Web Site Exclusives!

Story Fragments

Here in the Story Fragments section we make available some of the unfinished work that was neither long enough nor complete enough to be included in the Lost Treasures books.
BEAU L'AMOUR'S COMMENTS are in BLUE.


Three Different Beginnings of a Western Story

The Trials of Cain Bell - The wagons were passing. He stood there with his hands in his hip pockets and watched them go by. He watched the oxen passing and the flank riders, and the folks sitting on their wagon seats, and nobody looked toward him. Not even one. . .

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Horror Story

Roy and Kay at the Ocean - It began, I suppose, with the dead seal, but at the time we were not impressed with its significance. Roy found it one morning, lying dead upon the sand slightly above the level of the tide and there was nothing noteworthy about it other than some curious white blotches on the hide. . .and these might have been caused by aging or by some disease.

Continued . . .

A Western Story Fragment

Carlan's Gold - is a good example of the way Louis would get a fundamental situation down before going on to work on another story.

"Walsh," Kavanaugh said, "if the girl says one word she shouldn't, kill the boy."

Mary's quieting hand was on her son's knee and she felt it tremble ever so slightly.

Continued . . .


Fragment of a Mystery Story

Mary Humbert - In this fragment of a short story about a serial killer Louis uses a small piece of his own life. For a few months during the winter of 1925 he and a few other men rented a shack on the hill behind the port of San Pedro.

"It has been a long and relentless pursuit, but now it is over. He is out there on the corner standing under the plane trees, waiting for me, and soon I must go out. And when I do he will kill me. . . ."

Continued . . .

Rough Beginning of a Short Story or Novel

Ben Tolan - Here is the rough beginning of a short story or novel.

Reading it, I pick up some clues that Louis might not be quite ready to write this story or that he was just rambling a bit to see what came out. He did this occasionally, sometimes it produced something, sometimes not, but it was good exercise for his writing muscles.

Ben Tolan came down off the ridge with the sun behind him, and when he left the glare of the sun he was out of sight under the trees. He rode up wind toward the camp he had glimpsed so their horses would catch no scent, and he rode quietly, choosing his approach.

Continued . . .

Beginning of a Western Story

Shadow Rock - Captain Tom Casady stopped his horses on the brow of the hill, wanting to savor every second of his homecoming to the final instant. Below him the lights, now winking on for the first time this night, showed him the outlines of the town, altered but little, and sprawling comfortably along the banks of the Creek.

Continued . . .

Beginning of a Modern Western Story

Wrong Turn! - A Dan Turpin Adventure

He stopped when he saw the diamond-shaped tread of the tire tracks in the sand. He slowed the jeep, braked to a stop and then reversed until he was alongside the tracks.

A car had turned off the highway, probably early this morning, and had gone off up the road toward the blue, distant mountains.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Thriller

The Visitor - When she opened the door he was standing there smiling, a man slightly below medium height with a square pink and white face and a small blonde Hitler type mustache. His eyes were pale blue and protruded somewhat, but he was very neatly dressed in a gray suit. His hat was perched squarely atop his head, and looked faintly ludicrous.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a 19th Century Boxing Novel

Tapton Downey - Breaking free, Tapton Downey backed swiftly across the ring making the Slasher follow him, and the crowd booed. The Slasher charged after him and Downey went inside of the Slasher's right and fell against his chest. As he did so he rolled his big shoulders with two half-arm blows to the belly and felt the Slasher's knees sag under the impact.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Detective Novel

The Biggest Thing in Town - Sgt. Steve Brennan drops on a stool at a lunch-counter beside his Lieutenant, Van Holt. He pushes a folded newspaper toward him, indicating an item. "See that?"

It is a small item of only three or four inches on an inside page. "Suds" Merrick has been released from prison after only two years of a seven year sentence.

Continued . . .

Beginning of a Western Story

Marta MacMahon - Bud made his own bed under the wagon and before he crawled into his blankets he checked the loads on both rifles and the shot-gun. They had a Sharpe .50 buffalo gun and an old Deane-Adams rifle. The shot-gun was a good weapon, and she kept her husband's Navy Colt and the shot-gun in the wagon with her.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Western Story

Tom Pickett - Old Tom Pickett hunched his lean shoulders and rested his forearms on his knees. All during the preceding testimony, his eyes had remained on the dusty, boot scarred plank floor of the improvised court room. The evidence against the young stage driver was not overwhelming but it was convincing, and evidence or no, Old Tom knew that Johnny West was guilty.

Continued . . .

Beginning of a Survival Story

Ship Wrecked - He awakened to memory of struggle, and held himself tightly, warily, inside and out, bringing his thoughts into focus to locate his enemy.

It was all about him. It was the sea.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Crime Story

Sheriff Hackett - The body of the unknown man lay sprawled on the rocks forty feet below the lip of the canyon. They scrambled down the steep path some fifty yards up canyon from the body, and then walked back.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Crime Story

Jim - He should have carried a gun. That was obvious enough now. A man was a fool to travel with that much money and not carry a gun, but who would have suspected that he would need a gun in the home of his best friend?

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Contemporary Story

Walter Hebert - Walter Hebert was a tall, heavy man with straight black hair beginning to recede from his rather high forehead. He habitually wore horn rimmed spectacles, and his face was heavy of feature and inclined to be florid.

Continued . . .

A Fragment of a Western Story

Ben Scully - Ben Scully was not a fast man with a gun, but the quality that makes a man dangerous has nothing to do with speed or even accuracy. What was necessary, Ben Scully had...the ability to stand flat-footed and look into gun fire and shoot back, coolly and carefully.

Continued . . .

The La Quinta Experience

Louis' Rememberance of the California Desert - Already I had walked further than intended, but where did the trail lead? Obviously others had followed it. An Indian trail originally, I had no doubt, but a white man had done work here and there, probably to turn the old Indian trail into a bridle-path. I walked in.. . .

Continued . . .

Even More Story Fragments

Practice Makes Perfect - To have story ideas you have to put yourself in a certain frame of mind. It takes a good deal of practice though when you get into the flow it can be like a dam bursting..

Continued . . .

A good deal of the material presented in Louis L’Amour’s Lost Treasures Volumes One and Two is unfinished. 

Sometimes these were projects that Louis could not continue with because of other commitments.  Sometimes he discovered that he didn’t know how to go further and thus set it aside.

Often however, he used the process of beginning a story as a way of taking notes, of setting down his intentions for the day that he would return to finish the story.

Often however, he used the process of beginning a story as a way of taking notes, of setting down his intentions for the day that he would return to finish the story.

Here in the Website Exclusives section we make available some of the unfinished work that did not seem appropriate for the Lost Treasures books yet still seemed interesting and illuminating.

... Beau L'Amour