8 Year Old Prodigy
Makya Stell, aka “Tink-Tink,” has done more in eight years of her life than most people do in 80.
For starters, she’s a published writer. At the age of five, with some inspiration from her mother, Crystal, a best-selling author, Makya wrote her first book. Titled The Jazzy Little Five-Year-Old, the book is an autobiography of sorts, and naturally she was thrilled to see the first copy. “I thought it was nice,” Makya says. “The cover looked like me, so I was happy.”
Within the next four years, Makya published four more books including the latest, Tink-Tink and the Time Machine.
After paying the printing and illustration fees for her books, Makya uses the proceeds to help others. Remaining revenues go to set up scholarships at local universities to help first generation and low-income families pay for books. To date, Makya’s sponsored five scholarships. “I decided I was going to set up these scholarships when I learned some students weren’t going to school because they couldn’t buy books,” she says, “I want to help where I can.”
Makya’s also an impressive public speaker. She recently spoke to 150 Oklahoma State University students about how to believe in yourself and how to write books. Makya says, “I wasn’t nervous. Usually the crowds are bigger than that.”
Makya travels around the country speaking to crowds about being anything you want to be and striving for greatness.
Crowds in Connecticut, Kansas, Michigan, Texas and Washington, D.C. gather to hear her speak. At the capitol in Oklahoma City, she encountered her largest crowd. With arms extended as far apart as she can stretch them, this is her description of the size of the crowd: “Too many people to count.”
Makya’s interests extend far beyond writing. She loves to play basketball, video games and the piano. She has future dreams of becoming an astronaut. She’s on the honor roll at her school and loves attending Sunday school at her church. But she still has plenty of free time on her hands.
“Every third Saturday I go to nursing homes and bring all the people bananas,” she says, “Sometimes I have to help them open them, but they always love to eat them.”
Later this month, before sitting down to Thanksgiving turkey, she’ll be helping others again. Each holiday, Makya and her mother spend the morning hours at homeless shelters feeding the hungry and assisting wherever needed. “Some of the people there don’t have anything. I like to help and feed them,” she says.
Makya’s accomplished quite a bit since her introduction to this world on May 1, 2000. Her mother agrees, “Makya is a really special young lady. She has a caring heart. She loves the Lord and is some years ahead of her age.”
An inspiration to many, she says she spends each day teaching and learning. She helps where she can, strives to be her best, and encourages others to do the same. She’s definitely years ahead of her age.