Art is real life

Deborah Morris has been nicknamed the “Queen of Real-Life Dramas.” Though she laughs at the title, the 38-year-old Garland writer has chronicled more than 70 true-life tales of ordinary people who react extra-ordinarily when thrown into extraordinarily challenging circumstances.

Her new series, Real Kids, Real Advencures, published by Broadman & Holman already has two books on the market, and four more will make their debut in the spring and fall. Geared toward the 8-to 14-year-old set, the stories spotlight kids from the United States and Canada who have become heroes in their own right. A young boy scout reaches safety after being stranded in an abandoned cave; a 9-year-old girl fends off a shark attack; a 13-year-old walks away from a plane crash to find help for the rest of her family. An upcoming book will feature John Collmer of Rowlett, Texas, who was swept down a flooded underground storm drain with his dog during rains last October.

While she admits that her books are sensational, Morris defends her work. “I do not include all the gory details,” she says. “Real kids these days don’t have heroes. In giving kids peer heroes, it gives them a standard to reach for.”

Apparently, others agree. The book series has recently attracted some attention from Hollywood with talks of spinning it off into a type of “Rescue 911” for kids. If that’s the case, then this mother of four may soon be better known as the “Queen of Reel-Life Dramas.”

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