The Adventures of Finn Wilder was a concept of a life not yet born, and that’s when I began writing the first book, Finn’s Tree Alphabet. Then, Finn came into the world the morning of September 23, 2021, and I was overwhelmed by immediate love, respect, and excitement. Before that, word had it that I, at my totally young age, was going to become a grandmother. I chose the name Mammaw, which is what we called my mother’s mom, who lived in a holler in the Appalachian Mountains of Kentucky. I admired her so much, but she died young and I miss her. Together with my pappaw, she lived off the land and lived life simply and via hard work. Her accent and cooking are some of the things I’ll never forget. If I could leave any legacy to my grandson Finn, I want it to be similar to my mammaw’s and my own mother’s lives. Well now that time has come, so the one thing I can do–books–seems one way to give to him. Stories are so important, and have been my whole life. I can only try to infuse him with that same wonder.
I cannot take credit for Finn Wilder, except perhaps for the middle name, which I found one day and forwarded to my son. Finn will be his own person just like the rest of us. He will become an amalgamation of all of the people in his life as well as his natural and cultural upbringing and his own decisions and inspirations. If I have any dreams at all about who he is to become, it is that he will grow up happy and safe and become the person he chooses. I also dream that he will love the great outdoors, just like I do, just like my son (Finn’s dad) and his awesome partner do. I have no doubt that Finn will be raised to hike the forests and swim in lakes or rivers and appreciate the world. My own dad instilled love of the nature and love of reading in my life, and in my son’s. We talked about it one evening, and my son loved those old memories with his grandpa, my dad.
I live in the eastern part of Canada, and Finn will be born in the Midwest. So, we are not too close in geography, and things like climate change and Covid are still shaping the world around all of us, making travel risky and future life uncertain. However, if there is one positive to hope for it is that we will adapt to the changing world, and if I cannot be the mammaw that stops by every day, I will be the one he can visit who is far-ish away, surrounded by not a city but woods and lakes and imagination. I already have a faerie tree in the meadow, adorned just for him out of a hawthorn tree. And I will visit him, which means going back to the neighborhoods where I became an adult and of which I have great memories. As a writer, I will also be writing books for him, which is what The Adventures of Finn Wilder will be about. As a reader, I will read books to him often. As a fledgling guitar player and not-terrible singer, I will sing songs to him.
The Adventures of Finn Wilder will start with my imagination and evolve according to the world around us. The stories will have themes of the outdoors. Check back often as things unfold!
The Adventures of Finn Wilder will be published by Dragonfly Publishing.
Books will be illustrated using photographs, drawings, and other art. Book cover design and illustration is done through Canva.