Sometimes it seems like the most challenging part of writing a novel is distilling its essence down to a blurb – a quick pitch the publisher can use to create advertising and cover copy. This article gave me a spark that helped me see what “How to Hold a Cowboy” is really all about.

The article is about Dan and Linda Hubbell, who travel together and run a rodeo photography business. He’s one of the few photographers allowed in the arena at the NFR.

“I wouldn’t be there if it wasn’t for her,” he says. “It’s just like ranching. Partner up, and everybody goes to work.”

Yep. Partner up!

My novels usually hinge on some aspect of cowboy culture, and this one, tentatively titled, “How to Hold a Cowboy,” is about partnership – between cowboys and horses, ranchers and neighbors, and, of course, cowboys and cowgirls.

Here’s a first peek at the blurb:

“When rancher’s daughter Jess Bailey tries to run the family ranch on her own, she learns the importance of neighborly cooperation – and finds love along the way.”

Pro rodeo photographer Dan Hubbell will snap pictures of the WNFR contestants for the 20th year in a row