Saturday, February 11, 2017

Love, Lies, Typewriters & Heather Blanton #Giveaway

Howdy y'all! Crystal here and I've got another fun Western writer in the saddle--err, hot seat today. :) Hang onto your Stetson and join us for the ride. :)

Welcome to Stitches Thru Time, Heather. For those of us who don't have the privilege of knowing you, tell us a bit about yourself.

First and foremost, I am a humble follower of Jesus Christ. He shapes my worldview and everything I write. Speaking of which, I write historical fiction, with an emphasis on Western romance/inspirational Westerns. I think my fascination with Westerns (I always capitalize the word) started with my daddy. When he was a young man he worked for a time as a Florida cracker—a cowboy with a whip – check out his story . He always had that larger-than- life John-Wayne swagger (at least in my eyes) and I adored him. He taught me to shoot when I was five and I just loved sitting on the couch with him watching Gunsmoke, the Rifleman, and Bonanza. It was especially cool because I knew my daddy could do a lot of the stuff I saw on TV. Even shoot a hole through a quarter!

But I’m also a history freak, in general. I’ve held an outlaw’s note in my hand, climbed to the top of Independence Rock, trekked some of the Oregon Trail, explored ghost towns, camped on Colorado’s Million Dollar Highway, gazed out across the Sweetwater Valley…well, you get the picture. If it’s in my books, I’ve been there. I think that’s important for a writer. I try to show readers what I’ve experienced. Make it real for them.
Heather atop Independence Rock staring down at one of the oldest inscriptions on the rock: Milo Ayers, 1849.
She looked him up. He did indeed reach CA and had a good life.

That's so cool your dad could shoot a hole through a quarter! And I definitely wanna go to some of the places you've been. I love travelling.

Congratulations on your newest release! What is your story about?

My newest story is Love, Lies, & Typewriters, a Western romcom set in 1943. The story is a love triangle revolving around Lucy, Dale, and Bryce. Lucy has had a crush on Dale forever and when he gets home from the war, the feelings are still there. Then he saves her from a stampeding herd of cattle, and Bryce is the reporter tasked with not only telling their story, but promoting the “romance” as the couple tours the West selling war bonds. The assignment sucks for Bryce, who would rather be writing hard news. It gets worse when he realizes he’s falling in love with Lucy, but she only has eyes for her war hero. Or does she?

Sounds like a great read! Where did you get the inspiration for your story? 

The story was inspired by two things: Comes a Horseman, a movie with James Caan, was set in this same period and I loved the play of Old West against New West. Cars vs. Horses. Independent living vs. modern luxuries. And, I wanted to tell a little bit of my parents’ love story. How they met when they were seven, but had to overcome a lot of obstacles to finally reach the altar together.

Oh wow! You used part of your parents' story! That's wonderful!
What do you hope folks will take away from Love, Lies, & Typewriters?

A reviewer over on Amazon said this: “The story has a great theme about listening to God and doing the right thing. Sometimes we let pride get in the way which leads us to wrong decisions.” I couldn’t have said it any better myself. But there is one other thing I want readers, especially young women, to take away. At one point our heroine’s father says about choosing the right man, “I want Mr. Right to love you like Christ does: unconditionally and sacrificially.” Don’t settle. Wait for the right man.

Definitely great takeaways. 
Do you have a favorite scene in the book? If so, can you tell us a bit about it?

Oh, yes! Bryce and Lucy are coming home from a war bonds show and they happen upon a drunk cowboy bobbing in the saddle, the horse trudging toward home. When they try to assist him, he insists that he play one more song on his fiddle and they must dance to it. So right there, in the middle of nowhere, bathed in the car’s headlights, they slow dance to the mournful, haunting ballad Annie Laurie. They look into each other’s eyes… well, I guess you’ll have to just read the book. But if you’d like to know what Annie Laurie sounds like, give a listen:

Sounds like a very romantic, very unique scene. 
Where did you get your love of cowboys and the Old West?

As I said, it’s primarily because of my daddy, but there are certain attributes that make the Western unique. It just ain’t a Western Romance if you don’t have horses, a Western setting, a hero with a strong sense of justice, and a woman with a strong streak of self-reliance.

Yep! :) 
What do you plan to work on next? 

I am writing a novella for another collection, a mail-order bride story. Like all my stories, though, I pride myself on twists and this one is no different. There is more than meets the eye about this bride and the potential groom. No title as of yet.

I also plan on turning out book 2 in my Love and War in Johnson County series, and hope to get to book 4 in the Defiance series. Book 3 was supposed to end the tale of three sisters living in a rowdy mining town, but readers have made it clear they don’t want to let Charles McIntyre go!

Haha! That's great. Sounds like you've got a lotta irons in the fire. And speaking of readers, where can they connect with you? Where can readers buy your book(s)?

I love to hear from readers! They can join me at, ,, sign up for my mailing list (which has lots of exclusives) at, or follow me at

I also Skype pretty frequently with groups, so reach out. Let’s chat!

My books are available everywhere, but I suppose the easiest place to find me is on Amazon. :)

Last but not least, what is the quirkiest thing you've ever done?

An abandoned boardinghouse in a ghost town
in CO. Mineral Point
Unusual, strange, bizarre, peculiar, odd, outlandish, zany. Wow. Those words are just not me. LOL. My kids think I am peculiar because I don’t like to shop. So I’ll answer it this way: One summer my husband and I went exploring and camping in the Rocky Mountains. We used a book that had been out of print since 1969. Following its very old maps, we wound up in some of the coolest ghost towns EVER.

We got lost at one point, drove around till we saw avalanche warning signs, followed those backwards, and came out at the top of a ski resort near Telluride. Fortunately, it was summer. No skiers were harmed in our descent down the slope. We had a fabulous time!

Sounds like loads of fun! Thanks so much for sharing. I'm so glad you could join us today. It's been a blast. 

Let's keep the fun going, y'all. Since Heather loves to travel (like I do) and tattled on herself about getting lost. Tell us, do you have any funny, interesting stories about taking the road less traveled (or as my family likes to call it "the scenic route")?

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  1. On vacation each year in my father's hometown in southern Pennsylvania,we would go to historical places my mother would scope out for us. We always managed to get lost and end up at Gettysburg which was 20 miles away from Grandma's house! Loved those historical trips!

    1. Haha! Love it, Paula! Did y'all go visit Grandma while you were at it?

    2. Great story. I miss those trips with my parents.

  2. Several years ago on a much anticipated trip to Wyoming/Montana and the national parks, we took or tried to take a little side road to find an old abandoned mining town, in central Montana. It was a mountain road and was one lane.....never again!

    1. LOL! That's definitely taking the road less traveled, Cathy. One time we followed the GPS and ended up in somebody's pasture. :-D

    2. Cathy, I feel your pain. I've been lost in the Rockies. It's unsettling when you see signs warning of both avalanches and grizzlies!

  3. Great interview. I enjoyed it. Sounds like a great read.

    1. Thanks, Grantham. Glad you could stop in. Hope you get a chance to enjoy the read. :-)

  4. My family and I lived in a small town in Kentucky and once or twice a year we would go to Cincinnati to visit my Uncle, Aunt and cousins for the weekend. The first time that we visited after they had moved to a new apartment we got lost. Finally my Dad stopped at a gas station to ask directions and after driving for what seemed forever he admitted we were still lost and he pulled in again to get directions and Lo and Behold, it was the same gas station and the same man came out to tell us how to get there!
    Heather, it was also my dad who taught me to love westerns and I miss him every time I read a Western story.

    1. Aw, Connie, God bless our daddies for helping make us who we are! Loved the story!

    2. Oh my! What a trip!

      Connie and Heather, my mom is actually a bigger old Western fan than my dad. :-)

  5. I love that you took an old map and had an adventure! Your book sound so intriguing. And I'm listening to Annie Laura as I type.

  6. We got lost this Thursday night! We were headed to a Cub Scouts roundtable meeting, following gps,, it sent us 4 blocks in the wrong direction and told us we had arrived at our destination! So, obviously, we weren't! After 4 phone calls, and 28 minutes later, we finally arrived at our destination! We were all laughing! Such a fun night!!!

    1. And does that make you want to kill someone or what??!?!?! LOL

    2. LOL! Rose, I have totally been there. We were headed to a state park once and GPS tried to get is there by going through someone's pasture. After going over 5 cattle guards we decided to turn around. :-)

  7. Thank you for sharing your love of Westerns with us. I once traveled for a summer group sent out from our college. The college printed us maps for the church or school we should travel to each day. Those directions were notoriously wrong, and we often ended up in a corn field on the opposite side of the county from where we were supposed to be. We turned up late at our destination many times, even if we did allow plenty of extra travel time. One such day, we arrived at our Sunday night church service with 5 minutes to spare, a van full of stuff to unload, and in our traveling clothes, not our performance dress clothes! Our leader started calling and checking with the pastor the day before to be sure we were at least heading in the proper direction!

    1. Oh, Jessica. Great story. At least y'all persevered!

    2. Oh wow, Jessica! That's definitely trying.
      Thanks so much for stopping by!

  8. Stopping at small historical spots are always great to gain aspects of history. Thank you for sharing. Your new book sounds intriguing.

    1. Thank you, Marilyn. Yeah, I love those out-of-the-way-two-bit museums!