WALLINGFORD, CT – While grieving the loss of her beloved grandmother, Wallingford’s Emily Franke was inspired to write a children’s book in her honor.
Franke, 23, recently published The Ladybug Who Lived on a Four Leaf Clover, which is about a young girl named Emily who loses her grandmother but realizes she will always be with her.
Franke’s grandmother, Sheila Franke, died last June at the age of 83. Emily said her relationship with her grandmother was “a special one.”
“She was such a kind and loving person who befriended everyone she met,” Emily Franke told Patch. “My grandmother taught me how to always be kind, how to believe in myself and to love unconditionally.”
Franke said her hope with creating the book is to “share the unconditional love that remains even after a loved one has passed.”
“I like to say, ‘There are signs everywhere, just look around!'” She said.
Franke has always had a love for ladybugs and said that when she would see one, she knew it was a “sign of good luck.”
“When my grandmother was passing, I asked her to come see me as a ladybug,” she said. “I see ladybugs all the time now and know that she is always with me. After the loss of my grandmother, I needed to find a way to heal through the sadness and grief that surrounded me and all of my loved ones.One night, I was missing her and I wrote a story about a ladybug who lived on a four-leaf clover in the notes of my phone. was telling my heart to share this story and I decided to reach out to publishers and the next thing I knew, I created The Ladybug Who Lived on a Four Leaf Clover. “
Franke, a 2017 Sheehan High School graduate, is currently in the Occupational Therapist Assistant Program at Goodwin University and is set to graduate in December. She said she always had a love for writing, but never anticipated becoming a published author.
She said the process of writing the book went faster than she ever imagined, “because it was meant to be.”
“I reached out to a local publisher, Acute By Design, located in Marlborough, Connecticut and instantly felt a connection,” she said. “My publisher related to my story through ladybugs and they have been wonderful helping my book come to life.”
Writing the book was therapeutic for the Franke family.
The Ladybug Who Lived on a Four Leaf Clover was illustrated by Emily’s twin sister, Haley Franke.
“I was honored that she offered to help bring my story to life and keep our grandmother’s legacy going,” Emily Franke said. “It has been a wonderful family experience because it has brought us all closer in times of sadness.
“My family has been incredible through my journey of writing this book. There have been many tears followed by periods of laughter when reminiscing on old, happy memories. I believe that this book has helped my family through the grieving process as well because we are going through it together. “
Franke said one of the most challenging parts about writing the book is not being able to share all the exciting news with her grandmother.
“However, I know she is looking down on me saying, ‘Oh Emmy, I am just so proud of you!'” She said. “I can see her smile lighting up in the sky. This book would make her unbelievably proud and I know she will always be my biggest fan! “
Emily and Haley Franke will host an author and illustrator book signing event at the Hubcap in Wallingford from 9:30 am to 12 noon on June 25. The book is currently available for pre-order online here.