CRESTVIEW — Damonie Johnson, a 14-year-old Crestview resident, has published her first journal, "A Girl’s World," where she penned her coming-of-age experiences.
“A Girl’s World is a journal that is supposed to help a girl explore herself, the relationships that she is in with her friends, her family — just that concept — the world that she’s in, and how she feels about certain topics,” said Johnson, who co-authored the journal with her friend Laila Turner, 10, from Kennesaw, Georgia.
“When I wrote A Girl’s World, I was hoping that it would help girls get a better understanding. I think we all feel like we all have to be a certain way, have to look a certain way and have a certain body type; there’s always this expectation."
In addition to the journal, Johnson and Turner have created “vision/dream boards” and a coloring book for purchase on their company’s website, www.true2youpub.com.
“True 2 You Publishing has the journal, which is the first product that has been created as well as vision boards,” said Latoya Jordan, Johnson’s stepmother. “We have a vision board for girls called ‘Girl Talk’ and a vision board for boys called ‘The Playbook'; it’s the one thing we try to do for boys because she couldn’t write ‘A Boy’s World,’ you know, but we definitely did not want to exclude boys from this process of discovery.”
Jordan said, “The vision boards are essentially ways for kids to identify their goals, what plans they want to put in place in order to properly execute those goals and the challenges they face as they try to achieve those goals and some positive affirmations.”
And the co-authors, with a collective age of 24, have taken "A Girl’s World" on the road. On Friday, July 21, the authors hosted a vision board party in Acworth, Ga.; on Saturday they were set to attend Greenbrier Mall’s Annual Back-to-School event in Atlanta to present a talk-show format that motivates young people to have a successful school year. They will kick off a mini-book tour Oct. 1 at the Girls World Expo in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
When she isn’t writing or studying, you may find Johnson playing the trombone, which she hopes to play one day in a professional orchestra. Johnson will be attending Crestview High School in the fall.
Her advice to young aspiring writers is to never lose sight of yourself throughout the writing process.
“... Just do the best that you can,” she said. “If you are trying to write a book, just put motivation into it and have the motivation to keep going because I can understand how it can be frustrating, so try to stay strong and be who you are, write from your heart and do things from your heart from passion.”