Today I'm going to do another author interview. We haven't done that in awhile so thought it was time. This author is a first time author. Tyler Roberson is author of a children's easy-to-read, short chapter book. First, let me introduce the book a little. I would say 1-3 graders would enjoy this book and learning a little from and about Herman.
Herman and Eugene, better known as Gene, both have something in common. They are orphaned.
Eugene is a lively, but responsible, serious and shy (around kids) black-haired, blue-eyed, freckled-face, nine year old boy. He lives with his grandparents and Uncle Don on their farm in Northern Michigan. Eugene loves fishing, talking and singing songs. He is a hard worker around the farm. He finds a baby heron that quickly becomes his friend as he nurses it back to health. Eugene affectionately refers to the heron as Herman.
This is a cute story and your child will learn facts about herons and what it means to rescue and release an animal back into the wild. I was impressed. I give this book two thumbs up and a fishing pole to boot. I've asked Mr. Roberson if he'd be so kind to answer a few questions so you may get to know this new author better.
Could you share with my readers a little bit about yourself?
I am 45 years old. I am married and have one son, two stepdaughters, and a stepson. I also have four beautiful grandchildren and two on the way. I was born in Cheboygan, Michigan which serves as the setting for Herman. I currently live in Harrison, Michigan which is in the central part of the state or "middle of the mitten".
I'm from Michigan as well. Niles, right on the Stateline MI/IN, Southwestern corner more less
Are you a full-time author or do you have another occupation besides?
Currently I write full-time and take care of three of my grandchildren.
That is so neat that you take care of your grandchildren. What a big job.
Could you share a few (3-5 would be nice) fun fact with my readers about yourself that they might not know and you wouldn’t mind if they knew, of course.
I enjoy fishing whenever I get the chance which is why Gene, in my story loves fishing. I also like to travel. Two of my favorite places I visited are Yellowstone National Park and the Gettysburg Battlefield National Park. I am fascinated by shipwrecks in the Great Lakes and have visited the Shipwreck Museum at Whitefish Point in Michigan's upper peninsula.
Have you always been interested in being a writer?
I would say a better way to say it is I have always enjoyed writing. Writing became my "creative outlet". I always wanted to paint or sketch pictures, but I lacked the skill. As a result, I started to "paint with words"; writing in a descriptive style to allow readers to envision something the way I see it.
I'm not much of an artist, and I can't say I'm a good word painter either, but I love reading what others write.
Who or what had had the most influence in your becoming a writer?
When I was young I watched a TV show called The Waltons. John Boy, the oldest brother, wanted to be a writer and was always scribbling in his notebook. That was my first exposure to someone actually aspiring to writing as a career. Louis L'Amour, my favorite author, was another major influence as were, of course, my parents and grandparents.
I loved the Waltons too when I was growing up. Let you in on a little secret. We're the same age.
Could you share a little bit of how you came up with the inspiration for this story?
Herman is based on an actual event from my father's boyhood. I grew up hearing him tell the story of a young heron chick he rescued and named Herman, so when I was casting about for an idea to write about, my dad's experience was a natural choice.
What better way to write than from personal experience, well dad's personal experience, he passed on to you through stories.
Is it easy to get into the Children’s genre?
I think the most challenging part of writing for children is remembering that you are writing for children. Childhood is a time of constant wonder and discovery. The challenge is to relate to kids on their level without becoming condescending.
Sometimes as adults we have a hard time getting on child's level.
This being your first book what were your feelings when you finally saw and held the finished product in your hands?
A tremendous sense of accomplishment. Holding a copy of the book and knowing it was something that would last beyond myself was a truly rewarding moment.
Well, congratulations. I enjoyed reading this book and trust there will be more in the works.
Do you have any more books in the works? If so can you share with us a little bit.
I am currently developing stories about a Michigan family that experiences life just prior to and during the Civil War. There will also be future stories about Gene and his family.
Well, I love reading children's books. I guess that's the teacher in my. Hopefully, I'll be able to review many more of your books. They sound interesting. We need good clean books for our kids to read.
Is there any character in your book Herman that you best relate to? Why?
At this point in my life I'd say Uncle Don. I enjoy my grandkids and try to infuse humor as well as discipline into their lives.
Well, I enjoyed getting to know Uncle Don in this book and hopefully, we'll see him in future Gene books.
Have you ever been involved in an animal rescue/release effort before as you use in your book? If so could you share a bit about this with the readers.
Nothing as dramatic as Herman. When I was young we found two abandoned kittens that had gotten their heads stuck in a snack chip bag. We freed them and took them home.
I just had a sparrow fly into my house here a few weeks ago. We had to rescue it and set it free again. What would you like the readers to come away with after reading this book?
I would hope that anyone who reads Herman can relate to the story and its characters in a real way. The little heartaches and triumphs of everyday life are something we all go through and it's best to share them with someone who loves us.
Thanks that is so important to remember. What would you say for yourself is the hardest part of the writing process?
Actually setting aside the time to just sit down and write. There is always so much going on and things to do that it can be difficult to step back and take a few moments to pick up my pen.
There always seems to be something calling our needs. Something that needs our attention. What is the most rewarding part of the writing process?
Knowing that you're bringing something to life that you can share with other people.
That's always a good feeling. Do you have a web site? How can someone find more information on this book
Oh, thanks for the web site. I'll have to go check it out myself. When not writing what is your favorite pastime?
I really like hanging out with my grandkids and playing with them. I also like to play games on my computer or Playstation 3.
I don't have any grandkids yet, but I bet they are fun. You sound like a cool grandpa. Do you have any parting words you’d like to leave with the readers?
I'd just simply like to say thank you for their interest in Herman and myself, and I hope to be able to share more adventures with them in the future.
Thanks for taking the time to answer these questions. God Bless on your writing adventure. Loved your first book.
Learn more about this book here.
A copy of this book was provided for review by WinePress Publishing