Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Fun Facts + Giveaway: Western Song by Leigh Podgorski

From award winning playwright and screenwriter Leigh Podgorski
Western Song Tour Graphic
Leigh Podgorski
Genre: Contemporary Western Romance
Publisher: Solstice Publishing
Publication Date: June 21, 2017
Western Song
As she discovers the true meaning of freedom, he discovers he's lost his heart.
Western Song is a timeless love story filled with rich unique characters played out beneath the wide Wyoming sky about a bull riding rancher and his recently deceased best buddy’s Thai immigrant mail order bride; as she discovers the true power of freedom, he discovers he’s lost his heart.
A moving, thought-provoking read...beautifully written ... Highly recommend for fans of literary Western/romantic fiction...
- Claire Middleton--Goodreads; Barnes & Noble; IndieBook Reviewers
"Western Song" grabbed me from the opening pages and didn't let go until the very end. ... this book could cross genres, not just for fans of the western romance and interracial drama...but for anyone who just likes a moving, beautifully-written, and powerful read!
- Steph Coleman --Goodreads; Barnes & Noble; Indie Book Reviewers

Purchase Links

Available now for $3.99 only. Grab your copy today.

Fun Facts about the Book

Here are some interesting fun facts, as compiled by the author:

1. Western Song was first created as a ten minute play. My husband, actor/director Dave Florek, belonged to The InterAct Theatre Company and I was a member of their playwriting group. They produced a delightful series called The Last Gasp, which had been presented to their playwrights as a writing challenge: write a ten minute play that takes place in the judge’s chambers right before the couple’s divorce decree is decided. 

2. We had a lovely friend, let’s call him Bob, who was very shy. We used to joke: “The only way Bob will ever get married is by a mail-order bride.” This was soon after the Vietnam War. There were many mail order brides coming across the seas from Vietnam and other parts of Asia. Thus, a storyline, a few decades later, was born. My handsome husband played Weston, and a beautiful young actress named Janice Chow played Song. That little eight minute play was a big hit! 

3. Friend Stephen Metcalfe, playwright, screenwriter, and novelist read that eight page play and said, “This has to be a full-length screenplay.” 
With Stephen’s help as well as a wonderful screenwriting class with an inspiring teacher, I developed Western Song into a full-length screenplay. Again with Stephen’s help, I was able to get the screenplay around to some big fish including Clint Eastwood at Mariposa and Kevin Costner.


4. Alas—getting it there and getting it done are two very different things. Western Song won a number of screenwriting awards and placements—all very lovely, all in the end non-preventative of the proverbial collecting dust on the shelf.

5. A Very Favorite Memory: Another dear friend Don Toner who runs a theatre in Austin, arranged a reading of the screenplay. After the reading, a delightful Mom approached me with her ten year old son. “He wanted to shake the hand of the writer,” she told me. He looked up at me with his charming bespectacled face and thrust out his hand. 

6. We were able to get a director/producer interested in the script. Of course the first thing was my talented husband for whom the script had been written would be out. He was a working actor, but he wasn’t a movie star. Second: Asian was out. Black was in. Of course, never mind that the entire core of the script depended on Song being Asian.

   Michelle Ang Dream Cast for Song Phan Rang

7. We never heard from Mr. Hot Shot again. But here’s a very important point, a diamond in the rough, a gem amongst bewilderment and even dismay. This same guy had brought up what turned out to be one of the most salient points of Western Song the novel. Prejudice. When I penned the screenplay, I had made Wild River a charming small town, but I’d forgotten humanity. 

That humanity is made up of the good, the bad, and the ugly. As I began writing the novel, this man’s apt critique echoed in my head. As hard as it is to listen to our critics, especially the unctuous ones who get everything else so wrong, it is so important to keep our hearts protected but open. You never know what you will reap blowing in the wind.

8. In 2010, after having turned from playwriting to screenwriting, I turned to novels. There is so much more freedom. Both plays and screenplays require very strict form. Novels can be as short as 25,000 words, known more as a novella, or as long as 125,000, known as epics. Of course the writer needs to keep in mind marketing and publishing, but she always has the option of self-publishing. You can be a one-man or woman band if you must.

9. Having said that—I was a one-woman band for my first five novels. Western Song was my last hurrah. Writing, publishing, marketing are exhausting. I sent Western Song out in search of agent or publisher. I had some interest re agents, even did preliminary re-writes for a few, but eventually those contacts fell through. As we entered the New Year, I was ready to throw in the towel. I had retired early from my professorship at a community college to be able to write full time, but I was burned out. And then, in early January, I opened my lap top to check my mail. My husband sat at the other end of the couch. I spoke in a low voice: “Dave? I think I just got an offer on Western Song.” 

10. Of course it was an offer. And so now, thanks to Solstice Publishing Western Song is on its way. And in 2017, I have had three short stories published in Solstice anthologies and one standalone. And here comes 2018, and yeah, I’ve got plans.

11. Takeaway: Never give up your dreams. Whatever they may be. Dare to dream. Dare to believe your dreams will come true.


Western Song Giveaway Graphic
Two prizes up for grabs:
$10 Amazon Gift Card
Western Song (eBook)
Hurry! Join now!
Contest runs from November 28 - December 11, 2017.

About Leigh Podgorski

Leigh Podgorski
Leigh Podgorski is an award winning playwright and screenwriter. Among her favorite projects are a play and documentary on Cahuilla elder Katherine Siva Saubel entitled We Are Still Here and the one-act play Windstorm for which she interviewed Dr. Elisabeth Kubler Ross. Leigh’s novels include The Women Debrowska that is loosely based on her own Polish ancestry, Ouray’s Peak which follows the story of one matriarchal Ute Indian lineage, and the metaphysical mystery series Stone Quest that includes Desert Chimera, Gallows Ascending, and Neuri Shape-Shifter. Several of her theatrical monologues have been published by Meriwether Publishing, Gerald Lee Ratliff, editor. Her newest novel is Western Song published by Solstice Publishing.
Western Song is a timeless love story filled with rich unique characters played out beneath the wide Wyoming sky about a bull riding rancher and his recently deceased best buddy’s Thai immigrant mail order bride; as she learns the true power of freedom, he discovers he’s lost his heart. In addition, Solstice has also published Leigh’s short story The Season of the Neuri Knight, a short story that will be released as a standalone and is currently available in the Anthology Realms of Fantastic Stories Vol2; and the novella My Soul to Take, which will be released on October 31st in the Anthology Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Vol 6 and also as a standalone.
Visit Leigh's works on the Violet Hills Productions website: http://www.violethillsproductions.com
Connect with Leigh Podgorski on social media:

Book Tour Schedule

Follow the book tour from November 28 - December 11, 2017.
Visit each tour stop daily and discover more features, excerpts, reviews, interviews, fun facts and more!
To check the latest tour schedule, visit the Western Song Book Page at Book Unleashed.

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  1. Love the cover! Really enjoyed the description of the book, sounds like a great read.

  2. Thanks for the introduction to this book.

  3. Thanks for the great giveaway!
    The book looks absolutely amazing! I would really like ot read it!