A little bit about RLB:
I grew up in the foothills of North Carolina, listening to stories my grandmother Mawie told. They usually involved me as a character with her favorite movie cowboys. After earning degrees at Appalachian State University, I taught high school English. In Sarasota, I met a bookseller whose interests meshed with mine. We married and came back to the house where I had spent most of my life, and we are still here.
I wrote I Rode with Cullen Baker as partial fulfillment of a creative writing assignment in graduate school. In March of 2001 the script version of I Rode with Cullen Baker won first place in the Split-Screenplay competition, and more recently the novel version placed 4th in the Zirdland.com experimental contest. In September of 2005, I published IRWCB as a novel with the subtitle "A Tale of Romance and Adventure" at Lulu.com. In 2008 I re-published a slightly updated version, though the story remained intact.
My life’s work was to be a 600-page spoof on every Western movie ever made. I got as far as naming the Table of Contents before abandoning it for Tierra del Oro. The writing of this historical family saga has been the most satisfying of all my endeavors. My main goal now is to find a suitable venue for sharing these novels with actual readers.
Thanks so much for taking the time to participate in this week's Q&A! I had to edit your blurb down a little bit, but I was wondering if you could tell us a little bit more about your screenwriting endeavors.
In your email to me you stated "During a 9-year membership at Francis Coppola’s site www.Zoetrope.com, I reviewed hundreds of scripts for fellow writers, and my work frequently was rated in the monthly Top Three. Most of my submissions were screenplays based on the 9 connected novels I had already written as a single work, Tierra del Oro, a Saga of Old Mexico."
Have your screenplays been opted for movies? Do you find it difficult to switch from screenplay to book format?
The easiest stories to write were all of the ones about Floyd, 16 of which appear in my Lulu book Floyd and the Traveling Yard Sale. Every one came to me pretty much complete, with almost no tweaking and no revision. Two not in this latest edition, Snakeskin Boots and Lost in the Corn Maze, were always complete in my head, but didn't make it onto paper (well, file) for awhile, because I was busy writing other things.
Other works that took years to write were more like putting together a 10,000 piece jigsaw.
Since I knew almost nothing about the Mexico of that century, I needed to research everything from flora and fauna to culture and politics. Being married to a seller of old books gave me opportunity to find and own materials that supplied background. So there's a great deal of actual historical content, especially when the stories get into the 1910 Revolution. But the fictional plots and characters are the main focus.