Kerem Topsakal published his fictitious short novel, Monster Apocalypse.

Over the summer, Fishhawk Creek Elementary fifth-grader Kerem Topsakal only wanted to play video games, but his parents had other plans for his summer vacation: they wanted him and his brother to practice telling stories to build their imagination and creativity. After a summer of storytelling and lots of editing, young author Topsakal finalized his novel, Monster Apocalypse.

“[My father, Oguzhan,] invented this activity to see if we could tell stories spontaneously, and he thought it would boost our imagination. I do not want to admit [it,] but I enjoyed some parts of it,” said Topsakal in the “About the Author” section.

Topsakal expands on the origins of the activity within the section, noting that this was not his father’s first time trying to get his son to “utilize [his] time wisely.” Oguzhan has encouraged his son to take a break from his video games and attempted to pique Topsakal’s interest in other activities, such as novel writing.

Oguzhan encouraged him to continue inventing his story and recorded it on his iPhone 10 minutes at a time as he added to the story throughout the summer. Oguzhan used a transcription software to convert the audio recording of Topsakal’s story to text.

“Even though he did that, he required me to edit it. Editing a story is one of the toughest jobs you can imagine,” wrote Topsakal.

After all the hard work Topsakal had put into writing and revising Monster Apocalypse, his parents decided to publish it. Oguzhan hired an illustrator to create pictures to complement Topsakal’s story about the main character, Liam, and his battle against the king of the monsters.

Topsakal said the plot was inspired by similar books he has read, such as Wings of Fire, Warriors and The Last Kids on Earth, and that Liam is his favorite because of his bravery and courage.

“I don’t know if I am going to pursue a writing career, I am just a kid,” said Topsakal. “If people read this book and appreciate it, I can write another one.”

Topsakal’s book, Monster Apocalypse, is available on Amazon and Kindle at

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Lily Belcher is a writer for the Osprey Observer. She started as an intern in the summer of 2020 and has continued to write for the Osprey Observer since completing her internship. Lily is majoring in mass communications at the University of South Florida and is a staff writer for the university’s paper, The Oracle. She enjoys writing about local nonprofit organizations and community role models who have made an impact on her hometown.