Author of the Month - Ava S.

Author of the Month - Ava S.

By Emma Gutierrez / April 05, 2023

April’s featured author is Ava. She has a great story called “Chester’s Big Dream” that takes us on a journey of friends trying to fly! Let’s jump in and meet our two friends, Chester and Peanut!

Chester the squirrel is excited as he busts open the window of his treehouse. Chester and his friend, Peanut the mouse, have been preparing for MONTHS for this very day! Today was going to be the day that Chester was going to fly!

Chester climbs down the tree and he and Peanut go into the shed. “I’ll try the Extreme Squirrel Drone first,” says Chester. Peanut helps Chester fasten the drone to his body. Peanut salutes Chester and gives him the go-ahead for takeoff!

Chester presses the green button on the controller… but nothing happens! “Houston, I think we have a problem,” he says. But suddenly, the drone jerks Chester upwards. The controller falls from his paws and he shoots into the air. Poor Chester. He is jerked back towards the ground by the ground.

Luckily, they had pulled out a trampoline to catch Chester just in case there was an emergency. It wasn’t much use to him though as he had belly-flopped and he tears a whole right through the middle of the trampoline. Chester crawls out from under the trampoline as Peanut comes to help him. There quite obviously had been a serious malfunction with the drone. They toss it aside and head back into the shed.

They aren’t discouraged! They pull a cart that is covered with a cloth for the next attempt. What was under the cloth? It was the Extra Extreme Squirrel (and Mouse) Cannon! They load the cannon with blast powder and then Chester slides down the chute. Peanut lights the fuse before sliding down after him. BOOM! They are in the air, past the tree tops, into the blue sky. They are flying so fast that they don’t see the bird until it’s too late, and Chester smacks right into her. Chester is flailing his arms all around and reaches out to grasp Peanut’s arm.

They start rapidly falling, but the bluebird is able to peel herself away from Chester’s face just in time for Chester and Peanut to release their parachutes so they can land safely on the ground. 

The little bluebird comes down and they all introduce themselves and find her name is Sophia. They look around and try to get their bearings. They see a dazzling blue lake, emerald green grass, and golden maple trees. “Where are we? Which way is home?” asks Peanut. Sophia offers to help them find their way back home. She actually knows exactly where they live as she had flown over many times and had seen them experimenting.

As they made their way back home, the boys explain to Sophia why they had blasted themselves into the air. Sophia comments that she would love to fly them around, but she is too small to carry them. “What are you going to try next?” She asks.

Chester grins at Peanut and they answer her at the same time, “The Extra Extraordinary Extreme Squirrel Rocket-Powered Shoes.” Sophia was surprised. Chester and Peanut went to go grab the shoes. Peanut helps Chester strap into the shoes. “It was nice knowing you, bro,” says Peanut. Chester turns on the shoes and he blasts through the air as flames shoot out of the bottom of them.

Twigs were flying everywhere as Chester crashes into every tree. Thick, black smoke fills the air as Chester falls back to the ground right into a pile of leaves. Sophia and Peanut rush over to him to make sure he’s okay. He was fine but it looked like all the twigs he had run into broke the shoes. As the day ends, Chester is sad that he didn’t get to fly today.

The next morning, Chester is woken up by a knock at his door. He opens it and sees Chester and Sophia both smiling and saying good morning! They have something exciting to show Chester. Peanut takes Chester’s paw and they lead him to a branch on his tree. There was a small seat that was attached to the tree with two ropes that were knotted on the branch. The seat swayed back and forth as it was pushed by the breeze.

“This doesn’t look like it can fly,” Chester thought to himself. He was confused. “What is it?” he asks. “We present to you the Extra Exciting Extraordinary Extreme Squirrel, Mouse, and Bird Swing!”

Chester slides down one of the ropes and settles himself into the seat. He looks for a controller or a button but isn’t able to find anything. “Kick your feet in and out together,” instructs Sophia.

Chester kicks his feet together a few times and then grins and begins kicking faster and harder. He squeals with joy as he soars back and forth in the air. He glances over at Peanut and Sophia who were smiling at him.

“Chester, you’re flying!” cheers Peanut. “Sometimes your biggest problems don’t seem so big with a little help from your friends.”

Ava’s story leaves us with such a great message. Help from friends can always help cheer us up when things don’t go as planned.

Thank you, Ava, for sharing your story with us! Find out what Ava had to share with us in her interview below!


Read the Full Interview:

Where did you get your Lulu Junior kit? Who gave it to you?
I got my kit from Rainbow Resource Center. My mother gave it to me so that I could enter Rainbow Resource Center's book contest.

Where did you get your idea for your story?
Squirrels are one of my favorite animals so a squirrel wanting to fly sounded like a funny story.

How does it feel to be a published author?
I enjoy having a book that I wrote.

What's the one piece of advice you'd share with another young writer?
Never give up. Chase after your dreams and explore your story.

What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I love to play with my siblings and pets, and I also memorize Bible verses.

Do you prefer writing or illustrating? Why?
I prefer writing because I can let my imagination soar when I come up with different worlds and characters.

What's one of your favorite books?
The Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson.

How do you like to set up your writing/drawing space?
I try to keep all my stories and story ideas in a binder, so I can take my work with me wherever I go. My favorite spot to write is on the couch.

What inspires you to write or draw?
I get a lot of my ideas from things around me or events that happen in my life.

What do you want people to remember about your book?
Big things can be accomplished with perseverance and a little help from friends.