Ozarks Life: Mtn. Home author shares her creative mind with children

Rosette Elizabeth Hurst is working on her fourth children’s book.
Published: Feb. 3, 2023 at 5:18 AM CST
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MOUNTAIN HOME, Ark. (KY3) - Inside the mind of author Rosette Elizabeth Hurst lives a lot of curious creatures. It’s an imagination born when she was a child.

“We lived in Bandon, Oregon, right around the corner from the library,” Hurst said. “We used to go there all the time and read books.”

The love of reading evolved into the passion for telling stories at a young age at bedtime.

Hurst remembers, “my little sister would be ‘I want a story.’ So I would whisper and make up something till she fell asleep. That’s basically how it got started.”

Rosette would continue to write stories throughout her life. But it wasn’t until retirement that she became a published author.

“I thought maybe 20-30 years down the road I would hand (my stories) down to my daughters and they’d get them published,” Hurst said. “But as soon as I got that copyright, publishers started contacting me. I was amazed.”

A lot of Hurst’s inspiration comes from her taking a step back and watching nature.

“There are so many critters around to watch,” Hurst said. “We have a squirrel in the backyard, you won’t believe he runs along the fence and then he stops and touches the post. And then he runs along a little bit further and touches the next post. He runs along and touches every post and I thought ‘well, that’s just a fluke.’”

That squirrel might be a book in the future. “Fat Frog” published in 2019 was the first of three children’s books Hurst has published. Not only does she write the books, but she illustrates them as well.

“The thing I like about (”Fat Frog”) is that it’s short and sweet,” Hurst said. “But (it) has a little bit of activity on it. But I hope that children will like the illustrations. I tried to make the animals in childlike poses.”

Her second book “The Giant’s Garden” is the one that really put her name on the map. Her latest book “Forest Maid” is a little different from the first two but just as important for young readers.

“It’s about death,” Hurst said. “Sometimes we lose a pet or a loved person and grandma or aunt or even a sibling. And so I was kind of afraid to write that one. I thought death is a little heavy subject for a child.”

With a moral in all of her stories, Hurst hopes the impressionable minds will take something else away from each book.

“The love of reading,” Hurst said. “Even the illustrations, maybe someone will say, ‘you know, I could draw like that’ or something.”

Hurst’s books can be bought online at Barnes and Noble or on Amazon. Click on those links to go to their purchase pages.

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