Just recently, I had a great time visiting fans of The Tukor’s Journey in New York city area. I was invited to visit by children who loved The Tukor’s Journey. Those readers and their parents asked that I come visit their schools in Harlem, Flushing, and Long Island and it was such an honor to meet the fans – Naima, Aaliyah, and Derek and their classmates!! Amazing kids!
Each of the schools, Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy Middle School, World Journalism Preparatory School in Flushing, St. Brigid/Our Lady of Hope in Westbury, were such special visits for me. The kids were great and so fun to talk with them! A dream come true for me.
Yet dreams can be a funny business. I did not just decide to sit down one day to write a book for middle school kids. My book, The Tukor’s Journey, started as a game I played with my young nephews on vacation, a game diving for powerful blue stones at the bottom of a swimming pool while it stormed outside. I wrapped a story around that game and told it to my nephews. While we were driving home from vacation, they wanted to hear more of that story and so I made-up more of the story on the fly. And continued doing so for several years after. They eventually asked that the story about these powerful blue stones be written down.
The Tukor’s Journey would have never have become the book series that it now is without the imagination and interest of the children in my life. While I’ve always dreamed of being a writer, I never imagined when I started telling a story out loud to family that it would grow into publishing project with the opportunity to meet kids all over the country. But what a wonderful, yet wholly unexpected, dream come true.
During my school visits, we talk about storytelling and how we are all powerful storytellers. No matter who we are, our circumstances, where we’re born, who we’re born to, our talents or the lack thereof, a powerful mission stands before us, an invitation awaits our answer: Will we answer the call, choose the journey, and join the battle for Goodness as we bring encouragement and hope to others and send Darkness packing?
The choice is ours.