Inspiration From Real Life

Earlier in the summer my children’s book, Francine The Workin’ Stock Cowgirl, came out with Dingbat Publishing. I wrote the book under the author name Jewel Thomas.

Francine The Workin' Stock Cowgirl

Francine The Workin’ Stock Cowgirl

Francine is a cowgirl that thinks she can’t barrel race because she doesn’t fit the mold of a typical barrel racer. It’s not until she meets Flitter, a buckskin Quarter Horse gelding who also doesn’t fit the barrel racing stereotype, that she dares to believe she can barrel race.

Like a lot of books, Francine The Workin’ Stock Cowgirl really was inspired by real life and hits very close to home.

Having been a plus size gal my entire life, I know what it’s like to be very insecure as a rider, especially as a barrel racer. I know first hand the struggles that some girls have in believing in themselves, and believing in a dream. Francine epitomizes that internal battle.

The inspiration for Flitter also came from real life.

Flitter was a futurity prospect that was in training with some very close friends of mine. I had the privilege of sorting cows on Flitter when he was still a green broke colt. Not only was he smart, but he was level-headed and had a big heart – great inspiration for a book about believing in your dreams!

Sorting cows on Flitter

Sorting cows on Flitter

Sometime later, Flitter died from colic. His owners and trainers were devastated to lose a horse with such a great a personality and so much promise.

Flitter also happened to be a half-brother to my barrel horse, Fireman. So, when the opportunity came up to buy Fireman, I knew I had to have him because in some small way it was like having a glimpse of Flitter.

The inspiration for Merle, the number one cow dog on the ranch, is a blue heeler named  Hoss that belongs to the folks that trained Flitter.

I always say there’s a little bit of real life in every story that’s written. What are some of your favorite stories that have pieces of real life entwined into them?