The gypsy writer

Jan. 04, 2014 @ 11:16 AM

Northern Orange County’s Vern Miller has made his life different with a wealth of diverse talents. Recently, when his first book, “Gypsy the Goat,” was published, it allowed Miller to share finally with a larger audience his pursuit of a creative outlet.

“I’ve always written and found that it is something that allows me to express myself in a different way,” Miller said. The tale of Gypsy is a children’s book, with the artwork done by Marsha Cates Stanley, a native of Hillsborough. The goat encounters the new world of being part of a family and the misadventures associated. “I wrote this several years ago and then put it aside. It was my daughter and wife that urged me to do something with it,” Miller said.
According to Miller, the subject is derived from personal observations of farm animals that misbehaved. Miller recalls his own experiences with farm animals, including a duck that was once common at the old Caldwell School he attended. “The duck chased the kids around and was a real terror,” Miller said.
Professionally, Miller spent his early years as an aircraft mechanic, where he developed a fascination for aircraft and engineering. Combined with his love of the rural landscape, the place where he grew up and his mechanical mind, Miller started the South Grown Building & Timber Frame Company. Here he uses the natural beauty and wonder of raw wood to construct homes, perform renovations, and build in a manner that is natural and complimentary to the natural aesthetics of wood. “The raw power of wood is very popular now and building in this way is like building the way it was when exposed beams and exposed wood was predominant in homes,” Miller said.
The artist in Miller is one that has been present throughout his whole life. He has written songs and he’s fond of writing short-stories and poetry, too. “I have a little book with index cards that I keep with me and sometimes I’ll pull over on the side of the road and jot down a phrase or series of thoughts and I’ll come back to them as they usually inspire something in me,” Miller said.
Miller’s observation in life and his affection for exposing beams and building with wood that is not hidden compliments his vision of a goat and the child-like mannerisms it displays. Naturally allowing his creative energy to be visible in print, song, index card, and the use of an eye-catching beam of wood, is how Vern Miller makes his way through life.


For more information on South Grown Building & Timber visit: www.

Gypsy the Goat is available at Purple Crow books in Hillsborough and online through Amazon. The book was published by Light Messages of Durham, NC.


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