Yesterday I went to see a special visitor at the Ten Sleep Library.
His name is Craig Johnson and he is the author of five books. The sixth, Junkyard Dogs, is due out in May.
When his first book came out, entitled The Cold Dish, I remember thinking “This guy *understands* Wyoming!” At the time I was still working at the library, and I tried to recommend him to many patrons.
In my opinion, many authors who write *about* Wyoming, even if they live here, still don’t *get* it. Can I be more specific? Well. The majority of writers either treat all Wyomingites as dumb hicks or romanticized cowboys. The truth is somewhere in between, of course. Easy enough to say, much harder to write.
Mr. Johnson lives in Ucross, Wyoming, a wide spot in the road, population 25, just over the hill. For those unfamiliar with Wyoming topography, that means on the eastern side of the Big Horn Mountains… I’m on the western side. He has horses… and even *knows* horses… another bonus. He can describe Wyoming’s people and places, language, humor, and mindset seemingly effortlessly.
He is a born storyteller but is further spoonfed unusual story lines by police officers, sheriff deputies, and highway patrolmen, as well as small town newspapers and local b.s.-ers. Excuse my French.
I highly recommend reading his books… if you think Wyoming interests you through this little blog… just wait until you meet Walt Longmire, Sheriff of Absaroka County.