Being on the Mentor Memorial Middle School Power of the Pen team is just one way that Ayesha Faruki uses her talents to create content for others to enjoy. Ayesha has combined her interests in coding, reading, writing, science, and math into creative endeavors that extend from a website to game apps to a self-published book.
Visitors to her website, https://www.afaruki.com/, will find a number of games to try, plus a preview of her self-published novel, Whisper. Ayesha, who finished third in the 7th grade at the 2021 Power of the Pen state tournament, has been writing for as long as she can remember.
“My mom always used to read books to me, and it wasn’t long before I started creating my own stories,” she says. “I would dictate them word for word for my parents to write – and I would illustrate them myself.”
Ayesha wrote Whisper when she was 11 years old. A blend of adventure and fantasy, Whisper follows six girls who discover a new world while on a field trip. As the Chosen, they must navigate both the new reality and the world from which they came, all while working to fix flaws that inhabitants of the new world have become oblivious to.
Ayesha has been coding since she was 6 years old. She develops games on an MIT platform called Scratch. The games are released within the Scratch community for 8- to 16-year-olds, as well as on her website. Ayesha published her website to inspire other kids to publish their own works. “I remember that amazed feeling when I was younger and saw stories about kids and teens who did something great – especially those young authors who developed their bestselling novels as teens,” she says. “I hope to start a blog of my own soon to write about my own interests.”
Whether writing, coding games, adding to her website, or drawing illustrations to accompany her writing, Ayesha loves the freedom in pursuing creative endeavors. “All of these give me the power to be able to create something by myself, and something that I’m proud of,” Ayesha says. “I also enjoy sketching and drawing, and both this and writing help me visualize different worlds and people. I illustrated and designed my front cover of Whisper, and also drew all of the pictures in the book.”
Ayesha is involved in many activities at Memorial Middle School, including Science Olympiad, Math Club, Junior Model United Nations, the National Junior Honor Society, the school newspaper club, book club, and Student Council. Game On was her favorite event in Science Olympiad, as it involves the knowledge of both coding and science.
Winning third place in her grade level at the Power of the Pen State Tournament and being published in the 2021 Book of Winners inspired Ayesha to self-publish Whisper, the first in a planned series called The Cities of the Lost. Power of the Pen also helped Ayesha focus her stories. “I think the best thing about Power of the Pen for me as a writer were the time constraints,” she says. “They allowed me not to put too many unnecessary scenes in my writing.”
Ayesha recently finished writing another novel, The Legends of Atruviia, and plans to publish it, as well.