HILLSBOROUGH, NJ - "The Adventures of Jeff the Potato," written and published by 12-year-old Hillsborough author Manu Datta, will be shared with library customers on March 21st from 2-3 p.m. at the Somerset County Library System of New Jersey’s Hillsborough Library branch, 379 South Branch Road.

The book is an outgrowth of a visit to the Hillsborough Middle School in 2019 by author and publisher Stephen Kozan, founder of ReadyAimWrite Kids, LLC. He held a flash fiction contest with the students; Datta was selected as the winner of the contest.

“Writing these stories gives students confidence, an opportunity, and a ‘can-do’ attitude,” said Kozan. “It instills a belief system in them at these young ages that they can do anything if they put the work in and believe in themselves. It allows them to grow as young writers, improve upon their skill set, and delve deeper into their own imaginations.”

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ReadyAimWrite Kids, LLC is an independent publishing company for books written by kids for kids. Each book began as an in-school writing assignment. Kozan started hosting the contests because he believes that it gives participants a true creative outlet.

“Working with young authors is exciting, challenging, and rewarding,” said Kozan. “The challenge is guiding these young authors through the process. They hit speed bumps, get writer's block, ask for help. The reward comes when we're ready to release the book. When I get to speak in front of hundreds of other students, teachers and family members of the young-author, it's very humbling and rewarding to know what you helped facilitate.”

Having won the contest Datta offers some advice for his peers and future young authors: “just read.”

“Local author Manu Datta inspires his peers within the Hillsborough Public School District as they witness one of their own be able to accomplish such an amazing task - writing and publishing a book,” said Jessica Bauer, youth services supervisor. “Manu exemplified perseverance and dreaming big from start to finish.”

For more information or to register: sclsnj.libnet.info/event/3674455.