Conjure Man contains “The Wooden Seed,” “Running to the Sun,” and “Healing the Rift.” It is a combination Navajo (Dine) myth and supernatural genre. The story centers around Tessa and her lover Taylor who are part-bred Navajos. Tessa finds a wooden box, which leads her to a part of her past.
Luce is the conjure man who is using a rift between dimensions to power his desire to bring the world into subjugation. Tessa, Taylor, and the seed-bearers are the only thing to stand between Luce and total destruction.
A little background of why I wrote this book: I started writing this book after I earned my degree in English Literature. My husband and I were living in Germany, and he was a contractor, repairing electronics for the US Army. We lived near Ramstein AFB and the weather was wet and cold. There were a lot of forests there. I think that in one way I was homesick for the dry desert air.
My opening scene in this book started from a dream I had and from personal experiences that I had when we lived on the Ute Reservation when my father was a foreman for one of their ranches. A few miles from where we lived was a campsite for the Basque sheepherders. When they ran out of essentials like coffee and cigarettes, they would show up at their neighbors and ask for essentials. I remember how beautiful they looked. So it started out what-if my character Tessa had lived out in the boonies, and what-if her step-mother had an affair, and what-if Tessa found out.
The rest of the story which includes Luce came about because I needed a villain. So what-if Tessa met this guy when she was young, but because the circumstances were so evil that she lost her memory.
The Native American motifs seemed to naturally thread into a Western story. The Navajo creation story, where they come through a rift to make it to this new world has resonated with me for many years. And, if you think Western States you normally think of cowboys, Indians, miners, and in the modern West casinos.