ORANGE COUNTY, Calif. – A 6-year-old girl in Southern California authored a book on ponies in hopes of saving up to buy a real pony.
Nadrah Naeim says she was three or four years old when she met "Echo," the horse at a barn in SoCal. Since then, Nadrah fell in love with horses as she takes horseback riding lessons, brushing the horses and feeding them carrots any time she visits a local barn.
With her book, The Girl Who Loves Ponies, Nadrah is hoping the sales from her work will help her get a real pony when she becomes an adult.
Nadrah’s mom, Dr. Izdihar Jamil, Ph.D., is an author, entrepreneur and business coach. Izdihar says what started as a family project last summer, became a valuable teaching opportunity on saving money, being financially responsible and pursuing dreams.
As an entrepreneur and business coach, her goal is to empower women to become writers. With her daughter in mind, she teamed up with Nadrah to develop a "positive-minded blueprint" to help the 6-year-old pursue her dreams.
"You don’t have to be 18 to learn how to save money," Izdihar said. "There’s always a way. Rather than saying no, but focus on making it happen."
Izdihar adds, "As a parent, it’s important to set positive examples for kids. If you want to do it, you’ve got to go all the way."
As Nadrah remains stuck at home with virtual classes instead of in-person classes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, her budding writing career became a fun way for the 6-year-old to get engaged with reading and creative writing.
"It’s different when you tell a kid you need to read a book versus write a book. It takes more creativity and excitement… and of course, saving money to buy a pony," Izdihar said.
Both agreed has been a fun project to tackle together as a family.
"It’s a family effort," the mom says. "Nadrah drew some of the pictures. We crafted the story together. My husband proofread it and son gave expert opinion."
We asked Nadrah and her mom if they have any advice they could give to young girls and women looking to break into publishing books.
"Follow your dreams, what you want to do," Izdihar said.
"Don’t listen to anybody else," Nadrah said with a smile.
"Even your parents?" Izdihar asked.
"Sometimes," Nadrah said jokingly.
Those interested in checking out Nadrah’s book can click here for more information.
You can also check out Nadrah’s mother’s work by clicking here.