Thursday, July 20, 2006

Why 'Real Life Petticoat Ranch'?

Whenever I pitched my novel Petticoat Ranch to editors I'd start with: Petticoat Ranch is my husband's story. Ivan, my husband, grew up in a family of seven sons, no daughter. (His sweet mother is a saint). Then Ivan and I had four daughter, no sons. The poor man's life has just been one shock after another.
I remember one conversation where the girls were discussing the ins and outs of control-top panty hose. Ivan said, "You know, this is something that we just NEVER TALKED ABOUT when I was growing up."
Out of moments like that, I created Petticoat Ranch. I thought, "What if, instead of getting to start a family of all girls slowly, one wife, one baby girl, break it to him gently, Ivan had been dropped into the middle of it.
What if, instead of a normal life with plenty of exposure to woman, his mother of course, but classmates, sisters of friends, etc., he'd come from a truly all-male world, like, oh, if he grew up the son of a mountain man in the old west and, without ever really speaking to a woman, he suddenly found himself married to a woman with four daughters.
I just had such a good time writing this. There's so much more the Petticoat Ranch than just my very confused hero trying to figure out how to handle all these women. But that's the heart of it. That's where almost all the comedy comes from.
So, because my family, we live on a farm and we're knee deep in girls here, fits the description of a Petticoat Ranch, I decided that might work for a blog name.
Below, down a few posts, my four daughters are pictured at the first family wedding. Left to right, Wendy, Joslyn, Shelly and Katy. And now, as the proud owner of one son-in-law, we've finally got a BOY! Aaron's picture made the blog, too. No sign of Ivan yet, but I'll get him.


Crystal said...

Mary, I'm soooo glad I got the RIGHT Mary. Phew. I'm putting your blog link up on mine as soon as possible. (I hope I get the right one...)
I love the Petticoat Ranch premise and can't wait to read it and yes, Ivan's mom is a Saint! (I have four sons, and four, with lots of friends, is enough!) You already married off one daughter--want to arrange some marriages with the remainder?

Mary Connealy said...

I can't even get my daughters to talk to me with out major eyeball rolling, like they're gonna stand still for arranged marriages. But they'd be really great catches if a guy could catch them.