The energetic, spunky and charismatic eight-year-old Naila Baynes has released her first book. Open Your Heart was written based on a real-life experience she had with her granny Patricia, her parents and brother Naim Baynes.
Naila was a bit shy at first, but after a minute or two she willingly spoke to Newsday Kids about her book.
She said, “The message to this book is to open your heart to many possibilities and I wrote it because of my granny.”
Naila explained, “My granny told me to come on a walk and I refused, but then at the end of the walk I said that I enjoyed it. Since I said that I enjoyed it, my granny told me I should write a book. She also said that I should write a book because my mummy wrote one.”
Naila’s mother is Dr Sacha John-Charles-Baynes who wrote a chapter in a book called Virago: Warrior Women Butterfly Edition.
Naila told Newsday Kids Open Your Heart has six characters; her mom, dad, granny, brother (add), her cousin Aria, Teddy the dog, and herself. She explained that the book has many different stories with these characters.
“In the book, the stories are my granny and I went for a walk, my parents and brother went on a hike, and my little cousin and I playing hide and seek. Then my cousin and I played with Teddy.”
The Holy Saviour Anglican Primary School student said she draws and colours all of her characters in her book.
“I love to draw, drawing is my talent. I draw sometimes for ten hours, just whole day I’m drawing and painting.”
She said she first started painting and drawing when she was four and thinks it’s fun.
“My most favourite thing is colouring with my aunty Lisa. She taught me how to sew and colour too.”
Naila wanted the book to be more than a reading book, so she included a section for readers to colour the characters the way they want at the end of the book.
She said it took between two days and a week to complete with drawings, with the help of her mom. Naila said she loves to write because she gets to learn new words.
When she isn’t painting, drawing or writing, Naila plays outside and designs houses and clothes.
“I sketched a doll house that was so big, you had to stand to get onto the top floor. My dad helped me build it, but then we had to throw it away,” because her mom felt it was taking up too much space. Naila disagreed. She said she also uses Roblox to create her houses. Roblox is an online gaming platform that allows players to create anything imaginable.
Naila has already come up with an idea for another book and is close to completing it. She said her new book is called The Birthday Police.
“A birthday police is basically, if you don’t celebrate your birthday, you’ll get arrested by the police and then you’ll go to birthday police jail.”
She wants to attend Bishop Anstey High School East after she does SEA, and to be an architect, designer and writer when she grows up.