Wyoming book tour: discovering new pioneers in the old West
by Marilyn Skinner Lanier
Early August 2016
I’d been getting ready for weeks. Firmed up stops at indie bookstores in Laramie, Cheyenne, Casper, Cody, and Jackson for the week of August 8-12—towns that form a diagonal across the state from southeast to northwest Wyoming, through Yellowstone National Park to the Grand Tetons.
I’d contacted bookstores and local newspapers with names that echo the rural West: The Second Story in Laramie, City News in Cheyenne, Wind City Books in Casper, Legends Bookstore in Cody, and Valley Bookstore in Jackson, the Laramie Boomerang and the Jackson Hole News & Guide.
After Cody, Bob and I would drive to our family ranch near Clark where my family lived in the mid-1950s—the place that inspired my debut novel, Hardpan.
But this time our ranch house wouldn’t be there. During my last visit, in 1973, I didn’t imagine our ranch house would burn down some twenty years later. Even so, the ranch land would be there—all thirteen hundred acres of it.
Once more I’d marvel at the rugged expanse of sagebrush and cultivated fields interrupted by the Clarks Fork River winding its way to the Yellowstone and wonder at alfalfa fields that continue to defy the pounding winds (more…)