A Mother's Abandonment and a Life in Art, Nature The Day My Mother Left tells the story of a young boy whose mother leaves him — and how that experience stokes his love of art and nature. Author and artist James Prosek discusses the work, which is fiction but largely autobiographical.

A Mother's Abandonment and a Life in Art, Nature

A Mother's Abandonment and a Life in Art, Nature

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James Prosek's young-adult novel tells the story of a young boy who discovers art and nature after his mother abandons the family. hide caption

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James Prosek is a master at bringing the outdoors into people's lives through art. He is a celebrated fly-fisherman, a critically acclaimed author and a wildlife artist often described as a modern-day John James Audubon.

How he developed his artistic gift and his love of nature is chronicled in his latest project, a young-adult book called The Day My Mother Left.

Although billed as fiction, Prosek's book is largely autobiographical. It follows the life of 9-year-old Jeremy as his parents go through a bitter divorce. His mother, Phoebe, drowns her depression with alcohol and eventually leaves the family without saying goodbye.

Jeremy copes with the loss by losing himself in the surrounding fields and streams. He finds solace fishing and sketching the wildlife he encounters.

Prosek says he wrote the book as fiction rather than as a memoir because memories from that difficult period of his life were fuzzy. He discusses the book, and how the experience of being abandoned by his mother helped him discover his gifts for art and nature.

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The Day My Mother Left
By James Prosek

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The Day My Mother Left
James Prosek

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