Taylor is a high school senior attending school in Huntington, NY. She wrote and published a children’s book called No Wheat, Barley, Rye, or Oats to raise money for celiac disease.
In August 2008, Taylor was diagnosed with celiac disease, a disorder that degenerates the lining of the intestine in response to the absorption of gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. Her diagnosis meant that she had to transition to a 100% gluten-free diet. It was difficult for Taylor to adapt socially to her disease, as class parties and birthdays were reminders of how different she was from my peers.
At age ten, Taylor wrote a children’s book to encourage kids to embrace celiac disease in an educational and entertaining way. No Wheat, Barley, Rye or Oats depicts, through a Revolutionary War analogy, a fictional “gluten-free” town fighting gluten-eating colonists for their “gluten freedom.” There are characters like “Buckwheat Franklin,” “Tofu Jefferson,” and the inevitable King Gluten. Taxes are passed on gluten-free bread, tea, and even gluten-free stamps. The story explores the townspeople’s quest for independence and individuality.
Taylor’s book has been endorsed by leading experts on celiac disease, including Peter H. R. Green, M.D., Director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University Medical Center (who also wrote the foreword), Amy R. DeFelice, M.D. and Suzanne Simpson, R.D. In addition to helping families adjust to life with celiac disease, her hope is that her book inspires other children to turn negative situations into positive outlets for change, and, perhaps, even discover their own passions for writing.
To promote the sale of her book, Taylor has participated as a vendor at expos and trade fairs; read the book at support group meetings, bookstores, and libraries; and sold the book through storefront and online outlets. She is donating the proceeds from the sale of her book to the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University Medical Center, where she was diagnosed. To date, Taylor has raised over $1000 for the Center’s groundbreaking research on celiac disease. To learn more about Taylor’s book, please visit her website at taylorfoxbooks.com.