Cowgirl Come Home: Debra Salonen

debprMontana Born’s new summer series is off to a great start and the Facebook party on Thursday was a huge hit with readers.  Thank you to all of you who could attend!  I love that so many of you were there to enjoy the fun and the giveaways.

Book two in the Marietta Fair series, Cowgirl Come Home by Debra Salonen is available today and I couldn’t be happier.  Debra’s such a great writer with a strong voice and such wonderful talent.  I love that she’s a Tule author as it’s always a treat to read one of her books!  I knew I had to invite her as a guest on my blog and she agreed.

Here’s Debra Salonen to talk to us about Arts and Crafts, Fair Style.  Welcome, Debra!

ds1My July 18th Tule Publishing release, Cowgirl Come Home, is part of the Big Marietta Fair series. My heroine, Bailey Jenkins, is an artist who works in jewelry. Under different circumstances, Bailey would have entered her pieces in the Arts and Crafts competition, but blue ribbons don’t pay bills. So, instead, her work is on display in Exhibit Hall-A, with the other Marietta vendors.

When I go to our local County Fair every year, one of my favorite exhibits is: Arts and Crafts. I am completely blown away by the creativity within my small community. Inevitably, there’s one photograph that reaches out and pulls me into a story, a candid moment in time. If there’s no Blue Ribbon or Best-in-Show sign hanging on my favorite, I use the power of my “People’s Choice” vote to pick.

Ten or so years ago, my hubby won Best of Show for this photograph.  (image) It’s called, simply: Blue. The fellow in the picture was an old-time cowboy, who tended the two-hundred-acre ranch behind us. Everybody called him Blue. He appeared in my very first published short story, which came out in Country Magazine in 1990. The title of the piece is: The Bulls That Fell From the Sky.

Until his death four years ago, Blue lived in a little trailer without electricity or running water–just him, his dog and his rattletrap truck. (I use that expression with affection–it did rattle.) He was our friend, and this photo hangs on my wall where I see it every day…and smile.

This year, I’m hoping to see my ten-year-old granddaughter’s painting displayed at the fair. She entered the Young Master’s contest through our local Arts Counsel earlier this spring and won First Place in her age group.

ds2My daughter won Best of Show for an oil painting when she was the same age. I’ll never forget the pride and validation that ribbon gave her. “I’m an artist, Mommy,” she said to me.

Now, she’s giving back by teaching young budding artists like her niece. I love the full-circle feel of this and I can’t wait to visit the Arts and Crafts exhibit at the Mariposa Fair this year.

What about you? What’s your favorite part of the fair? (There is no wrong answer here.) Even if you’re not fond of fairs, please reply to be included in the pool to win this prize.

Two Deb Salonen backlist titles (if you’ve read either or both of these, let me know and I’ll try to find others), The Princess Bride DVD, cookies, notecards, post-its, gel pens and great Tule swag. ds3 And please look for Cowgirl Come Home on July 18th. It will be available as an ebook at Amazon and in print from Createspace.

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Some dreams come with a big price tag.
Bailey Jenkins left her hometown of Marietta, Montana, at eighteen, poised to take college and the rodeo world by storm–despite Paul Zabrinski. On the eve of her great escape, at the top of the Ferris Wheel at the Big Marietta Fair, he invoked his great-grandmother Hilda’s curse. “If you do this, Bailey Jenkins, I will hate you forever. And I’ll call on my great-grandmother to curse you. She was a Gypsy witch, you know.”
Fifteen years later, Bailey’s back–shattered, humbled by fate and bruised at the soul level but determined to rebuild–once she helps her parents get back their feet. She didn’t expect her Paul Zabrinski to meet her plane, but seeing him strong, handsome and successful is somehow fitting. After all, Bailey didn’t need Paul’s gypsy great-grandmother to put a curse on her–Bailey already had the worst luck on the planet.
Never say never.
One look at Bailey Jenkins–his first love, the woman he adored…and cursed–and every emotion Paul Zabrinski felt fifteen years earlier comes rushing back. The love of his life broke his heart and made him hate her…or so he thought. The line between love and hate is very narrow, with only so much room for forgiveness. But Paul Zabrinski owns Big Z Hardware and Construction. If anyone is capable of building a bridge for them to cross together, it’s him.
From award-winning journalist to nationally bestselling author with 26 published novels for Harlequin’s Superromance and American lines, Debra Salonen brings humor and heart to her stories. She was named Romantic Times Reviewer’s Career Achievement “Series Storyteller of the Year” in 2006. Her popular Indie release, Are We There Yet?, has been called “laugh-out-loud funny, poignant and just plain fabulous!”


Debra, thank you for sharing with us!  Readers do grab your copy of Debra’s new story, Cowgirl Come Home.  You’re going to love it!  Leave a comment here to welcome Debra and share about your fair experiences and you’ll be entered to win the fabulous prize package Debra mentioned!  Have a great weekend!

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