Eighth Grader from Lehighton Is Worldwide Writing Sensation

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LEHIGHTON, Pa. -- A middle school student in Carbon County has a passion for writing that's landed him an opportunity of a lifetime.

His writing talents will be on display for millions of students nationwide thanks to a popular publishing company.

Eighth-grader Aiden Zelrick of Lehighton has a smile and personality that is known to light up classrooms at Lehighton Area Middle School, but it's his writing talents that have earned him worldwide recognition.

"I think I'm just extremely lucky," Zelrick said.

The 13 year old is one of 45 young journalists from across the globe to be named a "Kid Reporter" for Scholastic's award-winning News Kids Press Corps.

"My teachers and my mom have constantly told me that my writing is extremely good, and I wanted to get more experience and put it out there that I can write."

The "Kid Reporters" are in charge of covering a variety of stories in their respective communities. Those articles then appear on the Scholastic website, reaching more than 25 million students.

Eventually, Aiden wants to be a published author. He's already started on his first novel.

"It's a fantasy adventure book, like 'The Hobbit' or 'Lord of the Rings' or 'Eragon.' I always wanted to write a book since fifth grade. I just didn't have the proper experience."

And for some of Aiden's teachers who have known him for a long time, this honor doesn't come as much of a surprise. He's demonstrated creativity and a vision in the classroom.

"He's full of life. He's a ball of fire. The kids like him. He speaks well and has fun doing everything he does," said eighth grade English teacher Cynthia Smith.

When asked if he wanted to take my job, Aiden said he's more interested in becoming an author.

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