Many actors and actresses now add the author title to their CVs. Many are turning to the children’s market, writing books to encourage a new generation. Actress Kirby Howell-Baptiste has joined the ranks of this growing new segment of authors. The actress has written two new children’s books with uplifting messages of self-love and confidence for young readers.

According to Ebony Magazine, Little black girl and little black boy both

celebrating the joys of being a kid and encouraging black boys and girls to achieve their wildest dreams. In each book, both children learn the importance of self-love and the belief that their potential is limitless. Little Black Girl tells the story of a girl who is determined to have her robot ready in time for the school party. In Little Black Boy, Howell-Baptiste teams up with Fields to share the story of a boy who turns his passion for sea life into a hobby of caring for his environment.

In a exclusive interview with the famous entertainment medium, Howell-Baptiste talks a little more about his inspiration for the books. Take a look at what Cruel the actress had to say.

What made you want to write these specific books at this precise moment?

But Little black girl and little black boy are children’s books, the hope is that they will transcend this space and also be given as graduation gifts, to young people moving for the first time and to people who just need to be reminded that they are unlimited! Your books are a love letter to black girls and boys.

In a climate where critical race theory dominates the headlines and threatens to change the way we raise children, has there been any pushback?

I wrote little black girl years ago and at the time I was pushed back, not because of the content but because of me, the author. I was told there was no appetite for the book. The message was clear: I had to stick to comedy. But that’s exactly why I knew I had to do these books. I believe there is enormous power in knowing, deep within yourself, that despite resistance, naysayers and outright saboteurs, the only thing that can limit you is yourself.

little black girl and little black boy are both STEM-centric. Was it a conscious decision? Do you think kids of color need more exposure to STEM careers?

I knew the words, but I didn’t know how they would come to life. The focus on STEM came later. Centering STEM reinforces the message of these books by showing young black children that they have a place, and in fact are very much needed, in careers/areas from which we have historically been erased or excluded.

The world can be a tough place for children of color. Why do you think celebrating the joys of being a child is something we should advocate for more often?

In the poem Intimations of Immortality, Wordsworth wrote “The shades of prison begin to grow…” in reference to the loss of childhood innocence. I read that years ago in school and it always stuck with me. We are children for such a short time and for some, especially black girls, that time is even shorter because we are forced to grow up so fast. I want to celebrate childhood and encourage kids to be kids: to immerse themselves in play, to be clumsy, vulnerable, oblivious to their differences, and to continue to love who they are.

You’ve established yourself as an actress and can now add an author to your resume. What’s next for Kirby Howell-Baptiste?

I will continue to play and write. Both allow me to express myself through different characters. I also intend to direct. For me, it’s an opportunity to interpret a work of art and publish it as you imagine it.

Little black girl and little black boy will debut in November this year. However, you can pre-order your copies here! We feel that these two titles are only the beginning for her.

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