Solace of reading drives student

Born July 17, 1989, in Sacramento, Calif., Stephanie Lindsey proves that a person’s past has no control over their future. 

Before transferring to Grambling State University in 2010, Lindsey admits to her life as being testimonial.

 “The reason I read a lot as a child was because my mother who, although she loved me, was not able to take care of me, and my father wasn’t there,” Lindsay said. “Reading and writing gave me an escape.”

Being reared by her late grandparents Lily Mae and Ephrim Washington, Aunt Millie Washington-Kenoly and cousin Angel, Lindsey admits to finding comfort in reading and writing. “My grandmother found her comfort in God, so my first book was a children’s Bible,” said Lindsey. 

Now a senior mass communication major at GSU, Lindsey is using her passion for writing to inspire children.  Her first book, Crabs in a Bucket, is the first in a series of children’s stories she plans to publish. The Crabs in a Bucket series will detail Martin the crab’s life, as he learns honesty, friendship and self-worth. 

Lindsey pulls from her childhood experiences as a source for her writing. 

“I feel children must learn honesty and friendship at an early age, because these are the things a child needs to ensure personnel growth.”

She says learning self-worth is important because “as long as you love yourself, you can arise out of any situation.” 

Lindsey says she writes children’s books because reading is not only an educational tool, but can allow children to find peace when dealing with difficult circumstances. 

Crabs in a Bucket is centered around Martin the crab, who happens to have a uniqueness compared to all the other crabs in his reef. With one claw larger than the other, and his sea-blue shell color, Martin stood out far more than the rest of the crabs. 

“I wanted him to be unique because a lot of times children are taught through the media that different is not always good,” Lindsey said. “I felt like Martin’s uniqueness could help children express themselves and be proud of their own differences.” 

Martin is adventurous and embarks, through his dreams, on an adventures in the deep blue sea. The other crabs find Martin to be odd because of his appearance and his exploratory dreams. While dreaming, Martin is interrupted by a big fishing net he sees coming to capture all of the crabs in the reef. While trying to warn the other crabs, Martin gets captured with the others and placed in a bucket. The story is based on Martin’s ability to make his dream a reality by taking on this new adventure of survival. He will use what makes him different to save the day.  

The story is filled with life lessons that children can learn now and use forever. Lindsey plans to donate a copy of her book to the surrounding schools of Newtown, Conn., where a mass shooting took place Dec. 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary claiming the lives of 26. 

Lindsay says Crabs in a Bucket will also be recorded to an audio version, and she envisions many book readings are in the near future. 

One of Lindsey’s readings is scheduled to take place later this year in Mary Gam Hall orphanage in her hometown, where she was housed for a few months. 

The new author dedicated her first book to her late grandparents and Aunt Millie. 

“I dedicated my book to my grandmother for giving me faith, my grandfather for being an example of a man in my life, and Aunt Millie because she helped me discover myself and being different was beautiful,” said Lindsey. 

This is the first book from the GSU student but not the last. “It matters not how rich or famous you become in life, if you do not help others out of the bucket along the way,” concluded Lindsey.