Grade 5 student Dominick Leaman is proud of the comic book he created himself called The Adventures of BatDom. It’s inspired by the Dog Man comic series, and he created it for a Scholastic contest.
It took him nearly two weeks to complete, but it all paid off when he was announced the national winner.
Dominick says he was excited to win because he worked hard on his story, which he says is jam packed with action and adventure.
“(There’s) evil cavemen who tried to rule the world and destroy me as a superhero,” said Dominick. But of course that doesn’t happen, and there’s a happy ending.
“The parade, the big parade, but that’s all I’ll tell you,” said Dominick.
Dominick has autism spectrum disorder, and his teacher Stephanie Fawson says she thought the contest would be a good way to motivate him to write.
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While the contest itself only asked for students to turn themselves into Dog Man’s buddy, Dominick took things a step further by creating a whole graphic novel.
“I’m not really surprised,” said Fawson.
“He goes above and beyond when it comes to comics.”
While Dominick’s mother Trish Leaman says, because of his autism, some things can be more challenging for Dominick than other students, like picking up on certain social cues, she says comics have always been an outlet for him, and a chance to foster his creativity.
“He has this incredible memory and he takes everything that he absorbs from the comic books and everything he reads and he incorporates that into his own novels,” said Leaman.
On Friday, before being let out for the holidays, the whole school celebrated Dominick’s success at an assembly.
He was also awarded prizes from the contest including a Dog Man watch, Dog Man novels and a Dog Man plushy, which will no doubt help inspire Dominick to create more adventures for Dog Man and his own superhero alter ego BatDom.