Derrickson, Jim 1959-

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PERSONAL: Born September 30, 1959, in Falls Church, VA.

ADDRESSES: Home—Willow Station, AK. Agent—c/o Author Mail, Scholastic, Inc., 557 Broadway, New York, NY 10012.

CAREER: Writer. Worked as a construction laborer, 1980-86; federal park police ranger and law enforcer, 1986-89; performing songwriter, 1987-96; farrier (horseshoer), 1991—. Activist on behalf of animal-welfare issues, Antislavery International, and Amnesty International.

MEMBER: Alaska State Farrier's Association.

AWARDS, HONORS: Teluride troubador finalist; Teluride guitar-picking finalist; SIBL Project songwriting finalist.


Bomo and the Beef Snacks: A Story of Friendship andPromises along the Iditarod Trail, Scholastic (New York, NY), 2001.

Also author of music and lyrics for Sing to Me, produced by Paint Pony Publishers, 1997, and of several unpublished collections of songs. Contributor of short fiction and journalism to Anvil magazine.

WORK IN PROGRESS: A "comic-tragic novel on surviving reality," a collection of "barnyard stories," a collection of poems, and four songwriting collections, as well as various short stories, children's story projects, and songwriting pieces. Research into animal communications.

SIDELIGHTS: Jim Derrickson told CA: "I gave up creativity, considering it an impractical goal, while still finishing school, and pursued a number of vocations before I one day suddenly quit my job and started writing songs. Ever since, my day jobs have centered around allowing space to write. I cannot explain why the unused talent persisted, instead of being lost.

"Bomo and the Beef Snacks: A Story of Friendship and Promises along the Iditarod Trail is about underlings and the survival of their solidarity amidst the increasing, commercially competitive atmosphere of the yearly Alaskan dog mushing race. Bomo will hopefully acquaint readers with the values important in dog mushing, as opposed to those that are not and yet are prevalent on the actual circuit.

"Bomo is published in French and English and distributed throughout Canada and in Alaska. It is my first children's book. I have been writing literary fiction for around ten years and some activist-related journalism; songwriting is my area of deepest devotion. One piece, 'Winter of Our Discontent,' based on the Steinbeck novel, has been placed in the SIBL project library of songs, a collection of contemporary and historic lyric songs inspired by literature and used in reading programs for the illiterate in various institutional systems.

"Advice to Writers—If one has the desire and has it for the right reasons, the capacity follows. Be clear about your message and never fear any form of 'writer's block.' Surround any problematics with research and thinking; approach it from every angle. Then pause, and the inspiration will come."



Canadian Materials, November 30, 2001, Ruth Mc-Mahon, review of Bomo and the Beef Snacks: A Story of Friendship and Promises along the Iditarod Trail.

Resource Links, December, 2001, Zoë Johnstone Guha, review of Bomo and the Beef Snacks, p. 4.