I always knew that I wanted to write, but I didn’t know what I was meant to write. A few years ago, while speaking to a friend about funding for my children’s computer games and animation using my characters, she suggested that I do some writing courses to get me started on the stories for these games and animation. While doing these writing courses I realised that I was meant to write children’s stories. It came quite naturally to me. One of the teachers I had said, “When I set out to write, I didn’t know that I would end up writing horror fantasy”. I didn’t know that I would end up writing children’s stories. I love writing my children’s stories, I become the child living the adventure and see the world through their eyes. I also love the research that I do to write my stories. The stories I write builds intimacy between a child and animal. The child and animal have a strong loving and nurturing connection.
Another teacher I had, Mark Tredinnick, said to me, ‘Lina why don’t you contact Dave Blissett and submit a children’s short story for the ‘’Reflection of Elephants’ book that he is working on.” And so I contacted Dave and he said submit a short story not longer than 1,000 words. I started to do a lot of research about Elephants, their emotions, how they are as a family group, what was happening to them; and decided to set my story in an Elephant conservation park in Kenya. I called my elephant Ela and her companion Jamal, a young orphan boy. This meant that he had affinity for Ela who had just lost her family to poachers. The story takes you from a distressed and very unhappy baby elephant to an elephant that not only finds love, family, safety and a happy home but finds herself and gains confidence becoming cheeky. Jamal also, because of his bond with Ela, finds himself, love and family.
Finally my story was ready and I submitted it to Dave. He said that it wasn’t his decision and he had to show it to Bobby-Jo Clow, the author and creator of the book. He came back to me a week later and said that my story had been accepted. I was excited, the story would go into a book which was being put together by really amazing people who have a love for animals and care about their preservation. It was my first story and all the proceeds from the book would go to help the ‘The Askari Project – an elephant conservation initiative - www.the askariproject.org’. I didn’t mind devoting my time and effort for a wonderful cause which works hard to prevent many beautiful elephants from being poached for their ivory and allows them to live a long and wonderful life which they are entitled to.
This book features many beautiful photos taken by Bobby-Jo Clow and carefully edited by Dave Blissett with a forward by Bradley Trevor Greive AM. For a copy of the book please email email@example.com. Soon we will have our elephant hand puppet to go with the book.