Why I wrote a children’s book – Mermaid Indi

Why I wrote a children’s book – Mermaid Indi

Why I decided to write a book:

For as long as I can remember I have loved reading books, writing and illustrating, and felt compelled to write a book from a very young age. But I had something holding me back and that was a huge dose of…..self doubt!

I was originally planning to write a non-fiction book about my struggles with infertility, which I still may complete in the near future. For over a year I had been writing and researching trying to articulate a very raw and emotional story with an inspiring message. But I was finding it draining and I had an internal battle about how people would perceive me i.e. judge me if it wasn’t well received.

One day after a particularly stressful week I locked myself away and the story of “Mermaid Indi” flew out of me, it happened so quickly there is no better way to describe it than “I was in the flow”. I knew there was an important message that I wanted to covey about judgement, not only of judging others to quickly and harshly but judging ourselves too. And the importance of being kind. With a little tweaking for younger audiences, I was in love with the story I had created.

After writing this story I had NO internal battle with myself and I was completely confident to share it. So, I read it to my husband and with a very proud look in his eye he said “you need to publish this”. I then read it to my daughter and the look on her face I will hold with me forever. Her eyes were glistening as the proudest smile I have ever witnessed appeared on her face.  That feeling alone gave me the impetus to follow this journey and I started to sketch scenes for the book to really bring it to life.

My message is pretty clear and I feel we need to start reading books with strong positive messages to children from a young age. There is far too much criticism and negative judgement in our lives and we can absolutely educate children to be kind and more compassionate. I hope that in reading this book it can spark conversations around how to change preconceived notions and be kinder and gentler with others and ourselves.

Why did I choose a mermaid and shark to transmit this message?

Who doesn’t love mermaids! And my husband and dad had recently been shark diving in Adelaide with Great Whites, after that experience they both spoke about how Sharks are completely misunderstood by the public. Most of us have very negative connotations about Sharks and with education we learn that these majestic fish are not mindless killers and do have a softer side.

Leanne x

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