Friday, June 1, 2018


Junior Kiana Sanchez and 8th grader Madison Plotkin recently teamed up 
to write and illustrate a children's book together. 
I feel this post would be more meaningful in their own words,
so I'm letting them write it together.

I, Kiana, had chosen the idea to publish my research on Adolescent Athletes Self Confidence, because playing sports, for me, has been such a roller-coaster of emotions with my self esteem. Once I was published in a Scholarly Journal, I knew I wanted to spread this message, so that teenagers and their parents can learn how to work together to ensure healthy mindsets. To further the understanding of it, I decided to create a children's book. I knew right away that Madison, a super eager artist in my class, would be the one to do the illustrations. Because I know how beautiful her work is, I wanted to give her lots of freedom with this project! Her kind spirit and talent had made me all the more excited for this project. 

I, Madison, had so much fun doing the illustrations for this children's book!  I felt so honored when Kiana asked me to do them, it was a dream come true!  The wonderful and captivating story that she wrote included a lot of action between the characters, with it centralizing around basketball, so I really wanted to capture the movement in each illustration.  With each character being so unique, coming from a different background and culture, I wanted to give each character their own individual page that was vibrant and matched their personalities.  This overall has been such a great experience and I truly appreciate Kiana for asking me to work with her!!!

Madison here!  I think that this one is the illustration that I most enjoyed doing.  I loved how Kiana gave each character a little background information that gives you a sneak peak into their life.  With this one, one of the characters, Sharon, has a really tight bond with her grandmother, Nai Nai Kim.  I pictured that the two would have a lot of fun baking together so I decided for them to be doing just that for this particular illustration.  I also wanted each character to have a pet that you could see interact and have their own little adventure throughout the book.  I thought a guinea pig would be quite fitting for Sharon.   

I, Kiana, am a basketball player for my school's varsity team, so I knew that it was the main sport I wanted to cover in this book. I think Madison perfectly showed the movement of the player as she is dribbling to the hoop to score. Not to mention, the annoyed face on the character under the basketball hoop is exactly how I imagined it. Her illustrations all include so much color and really make the scene lively. I also enjoy all the small details she adds to every piece. This one will be my favorite illustration from the book!

I'm so thrilled to be able to share this remarkable book with it's illustrations.
I can't wait to see it in it's finished form, 
and hope to get it autographed by it's creators.
Know Kiana and Madison that I'm so proud of the both of you,
and thank you for sharing and giving ll of us a preview.
Junior Kiana & 8th grader Madison


  1. Madison's illustrations fairly glow ... inspired no doubt by Kiana's words (perhaps you could share a sampling?)

    And a question: I too am in the process of authoring a children's book and am considering CreateSpace ... any thoughts on that?

    1. I will ask Kiana if she'd like to share some of her story, and see who will be publishing her book.