An Interview with Jamey Long

We were able to meet Jamey Long through 3 Story Tellers monthly book club.  My son and my friend's daughter are quite confident he's the coolest person on earth.  His book series about "A Possum" is very adorable.  Jamey is also available to come and speak to school groups/classes/writing workshops.  One of the coolest parts about the books is that they come with free audio downloads so you can put them on your (or your child's) mp3 or ipod.  It works really great in the car!

PWC Moms: How did you start writing?
I started writing for one of my kindergarten students when I was teaching at
HCA (Holy Cross Academy) in Fredericksburg.  Her father was hit by a car
around Christmas time and passed away on Valentine's Day.   He never
regained consciousness so she never got to talk to her dad again.  I wanted
to give her some good memories of the holidays and wrote a Christmas story
for her.  She loves animals and I loved possums so I wrote her A Possum's
Christmas Tale and Opie was born.  The kids liked the book so much they
wanted more stories so I started writing one for every holiday to tell
children about the true meaning behind what we celebrate.  I then moved on
to important events in history.

PWC Moms: Why a possum?
I grew up in Kansas and one morning something big got between me and the
front door when I was getting the paper for my parents before school.  It
was dark and I could not see what it was.  They put out a trap and brought
me home early from school later in the day.  It turned out that it was a
hungry possum.  I have been fascinated with them ever since.  I have moved
several times, to new states and houses.  One has always ended up coming to
my home no matter where I was at.  In fact, when I started going to Grace
Baptist Church, one even crossed in front of my car before service going
into the woods.

PWC Moms: What's your favorite subject to write about?
I liked all of my subjects.  I think the holidays are important so the
children remember the real meaning behind things.  History is also
important.  One of my most favorite events in history is the Titanic.  When
my book, A Possum's Night on the Titanic, was completed, I sent it off to
Dr. Ballard (he found the ship in 1985).  He sent me back an autographed
photo and note saying "Good luck on the writing efforts" and that he really
enjoyed my book.  I donate a dollar of every book sold to the Titanic
Historical Society

PWC Moms: What's your favorite part about writing for kids?
I like seeing them learn.  My parents tried to get me interested in reading,
writing, and history.  It was very hard for me to care at a young age.  The
older I get, I see the importance in it and believe that children should
learn it at an early age so they can pass it on to their kids one day.  I
really enjoy when they tell me they have seen Opie around town or on one of
their adventures.  Opie has become a very busy little possum and it is nice
to see that he has found a warm home in the hearts of children.

Thanks to Jamey Long for taking the time to talk to us! If you want to see more of Opie, you can check out his website at http://Opiepossum.tatepublishing.net/


  1. My daughter was pretty sad when I told her Jamie wasn't going to be at the next book club meeting at the Three Story Tellers... she really enjoyed meeting him.

  2. I loved TST and my niece is an avid reader. I am guessing she would love these books! :) I am so glad more writers are getting back to good children's tales now!!!

  3. Danielle PaulenichMarch 7, 2011 at 11:04 AM

    Jamey Long sounds like such a wonderful person and his books do sound adorable. I'm sure my kids would love them. Also very neat about the audio downloads! :)

  4. Wow. What a wonderful man. It is a rare teacher to reach out to a student in such a way, what a way to begin your life as an author. As a fellow transplant Kansan myself he gets extra bonus points

  5. These books sound so wonderful! I would love to add one to our book collection!

  6. Gotta love a book about a possum! The audio downloads definitely sounds like a good addition.

  7. My kids would love it if I'd win a book for them.

  8. I would love to add one of these books to our collection! My son is such a little reader!