Sam Tells Her Disability Story

Writing the Book She Needed

LIFEPlan member and Columbia County resident Samantha has wanted to be a children’s book author her whole life. Talking about her disability started at a very young age, especially when she got her first wheelchair at age 5. 

Samantha’s mom thought using a stroller was easier and less stigmatizing than a wheelchair. But a family friend, who is a quadriplegic, opened her mom’s eyes to the need to allow her to move independently. She remembers explaining to other kids why she needed a wheelchair and found her classmates to be very accepting of her. 

Samantha, now 25 years old, decided to write a book after she recently had a long discussion with her young niece and nephew about her disability. “I decided to write the book I needed as a child that didn’t exist,” she said about her reason for becoming an author.   

Samantha wrote HiI’m Sam! in about 10 minutes, but it took her much longer to learn how to self-publish. She spent hours searching on line, watching You Tube videos and published her first book. After just three months, Hi, I’m Sam!  has already sold over 300 copies on Amazon and through her web site. Samantha said, “Talking about disabilities and the challenges people like me face is so important. We simply need more representation in the media.” 

Samantha is currently studying psychology at her local community college and wants to someday work with people who struggle with addiction.  But her writing days aren’t over yet. Samantha says she’s already working on a series of children’s books that continue to tell Sam’s story! 

Learn more about Samantha’s story and her book, “Hi, I’m Sam” here.