A look into how one individual is developing children's books

TKhan

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Michael Girgenti is very big on intuition and gut feelings. This is how the company Strawberry Pencil Magic (SPM) was formed which is a colorful children’s picture books that allow a child’s imagination to flourish.

"In a nutshell it means when you write from the heart, magic happens, the strawberry symbolizes the heart, the pencil symbolizes writing, and the magic is the outcome. I felt like over the years when I would walk into bookstores or see the variety of different titles being promoted on TV or online it was either the same few iconic characters that we've always known about for the past twenty to thirty years, or in my opinion, dull concepts. I started the SPM brand to provide an alternative to the conglomerates in diversified multinational mass media & entertainment. I think there's a huge hole in creativity within the market which is ironic because children are the most creative beings," Girgenti says.

The SPM books are abstract and non-traditional from a character standpoint and a storytelling aspect on top of being current and conscious of the future. What most people don't know is that out of the sixteen or so books that are published and the 584+ other stories and characters that are coming, they're all connected and over time will intertwine which some stories have already begun to do so. This is why Girgenti believes the work is truly unique and that's why it is dearly needed.

Girgenti thinks charitable contributions are always needed at all times because there are so many less fortunate people out there that deserve better.

"For whatever reason that has placed or led them into their current circumstance a small act of kindness can provide a beacon of hope. Tons of adults are forced into uncontrollable scenarios and what makes that even more heartbreaking, is the children attached to those parents are even more helpless. If a book we've produced can also create a laugh or smile in a child's life, we want to provide and give as many smiles as we can afford. As SPM grows, so will the abundance of donations. With natural disasters and the pandemic we all have recently endured, people could use an extra smile right now more than ever," Girgenti elaborates.

For being a new brand for barely over a year old Girgenti is most proud that his books are at Barnes & Noble. Currently working with an animation company in India, Girgenti is developing their first animation pilot to one of their SPM books.

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I write about culture, politics, parenting, religion, and health. My work has been published in The New York Times, National Geographic, Vanity Fair, Vox and Prism Reports among others.

Illinois State
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