Maisey Yates’ Top 10 Western Inspirations
by Maisey Yates, author of The Rancher’s Baby
I’ve been a big fan of Harlequin Desire and the Texas Cattleman’s Club series for years as a reader, so when I was asked to take part in it as a writer, I was thrilled. To me this is an iconic romance series with so many things I love. High stakes, family drama and, most of all, hot cowboys.
I love a hot cowboy. I write a lot of them. And I thought I’d share the top ten Western inspirations, or my #ranchspirations, that inspire me!
Music—I’m a huge country music fan, and the building of each book’s playlist is a big part of my process. Some of the songs on my playlist for The Rancher’s Baby were “Hurt Somebody” by Dierks Bentley, “Make You Miss Me” by Sam Hunt, “Jack Daniels and Jesus” by Chase Rice, “Black” by Dierks Bentley and “Love Is War” by American Young.
Visuals—Visual inspiration is another huge part of my process. I use Pinterest to help with that. Here’s a link to my inspiration for The Rancher’s Baby: https://pin.it/trzmm5kgwz2dm5.
My office—My office is pretty Western-inspired. It was built last year, and I definitely had my gorgeous cowboy heroes in mind when I did the design for the space.
My desk—My desk was another thing I had a specific vision for, but I couldn’t find what I was seeking anywhere. My dad ended up making my desk for me. Not only is it beautiful, it’s more meaningful to me than anything I could have found at a store.
My home town—I’m a small-town girl, and I’m inspired by the places and people around me every day. I live in a Gold Rush town so there’s Western flavor everywhere, coupled with a sense of community that I always strive to reproduce in my books. I’m writing a Christmas book now and found a huge dose of inspiration for an upcoming scene at the Christmas parade I attended a couple of weeks ago.
The rodeo—I love a rodeo. I go every year with friends and I find the atmosphere inspirational and electrifying. I love the dust and the music, the action, the little stories the announcers tell about the cowboys, the people watching…and of course, the cowboys themselves.
Dierks Bentley—Yes, I know I said music already and I know I already mentioned Dierks in that section, but he gets his own section, too. His music and lyrics are always inspirational to me, and his has been the theme song for the majority of my books. I’ve also been to see him in concert twice, and believe me, I left very inspired.
Food—It might sound silly, but food is a big part of my books. The families in them are always sharing meals together, and that comes from my own life. It’s what my family does. We eat, we talk, we laugh. And to me food says a lot about the people in the book. Barbecue and homemade pies with berries picked from down by the river…it reminds me of small-town summers, which always gets me in the mood to write about my fictional small towns.
Summer—I think this is because it reminds me of parties we went to when I was a kid. There was a family that always hosted a big potluck in their barns during the summer, and the kids would run wild all over the property (I fell into a pond once—that and the baked beans are my most prominent memories of those get-togethers). So summer always gets me in a very cowboy-ish mood. I always want to roll the car windows down while I drive and play Tim McGraw.
Oregon—My home state is my chief inspiration when I write. Getting outside, hiking, driving and finding new places to explore are what rejuvenate me, and these trips inspire the descriptions in my books. My Copper Ridge and Gold Valley books are my love letter to my favorite state, and even though The Rancher’s Baby is set in Texas, the heat and beauty of Oregon summers still served to get me inspired to write the book.
We all have something that inspires us, so what inspires you to do what you love most? Comment and share your #ranchspirations!
About The Rancher’s Baby:
She’s having her best friend’s baby… Only from New York Times bestselling author Maisey Yates!
When a torrid, possibly dangerous scandal comes to Royal, Texas, Selena Jacobs is nearly caught in the middle. Until her best friend Knox McCoy ensures her safety—by moving in! Selena has loved Knox for years, but she’s never had the courage to tell him. Now the sparks she’s tried to smother burn out of control…and leave her pregnant. But with the pain in his past, will Knox finally take a chance on love…with her?