Donna Love, 53, writes children's books about the wildlife that live in the surrounding Seeley-Swan Valley. After getting her husband and son AJ off to work and school, she spends time writing at her house which overlooks Seeley Lake. Love usually writes until 10 a.m. and then goes for a walk or out on her boat to look for wildlife.

Donna Love, 53, writes children's books about the wildlife that live in the surrounding Seeley-Swan Valley. After getting her husband and son AJ off to work and school, she spends time writing at her house which overlooks Seeley Lake. Love usually writes until 10 a.m. and then goes for a walk or out on her boat to look for wildlife.

 Love flips through her first book, "Animals Count in Grand Canyon National Park," while in her living room. "I read everything out loud," Love says, "because I know that's what a lot of parents are going to do with their kids."

Love flips through her first book, "Animals Count in Grand Canyon National Park," while in her living room. "I read everything out loud," Love says, "because I know that's what a lot of parents are going to do with their kids."

 Love acknowledges that she is a little "loony." "People just keep giving me loons," she says, showing off a diorama featuring a loon made by her daughter Laura Love, who is 24. Donna Love is the secretary for the Montana Loon Association, and helps identify and keep loons in Seeley Lake. Seeley Lake currently has one nesting pair of loons.

Love acknowledges that she is a little "loony." "People just keep giving me loons," she says, showing off a diorama featuring a loon made by her daughter Laura Love, who is 24. Donna Love is the secretary for the Montana Loon Association, and helps identify and keep loons in Seeley Lake. Seeley Lake currently has one nesting pair of loons.

 Love peers through a viewing blind near her home. In the summer, the wetland is filled with waterfowl ranging from loons to herons to ducks. Now, at the end of the season, the marsh is dry.

Love peers through a viewing blind near her home. In the summer, the wetland is filled with waterfowl ranging from loons to herons to ducks. Now, at the end of the season, the marsh is dry.

 As part of her daily routine, Love takes her chihuahua mix, Ginger, for a walk near the lake. The neighbor's dog, Ky, often joins them. "I spend my day in nature," Love says. She uses her walks as part of the creative process, and takes time to observe any wildlife she sees on the way.

As part of her daily routine, Love takes her chihuahua mix, Ginger, for a walk near the lake. The neighbor's dog, Ky, often joins them. "I spend my day in nature," Love says. She uses her walks as part of the creative process, and takes time to observe any wildlife she sees on the way.

 "I love the wordsmithing," Love says as she relaxes on her dock to edit her latest book. "Researching and watching the animals is fun." She spends her afternoons editing on her dock, until it gets too cold and snowy to do so. Love says that she studies her subjects until she understands it. Then she explains it. "I think that’s why children, as well as adults, love my writing," she says.

"I love the wordsmithing," Love says as she relaxes on her dock to edit her latest book. "Researching and watching the animals is fun." She spends her afternoons editing on her dock, until it gets too cold and snowy to do so. Love says that she studies her subjects until she understands it. Then she explains it. "I think that’s why children, as well as adults, love my writing," she says.

 Love docks the boat below her house, and ties it off. It's the first week of October, and this is the last week Love will be able to go out on the boat to view wildlife. Her husband will pull the boat out of the water and put it in dry dock next weekend. "We left it out so Laura could go on the lake before the baby came," Love said.

Love docks the boat below her house, and ties it off. It's the first week of October, and this is the last week Love will be able to go out on the boat to view wildlife. Her husband will pull the boat out of the water and put it in dry dock next weekend. "We left it out so Laura could go on the lake before the baby came," Love said.

"Early morning is the best time to see wildlife," Love says, driving across the lake. Seeley Lake is a glacier-carved lake that is three miles long, and a half mile wide. "It's trial and error to find the animals" she says, "but you can find most wildlife here."

 Donna Love shares dinner with her family after a day of writing and scouting and for wildlife. Her husband, Tim Love, is the district ranger for the Seeley-Swan Valley ranger district. They have been married for 32 years, and have two other children, a son named AJ who still lives at home, and Nathan who has moved out but still lives close by.

Donna Love shares dinner with her family after a day of writing and scouting and for wildlife. Her husband, Tim Love, is the district ranger for the Seeley-Swan Valley ranger district. They have been married for 32 years, and have two other children, a son named AJ who still lives at home, and Nathan who has moved out but still lives close by.

 Love asks the students to pretend like they are learning to fly, and joins in by flapping her wings. Around 100 students participated in the presentation which was part of the Missoula Festival of the Book.

Love asks the students to pretend like they are learning to fly, and joins in by flapping her wings. Around 100 students participated in the presentation which was part of the Missoula Festival of the Book.

 
 Donna Love, and her daughter Laura Love cook dinner in their home. Laura Love is visiting from Seattle for the week, and has just graduated from the Academy of Art. A talented painter and designer, she hopes to illustrate her mother's books.  Laura Love is four months pregnant, and Donna Love says she is very excited to be a grandmother.

Donna Love, and her daughter Laura Love cook dinner in their home. Laura Love is visiting from Seattle for the week, and has just graduated from the Academy of Art. A talented painter and designer, she hopes to illustrate her mother's books. 
Laura Love is four months pregnant, and Donna Love says she is very excited to be a grandmother.

Love has a wide variety of children's books which focus on nature and wildlife. 

 Kindergarten through third grade students from Hawthorne Elementary listen attentively as Love gives a presentation on Herons. The students have been reading her book, "Henry the Impatient Heron." Three students were picked to receive a free copy of the book.

Kindergarten through third grade students from Hawthorne Elementary listen attentively as Love gives a presentation on Herons. The students have been reading her book, "Henry the Impatient Heron." Three students were picked to receive a free copy of the book.

 As part of the presentation, Love has the students pretend that they are baby herons learning to be patient. Love asked the students to circle up into hatcheries and to curl up like they were in eggs. Here, Annie Martello a second grader in  Marva Gallegos' class, peeks out of her "egg" at one of her classmates.

As part of the presentation, Love has the students pretend that they are baby herons learning to be patient. Love asked the students to circle up into hatcheries and to curl up like they were in eggs. Here, Annie Martello a second grader in  Marva Gallegos' class, peeks out of her "egg" at one of her classmates.

 
 Substitute teacher Karen Ekegrem "feeds" Martello as Martello pretends to be a baby heron just out of the nest.

Substitute teacher Karen Ekegrem "feeds" Martello as Martello pretends to be a baby heron just out of the nest.