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John's Journal... Entry 78, Day 1

Why Ronnie Strickland Wrote His New Book

click to enlargeEDITOR'S NOTE: Longtime, avid turkey hunter, Ronnie "Cuz" Strickland of West Point, Mississippi, vice president of Mossy Oak's TV and video production, talks this week about his new turkey-hunting book, "The Truth About Turkey Hunting."

Question: Ronnie, how did you come to work for Mossy Oak?
Answer: Actually, I met Toxey Haas at a SHOT Show back in 1987 or 1988 when I was working for a sporting-goods store. My wife Pam took me over to the Mossy Oak booth and said, "You've got to come look at this camo pattern, Ronnie. These guys are from Mississippi." And that's where I met Toxey. Mossy Oak had the Bottomland pattern at that time, and I really liked it. Toxey and I just hit it off. I started selling Mossy Oak and helped Toxey open up new dealers. Our business and personal relationships have built from there.

click to enlargeQuestion: Tell us about your book, "The Truth About Turkey Hunting."
Answer: Actually "The Truth" is a video series I helped Will Primos of Primos Game Calls get started. When I was working at the sporting-goods store, I would send Will video tapes that my buddies and me shot to show him how good his turkey calls were. I bought calls from him and ended up using one of his old tube-type TV cameras to help him do the first couple of videos called "The Truth About Turkey Hunting." I came up with that name. I kept a journal of what happened while I was shooting the videos. I lost 30 pounds in 40 days, and I thought, "That's a chapter of a book right there."

To me, people want to be entertained; so anything I write generally has a humorous theme to it. I took the journal I had and some of the funny stories that have happened since then and came up with a book called "The Truth About Turkey Hunting." This book is about 90-percent humor and shows the lighter side of turkey hunting.

click to enlargeQuestion: Ronnie, how many days a week will you hunt turkeys during the spring, with either your gun or your video camera?
Answer: I hunt just about every day, except for traveling -- probably anywhere from 50 to 60 days a year, depending on where I start and that state's turkey season opens and what state I end up hunting. I've hunted turkeys that much since about 1987 or 1988. But I'm not hunting every day all day; sometimes I'll video and then edit until 10:00 or 11:00 at night and then go back and hunt the next afternoon.

Question: During those 50 or 60 days, how many turkeys will you see harvested?
Answer: Encounters with turkeys actually are pretty common. When we're filming, we don't have set schedules. We depend on people to tell us they have turkeys gobbling. An encounter with a gobbling turkey will basically happen just about every day. Our Mossy Oak video team will get a turkey on camera about 50 percent of the time, and having a successful hunt will probably happen eight or 10 days out of those 50 days I'm hunting and/or videoing. You just don't take turkeys all the time.

click to enlargeTo order Ronnie Strickland's book, "The Truth About Turkey Hunting," which Mossy Oak has published, call (888) MOSSY OAK. To learn more about turkey hunting, go to Night Hawk Publications' home page, and click on books. You'll find information about three of John E. Phillips' turkey books -- "The Masters' Secrets of Turkey Hunting," "Outdoor Life's Complete Turkey Book" and "Turkey Tactics." These books explore the minds of some of the nation's top turkey hunters.

Tomorrow: One of Ronnie's Strangest Hunts




Check back each day this week for more about Ronnie "Cuz" Strickland On "The Truth About Turkey Hunting" ...

Day 1 -Why Ronnie Strickland Wrote His New Book
Day 2 -One of Ronnie's Strangest Hunts
Day 3 -Another Exciting Story from "The Truth About Turkey Hunting"
Day 4 -More Interesting Cuz Stories in "The Truth About Turkey Hunting"
Day 5 -A Memorable Story from "The Truth About Turkey Hunting"

John's Journal