Nancy Quinn is an internationally known wildlife artist and author. Her detailed and realistic paintings have made her the recipient of two World Wildlife Art Championship awards, and her debut book, Go West, Young Woman!, is a current finalist for the Will Rogers Medallion Award. She happily resides on a Montana mountainside with her husband, daughters, and animals, where she continues to enjoy painting and writing about her experiences with domestic and exotic wildlife, as well as sharing her uplifting family stories in her books, blogs, and YouTube video series.
I've just completed the sequel to my first book, Go West, Young Woman!, which was released last year. My new book, Stay West, Young Woman!, picks up where my debut book left off. It is the continuing true story about my family leaving the urban lifestyle of the United States capitol (Washington, DC) to live on a mountainside in Montana.
Frequently asked questions:
When and why did you begin writing?
Eleven years ago my husband retired from the United States Air Force. We decided to move the family to Montana and pursue a more pastoral lifestyle, hoping our days would be calmer and less hectic. We endured a steep learning curve those first five years, and the book is a chronicle of many of our more comical and dangerous experiences. Now, instead of crowded subdivisions and endless traffic, our nearest neighbours are hummingbirds, songbirds, magpies, crows, owls, ospreys, hawks, eagles, grass snakes, ants, spiders, deer, elk, moose, horses, cows, foxes, coyotes, wolves, chipmunks, squirrels, mice, rats, rabbits, skunks, marmots, beavers, badgers, bobcats, cougars, and bears - to name a few. Hardly a day goes by without a visit from one of them, though they've yet to bother me for a cup of sugar or flour. I began writing to friends and family, explaining in detail the interactions we were having with them. When the stories began to generate some keen interest, I decided to share them with a broader audience by writing a book about our modern frontier life.
Is there a message in your books that you want readers to understand?
The events are true, though names, dates, and some locations were intentionally blurred for privacy reason. And, yes, there is a message reflected in the cover photo on my first book, which features the rainbow. I think it represents hope. This is a recurring theme throughout both books, along with perseverance and the need to cultivate a humorous perspective on life. Dreams don't come true without a continual effort on your part. Even though you may fail at first, or encounter hardship, there is a greater success if one keeps on trying, again and again. Humour helps, especially when times are tough. If you can laugh through adversity, you've already beaten the devil. If you can't, well, maybe someday you will see the comedy in retrospect. There is enough tragedy and despair in life to drag even the strongest of us down - if we let it. I want people to find my books uplifting; that is my primary goal.
Join the conversation as Yvonne Mason and I discuss my latest Montana misadventures on her "Off the Chain" Blog Talk Radio program, the first Wednesday of every month at 8pm EST (6pm MT). Enjoy western adventure without getting your boots muddy while we talk about the "crime wave", fickle weather, nosy bears, curious cougars, mischievous chipmunks, and so much more. It's wild times among the wildlife of the Wild West.