Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Wild Deadwood Reads by Paty Jager

photo taken by Paty

Have you ever wondered what a gunfight would have been like in the Old West? Having studied up on many things about the old west the one thing that struck me was how inaccurate the rifles and pistols were and yet men would stand in the street shooting at one another without regard for the people who might be in the street. Smart citizens would hide inside, knowing that most bullets wouldn't be anywhere near the target the other man was shooting at.

And that is what makes watching the Deadwood actors portray a shootout in the streets of Deadwood, South Dakota so much fun.

I attended the Wild Deadwood Reads last June and had a great time. The downtown area is filled with history. You can't walk into a building without seeing it and hearing about it from a proud owner.

In the summer of 1877, there were 75 saloons in the town. Some grandiose establishments and others makeshift bars with two barrels and a board nailed across them. There were also Theaters. Some were legitimate places to see plays and hear singers, while others were brothels and gambling dens.

The theaters that were brothels and gambling dens usually coaxed young women from other places to their establishments, saying they would be put up and paid to sing. Only when they arrived they realized they also had to sell drinks and themselves. They were treated poorly and those with strength would get away.

Because of the huge masses of gold, the gambling, and drinking, there were also the criminals. The seedier side of mankind hung around waiting for a chance to knock off someone who won big at a gambling table, a miner who hooted too much about his strike, or the mines' payrolls.

The fun part about visiting Deadwood is the fact that the townsfolk now, revel in every good and sordid detail about the growth of their town. Which makes hanging around there so much fun.

I'll be attending the Wild Deadwood Reads again this summer. It's June 7th-10th at the Deadwood Mountain Grand hotel. There is a meet and greet on Thursday night with the authors who are attending. Friday there is a motor coach trip to some of the surrounding sites. There are ghost tours, book readings, a breakfast with the authors on Saturday morning, a book signing, and then a fantastic VIP PBR package where we meet behind the chutes with bull riders, the announcer, and the rodeo protection athlete(clown). Then we have special seats for the rodeo and a dinner afterward.

You can find information on all of this here:

guide on the train
I had a fun time on the 1880's train through the Black Hills. If you've never ridden on an old steam train this is a great experience to understand how it felt back then.

Paty Jager is an award-winning author of 32 novels, 6 novellas, and numerous anthologies of murder mystery, western romance, and action adventure. All her work has Western or Native American elements in them along with hints of humor and engaging characters.
This is what readers have to say about her Silver Dollar Saloon series: Paty Jager brings her characters to life, right off the pages of her book. You will laugh, cry, be sad and get angry right along with the characters.

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  1. Paty, Wild Deadwood Reads sounds like great fun. Wish I could be there in June to meet you. I love your books, especially your Shandra Higheagle mysteries. Looking forward to reading more!

  2. Hi Lyn, It is a fun event. I wish you could be there too! One of these days we'll meet in person. Thank you for your kind words about my mysteries. They are my favorite books to write.

  3. Paty, the event sounds so interesting. You have planted seeds of discontent. LOL I'm glad you had the opportunity to attend and will again. I know how much emphasis you put on historic accuracy in your novels. Wild Deadwood Reads should help in a fun way.

  4. HI Caroline, It is a wonderful event for readers and authors. I'm planning a side trip while there to check out the area in North Dakota where I set my Silver Dollar Saloon series. So it is fun and a work trip.

  5. Paty, reading your post makes me want to go back to Deadwood again! One of the best historical western towns I've ever visited by far. Wild Deadwood Reads sounds wonderful ... this cowgirl's envious!

  6. HI Cheri, It was a lot of fun last year and they're making it even more fun this year. Looking forward to my western get-away.

  7. It certainly sounds like so much fun to ride a train and visit a place as fascinating as Deadwood. I've heard so much about Deadwood, but I have never been there, so thank you for bringing it to life for us.
    All the best to you, Paty.

    1. Hi Sarah, It is a great town with a lot of history. Hope you make it there some time.


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