The Perryton Pipeline: "One on One with John Erickson"

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

From the Article: 

"...Erickson was born in Midland, but he moved to Perryton with his family when he was three. He graduated from PHS in 1962. While in high school he ran track, played varsity football, sang in the choir, played the bassoon and drums, and participated in speech events and school plays. He went on to attend the University of Denver for a year and finished his B.A. degree at the University of Texas in Austin. It’s there where he met his future wife, Kristine. He then studied theology at Harvard Divinity School. After college, Erickson worked as a ranch cowboy in Oklahoma and Texas, and he wrote four hours each day. Today, Kris and he live on their ranch near Perryton. They have three grown children and four grandchildren.

We talked with Erickson about his successful writing career. Here’s what he had to say.

When did you begin writing?
I started writing poems for my English teacher when I was a senior in high school. I also wrote while at the University of Texas. When I got married, I started writing every day.

What do you like about writing?
It satisfies some deep need to express myself through words, just as a musician needs to express himself through singing. I take pride in writing. It is a difficult profession, but it is starting to get easier. It’s a nice way to make a living.

When and how did you come up with the idea for Hank the Cowdog?
It kind of fell out of the sky. I was writing a series of humorous articles for The Cattleman magazine in 1981 about dogs I knew at a ranch I had worked at...."

Article continues on the Perryton Pipeline's website: The Perryton Pipeline's article on John R. Erickson



Tags: Hank the Cowdog books, Writing, Panhandle, Perryton