KIMBERLY — The idea for a children’s book came to Lance Butler one day while he was driving his car.
The Kimberly Elementary School fourth-grade teacher hadn’t written a book before, even though he’d long thought about it. Finally armed with a concept, Butler put the idea for the narrative to paper in only 45 minutes in December.
“It was just a really quick write,” he said. “The story was formulating in my head.”
After searching for a publisher, Christian Faith Publishing accepted the book. “I Can Fix That” was released in June and now, Butler is working with the publisher to write a second book.
The idea behind the story line in his debut is all broken things can be fixed, Butler said, and that concept is applied to a bigger picture of the world. It’s a twist on the story of Jesus starting out as a young boy watching his father fix things as a carpenter to later in his own ministry.
The picture book is geared toward elementary school-aged children, with artwork from an illustrator Christian Faith Publishing found who’s based in the Philippines, Butler said.
Now that his first book is out, Butler is waiting to sign a contract on a second book. There’s no timeline for when it will be published.
Butler’s second effort will be about a young boy who has a terminal illness and meets a strange man who wants to show him a rock. The story evolves as the rock maker continues to show him bigger things, Butler said.
After writing the draft for his first book, Butler set out to find a publisher, a task that would turn out to take up a lot more time. Butler found many publishers weren’t accepting manuscripts or weren’t interested in children’s books. But one night, he saw an advertisement on television for Christian Faith Publishing.
He sent the publishing company a manuscript, and it was accepted. “Finding the publisher was kind of an interesting thing,” Butler said.
He said it’s almost like self-publishing because he had to pay to get it published. But the company handles the marketing.
“Their program is nice because they don’t collect royalties until I recoup the investment,” he said.
So far, Butler has sold his book mostly by word of mouth, largely from his students telling their friends.
“They’ve all really enjoyed it,” he said. “They wanted to get autographs.”