9-year-old girl's Kickstarter for coding camp is crushing it

Mackenzie Wilson's older brothers said she couldn't raise $829 for a game design camp for kids. They were right. She's raised more $16,000.

Mackenzie says her mean older brothers told her she couldn't make her own game and pay for it, too. Kickstarter/Susan Wilson

Mackenzie Wilson, 9, may just be the youngest Kickstarter rock star to date, and if all goes as planned she'll be a coding superstar one day as well.

Wilson teamed with her mom, Susan Wilson (to respect Kickstarter's official ban on minors owning crowdfunding projects) to launch a campaign to raise $829 to cover the cost of attending a weeklong role-playing design camp for 9- to 12-year-olds.

"I love computers, video games, apps, and role playing games - especially Magic the Gathering and Borderlands 2 that I get to play with my Dad (because my 15 & 16 year old brothers are too mean to play with me)," Mackenzie writes in her pitch.

If the thought if a young girl playing a first-person shooter like Borderlands isn't exactly the slice of contemporary Americana family life you're comfortable with, don't worry, Mackenzie gets it. In fact, she says that's part of the reason she wants to learn to make her own games:

"Right now, I know for sure that my game will be more age appropriate than the games I'm stuck playing. Sadly there just aren't many cool RPGs out there for kids my age that aren't stupid or silly."

You go, girl. And although I'm pretty sure she's dissing the My Little Pony game that extends into my 5-year-old daughter's dreams at night, I can't wait to see what she comes up with. I look forward to being able to load a game for my own child that was designed by one of her near-peers: "Here, honey, look at what another little girl like you did." That's more inspirational and motivating than any TED talk. In fact, the TED folks should book her right away.

Pledge more than $10 to the campaign and you can get a copy of the game Mackenzie comes up with. By the looks of it, it could already be a hit. The project has raised more than $16,000 so far with 28 days to go.

Correction, 4:28 p.m. PT: The story has been altered to indicate that those who pledge $10 or more get a copy of the game.

 

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