old western gunfight“Maybe it was time to kill Rawhide Rick.”

Wow. Now that’s a shocking way to begin a story. After all, what type of character contemplates murder in such a matter-of-fact tone?

But with a name like Rawhide Rick, I’m picturing a confrontation at the saloon followed by a shoot out in the middle of a dusty, western town. Black hat versus white hat … while tumbleweeds roll across the wooden sidewalk and past the livery. But why? Cattle rustling? Double-crossing after a stagecoach robbery? Romantic competition for the hand of the storekeeper’s daughter?

Then again, what if the character was a girl who was contemplating doing away with an unwelcome suitor? Perhaps “killing” him with giggly mannerisms sure to dampen his enthusiasm? Or destroy his assumption that she knows her way around the kitchen by actually serving him something she cooked?

(By the way, this opening line was selected from A Matter of Character by Robin Lee Hatcher, a 2010 historical romance, during a random wandering through the local library … and I had to read on enough to find out that Rawhide Rick was a character in a book series!)

What about you? What did you think was going to happen next?

Story Starters – 8
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