Lee Fortune

Rockmart Police officer Lee Fortune is also a children's novelist, and recently released "Little Stevie and the Guard Rooster," the first in a series. (Contributed photo)

It’s a story that was an idea launched after seeing what students were reading, and now it’s available from a local author who also keeps an eye out for criminals during the night shift in Rockmart. Local police officer Lee Fortune first children’s novel “Little Stevie and the Guard Rooster,” the first in a series, and now it’s available in stores all across the country for purchase as he continues work on a second.

Published by Xulon Press, Fortune said the 144-page book was inspired by some of his own childhood experiences on the farm.

“My family used to have a big white leghorn rooster when I was about five or six years old, and it used to bully me,” he said. “It would peck me right on the nose.”

The memory stuck around for a long time before Fortune got around to using it in his writing, and only after he completed a book a few years ago did it pop back into his head.

Fortune was previously working as the Rockmart Middle School Resource Officer for the Rockmart Police, and has since transferred to a night shift role. But before his duties changed, he took notice of what the students were reading and thought “I could do something like that.”

His book takes the rooster from his past, but gives him and the boy, Little Stevie, a challenge to overcome. Stevie’s pet rooster in the novel is injured after an attack by a fox, and through nursing the barnyard fowl back to health they develop a bond and the rooster takes on the role of pecking away at those who threaten Little Stevie. It’s the first in a longer series, Fortune said, and his hopes are to have the next installment ready no later than early 2018.

And his hopes are to continue writing for years to come.