Tullamore woman Donna Mills.

Storytime event in Moate

Offaly woman Donna Mills will read her first children's book at a storytime and craft event in Moate this weekend.

Donna will also undertake a craft making lesson for children to make their own elephant at the event in Moate Library at 11am on Saturday, March 25.

She recently released the book 'What Can I Do?' which was written whilst she was on maternity leave with her son Eli in recent months.

The book centres around an elephant who wants to join the circus and tries to be like everyone else but is unable to do the same tricks. According to Donna, the inspiration for her book came from her two older sons Alyx (11) and Kayden (9) who would constantly compare themselves to each other and others. She said she was always interested in children's books but had never written before. “I was good at English in school but it never occurred to me as a career. Once I got writing the words came. It got fun.”

Donna broached the subject of writing a book with her family one day and her partner and children all told her to do it. “I didn't tell them at first I wrote it (the story). They said 'Mom, that's great. It's a brilliant story.' That definitely gave me a push to get it published.”

The book also features stunning illustrations by Rana Kamran.

The Portlaoise-based woman previously worked in residential care and studied Social Care in AIT (now TUS.)

She is now writing a second as yet untitled book about a unicorn that notices she looks different from everyone else and goes on an adventure to find out who she is but ultimately finds herself back at home where she belongs.

The book costs €8.99 and can be purchased from Midland Books in Tullamore, select shops in Portlaoise. It's also available on Amazon and can be ordered directly from the author via her Facebook and Instagram pages by searching Donna Mills, children’s author.