2016 Western Fictioneers Peacemaker Award Winner

Author GP HUTCHINSON - 2016 Western Fictioneers Peacemaker Award Winner

Popular Handguns of the Old West

If you’re going to enjoy Westerns to the fullest, it’s good to know some of the more popular handguns of the Old West.

What kind of gun is he totin'?

What kind of gun is he totin’? With its bird’s head grip, it might be a Colt 1877, or it could be a reworked Colt 1873.

It’s been suggested many times that gun play was not nearly so common in the American West as Western fiction makes it seem. Likewise some have insisted that the late Elmer Kelton (whom Western Writers of America crowned the greatest Western author of all time) didn’t write shoot-’em-ups. Both statements may be correct, but a great deal of fiction across all genres places heroes and villains alike at one end or the other of a gun. It’s fiction.

Meanwhile, the American West of the 1860s-90s was not a tame place. A cowboy might need a pistol if for no other reason than not wanting to get dragged to his death if his horse threw him and bolted while his foot remained tangled in his stirrup. Besides, there were snakes, wolves, coyotes, mountain lions, and the like to contend with, not to mention a wide open land with too few lawmen to keep up with scores of new settlements and problems.

With that said, what popular handguns did the folks of the Old West like to carry?

Famous Handguns of the Old West Continue reading

The American Cowboy: Two Different Pedigrees

I’m painting with a broad brush today as I share these fun facts about the cowboy of the 19th century American West, but did you know that, in the heyday of cowboys and cattle drives, two distinct cattle culture traditions developed side by side?

"HerdQuit" by Charles Marion Russell - Uploader took photo at museum. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons -

“HerdQuit” by Charles Marion Russell – Licensed under Public Domain via Commons –

There were the cowboys of Texas heritage, of course, many of whom were unemployed Civil War veterans who heard that there was lots of free beef on the hoof down in the Lone Star state and a huge demand for it on the depleted tables to the north and east. Then there were the buckaroos who came up via the California vaquero tradition. Continue reading

A Man On a Mission

StrongConvictions_CVR_XSMLTexas Ranger Emmett Strong is a man on a mission. Two missions, in fact.

When Strong straps on his six-gun and sets out with friends Juanito Galvez and Granville Sikes to capture and bring to justice the man who murdered his brother, he isn’t always quick to unholster his weapon. But there’s no time to hesitate when going against an assassin who’s taken refuge with a cruel and wealthy brother and his band of armed and deadly outlaws.

And that isn’t the sum of his worries. Strong, whose wife died in a shoot-out gone awry, finds romance again when he meets the daughter of a Chinese immigrant family. He’s reluctant to cross cultural barriers but must put that aside when she and five other young women are kidnapped.

With success hanging on quick thinking and quick shooting, can he afford to take one last shot at both love and retribution?

Enjoy the action in Strong Convictions, an entertaining, wild ride of a Western with a multiethnic cast and a surprising twist ending.

Look for the novel on in print and in e-book format by February 27, 2015.

And please feel free to use the Comments box below to ask me questions about the story, the writing process, or book availability. I’d be delighted to respond.


Strong Convictions hero, Emmett Strong, shot and killed his beautiful young wife. It was an accident, to be sure. But that fact won’t bring her back. Now he’s reticent to draw his Colt from its holster—a condition he’ll have to overcome one way or another if he’s to apprehend the rowdy who’s to blame. And that’s just the beginning.

Strong Convictions: An Emmett Strong Western is now in the capable hands of the professional editors. After drafting the complete manuscript, I put the novel through two rounds of rigorous self-editing and decided it’s time for another pair of eyes to give it a once-over.

Saguaro Slim Cartooned 3When the editing’s all done, what can the public expect?

A Basic Premise

Reading is only one of many options people have for relaxation and restoration. We tend to live life at breakneck speed. Our recreation time is precious to us.

When I set out to write a story, I try to dream up a tale that will Continue reading

Strong Convictions First Draft Completed

Strong Convictions, the first installment in a series of Old West action novels I plan to release, is becoming a reality! The first draft is complete, drawing to a dramatic conclusion right at the three hundred page mark.

It’s a tall order to fill, but I hope to offer the reader a fresh take on the conventional American Western, building on foundations laid by the likes of Robert B. Parker of Appaloosa fame and Elmore Leonard, author of Three-Ten to Yuma.

cowboy shooting the gun; old wild westMy initial intent is to develop a trilogy featuring the hero Emmett Strong, a prodigy of a pistolero who loses his instinctive prowess with the six-gun the same day he loses his beautiful young wife. As his story progresses from Strong Convictions through Strong Ambitions to Strong Suspicions, Emmett will have to rely on his wits, courage, and character as much as he ever relied on his speed and uncanny marksmanship. Continue reading