Among the many projects one might expect from country duo Brooks and Dunn, a debut novel, "The Adventures of Slim and Howdy," probably wouldn't top the list.

Among the many projects one might expect from country duo Brooks and Dunn, a debut novel, "The Adventures of Slim and Howdy," probably wouldn't top the list.

"It's not on our annual schedule, I'll put it that way," Kix Brooks tells Billboard.com. "When Ronnie and I were first getting together and really having fun with that first album, 'Brand New Man,' we were sitting around talking about what we liked about albums growing up. And we both had the whole liner notes deal in common. So we thought, 'Let's get a little adventure story going here and give people something to read.'"

Within a few albums, Brooks and Dunn had created their alter egos Slim (Dunn) and Howdy (Brooks). Eventually there was talk of maybe doing a short story Christmas book, but nothing ever came to fruition.

"We could never get our hands around it, and finally William Morris came and said, 'Let's just do a book,'" Brooks says. "We talked to several different writers and kind of landed on Bill Fitzhugh because we're not novelists, even though I feel like we did come up with a couple of good characters.

"And we didn't want them to be 'Dukes of Hazzard' silly," he continues. "We wanted them to be that kind of 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid' smile -- [not] too heavy, but at the same time [with] a good sense of humor."

While "The Adventures of Slim and Howdy" is due out May 12 via Center Stage, the rocking country duo is focusing on its music this spring. The act just released its latest single, "Put a Girl in It," the third from its 2007 effort, "Cowboy Town."

"We've probably got another year's worth of music off of this album," Brooks says. "In fact, the tour will be interesting this year because we have half a dozen stadium deals with (Kenny) Chesney, but starting in August we're going to tour with ZZ Top for like 28 shows."

He adds, "We hooked up with them and did a special on CMT a while back, and just kind of got to be friends. We talked about touring, so we're going to do it. It should be fun. We'll play as hard as we can with those guys, but we're not going to try and out ZZ ZZ Top, that's for sure."