ELMIRA, N.Y. (WETM) – A 21-year-old college senior has published her second children’s book. The book is titled “If Dreams Could Fly” and focuses on encouraging children to chase after their dreams.

Maria Lei Antonio, the author of the book, published her first book back in 2021. The community was extremely supportive of Antonio’s publication and would frequently ask her when her next book would arrive. Maria says the outpouring love she received is one of the main reasons why she decided to write book number two.

“Knowing people were excited for another one made the process a lot easier,” Maria said. “Knowing that people were looking forward to it made me extremely happy.”

Maria is triple majoring in childhood education, special education, and English literature. After graduating from Elmira College this Spring, Maria will begin her masters. Following receiving her master’s degree, Maria has plans of becoming a schoolteacher.

“When I was younger, I had very influential teachers,” she said. “Having them growing up, I always knew I wanted to be a teacher and that’s what I’m pursuing now.”

There will be a book launch on November 13th from 12-2PM at the Watkins Glen Event Center where you can meet Maria and purchase both of her books. She reminds us all that some of the biggest goals you achieve throughout your life start with a dream … all you have to do is try.

“If you never try, you’re never going to succeed,” Maria said. My biggest thing would be taking that first step and see where it takes you.”

You can purchase Maria’s book online and even request a signed publication as well.