With Success Comes a Sequel

Sophomore Harmony Banwo is in the works on a sequel to her first book

A quarrel between mother and daughter, written by an eighth grader’s hand, and developed across 145 pages, Harmony Banwo’s Shattered Windows: It’s Better To Be KILLER Than To Be KILLED now has a sequel on the way.

After publishing her first book, Banwo seeks to work on her writing and to use her new skills in the production of the sequel. In fact, many of her new skills come from the education she receives at MN.

“Taking Honors English, I feel, has helped me learn to write better, and I’ve gotten more advice from teachers,” Banwo said.

Along with these new classes, Banwo has noticed a spark in her interest,  much like the fire she felt while writing her first book. 

In fact, Harmony was so enthusiastic while writing her first book that she found more difficulty nearing the end of the writing process. 

“I really enjoyed writing my first book,” Banwo said, “but I was really hard on myself and I didn’t want to end it. Writing those last couple chapters was a [big] stress relief.” 

With this renewed enthusiasm, and with a goal in mind, Harmony feels strongly about the sequel in progress. 

“When I write [now], it’s deeper because [before] I was just writing to write,” Banwo said. “I didn’t know my writing was going to be a book, but now that I know my writing will [be published], it’s written much more intentionally and with purpose.” 

Similarly to how she utilizes her education now, Banwo found use in the school environment around her at Millard North Middle School and sought advice from her eighth-grade teacher, Sarah Prince. 

Prince, who had Banwo for MNMS’s PRIDE (homeroom) time, was present while Harmony wrote the majority of her first book, and was able to give her advice as the book developed. 

“Harmony showed me copies of her book in different segments, and I would read them and provide both encouragement and constructive feedback,” Prince said. 

Along with chapter-by-chapter development and growth, Prince noticed changes in Banwo’s word-by-word writing as the book progressed. 

“The biggest development with Harmony’s writing during her eighth grade year would have to be her motivation to elevate her vocabulary,” Prince said. “She really wanted to make her descriptions specific and vivid.”

Throughout the technicalities and decision-making skills that come with writing a book, Prince stood by and supported Banwo, and even advertised her student’s book.

“I mainly played a part in Harmony’s works by reading her work in progress, providing encouragement, and promoting others to read her book,” Prince said. 

Along with Prince’s advertising, Banwo received massive amounts of support from her fellow students at MNMS, and even had a book signing.

“[Having a book signing] was a good time, with lots of people showing their support for me and my book,” Banwo said. 

While making big strides forward to the completion of her sequel, Banwo finances and markets the series with the  support of her father.

“My dad took care of the majority of [marketing],” Banwo said. “Selling the book has been going pretty well, with some of the money for my personal enjoyment, some put into  investments for the next book, and with 10% of earnings going to the National Alliance on Mental Illness as well.” 

With the support and sales funding she received for her first book, and with the connections she makes being a part of school clubs, Banwo’s motivation withstands the test of time, and the well of ideas for her next book never runs dry.

“I use the experiences with the people I am around in life in my book, and exaggerate them to [have] happy and sad  moments,” Banwo said. “I have always written stories, but writing books has been a way to write the way I feel, and to be able to exaggerate [and make] life exciting.”