By: Krystle Crossman
Marley Dias made a name for herself after she collected over 1,000 books that featured black girls as the main characters. She wanted to accomplish this so that she could donate the books to a school that was in Saint Mary, Jamaica, where her mother grew up. She reached her goal and more so she has now decided to take on another ambitious project. She is going to become a published author at the young age of 12 years old.
Dias will have a book published after signing a deal with publishing giant Scholastic. Her first book which has no title at the moment is going to be a self-help guide for young girls and women who are having trouble figuring out how to reach their goals and dreams. Dias wants to inspire black girls everywhere to see that they can do anything that they want to do and be whoever they want to be. She is going to inspire with realistic goals and tips however, instead of the cookie cutter “you can do it” messages that are often seen in self-help books.
Dias had the chance to speak at the United State of Women summit this past summer. She said that she feels that it is important to have someone in a book that looks like you and has the same characteristics. The readers are able to connect with the characters in the books more because they feel more of a common bond than they would with a main character who is of a different gender or ethnicity. This is what inspired Dias to start her 1,000 book campaign a few years ago, using the hashtag #1000BlackGirlBooks. Dias feels that young girls like herself are able to see the bigger picture and really take in what the story is about when they feel close to the character that they are reading about. This can also help to inspire them to come up with solutions to problems that they may share with the main character.
Dias’ book with be featured at Barnes and Noble after she is published in the Spring of 2018 and so far it is predicted to be a best-selling book. Imagine writing a best-selling book before you are 12 years old? Marley did it and she is hoping that she can motivate and inspire other black girls to do the same.