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Local Resident Publishes Children’s Book Inspiring Young Readers to Find and Pursue Their Passions


ESSEX COUNTY - West Orange resident, Erica Brown Oliver, publishes her first children’s book When I Grow Up…Just Imagine.  The unique print book (264 pages) for elementary and middle school-aged children, provides 14 lifelong tips to help young readers find and pursue their passions, and features people who love their professions and why they chose them. The resource also includes a profile page for the reader, blank profession templates for the reader to conduct their own interviews, special sections and much more.

Oliver says “Watching my children, as early as 5 years old, get asked the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?”, made me flash back to my own childhood, being asked the very same question at such a young age. That is when the book idea came to me and it became my passion project. I wanted to let children know that they shouldn’t feel the pressure in elementary nor middle school, as they haven’t even been exposed to the vast amount of professions out there yet.” Her idea was to give children exposure to as many professions early on, so that they could be aware of how many careers there are. She wanted to inspire children to tune-in to their passions, and if they found something they were passionate about, to take the steps to pursue it. As she believes, if you love what you do for a living, it doesn’t feel like work.

Oliver reached out to friends near and far, to ask if they would be willing to share their professions with young readers, and with their overwhelmingly positive response, her interviews began. When I Grow Up…Just Imagine.™ features people in various professions across the country, from accountants, educators, engineers and entrepreneurs, to physicians, producers and more. And, includes numerous industries from the Arts and Entertainment to Law Enforcement, Retail, Science, Technology and many more.

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Written for the 7 to 13 year old, however, any age will gain more knowledge and the 14 lifelong tips (which include leadership and volunteering) are concepts the child can carry with them through adulthood. “It’s a coffee table book for kids. Something I hope they will refer to often as they are growing up”, expressed Oliver, who included her children in the book process. Her daughter Madison Michelle Oliver is the Editor and her son Brendan David Oliver is the Illustrator.

When I Grow Up…Just Imagine.™ is available from and other retail outlets. Click here:


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