Wild Bunch Wednesday is the brainchild of Black Horse Western writer Terry James (aka Joanne Walpole).
Five writers listed below will be showcasing their work over the next few weeks.
Now the intention is to highlight either the latest book or a future publication.
In my case I have neither. 'Lawmen' was published about a year ago and Jed Midwinter has yet to draw a close on the latest book to go on my machine.
Still this week's subject is the hero.
The pictured books were published back in the 1980s and featured main characters that were flawed.
Poseidon Smith was a preacher with a past but found a faith and God working amongst the Apaches. He became the preacher in a small town but when a catastrophe happens that tests that faith he tries to make himself believe that he is God's instrument in wreaking vengeance.
Van Essen in 'Rebel Run' is different. He is a Confedrate soldier who believes that it is his duty to escape. He,also, has strong principles that no matter what is thrown at him he will not stir away from.
In 'Leatherface' the hero is young, good looking and has an answer to everything but he learns that vanity and vengeance come at a terrible price.
Just three types of hero or main characters that I have written about.
When it came to writing a new book with 'Lawmen' I found myself writing a book with two heroes. Two lawmen who share their time through the book. Sam Ward, the ageing lawman and his younger deputy, Chris Ford who are chasing down a rustler. They arrive in the railroad town of Dennett Junction and have just discovered that there was an ambush set up for them.
Extract from 'LAWMEN':
" And you?" Chris demanded. " Where were you?"
" Right here," The barkeep shrugged. "Got no other place to be. 'Sides, the feller at the window had his gun aimed at me. I wasn't goin' to risk gettin' killed."
" Yeah, right," Chris responded, sarcastically. "So where are they now?"
The barkeep just shrugged: "How'd the hell I know? They just lit out and ain't come back."
"They - they said something about going to - to the livery," the surveyor offered, stumbling over his words.
As he spoke so Sam came through the doors and, like Chris before him, took in his surroundings before bellying up to the bar.
"Two beers," was all he said before turning to Chris. "You going to join me? Or are you going to stand there keeping the cards close to your chest?"
"There's a couple of hopefuls checking us out," Chris told him. "I think we need to deal with that problem before we do anything else."
Sam sighed: "Got a location?"
"Livery - maybe."
Sam shook his head: "If that's where they are they could've taken us both out when we came back from the station."
"Maybe," Chris nodded. "But I think they want to be sure they get us both together."
Sam pushed his duster away from his hip, exposing the holstered pistol. While he was doing that Chris slid his own gun out, checked it and held it against his side. He was no quick-draw artist and preferred his gun to be in his hand for instant use should it prove necessary.
"Ready?" Sam asked, with a slight cock of an eyebrow.
"As I'll ever be," Chris confirmed, taking a step towards the door.
Copyright Jack Giles - 2008 and Robert Hale Limited
Next up will be a look at the bad guys. In the meantime check out these other writers.
Lance Howard at Dark Bits (http://howardhopkins.blogspot.com
Terry James at Joanne Walpole (http://joannewalpole.blogspot.com
I.J.Parnham at The Culbin Trail (http://ijparnham.blogspot.com
Jack Martin at The Tainted Archive (http://tainted-archive.blogspot.com