By Daniel Brunty
The Winston County Journal
Eiland Middle School is proud to announce its recent selection of having its school name used in a fictional novel.
The name of the school was used in the fictional novel “Kid Owner,” written by New York Times bestselling author and former NFL player Tim Green. The book was published on September 29, 2015.
The story of how the school had its name used is just as interesting as the book. Eiland Middle School substitute teacher Amy Fulton details of how Eiland Middle was chosen for the novel as well as her contributions on making this a reality.
I had a student that was here at Eiland when I submitted this name. My son Reese was a student here. Tim Green held a contest through Facebook asking for requests of middle school names to be included in his new book, ‘Kid Owner’,” Fulton said. “So I submitted Eiland Middle’s name and this was not long after the tornado, it was May 2014. The way the contest worked is that you submit a name, and the name that received the most likes of Facebook would be chosen.”
With hope that Eiland Middle would receive enough votes, Fulton was positive that their school would be picked after seeing the early results. “We were ahead, and then we really started slacking off,” Fulton said. “There was another name that was submitted from New York that initially won. There was a student at that school named Ben Sauer who was a four-year old child who died of cancer. So the school submitted his name and they won.”
With the contest having an official winner, Fulton thought that the school’s opportunity to have its name published in the book had passed. The opportunity, however, would find its way back to Eiland Middle.
“Some people from New York message me after and asked me why did I submit Eiland’s name,” Fulton said. “So I sent them a long email about the tornado and all the families that were affected and all of the children at Eiland that lost their homes. So I submitted that to them. So the people in New York went onboard and started helping us to get chosen.”
As faith would have it, Eiland Middle would soon find itself receiving the opportunity of a lifetime. “So Tim Green sent me an email and said that if we got close to receiving the most likes he would see what he could do about having two names in the book,” Fulton said. “So the people in New York started helping us get more likes for the school name and eventually received enough votes for the name to be placed in the book.”
Assisting Fulton in making this a reality were Darlene Fryery Bane and Toni Nicholson-Jackson. “These two ladies helped me through Facebook get people to vote,” Fulton said. “I asked them to help me get the word out around Winston County to vote.”
Fulton has been in correspondence with Green for the past year. “We have sent a request to ask him to come here to the school,” Fulton said. “Hopefully he will be able to come here in the spring for Author’s Week. It is a great opportunity, not only for Eiland Middle School but a wonderful opportunity for our school district and town to bring such a positive light after we have all gone through so much.”
Eiland Middle School’s P.A.W.S. program is planning to incorporate the book and Green’s visit with the organization. The P.A.W.S. program (Positive Action Works of Service) is a student service organization of 6th, 7th, and 8th grade Eiland Middle School students who are provided opportunities to serve others through projects that benefit the school, community, state, country and entire world. Eiland Middle School currently has 60 members in the program.
Sponsors for the P.A.W.S. program, 7th grade ELA Janna Chamblee and 8th grade ELA Angel Rogers have chosen two students to read the book because of their love and interest of sports. The two students chosen were Laquarrius Taylor and Deangelo Triplett.
The P.A.W.S. program will soon began to raise funds in order to cover the fee associated with the visit of Green to the school. The program will host a number of fundraisers that they hope will cover this expense.
The novel, “Kid Owner,” is the story of a middle school kid named Ryan. When Ryan’s estranged father unexpectedly dies, Ryan learns that he has inherited the Dallas Cowboys. With his new role as owner of this NFL team, Ryan has high hopes that he can be more than just a middle-school misfit. Maybe he can even get off the bench and into the starting lineup of his own football team.
With the help of his friends Jackson and Izzy, Ryan takes advantage of his newfound stardom. He convinces his coach to use a tricky passing offense that plays to Ryan’s strengths.
But just when things are looking up, Ryan’s nasty stepmother makes a legal play to make her own son the Cowboys’ kid owner. With drama heating up both on and off the field, Ryan quickly realizes he may lose much more than just the Dallas Cowboys.
In the novel, Eiland Middle School is the name of a school that is the rival to Ryan’s school, Ben Saur Middle School.
“We are very excited to have a book in the library with our school name as part of the setting,” Eiland Middle School Librarian Debra Wade said. “Students will relate to the story because they will feel as though they are a part of it. Tim Green is a wonderful author for students. His books are both entertaining and the themes teach positive lessons for our young readers to learn. I appreciate the effort of Louisville Municipal School parent Miss Fulton for nominating Eiland Middle School and for pulling the community together to provide this great opportunity for Eiland Middle School and our school district.”
If you would like to know more bestselling author Tim Green, you may visit his webpage at www.timgreenbooks.com.
If you would like to know more about Kid Owner, or would like to help Eiland Middle School in their efforts to have Tim Green visit the school, you may call Eiland Middle School at 662-773-9001