Post date: 
Wednesday, 17 January 2018
Elena Sommers

Connect member Elena Sommers tells us about her ambitions and the recent publication of her fairy tale book.

I am a confident, ambitious, friendly, partially-sighted writer, and mother of two daughters aged nine and twelve.  I live in the lovely Hampshire town of Portchester, which has its own castle and from my house you can see the sea.

Last August I decided to challenge myself to write a children’s book, which has now been published.  It’s a fairy tale for children aged between five to ten years-old and is called, ‘Three Royal Sisters’. It’s a story about a King and his three teenage daughters: Rosella, Snowflake and Mary. Rosella likes the colour black, Snowflake adores the colour white and Mary prefers a rainbow of colours.

The book demonstrates the differences between black, white and colourful points of view, and highlights the differences between the princesses. The book also demonstrates feminine power, as all the three sisters achieve something in life.

I joined RNIB over 10 years ago and it has been supportive and very helpful over the years.

I have optic nerve dystrophy and retinal dysplasia, and only have approximately up to 10% of normal vision. I have had this eye condition since birth; but despite this, I’m trying to have an active, interesting, exciting life; a life full of achievements.

A few years ago I was encouraged to take part in a local swimming contest, and raced against mixed ability contestants at my local swimming club, and I won gold, silver and bronze medals in my races!

Just over a year ago, I graduated from The Open University, with a Diploma in Higher Education in Humanities.  My family attended the graduation ceremony and I know that my daughters were proud to see their mother go up to get her certificate.  

I have also participated in some really physically challenging activities such as sailing, abseiling, canoeing and kayaking – and I won a kayaking race!  I also belong to a photography club, run by a charity group for visually impaired people called ‘Losing my sight’. I really enjoy photography, and I recently had a few of my photos printed onto canvas.  Through this charity, and the activities I participate in, I have made a lot of friends. 

Finally, I believe I have to give a positive example to my children. If I achieve things in life, they will follow my example and be more successful people in the future.

We only have one life and one body. I think it’s important to learn how to use all your senses to do everyday activities and more. If you have lost your sight recently, you too can learn how to do everyday tasks in a slightly different way. People with sight loss can enjoy themselves; they can be successful and extremely happy. They go to work, run businesses, raise children and enjoy being parents, and some even write books.  I wrote this book to show that every one of us have great potential.

‘Three Royal Sisters’ is available on Amazon.  I hope your children enjoy the story; it has lovely illustrations and is easy to hold.  



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