On the Trail 6-22-09 | TheFencePost.com

On the Trail 6-22-09

by Candy Moulton
Encampment, Wyo.

I am spending this week in Oklahoma City at the annual meeting of Western Writers of America with trips planned to Express Ranches and Guthrie, Oklahoma, and of course to the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. The organization will present Spur Awards, recognize other writing achievements, including giving the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Achievement to Elmore Leonard, and have a series of panel discussions and presentations.

Earlier this year WWA members voted on television series and mini-series programs to select those they believe are the best ever with the results announced during the convention. “Gunsmoke,” which ran for 20 years on CBS, was selected as the Greatest TV Western Series of All Time by the organization while “Lonesome Dove,” an Emmy-winning 1989 CBS production based on Larry McMurtry’s Pulitzer Prize-honored novel, was selected Best TV Western Miniseries/Movie.

“‘Gunsmoke’ teleplays won six Spur Awards from WWA, and McMurtry’s novel also won a Spur, so neither choice is a surprise,” WWA President Johnny D. Boggs says. “Many of our members study “Gunsmoke” episodes and “Lonesome Dove,” both the novel and the miniseries, as examples of great writing.”

In the series category, “Maverick” was second, followed by “Rawhide,” “Bonanza,” “Have Gun, Will Travel,” “The Rifleman,” “Wagon Train,” “High Chaparral,” “Death Valley Days” and “The Virginian.” A more recent hit, HBO’s “Deadwood,” placed 11th.

“Centennial” was second in the miniseries/movie category, followed by “The Sacketts,” “Conagher,” “Monte Walsh,” Disney’s “Davy Crockett,” “Last Stand at Saber River,” “Broken Trail,” “Riders of The Purple Sage” and “Into The West.”

Eight of the top 10 movies/miniseries first were Western novels: James Michener wrote “Centennial.” “The Sacketts” was based on two works by Louis L’Amour, who also wrote “Conagher.” Jack Schaefer wrote “Monte Walsh.” Elmore Leonard, recipient of this year’s Owen Wister Award for lifetime achievement, wrote “Last Stand at Saber River.” Alan Geoffrion’s novel and script for “Broken Trail” won Spur Awards, and Zane Grey penned “Riders of The Purple Sage.”

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“Many of our members remember when Westerns ruled television in the 1950s and ’60s,” Boggs says. “Some even wrote for those series, and with ‘Deadwood,’ ‘Into The West’ and ‘Broken Trail’ we’ve seen how successful Westerns can still be, and how important powerful writing is to that success.”

I am spending this week in Oklahoma City at the annual meeting of Western Writers of America with trips planned to Express Ranches and Guthrie, Oklahoma, and of course to the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. The organization will present Spur Awards, recognize other writing achievements, including giving the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Achievement to Elmore Leonard, and have a series of panel discussions and presentations.

Earlier this year WWA members voted on television series and mini-series programs to select those they believe are the best ever with the results announced during the convention. “Gunsmoke,” which ran for 20 years on CBS, was selected as the Greatest TV Western Series of All Time by the organization while “Lonesome Dove,” an Emmy-winning 1989 CBS production based on Larry McMurtry’s Pulitzer Prize-honored novel, was selected Best TV Western Miniseries/Movie.

“‘Gunsmoke’ teleplays won six Spur Awards from WWA, and McMurtry’s novel also won a Spur, so neither choice is a surprise,” WWA President Johnny D. Boggs says. “Many of our members study “Gunsmoke” episodes and “Lonesome Dove,” both the novel and the miniseries, as examples of great writing.”

In the series category, “Maverick” was second, followed by “Rawhide,” “Bonanza,” “Have Gun, Will Travel,” “The Rifleman,” “Wagon Train,” “High Chaparral,” “Death Valley Days” and “The Virginian.” A more recent hit, HBO’s “Deadwood,” placed 11th.

“Centennial” was second in the miniseries/movie category, followed by “The Sacketts,” “Conagher,” “Monte Walsh,” Disney’s “Davy Crockett,” “Last Stand at Saber River,” “Broken Trail,” “Riders of The Purple Sage” and “Into The West.”

Eight of the top 10 movies/miniseries first were Western novels: James Michener wrote “Centennial.” “The Sacketts” was based on two works by Louis L’Amour, who also wrote “Conagher.” Jack Schaefer wrote “Monte Walsh.” Elmore Leonard, recipient of this year’s Owen Wister Award for lifetime achievement, wrote “Last Stand at Saber River.” Alan Geoffrion’s novel and script for “Broken Trail” won Spur Awards, and Zane Grey penned “Riders of The Purple Sage.”

“Many of our members remember when Westerns ruled television in the 1950s and ’60s,” Boggs says. “Some even wrote for those series, and with ‘Deadwood,’ ‘Into The West’ and ‘Broken Trail’ we’ve seen how successful Westerns can still be, and how important powerful writing is to that success.”

I am spending this week in Oklahoma City at the annual meeting of Western Writers of America with trips planned to Express Ranches and Guthrie, Oklahoma, and of course to the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. The organization will present Spur Awards, recognize other writing achievements, including giving the Owen Wister Award for Lifetime Achievement to Elmore Leonard, and have a series of panel discussions and presentations.

Earlier this year WWA members voted on television series and mini-series programs to select those they believe are the best ever with the results announced during the convention. “Gunsmoke,” which ran for 20 years on CBS, was selected as the Greatest TV Western Series of All Time by the organization while “Lonesome Dove,” an Emmy-winning 1989 CBS production based on Larry McMurtry’s Pulitzer Prize-honored novel, was selected Best TV Western Miniseries/Movie.

“‘Gunsmoke’ teleplays won six Spur Awards from WWA, and McMurtry’s novel also won a Spur, so neither choice is a surprise,” WWA President Johnny D. Boggs says. “Many of our members study “Gunsmoke” episodes and “Lonesome Dove,” both the novel and the miniseries, as examples of great writing.”

In the series category, “Maverick” was second, followed by “Rawhide,” “Bonanza,” “Have Gun, Will Travel,” “The Rifleman,” “Wagon Train,” “High Chaparral,” “Death Valley Days” and “The Virginian.” A more recent hit, HBO’s “Deadwood,” placed 11th.

“Centennial” was second in the miniseries/movie category, followed by “The Sacketts,” “Conagher,” “Monte Walsh,” Disney’s “Davy Crockett,” “Last Stand at Saber River,” “Broken Trail,” “Riders of The Purple Sage” and “Into The West.”

Eight of the top 10 movies/miniseries first were Western novels: James Michener wrote “Centennial.” “The Sacketts” was based on two works by Louis L’Amour, who also wrote “Conagher.” Jack Schaefer wrote “Monte Walsh.” Elmore Leonard, recipient of this year’s Owen Wister Award for lifetime achievement, wrote “Last Stand at Saber River.” Alan Geoffrion’s novel and script for “Broken Trail” won Spur Awards, and Zane Grey penned “Riders of The Purple Sage.”

“Many of our members remember when Westerns ruled television in the 1950s and ’60s,” Boggs says. “Some even wrote for those series, and with ‘Deadwood,’ ‘Into The West’ and ‘Broken Trail’ we’ve seen how successful Westerns can still be, and how important powerful writing is to that success.”