R. S. Markel

An Interview with Lottiebury

After Lillybeth and Hinsberth, Lottiebury was our third interviewee. She presents a youthful air even though quite a bit older than the ducklings, and over the course of our discussion we found Lottiebury caring, modest, humble and of an oddly anxious sort, with a speedy voice and her whole being seemingly bubbling underneath with a prodigious energy; her eyes hiding a wit and energy and intelligence always on the verge of bursting forth.

The Interview

RSM: Greetings, Lottiebury. I ...
Lottiebury (interrupts nervously): Hi.
RSM: We are happy you have agreed to meet with us today, and to have a little chat for the benefit our interested readers.
Lottiebury: Thank you.
RSM: Thank you. Taking your expression into account, did that last point take you by surprise?
Lottiebury: I never really considered my answering questions would benefit anyone.
RSM: I think after what you accomplished in The Edges of Things, your words would garner some degree of interest.
Lottiebury: I do not know about that. I was only hoping to help.
RSM: Certainly, but such an extraordinary feat.
Lottiebury: It was tiring. I am only happy to have helped. After hearing Lillybeth’s speech in the Old Barn, I would have done anything.
RSM: Of that I have not a doubt. So, what might you wish to tell us about yourself? I have a list of prepared questions, but perhaps a little spontaneity is in order.
Lottiebury: I enjoy botany.
RSM: Botany?
Lottiebury: Plants. There are very interesting in so many ways, in addition to their great beauty. If only one stops to look.
RSM: I would not have thought ...
Lottiebury: Sorry.
RSM: Oh, no. No need to apologize. Come to think of it, I have always enjoyed trees and flowers and the deep greens and scents of spring and summer, but I believe as I have grown older I have not taken the proper time to stop and look, and really notice and admire the simple beauty of a leaf or stem.
Lottiebury: I do not think you are a unique case. Many of us have no end of business to attend to. But there is certainly more to life. I also enjoy flying, delivering messages for the Mayor’s Office. It is a privilege to fulfill such an important role. My deliveries are met with surprise and sadness and joy, depending on the message of course. I feel very much a part of The Farm.
RSM: Thank you for sharing a few thoughts regarding your work. Might you elaborate on that last point about feeling part of The Farm?
Lottiebury: The messages I deliver are often of an official nature but sometimes not. Sometimes they are personal. Important events: weddings, births, deaths, illnesses, triumphs and tragedies are all part of the correspondence. In every case, I try my best to console or revel in the happiness of those I happen to meet each day. Every day is different. I am immersed in the ebb and flow of life.
RSM: I admire your approach and perspective. Perhaps a bit of a reminder for myself in some way.
Lottiebury: Thank you.
RSM: You are certainly welcome. Shall we continue?
Lottiebury: I would not have thought so, but yes, I would like to continue on. I wish to add that my work allows something more, something I have not revealed very often, except to my closer friends and a few of my family. You see, sometimes I travel over distances, it is not common knowledge — the Mayor and Quillypom like to keep it that way — but The Farm is involved in the affairs of other nearby settlements, and I often must travel to them with official correspondence. I fly in all types of weather in every season, and as I do I watch the changes; the slowly shifting colors of land and sky, the plants drifting from colorless slumber only to burst into the bright lively hues of spring. Not once have I or will I ever grow tired of it. That is what I meant by the ebb and flow. To be outside so often, to see and be immersed in the unceasing flow of life, is indeed a privilege, in addition to a reminder we live in a wondrous and mysterious world.
RSM: When you put it that way your work does indeed sound appealing.
Lottiebury: Thank you. I really do enjoy it.
RSM: Speaking of traveling distances, is it intrusive at all to ask about your friendship with Pommelstom? Of course I understand if it is too personal.
Lottiebury: (Lowers voice) We are, as you know, rather close friends.
RSM: Anything more?
Lottiebury: (Grins broadly)
RSM: I see.
Lottiebury: As you might imagine it is a little awkward, working so closely with his mother. But I do love her so. I have never been able to tell her that, perhaps someday I will find the courage. But I feel that day will only come some time in the distant future. She commands so much respect, my voice fails me. For Pommelstom and I, being so far apart is also trying at times.
RSM: An understandable tentativeness in your voice with that answer. I hope the difficulties are soon to pass, and I wish you and Pommelstom all the best, of course.
Lottiebury: Thank you.
RSM: Lottiebury, it has indeed been a privilege to speak with you today. As a final question, do you have any thing to add, anything at all, for our interested readers?
Lottiebury: As I mentioned I am not sure my answers can be of any benefit.
RSM: Our readers can be the judge of that. Please, if I may ask for a parting word or two?
Lottiebury: (Silence.)
RSM: Thank you Lottiebury.
Lottiebury: You are quite welcome.

The Books

Abselard

The Morning Conversation

R. S. Markel has invited Mr. Abselard, a dear porcine friend, confidant and resident of The Farm, to share a few thoughts on a wide smattering of topics gleaned from the pig's venerable tradition of the morning conversation. We do hope you enjoy this new addition.
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Hinsberth Running

Newsletter

Sign up to receive R. S. Markel's newsletter "The Anati Daily" and receive updates on news and events and the forthcoming third installment to the heartwarming Lillybeth and Hinsberth trilogy.
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Hinsberth Presents

Speaking Engagements

Follow your dreams! Author, illustrator, scientist, engineer and generally curious character R. S. Markel is available to present The Wisdom of Ducklings at your next event or engagement.
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R. S. Markel
Photo by Tracy Burke Photography

Welcome!

I am a writer and illustrator of books for young (and young at heart) readers who have a passion for exploring fantastic places, impossible events, and the magic and mysteries of our world. Please feel free to read a bit about my work and peruse the character essays and illustrations. I do hope you enjoy this small glimpse into the whimsical world of Lillybeth and Hinsberth.

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