Sunday, May 13, 2018

Here Come The Brides

No, this post is not about Meghan and Harry, even though it's a fairy tale in real time, something we romance writers love to slobber over.

My bride reference refers to my WIP, which started out with a one mail order bride idea. Actually, I had thought three of them, the heroine and her two sisters. But mail order bride books are extremely popular in the western romance market, and my bride was only slightly different from all those who had traveled the route before her. 

What made my manuscript different was the fact that my bride in question was one of a group of sixteen women who were all traveling west to find their mates. Similar to Westward The Women, a movie about a wagon train full of women, filmed in 1951, I place sixteen women in the care of one brave man, Jake Shelton. If you're familiar with my Cotillion Ball series, you'll remember that Temperance Jones chose Basil Fitzpatrick over Jake in Banking On Temperance. In that book, Jake tipped his hat and rode off into the sunset. Not this time. Not if I have anything to say about it. 

I realized the hook to this book is the fact he's agreed to help his sister, who runs a matchmaking business, to shepherd these ladies west. Over the course of six months, Jake's ladies will prove to him they are strong women, just as Roy Whitman found out in the movie. Some of these ladies stand out in the book, and deserve their own stories about what happens after Jake drops them off and sees them get married. And of course, there's the one who captures his heart. 

So instead of the Bride Of Baxter Ridge, the name of the book has been changed to the working title of The Angelica Train. Is this my new, multi-volume series? Could be. I've learned a lot about the Oregon Trail while writing this book, as my sticky map of the trail attests to. And I wrote about a portion of the trail in my most recent post on History Imagined. 


  1. I'm looking forward to your new series. The idea of mail order brides has always fascinated me. I realize that arranged marriages have been around for centuries but these wagon train brides are in a different class. Such a dangerous journey to marry a stranger. If things don't work out, they are thousands of miles from home. What a brave gamble these women take. Love the new title.

    1. Thanks, Linda. I did some digging into cowboy lingo and angelica is the word used by old time cowboys to describe a young lady. I thought it was perfect for this book (or series).

  2. And that answers the question I didn't ask. I was wondering about angelica. It really is a beautiful word.

  3. Replies
    1. Thanks, Lynn. I just hope I can get the landmarks along the trail in the right order.