Special to the E-T
In a society that seems to be growing more and more fascinated with celebrities and their lifestyles, many of those celebrities are capitalizing on that heightened exposure in ways never before imagined. Musicians with their own clothing lines are now commonplace, as are fragrances loosely attached to actors and even athletes.
While those seem to be more natural fields for celebrities to expand into, one increasingly common arena enticing the rich and famous is the publishing industry — and not for the assumed “tell-all” memoirs. Many are penning children’s books with success. The following celebrities have already taken their first foray into children’s literature, and don’t be surprised to see many of their Hollywood cohorts soon following suit.
Maria Shriver — This is perhaps the least surprising of all the celebrity authors, as the former television journalist, turned wife of California governor and former actor Arnold Schwarzenegger has the writing experience one would deem necessary for getting a book deal. Shriver’s “What’s Happening to Grandpa” (Little Brown) is a tale about a family coping with Alzheimer’s disease. Will Smith — Building off the popularity of his hit single “Just the Two of Us,” the former Fresh Prince of Bel Air lends the song’s lyrics to “Just the Two of Us” (Scholastic), a picture book illustrated by Kadir Nelson that follows a father and son’s relationship through a variety of life stages. Terrell Owens — One of the most unlikely of children’s book authors, the mercurial Owens, known for his questionable antics while a wide receiver for the National Football League’s Philadelphia Eagles, offers “Little T Learns to Share” (BenBella), a book extolling the virtues of discipline. This is notably ironic as Owens has been characterized as one of the less disciplined players in pro football. John Travolta — The actor known best for his skills on the dance floor was among the first to convince publishers he has some skills at the computer, too, as the 1997 publishing of “Propeller One-Way Night Coach” (Warner Books) can attest. Himself an accomplished pilot, Travolta’s book is about a young boy named Jeff who’s fascinated by flight, leading up to the day when he and his mother take a series of flights across the country.