On with the Butter! Spread More Living onto Everyday Life


Hekla Publishing will be releasing a new retirement & aging book – On with the Butter! Spread More Living onto Everyday Life by Heidi Herman on August 14th. This new book is filled with encouragement and ideas to add more vitality and activity into your everyday life and has a strong Icelandic connection. She shares details of her new book and the inspiration behind it in this interview for INLUS.


INLUS: Tell us the story behind the title of your new book

HH: The entire time I was writing, I called it untitled, because nothing seemed to capture the idea of the book. I was actually getting little nervous because when it was completely done and in the editing stage, I still didn’t know what to call it. Then, I was reading an article about the Icelandic language, and it listed some of the more unique expressions. I read Áfram með smjörið –  on with the butter, and I knew it was perfect. It means to “carry on,” “keep doing what you’re doing,” “forge ahead,” or “keep moving.” It’s both an encouragement and a call to action and was exactly the right phrase to describe the motivational idea of this book. Everyone has really responded well to the title and I love that I can share a little more Icelandic flavor through it.


INLUS: How has your Icelandic heritage influenced you in your writing?

HH: It’s had a big impact an actually helped me define my voice, I think. There’s a little bit of Iceland in everything I write. My first book was about the Icelandic Yule Lads and I enjoyed that so much, I wrote two more books focused on Icelandic mythology. After that, my mom and I co-authored an Icelandic foods cookbook, and then I put some Icelandic character and scenes in my novel. This new book, though, really incorporates more of the Icelandic philosophy and mindset and I’ve worked to share some of that with the reader. The culture and people look at life differently, like all of Scandinavia, and that’s why those counties consistently rank in the top five or ten world-wide for having the happiest citizens. It’s an overall lifestyle and pattern of thinking that is unique and absolutely worthy of sharing.

Tell us a little bit about your story and what inspired you to write On With the Butter!

HH:  My mom was an inspiration to a lot of people just in the way she approached life and her vibrant spirit. I was fortunate to have learned that outlook and philosophy from her and wanted to share that with others. I’m often disheartened when I hear people talk about retirement with fear or hesitation, concerned they will be bored or that it’s the ‘beginning of the end’ of life. It’s just not so, and I wanted to share some inspiration and motivation for readers to become passionate about life and adventure.


INLUS: What are you hoping people gain from reading your book?

HH: I would love for peope to gain an understanding and inspiration about taking on new adventures, no matter what their age, but especially after 50. Too often in America, we use words and phrases like “retirement” “golden years” “senior citizens” and they all carry the connotation that it’s a stage of life to slow down and stop being adventurous. I’d like to think that maybe I can share some of that Icelandic vitality and adventurous spirit with readers so they can be inspired to have adventures of their own.


INLUS: How can we purchase your book?

HH: You can purchase my book on the publisher’s website: www.heklapublishing.com. After the release date – August 14, 2020 –  it will be available from any online retailer or can be ordered through your local bookstore.

On with the Butter! Spread More Living onto Everyday Life by Heidi HermanHeidi Herman-Kerr photo

Genre: Non-Fiction / Retirement / Aging / Self-Help / Motivational

Heidi Herman is a founding member of the INLUS and a published author of several children’s books based on Icelandic Folklore and an Icelandic cookbook she co-authored with her mother, Íeda Jónasdóttir Herman.

Hekla Publishing is an INLUS Member Business.