Meet the Eight-Year-Old Boy Who Took a Cheeky Shortcut to His Dream!

Dillon Helbig shared his comic book with the world via his hometown library.

Feb 10, 2022
Meet the Eight-Year-Old Boy Who Took a Cheeky Shortcut to His Dream! | Dillon Helbig shared his comic book with the world via his hometown library.

Do the means justify the end? Is it okay to bend the rules a little for a longed-for result? Aspiring author, eight-year-old Dillon Helbig, thought so. Instead of checking out a book at his local library, this determined second grader snuck the sole copy of his own illustrated book onto a shelf in his hometown library to check it in! And believe it or not, this little guy got rewarded for his efforts in a way he’d only dreamed about!

Dillon seized the moment!
It is well known that aspiring authors need tenacity as well as talent, right? Brimming with confidence that his new self-made, 81-page illustrated book created in a journal gifted to him by his grandmother would be a hit with his peers, Dillon seized his chance to let everyone read it. 

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A post shared by Dillon Helbig (@dillonhisself)

On a recent visit with his grandma to his local library in Boise, Idaho, Dillon quietly hid his book on a nearby bookshelf. He did this via a hearty dose of cunning! As ABC Australia shares, hiding the book close to his body, this intrepid boy ran into the children's library and placed it among other fiction titles.

“I had to sneak past the librarians,” said Dillon,  who says “li-berry” instead of “library,” shares the New York Times. " I always be sneaky, like how I get chocolate," he told Idaho TV channel KTVB.

But that wasn’t all. To help make his book look right at home among the others on the shelves,  Dillon put stickers on its spine.

All about Dillon’s self-published book
That said, Dillon’s book is no ordinary novel. Called The Adventures of Dillon Helbig’s Crismis, and signed by "Dillon His Self”, it was created in only two days over the winter break, and is packed with his own drawings made using colored pencils.

His creative, handwritten tale is a real adventure fest! It starts with Dillon decorating a Christmas tree which explodes, sending him on time travels to the first ever Thanksgiving and the North Pole.

What happened next?
Did the librarians hit the roof? On the contrary, these librarians found his stealthily-stashed book and reacted in an outside the box way! 

On the night that he surreptitiously left his book on the library shelf, Dillon confessed what he had done to his parents. When they all returned to the library a couple of days later, the book was missing. His mother then called the library, expecting to collect it from the lost and found, but the librarians had other ideas. 

They were so charmed by the book that they cataloged it with an official barcode, but leaving the publisher category blank. They then reshelved it alongside graphic novels due to its many drawings. 

“It deserves a spot on our library shelves,” said library manager Alex Hartman to the New York Times. "Every page is illustrated and yeah, it's a good story," he told KTVB. He even read it to his six-year-old son who told him it was one of the funniest books ever.

Having made the book available to check out, dozens of people are now on a waiting list to read it. “We’re just hoping that children find inspiration to write their own stories and share those with other people,” Hartman told the Washington Post

Dillon is now planning to collaborate with local writer, Cristianne Lane, to create a children’s writing workshop at the branch.

The library has since given Dillon its first-ever “Whoodini Award” for best young novelist, an award they created just for him. 

Dillon, who has wanted to have a book in the library since the age of five, is planning a sequel. The library also intends to print extra copies of the book as well as a digital copy, and has even been contacted by publishers about officially publishing the novel.

“It was naughty-ish,” Dillon admitted of secretly depositing the book without permission. But the result, he added, as reported by theworldnews, is “pretty cool.”

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Daphne has a background in editing, writing and global trends. She is inspired by trends seeing more people care about sharing and protecting resources, enjoying experiences over products and celebrating their unique selves. Making the world a better place has been a constant motivation in her work.