LSE Freshman and Published Author Plans to Release Second Book Next Summer

Jeffrey Ogbonnaya continues working on his trilogy which features young superheroes

LSE Freshman and Published Author Plans to Release Second Book Next Summer

Georgia Wood, Design Editor

Freshman Jeffrey Ogbonnaya began writing his first novel at age 10. Before leaving middle school, this young author had successfully published that first book and was working on the second.

“It wasn’t initially my goal [to publish the book]. I was just writing for the sake of writing. But then, after I had a finished product, I was like, ‘Hey, maybe people would want to read this,'” Ogbonnaya said. 

The science fiction book, “Ne’faro: The Invasion”, is the first book of what will be a trilogy. The book follows the story of four kids from Earth who unexpectedly gain superpowers and are thrown into a galactic war in the Milky Way galaxy. With these new-found superpowers, they are sent to fight against the evil alien race, the Ne’faro. The name of the evil alien race comes from the word “nefarious”, meaning evil, which Ogbonnaya felt was very fitting for the antagonist of his book. 

Ogbonnaya shared that the personality and thoughts of many of the characters in his book reflected his own mindset. He described this mindset as being “positive yet practical”. The characters in his book look at all aspects of a problem and look for the best possible way to solve it.

In third grade, Ogbonnaya decided to try his hand at writing a book. 

“I was just kind of bored in class one day, and I just started writing down ideas. It wasn’t anything concrete at first,” he said.

Until that point, Ogbonnaya had only written for class assignments. That was his first time writing something like this of his own accord.

Ogbonnaya says finding the motivation to write could be difficult. There were times he suffered from writer’s block, but he was always able to get back to writing after taking a small break.

“Even though it was something I wanted to do, the ideas wouldn’t always come out the way I wanted them, or I couldn’t figure out how to word it from my brain to the Google Doc,” Ogbonnaya said. “There were definitely times where I just could not write at all. Like my brain was shot. But I always came back to it eventually because I knew I had to get it done,” he said.

In sixth grade, around the age of 12, Ogbonnaya completed his book, and on Dec. 12, 2020, “Ne’faro: The Invasion” was published. After spending years on his book, Ogbonnaya said it felt rewarding to see the finished product.

“It was a sense of accomplishment. You spend all this time working on this thing, and now there is this finished product. It was very rewarding,” he said.

Many of Ogbonnaya’s friends and family supported his goal of publishing his book. 

“Most of the people I knew saw it as a really cool project and were really supportive of me,” Ogbonnaya said. “A lot of thanks to them because I probably wouldn’t have done it without them.”

Among his supporters, his parents were who helped him the most. 

“Both of my parents push[ed] me to keep writing and to go through with it and get it published and see where it would go because they wanted me to explore my passion,” Ogbbannaya said.

With the help of his parents, Ogbannaya commissioned an artist from Upwork, a platform used to connect people with graphic designers and website developers, to design the cover art for his book. The same artist is currently the artist for the second book of the trilogy as well. 

Ogbonnaya is currently working to publish the second book in the trilogy. If all goes well, he hopes for the book to be available by the summer of 2023.

“Ne’faro: The Invasion” is available for purchase at Barnes & Noble, on Amazon, Apple Books and directly from Ogbonnaya. 

Despite this incredible achievement, Ogbonnaya doesn’t plan to be an author as an adult. 

“I don’t actually think it’s [my goal] to be an author long term. I want to do something musical actually, probably be a professional pianist or violinist, or both. I haven’t put a lot of deep thought into it, but I feel like that’s what I want to do.”