Lilyana Napper, Year 4 Student and Published Author

Pimpama

Imagine being a published author by the age of 10. Pimpama Year 4 student, Lilyana Napper, has achieved her dream to write and publish her first book during a time considered by many to be one of the most difficult years to date.  

While attending an online Kid's Imagine program, the right connections enabled Lilyana to get her creativity down on paper and, within four months, she became a published author.

Scarlett Sloth is Not the Best

"Scarlett Sloth is Not the Best" tells the story of shy, quiet Scarlett - a misfit in her high achieving family - who is happy for others' achievements while being content just to be herself.

We asked Lilyana about her inspiration and her journey to becoming a published author.

What made you decide to write a children's book?

I was lucky enough this year to audition and be accepted into a program at Home of The Arts (HOTA) called Kids Imagine. I had lots of cool creative experiences through this program such as singing workshops, creating a music video, opera workshops and other things. In this program we were told to dream big and let them know what our dream project would be if we could choose anything creatively. I right away knew that I wanted to write a picture book!

I've heard that wrote this book during COVID. Is this correct and why did you choose the particular storyline?

Yes, the Kids Imagine team encouraged us to create our dream project while school was in lockdown. I was really lucky to have some Zoom meetings with an author who gave me tips on developing my characters, thinking about story line and structure.

I chose this particular storyline because I wanted other kids to know that they don’t have to be the best to be happy. I think kids are often pushed to be the best at sports, academics and other competitive things and that can take away some of the fun of participating. The storyline is about not worrying about others expectations, but loving who you are and how God made you. 

I’ve heard you are an avid reader. How and why do you think this has helped you in writing your book?

Yes! I love reading books, I’m a lot like Scarlett - my main character - in that way. It has helped me a lot in my writing. It has helped me improve my vocabulary and expanded my imagination. It also helps me to understand how to develop my story line.

Would you like to write more children’s books?

Yes, I would really love to write more children’s books. It’s been a really amazing time for me writing and showing others my book and doing the Author's reading to the Year 1 students.

Any other subject matter you’d like to write about?

I hope to write about a lot of different things. I like to write about how kids see themselves and hopefully encourage them to be happy and confident in who they are. I am very interested in neuroscience and the way the brain affects feelings. I hope, one day, to write a book that will help kids understand how the brain creates and controls fears.

 Would you like to be a writer when you finish school?

I’m not sure if I want to just be a writer when I finish school or what my main job might be. I would really like to keep writing books no matter what I am doing.

Have you always wanted to write books and, if so, at what age did you realise this?

I have always loved to write stories, starting from when I started school.

Where can people buy your book?

HOTA will be selling the soft cover book for $20 a copy. To order email Rachael Edwards at edwards@hota.com.au from 1 November 2020. 

Who has helped you promote your book?

HOTA has promoted the story and so have Lauren and Anthony at Story Surprise on YouTube.