By Davalynn Spencer

I enjoy hearing from readers of my inspirational Western romance, especially when they notice that a story portrays simple, everyday life as a believer. “Lifestyle Christianity” is how one reader described it.

Another reader said she couldn’t get through my books without baking a batch of homemade “potbellied” biscuits.

I have the same problem when I’m writing!

But no doubt the most poignant note I’ve received was from a young woman who drew a direct line from my cowboy romances of the 1800s to her own life in the twenty-first century.

After finishing one of the novels in my Cañon City Chronicles series, she wrote:

“I wish I’d had your books to read when I was younger so I would have known I didn’t have to let guys test-drive me like a car.”

Frankly, not a comment I ever imagined hearing. That situation was not in the back of my mind as I wrote the story. It wasn’t even close. But the young woman saw choices in the life of the heroine that she could incorporate into her own.

Readers come to Christian fiction with personal baggage. As authors, we can’t know what has informed and affected their lives, but somehow, those readers often find courage through the actions of a character that helps them make better decisions for themselves. They can find victory, strength, and success in what they face because they’ve seen characters threatened, challenged, and tempted.

Story is powerful, whether fictional or biographical. I find that it stirs hope, and isn’t that why we write?

That, and the homemade pot-bellied biscuits in the cast-iron Dutch oven.

Bestselling author and Will Rogers Gold Medallion winner for Inspirational Western Fiction, Davalynn Spencer writes Western romance set along the Front Range of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. She is the wife and mother of professional rodeo bullfighters and an award-winning rodeo journalist and former crime-beat reporter who can’t stop #lovingthecowboy. When she’s not writing Western romance, she teaches writing workshops, speaks for special events, plays piano on her church worship team, and wrangles feline mouse detectors Annie and Oakley. Connect with her at www.davalynnspencer.com.

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