There are only 33 days left before Cactus Country will launch its first two books. The Bountyman and Doe and the Cactus Country Anthology Volume I will be released on September 3rd. The Bountyman cover is on this blog, but just last night I finished up a rough draft of the anthology cover and wanted to give Michael Andrews a plug today. Mike is a western artist and a good friend of Dusty Richards. He sent us a black and white drawing of the perfect cowboy to use on the anthology. The picture has only one splash of color, the red bandanna around the cowboy's neck. I saw a photograph of the drawing in May and since that day the idea of using this cowboy with that simple splash of red hasn't left my brain.
Mike also did the cover painting for The Bountyman and Doe, and did 20 black and white illustrations for the inside of Dusty's how-to book, Writing the West with Dusty Richards and Friends. If you haven't seen Writing the West you should pick up a copy. It's not only a great book on writing, but Mike's cowboy artwork makes it something special.
We've included an article about Mike, written by Jeanie Horn, in the anthology. Below is a quote from that article that says it all.
“Art is one important way of keeping the details of history alive,” Michael said.
Since Dusty and I decided to start the Cactus Country imprint and book club, I've been doing a lot of research about the "old west." It is true that a picture is worth a thousand words. Below is the cowboy Michael drew, and part of the cover text that will be on the final book. With artists like Michael Andrews and writers like Dusty Richards we'll be able to keep the history of the west alive for a long, long time.