Where Magic Meets the West: The Para-Western

the-spirit-is-willing-blogWeird Westerns? Sci-Fi Westerns? Para-Westerns? Para-Mystery Westerns? Steampunk Westerns? Western Graphic Novels? At the Tallgrass Writing Workshop at Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas on June 7,  ESU English Professor Rachelle Smith expanded our minds on the Western novel. She spoke about Edgar Rice Burroughs’ John Carter of Mars series, Joe R. Lansdale’s novel Magic Wagon, Stephen King’s Dark Tower: The Gunslinger, Rod Belcher’s Six Gun Tarot and Emma Bull’s Territory (which takes place in 1881 Tombstone). One of the growing genres in Para-Westerns is Old West mystery. Novelist Max McCoy, known for his Jacob Gamble Hellfire Trilogy (Pinnacle), is breaking new ground in the Para-Western genre with his Kensington Mystery Ophelia Wylde series, Of Grave Concern (a 2014 Kansas Notable Book), The Spirit is Willing, and has a third on the way, Giving Up the Ghost, due in bookstores in late November. So the next time you are at the bookstore browsing for your next novel to read, I recommend these authors to begin your journey into the Wild, Wild West with a ride on the paranormal side.

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