The 11-year-old recently completed his first book, a 270-page fantasy adventure, titled "The Battles of Liolia: The Last of Kal," which was self-published in February and is available for purchase online at Amazon.com. On Thursday evening, Will signed copies of his paperback book at his school's book fair.
It's the first in a series of five books that Will plans to write and illustrate about the adventures in the fictitious land of Liolia. In "The Last of Kal," readers meet Speilton Lone, the main character whose village is destroyed. With nothing more than a blue egg and instructions to travel north, he is led on an adventure filled with challenges, new friends and personal growth.
The second book in the series, "The Inferno of Erif," is set to be published in the fall.
An avid reader since the second grade, Will said he drew inspiration from other fantasy adventure book series such as "The Chronicles of Narnia," "Harry Potter," and "Percy Jackson & the Olympians."
"I read Narnia and really liked the concept of this other world," Will said. "So I created a map. After that, I created a story that went along with the map about everything. Finally, I decided to start writing about the world."
For two hours each day over the summer, Will worked on the book, not only writing but also drawing several illustrations for it. He completed the manuscript with the help of his family and school librarians, he said.
"I was just amazed that a (then-)10-year-old kid could carry on this character through all these adventures," said Janice Kelley, Shallowford Falls media specialist. "It was so focused and well-organized."
What's perhaps more impressive about Will, besides his writing talent, is his decision to donate all of the proceeds from his book to Relay for Life, in recognition of his friend's little brother who is battling Leukemia.
Though they sometimes had to drag him away from writing in order to work on his homework or eat dinner, Brett and Liz Mathison said they're proud of the eldest of their three sons, which includes Charlie, 9, and Jack, 8.
"We're glad that he stuck with it and that he's excited about continuing the series," Liz said. "When he was little, he would color pictures of Batman in 20 different pages and would always want to staple it together. He always wanted to make a book."
Will said he hopes readers will become engaged with the characters and stories he plans to continue creating. He's already 100 pages into the second book.
But with middle school on the horizon, as well as football, tennis, soccer and other activities he enjoys participating in, Will doesn't expect to complete the entire, five-book series anytime soon.
"I might kind of slow down the process," he said.