Local father writes adventure novel for kids
CINCINNATI (Brad Johansen) - Parents these days, maybe more than, ever want to find entertainment for their kids that they think is appropriate.
That can be a tall order. Brian Wells has already produced successful TV-movies, now he's written a book he hopes will hit the big screen. But he says he won't sell out to do it and plans to do a lot of good in the process.
Imagine you're in Jr High and some author sends you a brand new book manuscript on your iPad and you get to tell him what you think about his new action adventure. Kids might think it's kind of cool to be the first one to read the new book. And making kids think it's kinda cool is Brian Wells plan for "The League and The Latern." But he's not your typical author. Unless you consider a P&G Brand Manager, to pastor, to fighting child exploitation in Asia, to movie producer a typical author.
"I've always seen a place I thought we needed to get to and if there was any other way than risk I would have but there was just no way," said Wells.
Wells has helped produce 15 made for TV movies, including "Secrets of the Mountain," which was an NBC ratings winner. He didn't like what his family entertainment choices were so he made his own. Instead of railing against things he didn't like, it was best to criticize by creating. He wanted to make something better and see if it connected with people.
And if he sat down at the computer he could create something kids might love, "Harry Potter, Twilight, Hunger Games, Divergent, etc.. If we really want to play the long game in this we need to be developing content for middle school kids that's books and then we will control that content as we expand it out to other entertainment tools," said Wells.
"The League and The Lantern;" Abraham Lincoln laces history, action adventure with honor and heart.
Steven Spielberg's company wants the rights, Disney is interested as well. But book distributors like Amazon take 55% off the top. Wells is risking it all that there's a better way.
"So what I'm most passionate about is for every copy we sell, we're going to give a copy to a child that can't afford it," he said. Controlling the release, everything is local from book design to animation, "Most of my clients are in California so it was to work with someone local and meet up and talk over what they're looking for."
What he's looking for is a different model, "There's something about a kid being able hold their own copy of this hardcover, open, write their name in it put on shelf. That's what I'm most excited is for every one we sell we're going to give one to a kid couldn't afford it otherwise.
Yeah, that would be kinda cool.
"The Legend and The Lantern is the first of five books planned. He's engaged friends for donations and Monday, Feb. 15, began a Kickstarter on internet. 100% of the money raised will put the book in the hands of as many kids as possible. And in two days he raised more than $32,000, hoping to hit $100,000 for the launch.
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