Saturday, April 28, 2018

TIME PLAINS DRIFTER- #blogabookscene #westernromance #prairierosepub by CHERYL PIERSON

Did someone say ‘paranormal time travel historical western’? That’s what my novel, Time Plains Drifter, is—a very different kind of romance novel than anything I’ve ever read.

The publication of Time Plains Drifter is a story unto itself—but it has its very own ‘happily ever after’ ending. Here’s what happened. After being released in December of 2009 with an unscrupulous publisher, I took my rights back after only three months and spent the next year searching for another home for it. In the spring of 2011, it was placed with WESTERN TRAIL BLAZER, an imprint of PUBLISHING BY REBECCA J. VICKERY.

But that’s not where it ends. When Livia and I opened Prairie Rose Publications, I made the decision to move Time Plains Drifter over from WTB to Prairie Rose. With a brand new cover and a few minor changes, this book can be offered not only in the Prairie Rose Publications line, but also in our New Adult (ages 18-24) category in the Painted Pony Books imprint.

That being said, let me tell you why Time Plains Drifter is so hard to pigeonhole and why that may be a bit scary in today’s market…this is also the very reason it’s a perfect fit for PRP.
I knew Time Plains Drifter was going to have to be classified as a time-travel romance; that’s how the H/h meet one another. She’s from the 21st century—he’s from 1879. That was the easy part. The part that was a bit harder to work around was that he was dead. I just couldn’t get past the premise that Rafe d’Angelico was going to be the “paranormal element” of the story. I didn’t want him to be a werewolf, vampire, or shapeshifter. So that left angels, demons, zombies and so forth. I chose for him to be an angel.

Working with Rafe—an angel who didn’t want to be an angel—was a challenge. I told him he had a pretty good deal going. He told me, “I want to be human again.” In the end, I realized he was right, and that was the only way to resolve the issue of time-travel-paranormal-angel-demon-human issues.

Jenni Dalton, the heroine, was completely unsuspecting in all this. She went out on a stargazing field trip with seven of her high school students one night and they never came home. Instead, they ended up in Indian Territory, 1895; one hundred-twenty years in the past.

Jenni’s got it rough, trying to deal with her seven charges, four of them the senior class troublemakers. It takes Rafe to bring them to heel and get them to toe the mark, until the gravity of their situation causes them to all make some surprising adjustments.

As Rafe and Jenni realize their growing attraction to one another is fated, they also understand there is no way anything can come of it on a permanent basis—Rafe is an angel, and Jenni is human—and they will eventually go back to their own times and places in the universe.

The twists and turns that finally bring the book around to the HEA were the most fun to come up with for me. But the story itself, being so unique, is tough to categorize. I think now, it has the best of both worlds. It’s in a place where it can appeal to two separate readerships.

Time Plains Drifter was the recipient of The Reviewer’s Top Pick Award by Karen M. Nutt, PNR reviews. It also received a 4.5 star review, the highest rating given, from Romantic Times Magazine. I was selected as the recipient of the Honorable Mention—Best New Paranormal Author category in PNR’s PEARL Awards (March 2010), for Time Plains Drifter.
I’ve got a sequel in the works, Time Plains Guardian, which has been a delight to work on. There are different twists than what we saw in the first book, and some familiar characters will be the stars of the show this time around since the story is built around Rafe’s brother, Cris, and Jenni’s sister, Victoria.
Time Plains Drifter is now available in both print and Kindle. I’ve also written some short stories that have a paranormal twist to them: A NIGHT FOR MIRACLES, THE GUNFIGHTER’S GIRL, HOMECOMING, (these three are Christmas stories) ALWAYS AND FOREVER, (Halloween story) THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS (western) and THE KEEPERS OF CAMELOT (western). Take a look at my Amazon page to order. (See link below.)
Cheryl's Amazon Author Page:

I’ve included the blurb and an excerpt below. Please leave a comment! I always love to hear from readers and other authors.

Trapped in Indian Territory of 1895 by a quirk of nature, high school teacher Jenni Dalton must find a way to get her seven students back to the 21st century. Handsome U.S. Marshal Rafe d’Angelico seems like the answer to her prayers; he is, after all, an angel. In a race against time and evil, Rafe has one chance to save Jenni’s life and her soul from The Dark One—but can their love survive?


Jenni had been so preoccupied with staying in the saddle for the past four hours and worried about Joel that she hadn’t noticed the wind had quickened, the sky darkening as the thunderheads rolled in.

“We better stop here,” Rafe told her reluctantly, nodding toward a small ramshackle house in the distance. “Wait the storm out. Looks like it’s going to be a bad one.”

Jenni nodded, swallowing her protest as she glanced up, seeing the roiling black clouds for the first time. It was true, she reminded herself, some things never did change, no matter what year it was. It was April in Oklahoma—tornado season.
They had to find shelter immediately.

She followed Rafe toward the cottage, relieved to see a lean-to for the horses a few yards away.

As they rode into the overgrown yard, it was obvious the tenants had long since vacated. The runners of morning glory vines climbed along the front porch posts boasting new growth, the purple flowers adding a splash of color to the drab weathered wood.

Rafe swung down, calling a cursory greeting. He opened the front door at the answering silence, his gun drawn. As Jenni made a motion to dismount, he lifted a staying hand, not sparing a backward glance before he disappeared into the little cottage.

Jenni could hear him walking slowly through the house, his footfalls deliberate and hollow-sounding on the bare plank floors. She bit her lip anxiously, wondering what he was looking for. She didn’t like being separated from him, she realized. This was crazy. She thought of Kody and Anna, how quickly they’d come to care so deeply for each other.

Was she in love with Rafe d’Angelico? The idea was absurd. She barely knew him. Yet, when she’d ridden behind him, her arms encircling the lean grid of his waist, she’d felt—something. He’d noticed it too. “Can you feel it, Jen?” he’d asked.

Yes. She still did, stronger now than ever.

Rafe put his head outside the door, ducking through the narrow frame.

“Come on,” he said, reaching up to help her down. “I’ll get our gear, you go on inside out of this wind,” he yelled to make himself heard above the wail and rush of the storm.

Jenni nodded. “The horses—we can’t leave them out here!” she shouted.

He cast a glance back at the animals. “I’ll get ’em in the lean-to! Go on inside!”

Jenni slid off quickly and handed Rafe her reins, then hurried up onto the porch. She watched as Rafe quickly got the horses under the lean-to and looped the reins around the hitching post there, then ran back to her through the tall grass. Just then, the skies opened and rain pelted him.

Small pieces of hail fell. The horses whickered nervously as it hit the wooden structure over them. Rafe took Jenni’s hand, leading her back into the house. He was soaked, and Jenni hurried into the kitchen to see if there were any linens in the top of the pantry.

Whoever had lived here must have loved the place. The kitchen had been cleaned, and as Jenni opened a cabinet door, she noted the sparse pans lined up tidily against the wall. She opened another door to discover a beautiful china sugar bowl that was half full, and a can of beans on top of a can of condensed milk.

She found a clean but ragged towel and brought it to him, offering to dry his back as he shrugged out of his sodden shirt. But he took it from her, shaking his head. “I can do it,” he murmured, turning away from her quickly. “Thanks.” After a moment, he sat down on the chair, watching Jenni explore as he finished drying off.

She came toward him slowly, wrapping her arms around herself tightly. To have been so full of questions before, she certainly was at a loss for words now, she thought. A wry grin curved her mouth.

Rafe patted the side of the bed in invitation, and she sat down next to him. The hail was sporadic now, although rain was hitting the snug little cabin in sheets.

Water for the morning glories, if the hail doesn’t destroy them, Jenni thought, her gaze going out the front window to the thirsty flowers winding their way along the rough posts and roof of the porch. “It’ll wash out the trail,” she whispered to herself.

Rafe’s teeth glinted white against the stubbled growth of beard. His dark eyes were warm with a teasing light. “I think I can still find my way to Fort Sill. I’m pretty familiar with the lay of the land.” He gave her a wink. “This is my territory, Jenni. I don’t need to follow a trail to find them.” He shifted and began to pull off his boots.

“How long will it take us to get there?” Jenni turned to face him.

“At the rate we’re going—”

She grimaced at the teasing note in his voice. “I know I’m holding you up. If I wasn’t with you, you might have already caught them rather than having to go all the way to Fort Sill.”

“I don’t mind. It’s just—time’s not on our side.”

The wind cried around the corner of the cabin, and Jenni thought how much it sounded like the sorrowful wail of a woman. Then there was silence, stretching out between them, broken only by the noise of the storm.

“Who are you, Rafe? Really?”


  1. Wow, what an interesting concept! It sounds amazing.

    1. Christine, this book was my "book that wrote itself"--I know a lot of authors have at least one of those, but this one was that one for me. I don't know where the idea came from, but I have the sequel started--and hope one day to finish it.

  2. Always was and always will be a favorite of mine. Loved learning the backstory to its seeing the light of day, so to speak. Doris

    1. Thanks, Doris. It was a challenge in that I had so many of them going back in time, they had to have a specific "problem" that caused the entire group to be transported back. Once they got back, then the fun began. LOL

  3. The stuff that comes out of your head, Cheryl! And I mean that in a good way. How do you come up with a story like this? What an intriguing concept. I know what you mean about writing yourself into corners (or box canyons, if you prefer) and then the satisfaction of finding your way out. It also is hard sometimes to work with the pigeonholes of genres. Looking forward to seeing the sequel.

    1. LOL I have thought that a time or two myself, Patti. LOL "The stuff that comes out of your head." LOL You know, there are times when just sleeping on something gives me a clear answer. I don't mean it always comes to me in a dream or anything like that, but sometimes the next day I figure out what needs to be done and it's so obvious... I just have to think maybe I was tired of thinking about it before and that's why it didn't "come to me" when I needed it. LOL I hope to get that sequel done, too. I have a lot of good stuff planned.

  4. Cheryl,

    One of the many reasons I like Time Plains Drifter is because it bend genre definitions. *wink*

    1. I like it for that reason, too, Kaye. Time travel is only a small part of the story--it's what happens once the time travel has occurred that makes up the plot.

  5. How neat to be able to combine western, time travel and romance. One must never question why or where, just accept that the story came and must be written. I've always had a special spot for angels, so I'm really looking forward to reading this story. And, I love sequels.

    1. Elizabeth, Rafe is a very reluctant angel, and I managed to write this without bringing religion into it--not easy. LOL Rafe just wants to be human again, and have his old life back. I loved how it all worked out.

  6. even better, a reluctant angel. I'm intrigued and looking forward to reading this book. I wish I could read faster, write faster, more hours in a day. I don't know how you do it all, Cheryl. You amaze me.

    1. LOL I went to sleep last night waiting for the news to come on. LOL That was bad. LOL I do things a lot slower than I used to, that's for sure. Hope you enjoy Time Plains Drifter!

  7. I love to read and write time travel, but have never worked with angels. Oh my, as a retired high school teacher I can imagine the challenges in having 7 teens along on my time travel experience. Love it! Will have to get a copy of this one.

    1. Linda, I really did enjoy this one--the teens all had their issues to face, too--and I had a lot of people who wrote and wanted them to each have their own stories, too! LOL I would love to do that if I knew I could live to be 150. LOL Hope you enjoy!

  8. I love this post, Cheryl. Isn't that why we're indie? We can publish books that don't fit the boxes of traditional publishing. Your writing is always so good that you deserve your own publishing company. Wait--you have that, don't you? :)

    1. Thanks, Caroline! I'm so glad to have Time Plains Drifter out there--it's really one of my very favorite projects. Thank you so much for your very kind words! MUCH appreciated! XO

  9. I am a big fan of time travel stories and I like stories with a paranormal twist, too. Naturally, I loved Time Plains Drifter! It's still one of my favorites of your work.

    I know you must be so happy to get the stories back out into the world and to have these fantastic covers to polish them off. Congratulations, Cheryl. I wonder how you manage to do everything you do. There is still only 24 hours in a day--right?

    1. LOL SARAH! Yes, and I tell you, I'm feeling it. I'm TIRED. LOL I still have hopes of finishing the sequel to this book because it's (at least, IMO) a great concept and I have a wonderful idea for what's going to happen--AND it's already STARTED. LOL One of these days!

      Thanks so much for your very kind words, Sarah, and thanks for stopping by. I love this cover, too--I love all my covers Livia's done--she is a cover guru. LOL

  10. Well, that settles it! Now I'm even more intrigued to read this story! I believe it's my last full-length novel of your's I have left and reading this teaser and the thoughts behind it make me want to have that one jump even closer to the top of the tbr pile. Plus, how you manage to give us a hea with a time travel/angel twist??? Hmmm.... I must find out soon! ha!

    I read The Kindness of Strangers and LOVED that story - ghostbumps and melting hearts for that. ha!

    1. Oh, Michelle, you've definitely warmed MY heart now! I'm so glad you loved The Kindness of Strangers--if you've not read The Keepers of Camelot, you will love that one, too--it's a western, but with a very surprising paranormal element to it. I do hope you love Time Plains Drifter!

  11. Late to the party but love this exposition on blending genres. Just bought the book and looking forward to a good read!

    1. Hi Arletta! Well, the good thing about the internet is that you're never late. LOL So glad you stopped by and I sure do hope you love Time Plains Drifter I am determined to get that sequel done, too!


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