My motive to write novels were stimulated early from reading old paper back Zane Gray Westerns and Science fiction in the late fifties while working summers for the US Forest Service at remote locations in the Mountains through California. Where I quickly ran up the latter in two summers to Fire Crew Forman and held that position through high school. Then continued doing the same to help pay my years in collage.
Though it did not take long when following my career in engineering after graduation for my feelings for Fire Control to pull me back into the Forest Service. Then eight plus years of traveling to many locations in the states and long stays away from home became too much. I stepped out and started my own private engineering business, though several years later accepted an Engineering position in the US Forest Service. In this department I was hands on laying out new road locations and needed structures, gathering information for their designing, drawing plans, staking their locations and supervising Private Contractors constructing these projects for the next ten years.
Through at first writing novels held frustration, trying to untangle piles of papers while developing a story. My savior came in the early sixties when the computer arrived and shortly followed descent programs like Word Perfect and MS Word. This let my thoughts to be saved in folders as of now, where I could unscramble and expand them into novels. Then the big plus came when lap tops computers arriver and now the novels being worked on travel with me.
I must say a large plus came to me during my last ten years in the Forest Service when all timber and road projects had to have written summaries and environmental documents to be tested in the courts. So my winter months were filled doing these papers and gathering backup material to prove them. Also putting me in a Federal Judge’s chamber to get his stamp of approval.
These documents did help hone my ability to absorb information and placing my thoughts on paper. But writing a novel took a new reach. Though at this time my aim was towards western novels based on a Zane Gray style. So to give me more balance came night writing classes, plus reading action fiction written by noted authors like Tom Clancy, Robert Ludlum and John Grisham.
But it was not long for my style to change and soon my westerns followed the line of modern action novels. By basing them on the years just after the Civil War, that carried lawless uncertainties, along with bumping into Ruffians thinking only to do you harm. Though it did not take long for regular action fiction to absorb into half of my new novels.
Another good thing happened when I was able to take an early out from the Forest Service years back. This let my vision expanded as my wife and I pushed our photography into other subjects and like now we are still traveling through the states and different world countries. Also a laptop Computer travels with me, plus by passing through actual locations enabled me to wrap them into a novel, giving it more bases.
Now that E-Books have becoming popular, I am in the process of converting my stack of novels into this form. Also some light rewriting is being done before they make that jump. Of course the new ones coming off my computer will soon be added.
by Patrick Spence
Published: May 16, 2017
Green Texas is an action Western that follows four ex-federal soldiers home from the Civil War leading seventy saddle horses. Crossing Arkansas and Oklahoma came run in from ruffians and Indians. In Texas they helped a fright hauler go against ruffians. Then months later three of them joined the Federal Marshal service going after men who stole money and goods from the government during the war.
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