Stephen King to donate $6,500 to elementary students in Maine so they can publish their own books

Stephen King will donate $6,500 to elementary students in Maine so they can publish their own books. By Leah Asmelash, CNN

(CNN) -- Author Stephen King is giving back, by donating thousands of dollars to an elementary school in his home state of Maine so that a group of students can publish their own books.

King will be donating $6,500 to Farwell Elementary School, located in Lewiston, Maine, so the students in its Author Studies Program can publish the two books they've written, Farwell Principal Amanda Winslow told CNN.

As a group, the students -- some of whom have graduated and are now in middle school -- have been working on the books over the course of four years -- mapping out the character development, plot, and overall storyline with the help of another Maine author, Winslow said. The end result is two books -- an original and a sequel -- and a 290-page manuscript.

Now, the books are ready for publication, and with the help of King's donation, they'll be sent to a publishing company and available for purchase.

CNN reached out to representatives for King for comment but did not hear back.

"It was, like, mind-blowing," said seventh-grader Ella Leo to CNN affiliate WMTW.

And the books are, in part, based on the Covid-19 pandemic. The sequel novel is reworked from G. R. Savage's "Fletcher McKenzie and the Passage to Whole," to be made about a boy's adventures during the pandemic, WMTW reported.

"I've been in it for the last four years, and only the people in my school have ever gotten to read what I've written, and it's really cool to think that (now) pretty much anyone can read anything you write," fifth-grader Hailey LaBrecque told WMTW.

Winslow told CNN she's proud of the students and what they've accomplished.

"I think it's hard for kids to really understand the lesson of perseverance and patience, but they've been working on this book ... and they're definitely starting to reap the rewards of their hard work," she said.

King is the author of many acclaimed horror and thriller books, including "It" and "The Shining."

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