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Listen to your Tiny Ninja

Written by Sasha Graham for MagicBeans Bookstore

Before my daughter was born, her big brothers nicknamed her “Tiny Ninja” because they were looking forward to her completing their trifecta of ninjas. They knew that she would, at least at first, be very little so they called her their “Tiny Ninja”.

I had been writing professionally for a long time, first for television, then as a publicist at Disney and had always enjoyed writing for pleasure as well. I really loved the “small but mighty” feel of the name “Tiny Ninja” and it eventually weaved its way into stories I was working on and this concept of personifying our best self as a Tiny Ninja quickly began to take shape.

Over the course of many stories, I developed a collection that centers around the idea that we’re each born with a Tiny Ninja who is the best version of us; brave, compassionate, and kind.

I published the first book in the collection, Milo Does Not Like Mornings, in 2019 and followed it up in 2020 with the Spanish version, A Milo no le gustan las mañanas.

As our kids get older and spend less time at home, I think it’s really important that we’ve given them the confidence to trust their own inner voice. Reminding them to “listen to their Tiny Ninja” is a shorthand way of saying, “You’re strong, smart, brave and compassionate and you know in your gut the right thing to do.” Interestingly, I’ve found that this idea really resonates with adults as well. When we’re struggling to make a difficult decision it’s often because we’re overthinking it. When we take a pause to ask ourselves, “What does my Tiny Ninja think?” it usually becomes a whole lot clearer in a hurry!

It is impossible to deny that social media has had a massive impact on all of us. There are some really wonderful things that come from the opportunities for connection and information that we never had before, but there is also the darker side of its effect, particularly on our kids.

Prior to the advent of Instagram and TikTok and YouTube there was just a lot less noise in all of our lives and it was easier to find a quiet moment to ourselves to reflect. Now there are so many voices coming at us all the time it can be difficult to take a breath and ask, “What do I think? Who do I want to be? How do I feel, and what do I want?”

My hope, of course, is that my books will give kids and their grownups a quiet moment or two to think about their Tiny Ninjas and ask themselves these questions.

There is a brand new book in the Tiny Ninja Books Collection called Whitney Wins Everything. I have been delighted by the way it is already resonating with kids and adults and am looking forward to adding yet another book to the collection in the not too distant future!

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