SUMTER, S.C. — Writing a book is no easy feat, but for one third-grader in Sumter, it was a way to share his passion for the military with his family and friends.
At just 8 years old, Lane Russell can call himself a published author.
It all started with a trip to the USS Yorktown near Charleston.
"They were like one of my favorite ships so I was like, 'Wow, it was big!" Russell exclaimed. "I just couldn't say a word."
His grandparents surprised him with the trip and took a lot of pictures while they were there.
"My grandma said, 'Hey, you want to make a book?' and I said, 'Yes, please," he explained.
His grandmother Marialaina Davis says she gave him a tape recorder and then transcribed what he said. She said at first, the idea was to make a journal.
"I think just looking at the pictures, the pictures were just so beautiful," Davis shared. "And I said, 'You got to put this in a book.' And then when he got the recorder and went picture by picture, noting everything that he did and everything he remembered, I had to have a book."
"I was amazed!" Russell remembers. "The first time I saw it, it wasn’t really the book. It was just like little papers. So I read it whole and I was like ‘This is actually pretty good."
Now that book is sold on Amazon and is in his school’s library. He’s even getting ready for book signings to show it off.
"I’ve sold my book like a lot of times. People have been like buying it every day," Russell told me. "It feels amazing. I'm just glad that people like it."
And Russell’s grandma, who is calls GaGa, is beaming with pride.
"Yeah, you don't see that much patriotism in a little guy, especially his age, eight years old," she smiled.
Russell says that while he hasn’t seen any money in royalties yet, he plans to donate it all to charity.