'The early Scottish West Texans are the real reason for these stories', says nationally award-winning teller and performer Rosanna Herndon. 'I wanted others to know them. Their unpretentious lives marked a clear path for me and for generations to come'. Herndon, who has been telling stories to audiences for more than a quarter of a century, had her first audiotapes released in the mid-1990s, at which time her daughter began urging her to write them down. Through her own family tales, Herndon began to study how such stories contribute to listeners concepts of self and family, what they reveal about communication patterns within families, and how they reflect who we are and who we wish to become. The eighteen stories collected here cover several generations of Scottish West Texans. Some are tales of Herndon's own ancestors; others are of extended family and friends. They tell of life experiences that measured character and produced a distinctive toughness of spirit. Others are personal narratives of more recent history but also regional, reflecting a culture peculiar to the southwestern United States and specifically Herndon's own West Texas.
Rosanna Herndon, professor emerita of communication at Hardin-Simmons University, is also a charter member of the Tejas Storytelling Association and founder of the Mesquite Storytellers of Abilene. She has been a featured teller and workshop presenter at festivals across the United States, including the National Storytelling Festival.