Houston-area author inspires children to dream big through literacy with her book

HOUSTON – A new chapter is starting for many students throughout our area as they head back to school.  New adventures are upon them in the books they will read.

One local author who is hoping to inspire children in the black and brown community to dream big with her book ‘The Train’.

“Oh well, I guess I will go to sleep now…” read Shynikia Means, author of ‘The Train’. “The Train is about this girl who takes an adventure on a train, and she goes to different places; she is underwater, she goes across the moon, she goes to the north pole so she can get ice cream.”

Means reflects on her childhood for inspiration.

“We had to move into the projects (as a kid) and living in the projects was totally different from where I used to live.  There were times when our lights got cut off, and there were times my mom didn’t eat, when I think about it, she used to make puppets on the wall, and give me an imagination.” Means said.

The author and mother said she did not let trauma define who she is, instead she defines it by changing the narrative.

“A lot of kids didn’t get that because they didn’t have that mom or dad, or presence of a positive person, to give them imagination.” Said Means.

According to Data USA, only 6% of authors and writers are black.

“I was like we don’t have that many representations, and the stuff I was going through it makes sense to have people look like her to write a book.” Explained Means.

‘The Train’ is available now on Amazon.

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