To research "Last of the Buckaroos", Jim van de Erve worked on a ranch in Smith Valley, Nevada, using the experience to write a biography of one of the most prominent ranchers and one of the most renowned women in Western Nevada. To expand his understanding of ranching, Jim has driven cattle to and from summer range in Western Montana each fall and spring for the last fourteen years. Jim has worked as a reporter and photographer on a small-town weekly newspaper in California's Gold County, worked on farms in Utah and Norway, and held three one-man photography shows. He has also had a career as a technical writer in high-tech fields. He currently lives in Washington, splitting his time between Seattle and the Okanogan country east of the Cascades.