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Front Page » June 3, 2008 » News » Local author's first book hits the shelves
Published 2,146 days ago

Local author's first book hits the shelves


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By PATSY STODDARD
Editor


Author Bevan Olsen holds his first book, "The Littlest Nephite"

Bevan Olsen has just written a children's book and has many more in his imagination. Olsen is a former Orangeville resident now residing in Lehi, he is the son of Kelly and Wayne Olsen.

Olsen works for a publishing company and he saw an opportunity for a stronger line of literature for children. Olsen's first work is entitled, "The Littlest Nephite," this little Nephite is the smallest among Nephites. He stands 3'9" and was left out of all the scriptures and book of Mormon stories because of his lack of stature. But, nevertheless he follows the Book of Mormon heroes around recording their events and transferring them to the pages of Olsen's book in a rhyme form.

The stories the littlest Nephite recites are correct. Olsen said he was influenced by Dr. Seuss as he grew up because of the rhymes in his stories. You could read them once and recall the book because of the rhyming and fun rhythm of his books. Olsen said there is a lot of literature out there for children, but not a lot of books that help children learn about scriptures in a new, fun and interesting way. Olsen hopes his books will become a series, but his publishing company is waiting to see how the first book is received. The possibilities for subject material for his books is limitless.

The next story Olsen has ready is the one which tells of Lehi's dream and the tree of life.

"My first book, 'The Littlest Nephite,' has been out for about a month and seems to be doing well. Rebecca Miller is the illustrator for my book, she is from Utah County. I Bevan Olsen has just written a children's book and has many more in his imagination. Olsen is a former Orangeville resident now residing in Lehi, he is the son of Kelly and Wayne Olsen.

Olsen works for a publishing company and he saw an opportunity for a stronger line of literature for children. Olsen's first work is entitled, "The Littlest Nephite," this little Nephite is the smallest among Nephites. He stands 3'9" and was left out of all the scriptures and book of Mormon stories because of his lack of stature. But, nevertheless he follows the Book of Mormon heroes around recording their events and transferring them to the pages of Olsen's book in a rhyme form.

The stories the littlest Nephite recites are correct. Olsen said he was influenced by Dr. Seuss as he grew up because of the rhymes in his stories. You could read them once and recall the book because of the rhyming and fun rhythm of his books. Olsen said there is a lot of literature out there for children, but not a lot of books that help children learn about scriptures in a new, fun and interesting way. Olsen hopes his books will become a series, but his publishing company is waiting to see how the first book is received. The possibilities for subject material for his books is limitless.

The next story Olsen has ready is the one which tells of Lehi's dream and the tree of life.

"My first book, 'The Littlest Nephite,' has been out for about a month and seems to be doing well. Rebecca Miller is the illustrator for my book, she is from Utah County. I submitted the words and the publishing company sends the words to various illustrators and they send samples of their work back. The drawings are examined to find the best fit for the story. The publishing company is Cedarfort and the books are distributed through Deseret Book and Seagull Book. They are also available from the company website, cedarfort.com," said Olsen.

Olsen manages the warehouse at Cedarfort and is responsible for the shipping of all book orders.

Another book he has ready is about the Christmas star and how it came to be. The book also tells the Christmas story and will be available for the Christmas season. The book tells the Christmas story from the star's point of view. The story will be made into a booklet to be given away like a Christmas card.

"I love making up poems that rhyme and are humorous, but I don't necessarily consider myself a poet. I do it like a hobby. Sometimes the material just flows out. I did it as a little kid, too. Writing poems was easy, those school projects were easy to complete," said Olsen.

Olsen met his wife Cyndee on a blind date. She is from Lehi. Olsen has two young sons ages 9 months and a 3 year old. He loves to read to his sons and the older one knows all about daddy's book. Olsen thinks young children just have minds like sponges and they are always soaking up information and taking it all in. "If we read to them and it's fun for them, then learning the scriptures can be a fun experience. Rhyming makes it fun and easier for them to remember," said Olsen.

Olsen just completed the third book which is the story of Nephi building a boat by the sea. Olsen likes to research his stories to make sure his facts are correct and then he tells the stories to rhyme. Olsen hopes his books will be used by families in family home evenings to make scripture stories more interesting and easier to grasp for the younger children. Olsen remembered a bishop, on his mission to Atlanta, who used a gospel story incorporated into How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The bishop had the whole story memorized and was very interesting to listen to. Olsen wants to expand upon this type of storytelling in his own work.

Olsen would like to set Bible stories to rhyme which would open his books up to a larger Christian audience. From the time Olsen turned in his transcript to the book being available on the bookstore shelf was approximately a year long journey. The manuscripts are read and suggestions made and then back to the author for the revisions and back to the publishers and then back to the author makes for a time consuming process.

Olsen is excited about his success so far in selling 500 copies of his book the first month. The book is available locally at Ace Hardware in Castle Dale.



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