Elaine Long, author, writer, Bear Ridge, Jenny's Mountain, Bittersweet Country

Elaine Long

Welcome to my website.

I appreciate all the readers who have contacted me about my work through this site and by regular mail.

Occasionally, I look on internet sites for used books to see if my novels are still listed (out of curiosity only-authors don't get payment for sales of their books on these sites.)

Recently, I was startled to see that someone had named my books as Western Romances. My novels are not romances. They are books about modern American Western women who work in the field. My characters are fictitious, but the details of the women's work are not. I have contacted and worked with women in mining, in sheep ranching and in the study of bear biology.

To do research for Jenny's Mountain, I went 70 feet down in mine shafts, 400 feet back into tunnels, shoveled ore into carts, studied burros as they worked, and took the mining women's suggestions for contacting other experts in the field so that my reports of tools, procedures, and mining laws were accurate.

My research for Bittersweet Country included working as a ranch hand at a sheep ranch in Montana, feeding, cleaning pens, and helping with lambing and bottle-feeding. I also did research about art work, quilting, and the sad topic of the loss of a child.

The research for Bear Ridge put me on the back of an ATV, jolting along through the woods with the bait box full of rotten meat behind me. (The male scientists had tested my sincere attempt to understand the procedures by telling me that my character would have to fill the bait box, so I did it.) I also went into a bear den to check on the cubs of a sleeping mother bear and into the university labs to understand the importance of the study of bear scat.

After the publication of Jenny's Mountain, a male reader called me. He said, "Women don't work that hard." I laughed and replied, "All the women I know work that hard." It is important for this world to know about the work women do. The women I met worked for knowledge, for further education, to gain skills, to help their husbands, to care for their children, to develop mines, ranches, and bear research. Of course, stories of romance are important, but in the long run, the stories of women's hard work are more inspiring.

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Jenny's Mountain Bear Ridge Bittersweet Country
Jenny's Mountain Bear Ridge Bittersweet Country


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