The strip, Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo by Jennifer Smith-Mayo.

In a few short days, we’re headed to the pulsing heart of true American commerce, vice, and villainy. Naw, not Washington, DC (Now why would you think that?). I’m talking Vegas! I’ve never been, but I hear tell it’s chock full of swingers and bandits and lightbulbs and tasty congealed orange mac-n-cheese under heat lamps. What’s not to like?

We’re headed to the land of Dino, Frank, and Sammy for the 60th Annual Western Writers of America Convention. I’m especially worked up about this one because I’ve won the Spur Award for Best Western Short Novel. I believe I’ll have to give a wee speech, and depending on my level of bourbon intake, it may or may not be memorable‚Ķ.