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Flossmoor girl has the ‘write’ stuff, at age 9

ElannLloyd visits children's fictisectiHomewood Public Library. Lloyd has donated several her books libraries.  |  Ginger Brashinger~For Sun-Times Media

Elanna Lloyd visits the children's fiction section of the Homewood Public Library. Lloyd has donated several of her books to libraries. | Ginger Brashinger~For Sun-Times Media

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Updated: October 20, 2013 6:03AM



Elanna C. Lloyd, 9, may have stars in her eyes, but the budding actress won’t let a future dream keep her from pursuing others while she waits for her big break.

“I want to be an award-winning actress,” the Flossmoor fourth-grader said about her career plans as an adult.

In the meantime, Elanna has been sharpening her writing skills. Her recently published book, “Happy Birthday, Nia,” is about one young girl’s birthday experience with her family.

The original was written and illustrated by Elanna when she was 6, and it was handed over to her mother, Tandy Green, who said she promptly lost it among the office papers of her home-based tutoring business, Chi Tutorsz.

When Green found the nine-page book years later, she scanned it in to her computer so it wouldn’t get lost again, but the computer crashed.

“The second time we found it, I sent it to the publisher and said, ‘Print it now,’ ” Green said.

After a few pages were added at the request of Xlibris (a self-publishing company), along with drawings by illustrator Al Margolis, the book was published and is for sale at Amazon.com.

Elanna said the book was actually her second one. A book written earlier about her own life, entitled “Me, Myself, and I,” seemed a bit ambitious considering her young age and lack of experience, she said, so she opted for a fictional character.

Nia is a character Elanna likes well enough to create a series around. She is now on her third book, the second in the “Nia” series. “Nia’s Terrific Sleepover” will be interesting to children and adults alike, Elanna said.

“I want adults, when they read this, to remember their memories of how they had a sleepover,” she said.

She said kids who read it will like it for the “tension” that arises from a “friend fight” but she’s not giving away any of the plot beyond that.

Elanna said she will continue with the “Nia” series until it’s time to move on to other themes. In the meantime, she’s all about getting plenty of experience for future use.

“I want to start right now so I’ll have a head start for when I’m an adult,” Elanna said. “It helps me prepare for (the future).”

Elanna has the full support of Green, who said she encourages all three of her children to follow their dreams to fulfillment and then “dream a bigger dream.”

Elanna’s sister, Courtney Green, 20, and brother, Matthew Green, 19, both have been involved in the performing arts.

Courtney Green was “cast in every play all four years at Homewood-Flossmoor High School” and in the recent production of “Hair” at Governors State University, Tandy Green said.

She said her son completed a one-year film production program at New York Film Academy and is attending Columbia College in Chicago to study film production.

“I’m fortunate in that if one of my children says they’d like to try this, I can say, ‘OK, let’s try it,’ ” Green said. “When Elanna said she wanted to write a book, I said, ‘Start writing.’ ”

Green said she is proud that Elanna wrote and illustrated her book by hand rather than using all the advanced technology available to her at home.

Elanna also hones her skills for a future career in acting by participating in community theater, taking dance and acting lessons, and attending an Apple Camp to learn to make movies.

Her advice to any young person who dreams of doing something when they “grow up” is not to wait.

“If you’re putting it off — don’t put it off, because it’s going to help you (not to wait),’ ” Elanna said.



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