Cadence Klemp has always enjoyed writing.
So it was natural when her German teacher at Hope Lutheran High School, Larry Finke, tasked his students late last year with developing their own project that Klemp got creative with pencil and paper.
The end result, though, surprised even her.
Klemp, 17, has self-published a 14-page children's book that she wrote and illustrated for the assignment, the Winona Daily News reported (http://bit.ly/10tuY2m ).
"I always liked writing, but I never thought I'd write a book in German," she said.
"Schweinlein Geht Einkaufen," which translates into "Piglet Goes Shopping," tells the story, predictably, of a young pig that goes to the grocery store with its mother.
Klemp said she'd been attracted to the word schweinlein — it's fun to say — and knew that she wanted to include food in some way.
The rest of the idea just fell into place.
Klemp spent a week over her winter break writing and drawing. Formatting the book on lulu.com, the website she used to publish the work, took a bit longer.
Several weeks later Klemp had the finished product in hand, the fictional world she'd created bursting from the colorful pages of the paperback.
"I couldn't believe it turned out this well," she said recently at her school.
Klemp doesn't plan to stop there. Her writing is far from finished.
The junior wants to translate the story into an English version, and Klemp has a new endeavor in the works — writing a novel.
That book, absent German-speaking swine, is about a girl who is switched at birth and later finds out she is a princess. The idea is loosely based on an existing fairytale, Klemp said.
"It's kind of about Sleeping Beauty," she said, "but obviously way cooler."