Local author publishes first children’s book
ROCK FALLS – For Amy Rimmer, Dec. 22, 2017, was the last day she clocked out at Casey’s and the first day of her start as an author.
“I was 45 years old working at a convenience store, so I said ‘it’s now or never,’ quit my job and never looked back,” Rimmer said
Almost a year later, the now 46-year-old from Rock Falls has achieved her goal of being a self-published author with the release of her first children’s book “Abby McNabby: And Her Unbelievable, Unexplainable, Not-So-Boring Day At Home.”
It’s a story that follows a mischievous redheaded girl, Abby McNabby and her dog, Fetch.
“She’s always finding herself in situations where she bites off more than she can chew, and a little chaos ends up happening,” Rimmer said.
For example, Abby and Fetch get a little greedy with a snack and find themselves stuck under an avalanche of popcorn, trying to find a way to clean up before mom gets home.
It’s a tale woven with memories of Rimmer’s early childhood.
“I brought her to life because I was Abby McNabby,” Rimmer said. “I looked at a lot of those young, mischievous girls and wrote this book based on my own experience.”
Rimmer took to writing and creating stories at an early age, participating in young authors competitions and writing about classmates.
“I always had something to say, but I was never good speaking face to face, so I would write stories, poems and rhymes,” she said.
Being a single mother meant putting her dreams on hold, but when she started putting her ideas on paper, she remembered one of her biggest influences in life.
“I always felt a higher power kicking me along, especially my dad, Robert Cervantes,” Rimmer said.
The book was accepted for publishing on Oct. 29, her late father’s birthday.
“I remember I said that I was going to make him proud when he was dying, so I told him ‘if you die, will you come back and make give me a sign that you’re OK?’ and he said ‘you bet,’” she said.
The book, written in rhyme, was influenced by Rimmer’s favorite authors such as Dr. Seuss and illustrated by a childhood friend, Dana E. Carroll.
“I’ve been drawing all my life, making up cartoon characters and drawing rainbows, dolls or people,” said Carroll, 46, of Sterling.
They reconnected when Carroll saw that Rimmer was looking for an illustrator on Facebook.
It was a match, and early renderings for Abby was just what Rimmer imagined. It’s a sort of patchwork style, made with colored markers, pencils and pens to pair with Rimmer’s writing style.
“It’s exactly what I imagined for the book, and we love how it came out,” Rimmer said.