Children’s bedtime story plants seeds for dreaming
November 26, 2008
A dream has come true for Colorado Native Eric Hallam.
The first-time author “was fortunate enough” this year to receive an offer from Tate Publishing to publish his first book, a children’s story called “Big Dreams.” It will be available in bookstores throughout the region, starting Dec. 2.
A “bean counter” by day, with a degree in economics and business from the Colorado School of Mines, he wrote the story during his wife’s last trimester with their twins. In the wee hours of the morning from his home office in Colorado Springs, when he couldn’t sleep, the words began to flow.
“I was so anxious for their arrival that I needed something to consume a little of my energy as well as keep me busy,” he said. “I could not wait to be a dad.” He wanted to be more involved, he explained, but there really wasn’t a lot he could do during the pregnancy except try and make his wife Kristin more comfortable. Children Brenna and Rylan are a year old now and he said it is a pleasure to be able to share his story with them.
As a child, he loved Maurice Sendak’s “Where the Wild Things Are” and as an adult he loved J.K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” series. He said he used to read “Harry Potter” books before going to bed so that he would have dreams about whatever was happening in the story.
The dreams became the inspiration for his own book series. The first book reads as a bedtime story that “strives to plant ideas” in the imaginations of children “so that they can have wonderful, vivid dreams,” he said. Through his stories, he hopes to fill a child’s head “with positive ideas before they go to sleep,” hoping that they will dream about it during the night.
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He said there’s a great quote from Andy Andrews’ “The Traveler’s Gift” that talks about how kids think they can do anything, and how it is almost a crime to tell them differently.
“I love the fact that when you ask a kid what they want to be when they grow up you get answers from astronaut to president to zookeeper,” he said. “My book encourages these kinds of ideas. Have kids imagine themselves doing all kinds of things, because there is no way of knowing what a child will achieve in their life or what will be achieved during their lifetime.”
The work, which he said exceeded every expectation he had, also includes “awesome” illustrations by Benton Rudd, staff illustrator with Tate Publishing.
When Hallam isn’t counting beans or writing, his family enjoys spending time in the mountains, especially in Grand County. They ski their favorite ski resorts in the winter, hike and cycle the remainder of the years, and visit friends who live in the Pole Creek Valley. One of his favorite memories is from pedaling 1,200 miles on Colorado roads viewing the “wonderful scenery” as he completed a bike tour from Loveland to Wyoming and New Mexico in 2005.
For the past three summers, his in-laws rented a condo in the Fraser Valley to get away from the heat of their home in Houston, Texas. While in Winter Park for the month of August last year, he started the second book in the series, “Day Dreams.” It is already 90-percent complete and Hallam hopes to team up with St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital to raise funds for it and the third one, “Imaginary Photo Safari.”
Those interested may preview the work on YouTube from a link on Hallam’s Web site: http://www.dreamseedbook.com.