How does the world of tomorrow look like? How will we live in the future? These questions have moved many writers in the past. And today - with the development of artificial intelligence - looking into the future is perhaps more exciting than ever. In the writing workshops of the Amazon ABC Club, young up-and-coming authors between the ages of nine and 17 have demonstrated their ingenuity and inventive talent. The most original stories are now published in a book entitled "The World of Tomorrow", which is available as a free ebook on Amazon.com.
“Anything one man can imagine, other men can make real.”
Anie is a normal teenager. In the morning she is woken up by her good-humored robot Wall-E. Anie's mother works in robot research, her friends go to school with hoverboards. The school building is made of glass and looks like a giant terrarium, because research has found that students can learn better when enough vitamin D from the sunlight reaches their skin. At school, you learn everything you need to know about artificial intelligence. In Anie's world, pollution has been stopped, a cure for cancer has been found, and initial plans for colonizing Mars have been developed.
Growing up with robots - the 13-year-old Lisa-Marie wins the first prize with her story
Anie is the creation of 13-year-old Lisa-Marie. For her story "Growing up in the Future", which describes the everyday life of an adolescent in the age of robots, she won the first place at the Amazon ABC Club Writing Workshop in Koblenz. Several Amazon locations in Germany offered these workshops together with municipalities and regional cooperation partners during the summer holidays. The works of all participants were then read and evaluated by a jury. On the day of the award ceremony, the young authors from Lisa-Marie's region first got a tour of the Amazon logistics center in Koblenz. Subsequently, the best three young authors received prizes. There were also two special prizes for distinct achievements.
How does the world of tomorrow look like? This was the motto of the workshops under the direction of Gritta Gritzmann
The workshops were led by Gitta Gritzmann. The German studies specialist is the founder of the association "children read and write for children e.V.". Her association promotes the enjoyment of reading and writing and thus the linguistic competence of children and adolescents of all school types and age groups. After a playful introduction to creative writing, the young authors developed ideas and fictional narratives around questions like, "What happens when robots really learn to think and when reality surpasses the Star Trek vision?".
Gitta Gritzmann talks about the winning story in Koblenz: "Lisa-Marie brings bizarre and multi-faceted figures to life in her story: the happy main protagonist Anie, who naturally designs her everyday life with different robots but is the only one who skates to school on a skateboard that she found in an old box of her father. Then the all-thinking and friendly, but bad-cooking robot Wall-E. And the working and busy mother who Anie calls on the phone as a hologram. Lisa-Marie combines humorous moments with thoughtful elements. That's what makes the story".
Which rights do robots have? 17-year-old Leonie dealt with this question
17-year-old Leonie scored the third place in Koblenz with her story "Robot Rights". It tells of a time in the future in which robots are virtually indistinguishable from natural humans. As so-called "technical people" they have their own will, feelings, needs and freedom of action. Shouldn’t they also have robot rights that are similar to human rights?
That's just one of the questions the teenager tackled and worked through in their stories. Jury member Thomas Geisen, youth worker of the local community Ochtendung, who had integrated the writing workshop into his summer holiday program, is enthusiastic about the commitment of the children and adolescents: "The success was already in how many children have participated. We were thrilled, what these young people have achieved in a short time: Funny and exciting stories, but also a thoughtful approach to the subject of Artificial Intelligence".
Amazon and the passion for storytelling
Ralph Konen, the deputy site manager of the Amazon logistics center in Koblenz, presented the trophies to the participants and is pleased to announce: "We do not know what the world of tomorrow will look like. But we know that two skills will continue to be important in the future: reading with reason and writing with creativity. With the Amazon ABC Club we want to kindle the passion for storytelling in children and adolescents. The workshops have shown that creative writing is fun and that it can become a real book".
Without the world of stories and books, Amazon as a company would be different. Because the story of Amazon begins with books and their shipping. Today, Amazon offers the world's largest selection of digital literature as well as e-readers and extensive programs for self-publishing authors. Maybe the names of some young authors of the Amazon ABC club writing workshops will eventually find themselves in the topseller lists. 17-year-old Leonie has already set a specific goal: With her best friend as a co-author, she is currently writing her debut work, a fantasy novel. The first 100 pages are already finished. Once it's done, they want to publish it - preferably as a real book and digital at the same time. A wish that can already be fulfilled in the world of today.