Ashna is a ninth-grader and wrote “Joe saves Florida and other adventures” when she was in her third grade, although she is only getting it published now.
Her book Joe Saves Florida and Other Adventures is an exciting new novel for kids between 6-12.
Ashna shared her views with the media.
I am a ninth grader and I wrote this book when I was nine years old. I play the guitar and am always listening to music. I love reading fictional books and I have two younger siblings who I often babysit.
I am a voracious reader and when stories popped into my head, I wrote them down to keep them in one place and refine the vague plot in my brain. Of course, these story ideas have long since matured but the book reminds me of the thoughts in my head at that point in my life. I’m only publishing it at this age, but this book has been sitting on my laptop for years now.
I wanted to show that it’s possible to continue doing what you want to despite being, well, thwarted. Joe turned into a vampire, yet he continued trying to save people. The whole vampire thing was me trying to explain that it’s not all about physical appearances and that even the scariest of creatures can be good. I was also kind of inspired by my favourite fairy tale- Beauty and the beast. The characteristic of Joe liking and wanting to be a superhero came from the fact that I wanted to show that maybe, dreams do come true.
Joe is an eleven-year-old boy who is doing his best to live up to his dreams of being a hero and saving people despite having been transformed into a vampire. He meets lovely people who support him every step of the way and dangerous people who have it out for him yet doesn’t give up and continues to do what he never thought he’d get the chance to.
I wanted there to be something that is actually useful in solving problems unheard of, and since my characters didn’t have any superpowers, technology was the next best thing. Although, the idea of anyone can be anything and you can save the world without needing any special superpower is one I love, for this book I wanted to keep it simple and for a younger audience. The gadgets in particular are just things I see in day to day life that I modified to fit the situation at hand so that Joe could emerge victorious.
Sure, I might write another book for Joe’s adventures. Joe as an idea existed in my head a long time ago. I have revived him for publishing this book, and ever since, I have a few ideas starting to pop in my head.
There are also good chances that I will probably write a completely different book, more developed idea with a whole new base instead of this, but let’s see which idea wins out!
The only ideas I can share are that if you do want to write a book, the easiest thing to do is to write down the most random idea that enter your head at any point of the day and let your imagination go wild. The story will build up from there and the words will keep flowing. Honestly, I don’t think any fictional book authors know where the story will lead them when they start with it.
It feels amazing! This is a great accomplishment and there is a huge sense of pride in me that I finally finished this project, but since I have been working on it for so long, and the buildup has been pretty slow, it just feels like a part of my daily life at this point. More than how I feel at this being completed, I feel like there will be a sense of loss and extra time on my hands once all of this is over. I’m also very grateful for all the support I have received from everyone around me!
I have been inspired by many authors. Although a lot of the authors I like don’t write books like this, this book in particular was going off of the whole superhero thing. It was like superman and other famous superheroes at that time but I wanted to make a character like batman who only used technology but had no special powers of his own. I also love the classic fairy tales so a few of my ideas came from those books.
However, I like a few of these authors-
Yes, now that I have written my own book, I relate to the effort every author has put into the books they have written, and I pay more attention to the details and implicit meanings in the words. It’s also very enlightening to read now as I can try to guess what was going on in the author’s mind behind the scenes.
The book I have written is aimed at the age group of 6-12. Mostly for kids up to the age of 10 or 11 though. I knew I wanted to keep my book aimed at children younger than me as I have more of an idea of their mindsets, but the actual age group was only chosen once the book started going through the publication process. Having siblings of the age of six though made it easy to see what they’d understand and like, so my audience was decided to take into account the books my siblings like.
Not really. The idea of Joe was certainly inspired by the beast in ‘Beauty and the Beast’, however, he wasn’t only based on that and was not inspired by someone I know in real life. In third grade, when I wrote the book, I was thinking about a person who is perfect in all aspects and hence I created Joe: a kind, loving, handsome, young boy who was the epitome of perfection. Eventually, I realized that my character has to have at least one flaw or there would be no plot and no development in my story, so I made Joe a vampire.
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