Brooke Bitton doesn’t remember a time when she was not in love with the written word.
“I started writing stories in fourth grade,” the Coral Springs resident said. “Writing is not just a hobby but a passion. I enjoy being creative with it. It’s a very big part of my life.”
Her love for words is the springboard for an ambitious writing project that Bitton is now working on, one that will bring together people from all walks of life, from across the country and even beyond. Common people, politicians, celebrities, teachers, students, well-known writers, aspiring ones, chefs: She wants them all involved.
“The goal is to get people excited and passionate about writing,” Bitton said. “With all the technology that we have today, people are forgetting how to write. That is unfortunate. I hope that this project will inspire people to get back to writing.”
Bitton had created a similar project, with considerable success, when she was a senior in high school. “I got many people, students, staff, the community, public figures and celebrities to write about anything they wanted,” she said. “I was able to get submissions from Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Ted Deutch, among others.”
This time, the Coral Springs resident is aiming higher. “I wrote to President Obama when I did the project in high school, but I couldn’t get a response. This time, I tried again. He didn’t respond initially, but that didn’t stop me from writing to him again. His submission will be a part of the project. I have emailed many celebrities as well and hope to get them involved in the project.”
Bitton, who spoke about her project at a Coral Springs City Commission meeting recently, is hoping to get a wide variety of submissions. “People are free to write whatever they want — a personal story, political pieces, recipes, a poem, anything that they want to share with the world. I have sent emails to every school principal in Coral Springs; it would be great to have submissions from a lot of school children.”
Nora Rupert, District 7 school board member, said that she is tickled to be a part of the project. “I was a mass communication major in college with a minor in writing,” she said. “I love writing; it is a stress outlet for me. I mostly write poems, but right now, I am writing a children’s story, one that is about acceptance and love.”
The project will have a positive effect on children who take part in it, said Rupert. “Writing is introspective; it helps you look inside yourself. You need to know what you are about; writing will help students find their own voice. I am hoping many other elected officials will also be a part of the project; it is a chance for people to get to know them in a different way.”
The project has given Coral Springs Commissioner Joy Carter a chance to relive her childhood. “I am writing about my family,” she said. “I had a very interesting childhood; I practically grew up on an airplane. I lived in quite a few places and went to quite a few schools. I am glad that Brooke asked me to be a part of the project.”
Articles can be submitted until the end of February, but Bitton is hoping that people will respond sooner. “I plan to have an exhibition next spring to display everyone’s writing,” she said. “People will be able to view the submissions and listen to new guest speakers discuss the importance of the written word.”
The submissions will later be compiled into a book. “When the book is published and people purchase it, I would like to use the money to start writing programs for children,” said Bitton. “I would consider the project a success if I am able to inspire kids to start writing.”
Submissions should be sent to 2080 NW 103 Terrace, Coral Springs, Fla. 33071. For details, email Brooke Bitton at firstname.lastname@example.org.