Funding campaign for books that inspire young girls gets major backing

by Padraig Conlon

A local dad has made a “dream start” in his efforts to secure funding for his books.

Gavin Leonard, who is originally from Tallaght, launched a series of fairy-tale books last year titled “Not Just a Princess” aimed at promoting strong, empowering female role models.

The books, which were created after his blog became a viral success, were written to empower his two-year-old daughter Jade.

Gavin said he was inspired to write them after realising many people shared his frustration with the way women are represented in fairy tales.

He wanted to create a world of independent, capable princesses who are not afraid to follow their dreams, and who won’t wait around to be saved!

“At Not Just a Princess we want to break down the gender barriers that face our daughters, nieces and granddaughters in nearly every walk of life,” Gavin told Dublin Gazette.

“We want all girls to see themselves represented in the strong female role models that we have created in our book series.”

In Gavin’s books each princess has a unique set of skills and, along with her animal sidekick, helps people to solve problems in the fictional land of ‘Wonderville’.

After an unsuccessful Kickstarter campaign in 2018 Gavin was even more determined to bring Not Just a Princess to the world and relaunched the campaign on Tuesday, March 26.

This current campaign to fund the books will run for another 33 days but much to Gavin’s delight the project was backed in less than a day.

“This is the dream start to the Kickstarter campaign, we are so overwhelmed with the way people have responded to this idea,” Gavin said.

“We’re also overwhelmed with the response to the Not Just a Princess ethos over the last 12 months.

“The fact that we have reached our goal already means that parents will be reading our stories, with such strong, capable female role models, to their little girls and boys by the Summer; it is a dream come true.”

The project has been backed by over 170 people who have pledged funding of more than €6,800 – almost double the target.

There is still another three weeks of the campaign remaining and Gavin hopes to raise more than €20,000 to ensure that the Not Just a Princess ethos is felt around the world.

“The fact that so many people from right across the globe are behind this project means so much to us and tells us that we are doing something right!” Gavin concluded.

Not Just a Princess is live on Kickstarter now.

To view rewards, back the project or buy the books visit Not Just a Princess Kickstarter.

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