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Monday, August 27, 2012


Did someone say ‘paranormal time travel historical western’? That’s what my novel, Time Plains Drifter, is—a very different kind of romance novel than anything I’ve ever read. I think that’s why I enjoyed writing it so much.

The publication of Time Plains Drifter is a story unto itself—but it has its very own ‘happily ever after’ ending. Here’s what happened. After being released in December of 2009 with an unscrupulous publisher, I took my rights back after only three months and spent the next year searching for another home for it. In the spring of 2011, it was placed with WESTERN TRAIL BLAZER, an imprint of PUBLISHING BY REBECCA J. VICKERY. This is a marvelous company that handles some much “bigger” names than I have. But most everyone here knows that already. Print books are important to me, although I realize that e-publishing is growing by leaps and bounds. WESTERN TRAIL BLAZER will prove to be the perfect place for Time Plains Drifter, and I’m glad to say I now have the sequel in the works.

That being said, let me tell you why Time Plains Drifter is so hard to pigeonhole and why that may be a bit scary in today’s market.

I knew Time Plains Drifter was going to have to be classified as a time-travel romance; that’s how the H/h meet one another. She’s from 2010—he’s from 1879. That was the easy part. The part that was a bit harder to work around was that he was dead. I just couldn’t get past the premise that Rafe d’Angelico was going to be the “paranormal element” of the story. I didn’t want him to be a werewolf, vampire, or shapeshifter. So that left angels, demons, zombies and so forth. I chose for him to be an angel.

Working with Rafe—an angel who didn’t want to be an angel—was a challenge. I told him he had a pretty good deal going. He told me, “I want to be human again.” In the end, I realized he was right, and that was the only way to resolve the issue of time-travel-paranormal-angel-demon-human issues.

Jenni Dalton, the heroine, was completely unsuspecting in all this. She went out on a stargazing field trip with seven of her high school students one night and they never came home. Instead, they ended up in Indian Territory, 1895; one hundred-fifteen years in the past.

Jenni’s got it rough, trying to deal with her seven charges, four of them the senior class troublemakers. It takes Rafe to bring them to heel and get them to toe the mark, until the gravity of their situation causes them to all make some surprising adjustments.

As Rafe and Jenni realize their growing attraction to one another is fated, they also understand there is no way anything can come of it on a permanent basis—Rafe is an angel, and Jenni is human.

The twists and turns that finally bring the book around to the HEA were the most fun to come up with for me. But the story itself, being so unique, is tough to categorize.

Time Plains Drifter is special to me because it’s the first project my daughter, Jessica, and I have had the chance to work on together. She designed the cover art. I absolutely LOVE what she did.

Time Plains Drifter was the recipient of The Reviewer’s Top Pick Award by Karen M. Nutt, PNR reviews. It also received a 4.5 star review from Romantic Times Magazine. I was selected as the recipient of the Honorable Mention—Best New Paranormal Author category in PNR’s PEARL Awards (March 2010), for Time Plains Drifter.

The sequel has been a delight to work on, with a different twist than the first book, and some familiar characters will be the stars of the show this time around since the story is built around Rafe’s brother, Cris, and Jenni’s sister, Victoria.

Time Plains Drifter is now available in all formats, including print, Kindle, and Nook. I’ve also written some short stories that have a paranormal twist to them: A NIGHT FOR MIRACLES, SCARLET RIBBONS, HOMECOMING, (these three are Christmas stories) ALWAYS AND FOREVER, (Halloween story) THE KINDNESS OF STRANGERS (THE TRADITIONAL WEST ANTHOLOGY) and THE KEEPERS OF CAMELOT, which will be included in the Western Fictioneers’ 2012 Christmas anthology, Six Guns and Slay Bells: A Creepy Cowboy Christmas, due out in October, 2012. Take a look at my Amazon page to order. (See link below.)
Cheryl's Amazon Author Page:

I’ve included the blurb and an excerpt below. Please leave a comment! I always love to hear from readers and other authors. Enjoy!

Trapped in Indian Territory of 1895 by a quirk of nature, high school teacher Jenni Dalton must find a way to get her seven students back to 2010. Handsome U.S. Marshal Rafe d’Angelico seems like the answer to her prayers; he is, after all, an angel. In a race against time and evil, Rafe has one chance to save Jenni’s life and her soul from The Dark One—but can their love survive?


He closed his eyes, letting the pleasurable feel of her wet mouth on his body wash over him, along with her voice. “Some things never change,”she’d said earlier. Her Oklahoma accent was a slow waltz to his mind, its lilting cadence urging him to accept what they had between them. Still, he couldn’t let it go. Couldn’t ever be dishonest with her, of all people.

“Don’t you want to know—”

She stopped him, placing two cool fingers across his lips, smiling at the tickle of his moustache against her skin. The smile faded as she absorbed the worry in his expression, the smoldering fire in his eyes, and made it her own.

“Not now, I don’t. You asked me—earlier—if I felt it. Whatever it is between us. I do.” Debating with herself, she hesitated a moment before coming to a decision. “I want you, Rafe,” she murmured. “I trust you.” She nuzzled his neck.“It doesn’t matter now, who—or what—you are.”

His hand closed in a fist around the shimmering satin of her copper hair, his chest filling with a sweet peace at her quiet words.


His mind churned as Jenni kissed him once again. Accepting him, for whoever he might be. She loved him. She hadn’t said it yet, but he knew it by the gentle way her lips grazed across his, then claimed his mouth completely, as if that was the only way she had to let him know how she felt. They breathed together, as one.

He answered her wordlessly, his tongue invading her mouth, fingers splaying and tightening against her scalp as he pulled her to him.

She moved across his bare chest, the stiffness of the material of her own blouse gliding with gentle abrasion across his skin. He groaned in pleasure and felt her smile against his mouth. She made the move again as she lifted her lips from his, emerald eyes sparkling into his searing gaze.

“We’ll talk later,” she assured him.

“It’ll be too late to change your mind about me then,” he said, half-jokingly.

“I won’t change my mind, Rafe.”


  1. Time Plains Drifter was one of the first stories I ever read of yours. It had all the elements I love the best: time travel, paranormal and western. I loved this story. This is a keeper story--the kind you read over again and again.
    I look forward to reading all your future work, Cheryl, so get busy. LOL

  2. Cheryl's "Homecoming" story made me a fan of hers, and it has been a pure pleasure working with her on various projects. And this book has such a unique plot, I don't see how anyone could resist. I enjoyed it a lot, and I'm not a romance reader (I admit I skipped over some of the mushy stuff!)

  3. Aw, Sarah, you are so sweet. I'm so glad you enjoyed Time Plains Drifter so much...but after reading Harmonica Joe's Reluctant Bride, I knew why you liked it--because of the TIME TRAVEL. Those are hard to write, and you did such a great job in Harmonica Joe. Thanks so much for your kind words and all your support.

  4. Troy,
    You know, Homecoming was one of those stories that I wasn't sure was going to be published. When I wrote it, I didn't know WHY it came to me, and the first time through it only had mentions of Jack's love, Sarah. But when Rebecca read it we talked about a few small fixes that I made and came up with the finished product and I have had so many people mention that story to me, so I know it struck a chord with them. You were a good friend and waded through Time Plains Drifter (I know--- minus the 'mushy parts') and I appreciate it! LOL Thanks for coming by today!

  5. I do love time travel stories (and thank you for the compliment about HJRB), but, like Troy, I also liked Homecoming--in fact, as I've often said, omecoming is one of my favorites.
    I think it's your heroes that always win me over.

  6. I love getting inside my hero's mind when I'm writing a story.The thing that was so hard to do in Homecoming was to keep the reader from realizing what was going on until the end. LOL I'm so glad you enjoyed it, Sarah. That story is really special to me.

  7. Great excerpt, Cherly. I always enjoy learning something about how the story came to be, and this one has a history worth reading about.
    I wish you continued success with your books.

  8. Hi Linda!
    Thanks so much. I love to know how a book came about, too--it's always interesting to learn how other writers "process" and decide how and what their story is going to be. I'm glad you enjoyed the excerpt, and thanks so much for letting me know!


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