image: header
image: gownflare

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Spotlight on Mary Connealy and Cowboy Christmas


MARY CONNEALY writes romantic comedies with cowboys for Barbour Publishing. Cowboy Christmas is in bookstores now. Montana Rose, Book #1 of the Montana Marriages series, released in July, book #2 The Husband Tree comes in January and book #3 Wildflower Bride comes in May 2010. Mary is also the author of the Lassoed in Texas series and a cozy mystery collection, Nosy in Nebraska. Mary is a Christy Award finalist.

Find Mary Online at:
Petticoats & Pistols
My Blog
My Website

by Mary Connealy
Published by Barbour Publishing


A beautiful songstress on the run.
A distrustful cowboy who can't abandon a woman in need.
An evil man obsessed with controlling that stunning voice.
The brutal cold of the Rockies in winter.
A suspicious family risking everything to protect a singer with secrets.
One perfect chance for a star to lead two lonely people to true love. Cowboy Christmas.

Readers, buy your copy of Cowboy Christmas today!


1. What gave you the inspiration for this story?

I wanted to write a book about a ‘good girl’ who’s never been challenged to stand up for her faith. She’s lived a very protected life and it hasn’t been hard to be a Christian. But the day has come when, to do the right thing, she has to risk everything, and suddenly she finds that her steady faith isn’t so easy to hang on to when her life is at stake. That’s Annette in Cowboy Christmas. A life long good girl who’s just fumbling every challenge she meets, but her faith is solid so she keeps coming back, trying to do it all right.

2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that were theirs and theirs alone?

In general ways, I see Annette’s story as my own. I’ve had a very good, safe life. Wonderful Christian parents. Marriage to a man of faith. I’ve wondered if I really had to stand strong for God, what would I do? I’d like to believe I’d face anything courageously for God. But we hear about the suffering people undergo as Christians in parts of the world where Christianity is terribly persecuted and I always hope and pray I could die for my faith and speak truth to power at any cost. So I made Annette do it instead of me.

3. If your hero/heroine were an ice cream flavor, what would he/she be and why?

Annette is Rocky Road. She’s so full of gifts, so full of a sweet faith. But she keeps surprising poor Elijah, too. An occasional crunch he doesn’t expect, like when she uses a length of pipe to fight off the bad guy, right when he was there to be her knight in shining armor.

Elijah and ice cream. . .I’m having a little trouble with that. I adored Elijah. He’s been through something terrible and guilt is eating him up inside. But he’s such a sweetheart. And he loves his mother even though she’s a nag. Is that a flavor? Can you find a flavor in that? Let’s call him Chocolate/chocolate chip. That makes no sense but I’m hungry now so you’ve done your damage, Tiff.

* insert comment: Good! :) *

4. Are there any themes in Cowboy Christmas that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the stories progressed?

The theme I wanted was to live bravely for Christ. To believe that God is with you through the good and the bad. Annette is so bend on being courageous. . .especially when she fails over and over, that she fails to see the hand of God protecting her and guiding her.

5. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?

The scene where Annette was getting swept down the river was hard. An action scene is always a lot of work because, at least for me, it needs to be so tight and so fast paced and I can only achieve that through revisions, many, many revisions. So I need to go over it a lot of times. I can do it, I just can’t yet learn to do it naturally.

6. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?

My next release is The Husband Tree, coming in January. It’s a sequel to Montana Rose which released in July. I am completely in love with this book. I had so much fun with these two characters, Belle Tanner, a secondary character in Montana Rose, and Silas Harden.

Belle Tanner buries her third worthless husband and makes a vow over his shallow grave. She’s learned her lesson. No more men.

Silas Harden just lost his second ranch because of a woman. The first deserted him when times got tough. Now he’s had to quit the whole state of New Mexico to avoid a trumped-up shotgun wedding and the noose of matrimony. He’s learned his lesson. No more women.

Belle needs hired hands to move a cattle herd late in the season and there’s no one around but seemingly aimless Silas. She hires him reluctantly.

Silas signed on, glad for the work, though worried about a woman doing such a thing as hiring drovers, only to find out he’s the lone man going with five woman, including a baby still in diapers. After the cattle drive is over, he might as well shoot himself to speed up the process of being embarrassed to death.

A fast approaching winter.

The toughest lady rancher you’ve ever seen.

A cynical cowboy who has to convince five women he’s right for their ma. . .and then convince himself.

And one thousand head of the crankiest cattle who have ever been punched across the backbone of the Rockies.

* * * * *

Thank you, Mary, for being in the spotlight with us.

Readers, leave a comment for your chance to win a FREE autographed copy of Cowboy Christmas.

Make sure you also leave your email address (name at domainname You won't be entered in the drawing without it. If you wish to comment but don't want to be entered, say so when you post.

And if you want to make certain you don't miss anything, check the box that says 'email follow-up comments to:' when you leave a comment and they'll be sent to the email address associated with your blogging account. That way you'll be notified of any comments and will know when the winners are announced each time.

This week, the contest is open to US/Canada residents only.


Cherie J said...

Enjoyed the spotlight interview. Would love to be entered in the drawing. Thank you!


Casey said...

I have heard good things about this book and having read the first chapter myself on another site, I think I would enjoy this book. Please enter me!


Mary Connealy said...

Good morning. Your names are in the drawing.

Are you all ready for Thanksgiving? If you haven't started thawing your turkey yet, IT'S TOO LATE. :)

Audra Harders said...

Don't go spreading rumors, Mary. It is not too late to prepare a frozen turkey, you just have roast it twice as long and use iron teeth to rip apart the less than tender white meat : )

I'm halfway through Cowboy Christmas and Mary, once again, your wit and humor shine through. I'm trying to catch up on all my reading this week since I'm off work.

Your books just make me laugh : ) Good thing since teenage kids are driving me nuts this holiday!!

Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone!!

Anonymous said...

Please enter me.....would love to read it! Thanks!

Linda said...

Please enter me, too. Thank.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Merry said...

I can't miss one of Mary's books; every one has been delightful. Please include me in the drawing. Thanks!


Anonymous said...

Enjoyed the interview. Please include me in the drawing. Thanks!


Carolynn said...

Please enter me, this book sounds wonderful!

Mary Connealy said...

Hi, there. Just now coming out of the pumpkin pie induced coma. :)
Good luck in the drawing everyone.

Anonymous said...

Have read many fabulous reviews. Would LOVE to read this book.


Carole said...

First of all, I just want to say that all of Mary's books immediately go on my wish list!

I found Mary's description interesting - "a ‘good girl’ who’s never been challenged to stand up for her faith" - because I can identify with that to a certain extent. Having been raised in a loving Christian home, I came to Christ naturally, and later went to a Bible college. I always envied those with dramatic conversion stories, until I realized that my experience was a testimony of God's love and faithfulness. I'm looking forward to reading Cowboy Christmas and appreciate the chance to win a copy.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

Michelle said...

Thank you so much for entering me! I would just LOVE to win and read this book!!

scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

Sylvia M. said...

I'd like to be in this drawing!


Mary Connealy said...

Best holiday weekend of the year FOUR DAYS LONG. Pretty much over.

Love all the comments here, thank you for the kind words.

Now, onward to CHRISTMAS! which is all so REALLY GOOD. :)

Unknown said...

Please enter me in the drawing. I've heard of her books and they sound really good. ~Abby

abster dot rose at g mail dot com

Tiffany Amber Stockton said...

We have a winner from this drawing and that is:


Congratulations! I have sent your information to Mary so she can send out your book.

As always, thanks to everyone for your continued support.