Book of the Month:
Tractor Mac Arrives at the Farm
I like most of the books I write to have a theme or a lesson. Usually these are the same lessons my wife and I would try to instill in our boys as they were growing up. The first book in the Tractor Mac series,“Tractor Mac Arrives at the Farm,” is about the friendship between Sibley the workhorse and a new tractor on the farm. It’s a rocky start because Sibley feels that the tractor is taking over all of his chores and disrupting his farm family’s dynamics. “What good is a workhorse who cannot work?” The idea came to me as a way to discuss what happens in a child’s perfect world when a new sibling arrives.
This story is also about changing technology on the farm in the late 40s and early 50s. I chose this time period because of all the amazing and rapid changes in the tractors and farm machinery that took place in this era. It was still a transitional time where much of the horse powered farming traditions were going away to be replaced first by steam, then by gas powered engines. Ingenious work-saving inventions were changing the face of America, as well as much of the world.
The first book was a fun experiment for me and it set the tone for the twenty books in the series that followed. I’ve enjoyed creating new characters and hiding “Easter-eggs” in my artwork(various little animals that follow through a particular story, as well as hidden family names worked into the pen and inks or painting of each page).
I am eternally grateful to my family, friends, and neighbors who have influenced the stories and helped out at all the fairs and shows over the years. Without their support we would not have enjoyed two decades of the Tractor Mac journey. Tractor Mac has come a long way since arriving at the farm!