Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Comic-Con 2009: Interview with the Winner Twins

posted by Nell Minow
Comic-Con 2009 124.jpg

One of the highlights of Comic-Con was the time I spent with Brianna and Brittany Winner, 14-year-old identical twins who are cuter than a box of kittens and more fun, too.

When the girls were in fourth grade, they became discouraged because their learning disabilities made reading and writing difficult. They told their parents they thought they were stupid. But their parents knew that the girls were exceptionally intelligent and imaginative. Their father suggested something almost unimaginable — that the girls who found reading and writing such a challenge should write a novel. Once they completed the first chapter, they were excited to see what would happen next and had the confidence to finish the book. They have since finished a sequel, a comic book supplement, and a soundtrack CD. And they say that the best part has been the way it has brought their family closer together and given them an opportunity to speak to more than 45,000 students about overcoming challenges and achieving their dreams.


The books are about a “super-hero with no super-powers,” a brilliant scientist who discovers that accelerated evolution is producing predators who are about to put the entire human race at risk. He uses science to develop tools to help him understand and defeat the creatures. The books ae vivid and exciting, grounded in reality (it opens at the White House), rich in fantasy, but focused on character. The girls say that they want them to be fun to write so that they will be fun to read. They sometimes disagree with each other about what to write, but say that it is only temporary and makes the books better. They bring a creative energy to everything they do, including two books (so far), a comic book, a CD, and even their attire and the strings of pearls in their hair.


The girls are bright, creative, and enthusiastic, but what makes spending time with them so much fun is their endearing curiosity and courtesy. They are fully engaged in everything that goes on around them and deeply committed to helping others through their new non-profit and their work to encourage other kids. As exciting as their book series is, the next installment I am most looking forward to is what they will do next.

To arrange for the twins to make a no-charge visit to your school or other group, contact Ilene at 714.396.7685 or at

  • jestrfyl

    As a dyslexic who has struggled with reading and writing for my entire life, I appreciate what these girls have done. Were it not for MAD magazine and comic books I might have never made it through school. Learning to read and play music helped as well. Once I got the hang of reading I was able to earn a bachelors and masters. I am awed by the sensitivity and support these girls had from their family. For no reason other than their struggle I will go BUY their book (support comes in many forms including financial)
    By the way, a reading disability makes typing in these “Got’cha” security codes on B’net incredibly annoying.

  • Nell Minow

    Thanks, jestrfyl. I also have learning disabilities including ADD and well understand the effort that goes into all the necessary work-arounds and the challenge of self-confidence.
    And I HATE those captchas!

  • susanne

    These girls totally rocked at comic com, and there superhero is awsome with the illuminating blue eyes….

  • Nell Minow

    Thanks, Susanne! I agree!

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