The story begins with a hit-and-run accident, an injured mother, and child. And the tale that followed continues to be written. And shared.
Genie Webb’s November 2014 accident could have been tragic, but led to the publication of a children’s book that was released about a year ago. Now, Webb has published a second book and has launched a series of writing workshops for kids age 9 to 12.
The 2014 accident injured Webb’s then 3-year-old daughter and triggered the delivery of her baby son by emergency C-section. Luckily, the girl’s injuries were limited to scrapes and bruises, but Webb and her son spent several days in the hospital. Webb’s family worried about whether she would recover.
The traumatic experience gave Webb the impetus to retell her own story with a different slant. The children’s book, “Princess Lydi and the Baby Brother,” was the result. It’s a fictional account of the birth of her son.
This week, Webb took shipment of the first copies of her new book, “Baby Daniel and the Bedtime Blues.”
But the tale keeps adding chapters.
“I decided to start writing workshops to turn this into a business instead of just writing the books,” said Webb. I wanted to ask ‘How can I give children to tools to be successful and healthy mentally?’
“I didn’t want (the accident) to be my children’s story. I decide to rewrite that story and turn it into a children’s book. The community was great and rallied behind me.”
She hopes the community also gets behind her workshops.
“The workshops are a six-week program for children from ages 9 to 12,” she explained. “Our theme is ‘Magic. Love. and Light.’ It focuses on challenges (kids face) and how to put their thoughts to paper.”
Said Webb: “Because it’s children, there is a lot of wrangling. But we have a curriculum and a three-hour class once a week. Our intention is to make it feel like a club or a community where children feel safe. We will have circle time, where we can sit around and tell what’s challenging us and get other people’s perspectives.
“And maybe the children will be open to the (advice of others) when it is coming from their peers. These are age 9 to 12, so they are middle schoolers. We know how difficult that world can be.”
A fun space for kids
She described the workshops as “Creating a space where it’s fun, but also extremely productive. It’s about encouraging them to look on the bright side, especially in unfamiliar situations for children.
“It’s a writing workshop, but I’m not there to talk about grammar, punctuation or whether they have written in complete sentences. This is for the kids to express themselves.”
Webb hopes to bring her workshops to any community organization that works with children, but for the summer, she will also offer individual registrations. Her Young Storytellers Workshops will begin June 22. Program graduate will have their stories published in a workshop storytellers’ book, and they will be celebrated at the Young Storytellers Banquet.
Parents or organizations interested in the workshops can contact Webb at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or by calling 262-497-0059.