A Portland-based author recently published two books in a fictional series she hopes will have a real-life impact.
The stories are about encouraging young women to enter science, technology, engineering and math fields.
The series is called “Sarafina loves Science.” It’s a fictional story about an 11-year-old girl who uses her passion for science to overcome real life issues.
The author, Cara Bartek, began writing the series two years ago.
“Really what it’s all about is her [Serafina] figuring out things that 11-year-old girls go through, through science,” Bartek said.
Bartek wrote the books in hopes of getting young girls between 9 to 13 years old, interested in science.
“That’s kind of when girls start losing interest in science,” Bartek said. “That’s when you start getting a lot of pressure from your friends.”
As the author, Bartek uses scientific concepts, humor and real-life inspiration to write her books. She is the co-owner of an agricultural research company in Portland. Bartek says she knows firsthand what it’s like being a woman in the field of science.
“In this type of career, things are different,” Bartek said. “There’s not a lot of people who look like me that are around.”
Bartek was also inspired to write the series after having two daughters of her own.
“And it started to really change my perspective,” Bartek said. “I said, ‘what does this look like for her [my daughter]? What is this going to be like when she enters the workforce?'”
Now Bartek reads her newly-published books to her two daughters, who are both science enthusiasts.
“You can make it fun and you can also learn from it,” her daughter, Caroline Bartek, said.
Meanwhile, Bartek is planning on writing another book for the series.