocate–and to make sure we carried our rattlesnake kit in our back pocket.   We rode old horses who pretty much ignored us and went looking for deer at night once the sun dipped and twilight spread long lavender shadows across the hills.  As I said, it was simple, but it also remains part of my strongest memory of my childhood, my family and my past.  The ranch taught me to love the land and to listen to the wind in the grass and the rustle of the olive colored leaves on the oak trees.  It taught me that there’s nothing more better than pancakes on a cold morning and no better way to sleep than on a saggy, sqeaky bunk bed because your brothers and sister are nearby. 

I don’t know how the actual writing of Shey’s book will go.  I’m nervous.  I’m eager.  I’m excited.  Every book is a huge new challenge but this book already has a special place in my heart.  Taking Shey home will give me a chance to go home again, too.

It’s been a few days since I did a blog contest and I’ve got a stack of great novels to give away, including books by some of my author friends Liza Palmer, Megan Crane and Beth Kendrick, along with a Starbucks mug, a Starbucks drink card, a bag of See’s chocolate hearts and tons of JP goodies.   Just post a comment below by Wednesday midnight and I’ll announce the winner in a comment below on Thursday morning.  You can post anything to be counted, so talk to me!

102 Comments

  1. My goodness Jane you certainly did buy out the bookstore.
    Where I am from we call the ranches farms around here. Grandma and grandpa always had cows, mules and pigs. A couple of wonderful pond to fish in a barn to tell stories in and lots of land and forest for us kids the cousins to roam around in. You are right some of those special times during childhood bring the best memories.

  2. I have a ton of books I want to read as well. I keep getting books from the library and hoping I can keep them much longer than I’m allowed. If you haven’t seen the movie, The Other Boleyn Girl, you must rent it. So great and so historical!

  3. I love reading western romances, both contemporary and historical. Life on a ranch is simple, yet hard.

    I admire the research that you are doing. Hopefully, it will be more fun than work for you.

  4. It is a treat to read your blog and find out how you approach writing your books and filling that blank page. I am excited about the next book to be set in Texas because I have never been there, but it has had a big (of course, it’s Texas!) influence on the American myth of the West and its unique history that will be reflected from your experiences and reading in this next book. It will be fun to find out how your characters are formed by their setting and family. Your have given us a view of wealthy Northwest society and will soon reveal the California media sphere, and it will be interesting to contrast all that with non-City life in Texas. Enjoy reading all your new books, Jane, and good luck bringing this new story to life in your words.

  5. I love books based in Texas. I can see why you would want to write about a place that brings you back home. There is nothing like home to me. The place where I grew up is still home to me and I still back and visit.

  6. I’m looking forward to Shey’s story. I love that we are learning about each of the women and their backgrounds. I like that they are each so different, and yet that they are connected to each other. I don’t feel like I am reading the same book with different characters. For me (trying to write my first single title), your books are research.

  7. Jane, I just finished The Frog Prince and I LOVED it!! I just can’t seem to put your books down…I’m working on Mrs. Perfect next, as soon as I can find it. The last couple times I went in to buy it they were all sold out! 🙁

  8. Why NOT a book in Texas?!?! A good author (you!) can make a story come alive anywhere! I’m looking forward to it. Enjoy the research! Debbie

  9. Hi Jane,
    It sounds like you need to have a dewey decimal system for all of the books you purchased!
    I am looking forward to the release of Easy on the Eyes.
    Have a great day and pass it on.
    Jill W

  10. I love big shopping trips for books!! I love to be surrounded by books. I love new books even more where their pages and covers are still perfect. Seeing them all lined up on a shelf is so nice looking!! Right now my shelf is seriously lacking my JP books as I lent them to my pregnant sister for while she is stuck in bed alot and she is really enjoying them which is wonderful. But I miss my JP books and she really needs to give them back soon:) I have a lot of rules for my books. If I am nice enough to lend them out (especially yours as they are signed) they have to be returned in the condition they were borrowed in!! I know…I am a book snob. I can’t help it. It’s a real pet peeve of mine.

    Enjoy your new books for all your research! My best friend’s mom is from TX and she loves to visit and continuously threatens to move there. I love to hear about the ranches…you don’t find much of that in NJ:)

  11. You show me the difference between wanting to be a writer and being one. I used to write all the time when I was younger. It was a passion. But the true dedication to detail and the discipline that is necessary were never in me….I am always so impressed by you.

  12. I would love to write a book! I had even started one a little while ago & add to it when I get a chance. How exciting to be starting something new!

    On another note, I am addicted to Amazon.com myself so I can understand how easy it can be to go crazy on there!

  13. Happened on Mrs. Perfect at the Bellevue Library and immediately fell in love with it – my daughter went to a small school in Bellevue and there were several “Taylors” there! Have since purchased and enjoyed all your other books and look forward to the new ones! Is there somewhere locally that sells your historical novels?

  14. Hi Jane,

    I’m one of your fellow Pulpwood Queens. Woo! So great meeting you in Jefferson. I admire the research you are doing for the Texas-set book. I think it’s interesting that people think a writer must write about ‘her’ country. I think that a writer from Texas, who would no doubt do a good job, might not do as much earthy research. Sounds like you are off to a great start. And Palo Pinto county is very interesting so I know you’ll have fun exploring. It’s also the area that gets hit the hardest by storms before they enter DFW. We kinda joke here about “escaping from Palo Pinto County.” 🙂 Have a great day and again, so lovely to meet you in person.

    Karen Harrington
    author, Janeology

  15. Jane I am so excited for this book. Good luck on your research and good luck on getting your book started.

    hugs,

    Micole

  16. Hi Jane! I think maybe I need to get to the library & hoarde some books…we have ANOTHER winter storm warning. YUK!! We have had more snow this year than the past 2 or 3 put together. On another note, I really love the way your latest books are all drawing from the characters in Ms. Perfect… it is like a “series” & not only lets us in on “touched upon” characters, but makes it feel as if the original book hasn’t yet ended! I love that!

  17. Looking forward to a field trip with some of the junior high students from the school I work in. I am taking a group of 17 kids to the book store to let them each pick out a book for our library. This is a group of kids that are in a modified teaching program so we weren’t sure how interested they’d be…but they are SO EXCITED!

    Teenagers getting excited about books…just makes me smile!

    Have a great day with all your new books Jane, I love getting those Amazon parcels in the mail too!

  18. Jane –

    I’m very excited about Shey’s story. Those of us who live in Bellevue don’t have much of an opportunity to be cowgirls and ranch hands. But we can dream and live vicariously through others!

    Have you “experienced” the Pioneer Woman’s website? (http://thepioneerwoman.com) It’s a hoot. Her wild story of romance, Black Heels to Tractor Wheels, is a lot of fun. I enjoy her recipes in the Pioneer Woman Cooks section. Completely decadent yummy goodness and great photography. Her website is a fun departure from our lives here in the Pacific Northwest.

    Enjoy the research!

  19. I love that you do that much research into your characters! I have all these people in my head that have stories and I never know where to start.
    I applaud your dedication. When you invest so much into your characters you can feel it in the book and it makes the book so much better to read.

  20. I love Texas based stories. I hope you enjoy your research and digging into those history books you purchased. Texas is such an interesting place with a rich history and interesting people. It sounds like Shey’s story is going to be really special.

  21. Jane—I have wonderful memories of following my grandad around in his garden…eating turnips fresh from the warm soil…he would rub them off on his work pants and then cut them with his pocket knife for me! Memories from our childhood are precious. Cannot wait for the new book!

  22. Jane –
    Thank you for your Blog updates! It’s alot of fun being in contact with. I enjoy the fact that you share a bit of yourself with your readers. Look forward to hearing more!

  23. Hi Jane! Boy, you brought back some really fun memories for me talking about your own ranch memories. One of my earliest memories is when I was probably about 3 or so and we’d go visit my Great Grandparents (Pop & Granny) in their tiny little house in West Richland, Washington. Pop was a blacksmith and Granny was a retired school teacher where she taught in Oklahoma in a one-room schoolhouse. She was all of 5 feet tall and one tough old bird. I remember climbing into their chicken coop with the chickens where they’d always peck at me and couldn’t figure out why they wouldn’t let me pick them up! I’d drag over a chair and climb over the chicken wire just to play with them. I loved the fresh watermelon in the hot summer sun from their garden too! Wow, lots of old memories. Have as great time researching and creating their past! I look forward to reading about Shey!

  24. Jane,
    Sounds like you had such a wonderful childhood! I grew up always wanting a grandpa and a nana and making those kinds of memories you wrote about in your blog. I have hopes that one day I will have a chance to make memories with my own grandchildren. Of course, it won’t be for a while since my kids are still young!

  25. I’m glad that we have another book to look forward to! Texas sounds good to me! Although, I would LOVE to see another set in Hawaii as well! I’m back to work today after having four days off. Have a great rest of the week, Jane!

    Cathy

  26. It is impressive all of the research you do for a book. I am looking forward to reading it! I have been to Texas twice and had a blast. I will be heading back there this June for Pi Phi convention in Grapevine, Texas.

  27. I have no doubt the new book is going to be great! I love a great ranch read!! Something about a guy riding a horse and all 🙂 Baby Mac is in my thoughts. I will have to keep a look-out for you guys on the beach out here in Hawaii soon! The weather is a bit gloomy right now, but at least its liquid sunshine. Hope the snow back home there in Washington didnt keep ya down too much. I dont miss the weather there at all!!

  28. I think Shey is going to be a great book! We’ll all learn some new things from it too, besides about Shey! I don’t know much about Texas so I will be excited to learn more.

    It’s around 5 degrees here in S.E. Wisconsin so I am trying to keep warm! I went to the library last night and picked up a couple books. Lately I have been reserving them and just walk in to pick them up but since I didn’t have time to do that I browsed around the stacks which is also enjoyable. People must be in the reading mood since the “New” section was almost bare!

  29. Mornin’ Jane,
    Don’t you love when you hear someone else spent the day in their PJs, reading in bed and catching up with their favorite authors?! Yeah. Me too.
    It makes me so very happy when one of my neighbors makes a comment about one of your books as in, “The more I read(Jane’s)books, the more I WANT to read her books.” Yeah. me too!
    We all have more in common than we know. More alike than we think we are. Perhaps that is why your books are so popular. We can relate to your books characters as you can relate to us.
    Hang in, Jane. Remember that the pregnancy will not last forever. And it is so very worth it. Boobs and all…;)
    Did I ever tell you about my neighbor Crystal Cates, who just moved back home, to Texas? She is straight out of one of your books. And that is in a good way! Blessings, Mary

  30. It’s hard to resist research, isn’t it? But what fun! I admit I’d never have pegged you to set a book in Texas, but now I’m intrigued. Can’t wait!

  31. Whoa… that is a lot of texana books. Unfortuanely… I would be no help with a ranching book – I grew up in suburbia, and Mom grow up with oil and trucking in South Texas.

  32. I am also very excited to read your new book. Its cool that you are on facebook and we can connect. In addition and I am sure I speak for most of your readers, we would love to have follow up books and/or movies to Odd Mom out and Mrs. Perfect. Always a fan! Thanks again.

  33. Hi Jane! I am very excited about Shey’s story! I also have a bunch of books that I want to read but life just keeps happening and Im not able to get time to read them! Right now I am reading The Duggars book 20 and counting! They have 18 kids and they talk in there book about Homeschooling there kids, budgeting, marriage, and everything! They are an inspiration to me because I also have a large family and always try to find ways to save money. I also Homeschool my kids. It is a good book so far and I just need time to let me finish it! lol

    How is your pregnancy going? Do you know what your having yet? Do you have names picked out? I want another baby soon and would love to be blessed with a boy and I love the name Corbin Christian!

    Take care Jane and God Bless!

    ~Heather

  34. I grew up on a farm; first a dairy farm where we kids rode horses(very slow horses) while our parents milked cows(by hand).
    We then moved to a mixed farming operation(wheat and cows). I never learnt to milk as I had 2 brothers who did and Mom and Dad.
    I really like the prize offered and you give fab prizes always.

  35. How wonderful that you go so deep in your research. I could totally get LOST in research.

    Starting a new book is a lot like starting a new relationship, isn’t it?

  36. Hi Jane,
    Great contest, I’m entering!
    Hope to read and review your upcoming novel for my book review blog, I have read and reviewed all your other novels and I totally loved them! They are the best!

    love,
    Marjolein

  37. I look forward to hearing Shey’s story!! I need to get to the bookstore and get some new books to read.
    I hope you are feeling well!

  38. Jane!

    You’ll have to crank out that book a little faster so we can hurry up and have another booksigning. 🙂 You have the best parties, don’t you know?

    Jessie

  39. Hi Jane!

    I have an idea to run by you…
    You love Texas, I love Seattle, sounds like we should work out a trade! lol

    ‘Hope you enjoy all your new books.

    Melissa

  40. The beauty about writing is you are free to write about whatever you want and Texas is no exception! Cant wait to read Shey’s story!

    Vindella

  41. Sometimes I wish I lived on the other coast so I could attend one of Jane’s signings. Everone makes it sound like so much fun.

  42. Hi Jane, It will be great reading about Texas … that’s where my parents live … Luckenbach, TX. But, I’m here in our lovely snowy land on the Eastside (Newcastle). That’s something Texas doesn’t get much. ANyway, what I’d do to have your book complete by March, you’ve inspired some of us girls to go on a “girl trip” to Oahu … we’re all JP fans. That would be so cool to have us all reading the same book of your while we were there so we could dish on it. Get writing girl! We’re ever-so-patiently awaiting. Cheers!

  43. My 13 year old daughter is obsessed with Texas and has been since the age of 4. We’ve never been and live in New England but for some reason Texas grabs her heart, probably the same way the west does mine. One day I hope to take her there. Would love to win your books and goodies, thanks.

  44. As a 42 almost 43 year old,I saw
    “Flirting with Forty” showcased in a mag. Well I had to get it and devoured it in less than a day.Loved it! Now I have read all your books and just love them.I’m sure your newest will be just as great!
    Maybe I will see you in Hawaii one day!

  45. Jane, I am so excited that there’s at least another book coming! I can’t wait for “Easy on the Eyes”, and now THIS, too? Yeeeees!

    I’m doing the Snoopy dance over here for you!

    Julie

  46. Thank you for that rich, ranch post! My beloved grandpa (Gramps) fed my love of horses and I am grateful to him for that. He would take me on trail rides where we cut our own trail in the gorgeous valleys near Eden, Utah. I remember him getting off of his horse, grabbing a big knife and cutting away brush so the horses wouldn’t get big throrns in their legs. When we came home and Gram found out where he took me she’d holler at him that it wasn’t safe. He’d holler back “aw, it’s fine–she did great”. I’d stand around and brush them while he fed the horses and cleaned the stalls. He only kept a couple of horses, but the memories are rich and treasured for sure.

    Last night my daughter (Rebecca, 10) and I started “Black Beauty” together. Unfortunately she does NOT share my equine love but I’m hoping she can wrap her mind around one of my favorite childhood books. I haven’t read this book in nearly 30 years; but as I started the first chapter, the words were jumping off the page. I remembered reading those EXACT words many years before. It was so comforting. I promised to catch-up every night to where she’d left off during the day so we can discuss the book at the same pace.

    I hope its as fun as I think it’ll be and I hope its the first of many.

    Enjoy your new frontier, this Texas story; and a big ten-gallon hug to you!!
    Shannon

  47. Jane,
    I’ve always wanted to live on a ranch. It’s sounds so nice and peaceful, being close to nature.
    Good luck with your research!

    Marie

  48. Jane- I am a history nut too. I always imagine what life was like for women when reading about the different parts of history. How they felt, what they were like, what their deepest darkest secrets were, if they had girlfriends to lean on etc. We spent a few years living in Texas and loved it. The people there are so warm, humble and friendly. Texas ranks number #1 in my book.
    Have fun exploring, reading and writing!
    Blessings!

  49. Jane,

    I’m a masters student at Georgia State University and I am studying English with a concentration in Secondary Education. It’s a very long way of saying that I’d like to be a high school English teacher. That said, I spend the majority of my time working on essays either about different literary works and movements or on how to best teach certain literary works or movements.

    The farther I go into my career as a student (and the closer I get to my career as a teacher), my essays get longer and longer and the topics, while they are supposed to be narrow, seem to encompass more and more. I spend the majority of my time doing research on different topics, which of course leads to research on related topics.

    To me, one of the best parts about writing an essay is the research that goes into it – hunkering down in the library with a stack of books two feet high or scanning the internet into the wee hours of the morning. Doing research on anything and everything to do with your topic makes it come alive and makes it a more exciting and rewarding experience.

    I’ve never written anything about Texas, and I’ve never been on a ranch, but this was the aspect of your blog that I could most relate to. I hope that you have some great times reading these books and that they help you to find personal comfort, as well as professional detail.

    -Sarah

  50. Shey’s story sounds intriguing and the history aspect intersts me greatly. You certainly are ambitious and this project sounds appealing. Best of luck.

  51. I was so excited about Tiana’s book…and now you have me worked up about Shey!

    Never been to Texas, but I’ve always very intrigued by the Lone Star State! And I was a HUGE Dallas (tv show) fan.

    You’re a cool chic and I love you’re blog.

  52. Hi Jane, This past November(?) the girls I work with called me to tell me FWF was on Lifetime. Ross and I have passed your books around and everyone was excited to know someone who knew someone who was an author and had a movie out! We don’t have cable so we didn’t get to see it until Jan. 2nd. John Cormia told us it was going to be on again. We were all at Sanibel Island, Fl for News Years Day. Frank, Mary, Ross, Carl, Denise, and all the kids. Well we got to watch the movie and have a great time. Very good. Glad everything is better with the pregnancy! Ross was laid off Dec. 4 and is looking for a job. Mary will be heading to Austin, Tx to take care of Judy’s little boy Feb. 8th. We are having ice storms and possibly snow. We were out of school today and tomorrow. We went to the public library today and we were talking about you and all the ladies were saying they watched the movie and enjoy your books! So proud of you! Keep up the good work!
    Love always,
    Susan Cormia

  53. I’m sitting here laughing out loud, because I’m pretty sure that nobody can imagine that California would have a place like “the ranch” – but after leaving Southern California to live in Lemoore for 7 years, I KNOW! Lemoore is a tiny town located in the Central Valley – the heartland of California. Named for Dr. Lee Moore (seriously!), this town is a 45 mile drive from the nearest city – which is Fresno. It’s a 12 mile drive down the two-lane highway – with only agricultural fields in between – to the nearest “bigger” town, which is also the County Seat – Hanford. When I first arrived in Lemoore in 1990, I totally thought that I had left the state of California and arrived in another state, because as a California Girl born and bred, the Central Valley is NOT California! It’s so different from SoCal – it is DEFINITELY like something you would expect to see in Texas – ranches included!!! Anyway, thanks for bringing back the memories!

  54. Have fun with your research. I’m excited, too, and will look forward to reading this one. I know it will turn out great!

  55. Your grandfather’s ranch sounds like a great place for a kid to play. I have never been on a ranch but do love reading stories set on one. Best of luck with your new story.

  56. I’m excited for Shey’s story. I don’t remember her all that much but I do so much reading that I want to go and reread Odd Mom Out anyways. 😉

  57. Jane,

    I read your blog. We have so many “spiritual” similarities. Reading about your childhood ranch experience,and fondness for all the “simple” gifts in life…is so much like my childhood gift of being at my grandparents dairy farm,in Central Pa. My grandfather was on the faculty at PennState,but a gentleman’s farmer. The knowledge and life experiences he shared with us as children,will remain with me for a lifetime.
    This is where my love for nature,animals,gardening,and and everything outdoors was “born”. It may sound corny..but what a strong foundation and blessing to have been given.
    I lost my beloved grandparents several years ago,but the gift of Shady Lane Farm,lives on in my heart and soul.
    This is why you are so giftd as a writer. We
    “feel” your words
    Get back to writing,we are all holding our breath for Shey’s Story.
    Susan Z..

  58. Hi, Jane:

    Reading your blog is a fun way to wind down at the end of a day. It was interesting for me to learn that in order to write even the first word in a new book, an author must do a great deal of preparation – including reading history books and spending many hours researching and making notes about the book’s setting, etc. I have always had a dream of becoming a writer or changing careers to something I enjoy doing, rather than one that is less interesting, but pays the bills. I don’t think I have the where-with-all to put in the long hours of research. So, I will continue to enjoy books written by you and the many other wonderful authors who provide us with love stories, adventure stories and mysteries to take us away from our everyday lives.

    Thank you for what you do. You are appreciated.

  59. Hi Jane!

    I just love to receive a huge package of books from Amazon to dig into! The more books to read, the better!

    Hope you enjoy your research!

    Happy reading and writing!!! 🙂

  60. my husband use to live in texas and boy do i ever hear the stories about that place! sounds like a great state & i hope to visit there one day.

  61. I think it’s wonderful that Shey’s story will be set in Texas.. I recently moved to Fort Worth from Chicago b/c of my husband’s job. It is nice down here but very different that Chicago. I’m really excited for your new book to come out!!!
    PPL & mine,
    Laura Czerwinski

  62. You can never have too many books! I absolutely cannot wait to read your next one. I absolutely LOVED Odd Mom Out and Mrs Perfect – especially since I grew up in Bellevue and I now live in Issaquah! Boy culd I identify! I wanted to thank you also for all of the stuff from Jamette. You are so sweet!

  63. So looking forward to your next book! Sounds interesting.

    I love to research. Love finding information…I just compile it, I don’t actually DO anything though. Hmmmm…..

  64. Research can be so much fun! And I too have a stack of TBR books. Actually had to move them away from my bed for safety reasons. *cough* *grin*

    Looking forward to your new book, Jane. Happy Writing!

    Smiles,
    Chiron

  65. Hi Jane – good for you finding all those books for researching Shey’s story. I think it is great and not only that – we can never have enough books! Pile them up high 🙂

    At the moment I am reading The Hindi-Bindi Club by Monica Pradhan, kind of as a research tool for the indian way of life. It is a great story with loads of nice recipes and an interesting insight in to modern and traditional Indian life.

    Hope you are doing well. Take care 🙂

    PS: call me silly, but where do I look for the winners of post a comment …?

  66. That’s quite a list of books there Jane. 🙂 Please remember to write a little bit at least. It must be nice to have such a strong memory of your childhood.

  67. I’m a city girl but your ranch vacations remind me of when we would visit cousins at the old homestead farms in PA back in the 40s and 50s.

  68. Hi Jane,
    Shey’s story sounds wonderful! I can’t wait to see what “spin” you put on it ~
    Lynne in cold and snowy Ohio

  69. My family had a ranch in Mendocino County when I was growing up. What great childhood memories it brings back! The good old days. Wow. Can’t wait to read your new book.

  70. I so look forward to reading your blog and your books. You really inspire me and make me want to write a book. Unfortunately, I have no idea where to begin and have always doubted my writing skills. I think it a goal I would like to set for myself…maybe someday if I get the guts and the confidence 🙂

  71. I had to giggle at the thought of all those books being delivered to your front door. It makes me giggle when a box from Amazon or Borders arrives at my door. I’m taking my first of several Library Tech. classes at FCC and our second assigment was to say why we thought public libraries were so important, or what specific aspect of the public library we thought vital to the community.

    I pondered this a while, and decided that it was the Children’s section. Why? Because if we can get kids to read early in life, we foster a love of reading that will last a lifetime. Get them started early, and they have a head start in life with skills that can never be taken away from them. Imagine if everyone got excited about books arriving on their doorstep!

  72. I’m a 5th generation Texan and proud of it. The desires to travel and experience new places will always be there, but Texas will always be where I continue to live. It’s not only where I live but it’s always in heart. In the family tree I have grandparents with the last name of Coffee and Egg, now all we need is a Baccon in there somewhere. Texas is a little chilly at this moment because of the winter weather mix we received yesterday but tomorrow will be a wonderful sunny day and everyone will be outside in short sleeves and riding in cars with the windows down. Okay Jane between you and I and all the other posters here I’m going to toss in a little Texas fact/myth buster.. Everyone say’s “Everythings Bigger in Texas,” Well that depends on what is being talked about. Oh, and this doesn’t include my husband because he was born in Canada… 🙂

  73. I’ve loved reading this post!! I live so very close to “the ranch” you grew up on, as I’m just a few miles out of Paso Robles. I can relate first hand to the simple pleasures and lasting memories you described. Although, I could identify with “Mrs. Perfect”, I have NEVER experienced the kind of lifestyle that was hers. Mine is slower paced and filled with simple, mostly free, pleasures!!

    Can’t wait to read any and all of your future books!!

    PS Am anxiously awaiting a California (esp. central coast) book tour and signing hopefully sometime in the future?? After baby Mac!!

    Blessings, Mandy

  74. Jane, I didn’t get to mention it in my prior post but it’s so cool to hear your process of writing. I like so many others have always dreamed of writing novels but dreaming and doing are two different things. I honestly feel my dream was more on the fantasy side of what it would be like to be a famous author. Reality was years of on and off again writing had only produced two complete manuscripts that I would never show anyone. After saving my work for over 20 years I took the first one and shredded it up in fear that if I were to die that my children would find it and read it. The second one was much better and easier to write yet I would never send it off in fear of someone rejecting my hard work but to be truthful it’s no where near the quality of work I’d want to send off. My true enjoyment of writing comes in the form of writing screenplays. I have never had so much fun as when I’m sitting at my desk and I’m so in the zone. The rush of the words flying onto the screen faster than my mind can keep up or fingers can type, now that’s pure bliss. I’m more of a visual person and having to flesh out internal feelings of my characters was not working for me and that was causing me to struggle with the writing. But once I turned my writing to screenwriting everything is falling into place. The novel I wrote is being written as a spec script and will be entered into film festivals. I’m so excited. Writing novels is HARD work and my heart goes out to you for doing such a fantastic job. You make it possible for us ladies to turn off all the bad news, the sadness thats going on and you make it possible for us to escape into a much more desired place. With that I thank you, ~Becky

  75. A book in Texas! Hope you got some ideas when you visited recently. AMR Corp…hmmm…I just left them after 9 1/2 years. I heard you speak at the Manic Mommies Escape and don’t remember you mentioning that little fact! Can’t wait to read the book! Enjoy all the research!

  76. Hey Jane!

    Texas is a neat place. Since you are doing research on Texas, have you read Marsha Moyer’s books that are set in Texas? They are great! The first in the series is entitled The Second Coming of Lucy Hatch. That series is like a potato chip… one just isn’t enough.

    Happy reading!
    Christian

  77. Hi Jane,

    I am so excited to hear about the new book and your pregnancy! Your books can’t come fast enough for me…no pressure though! 🙂

    Christy in Mill Creek

  78. Jane,

    I discovered the beauty of book shopping on “Amazon” a few months ago and now am completely hooked. I know I was a very slow starter, but I have made up on all the lost time.

    Take care,
    Cathy

  79. Hi Jane,
    I love hearing how others get so happy with books!! I love love love reading! I am addicted to books, I buy them and get them from the library, you would think I had tons of time to just read!Books are like a good friend!
    And yours are the “Best”!

  80. I’m so glad Mac is doing well – I’ve finally gotten a chance to catch up on your blog after the great layoff news last week.

    I’m looking forward to reading this story. I spent summers on my Grandparent’s ranch in New Mexico and I have really good memories of it.

  81. I’m not sure how I missed this post but it’s cool that you’re writing a book set in Texas. I live in Texas and my grandmother on my father’s side had a farm with 99 acres. I loved going up there to visit. For a while we had a horse we kept there. I’m excited to read Shey’s story. 🙂

  82. Poster #95, Liz, you are our winner! Congrats and please send me a private email with your mail address and I’ll get the books, mug, Starbucks card and goodies out in the mail to you. Congrats again and thank you to everyone for participating!! You guys rock. 🙂

    Jane
    http://www.janeporter.com

  83. Loved Odd mom out. Well let’s be real I enjoy all of your books. LOL. I am really looking forward to Shey’s story it sounds like it will be wonderful.

    Laurie

  84. To make an even 100:

    I know the area you’re talking about. I used to love to visit Mission Paso Robles. It was even my “art project” in Mrs. Barnes’s class at Conyer Elem. in fourth grade, for which I won first prize, tyvm. 🙂 Wow, talk about the memories.

    My brother now runs a ranch just north of Fresno. His kids are blessed. A horse in the backyard, pigs down the road (thankfully not in the front yard anymore) and acres and acres to play before the cows come home. What wonderful childhood memories.

    Thanks for the walk down the Lane. 🙂

  85. Hi Jane,
    Right now I am reading “The Shack” for the second time. It is one of my favorites. I can’t wait for your new book to come out! I also have “The Known World” and a couple Sophie Kinsella novels I am looking forward to reading. I’m getting through my paper books so I can play with my kindle when it arrives later this month. So glad your books are on kindle! How are you feeling?

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