Vickie McDonough is an award winning author of 25 books and novellas. Her novel, Long Trail Home, is a finalist in the 2012 Booksellers' Best Awards, and her books have won the Inspirational Reader's Choice Contest, Texas Gold, the ACFW Noble Theme contest, and she has been a multi-tear finalist in ACFW's BOTY/Carol Awards. She is the author of the fun and feisty Texas Boardinghouse Brides series from Barbour.
Welcome to Ink Dots, Vicki. Tell us about your family. I live in Oklahoma, and I've been married for thirty-six years. I'm the mother of four grown sons and a grandma to a feisty six-year-old girl. My oldest son, a restaurant manager, is married to a sweet bank branch manager and they have the worlds smartest little girl, Hailey. My #2 son still lives at home but has a full time job. #3 son is in the Army National Guard, and my youngest son will be a senior this fall at Oral Roberts University.
How did you come to write this book? My agent approached me about writing a series with two other authors, Susan Page Davis and Darlene Franklin. We brainstormed and came up with an idea for a family saga set in Texas, which spans 50 years and several generations. The series is titled Texas Trails. I wrote the third book, Long Trail Home, and I also wrote End of the Trail, which is the sixth book and releases June 1st. One event in Texas history that has always interested me is the staged train crash at Crush, Texas. My hero and heroine in End of the Trail attend this exciting event and encounter unexpected adversity.
What's the most fascinating thing you discovered in your research for this book? My husband and I went on a research trip to Waco, Texas, when I was researching this series. We got to visit the Texas Rangers Museum, which is a fascinating place. The city is a very interesting place with lots of history, but the most interesting thing is that Waco has a suspension bridge that is a smaller replica of the Brooklyn Bridge. The Waco Suspension Bridge crosses the Brazos River in downtown Waco. It was officially opened on January 7, 1870, and at the time was one of the longest single suspension bridges in the world.
We have a famous bridge Dowunder too. Have you been to Australia? I have not had the privilege of visiting Australia but it is in my top three list of places to visit. I've wanted to go for soooo long, and I really hope that one day I'll get to.
I hope you do too. What's on the horizon for Vicki McDonough? The first novella I wrote, which was A Stitch In Time novella collection, is being reprinted in a special anthology called A Stitched Together Romance Collection. It releases next spring. I have several proposals out with different publishers and I'm hoping to have an announcement about another book or series soon.
Here's a peek at the first chapter of End of the Trail. Vickie has generously offered one lucky Ink Dots visitor the chance to choose any book they might wish from her Heartsong collection, should they be the winner of this week's book give-away.
Simply visit her website - Vicki McDonough - go to the Heartsong Books link, and leave a comment back here at Ink Dots telling us which of her Heartsong books you would like to win. You have until Friday to enter and there's 11 books to choose from, so good luck and happy reading.
End of the Trail
Central Texas 1896
Lightening skittered across the granite sky. The boom of thunder that followed spooked Brooks Morgan's horse into a sideways crow hop so unexpectedly that Brooks had to grapple for the saddle horn to keep from losing his seat. He tightened up on the reins and guided Jester back onto the trail. He had hopped to make it to the town before the storm let loose but it looked like he was in for a soaking. He didn't mind a good washing down, but Jester hated rain.
Rocks crunched beneath Jester's hooves as he trotted up the trail. A gnawing in the pit of Brook's belly made him wish for a home cooked meal, but those were hard to come by for a drifter like him. He glanced up at the ominous sky as another bolt of lightening made him squint. Tugging down his hat, he pulled Jester to a stop atop the hill to get his bearing. Though just two in the afternoon, the sky looked as if twilight had already set in. Another bolt of lightening zigzagged from heaven to earth with an explosion that set Jester prancing. Rain was one thing, but Brooks had no hankering to get hit by lightening.
He clucked out the side of his mouth, and Jester leapt forward with no more encouragement. The black horse was as fame as any, but send a little rain his way. and you could almost see a yellow stripe appear on his back. They topped another hill, and a small town came into view, barely visible becasue of the sheet of rain that was falling between Brooks and the place. Several lights flickered, welcoming him.
He reigned the horse down the hill, thankful that the rain hadn't reached him yet and make the passage slick. At the bottom of the valley, he nudged Jester into a gallop. The horse slowed when the first raindrops hit him, but then stretched out into a long-legged gait that ate up the ground. Something hard hit Brooks on the shoulder, and he glanced sideways to see who had lobbed the object, but not another soul was out in this weather. Another rock hit the back of his hand, then the sky let loose in a storm of hail.
Brooks hunkered down. Rain was one thing, but hail could kill a man. He reached the end of the town, reined Jester to a trot, and rode him right up to the boardwalk. The horse was the only thing of value he owned, and he wasn't about to let him get pounded by hail.
A woman with the face that reminded him of a fox rushed through the door of a dress shop, shooing him away. "You can't have that beast on the boardwalk. He'll make a mess."
Brooks bit back the first thought that came to mind and smiled. He bent his head, tipping his hat, and a river of water poured down onto the walkway. The woman squealed and jumped back. Brooks smiled and led Jester toward her. "Sorry ma'am. We'll just mosey on down toward to the cafe and see if we can't get something to eat."
Thanks for visiting with us Vickie. Wishing you every success with End of the Trail and your many future projects. We look forward to hearing more news from you soon.