Published author has ties to Greenville

Fannie Lewis Barnes may be a Talladega native, but her roots run deep in Greenville. She is the daughter of Cecil Lewis and Vicie Pressley Lewis. The Majority of the Barnes family are from the Pine Level and Ridge areas and include family names Lewis, Pressley, and Loveless. Many of Barnes’ relatives reside in Greenville, including Carolyn Crenshaw, a Butler County School Board member for District two.


Barnes attended Talladega College where she obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Rehabilitation for the Deaf. She received a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Jacksonville State University and a Certification in Visual Impairment from the University of Alabama.


Barnes’ upbringing led her to a life of service to others.

“My parents always taught us to help those people who really need help,” Barnes said. “My mother worked at the Alabama Institute as well. We would see the children when we would pick her up from work and they just touched my heart.”


Barnes retired with approximately 32 years in education from working at the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind and the Talladega City School system.


With her retirement in full swing, Barnes picked up a pen and fell back in love with writing.


“It began in elementary school,” Barnes said. “The teacher asked the class to write a poem. The top ones would be read at the PTA meeting. My poem “What is a teacher” was chosen. It was fifth grade, I believe.”


Barnes said she would write poems and stories and stick them in her books from that day forward.

According to the author, Barnes started her published career with two poetry books, “More P’s Please,” volumes 1 and 2, which are a collection of poems, power and praise.  


“I Must Read” was Barnes’ first reading book. The book is aligned with some Common Core standards. It consists of capital and lowercase letters with pictures, focusing on main vowels, sentences, and other approaches to promote a fun learning experience.


“Reading As I Learn” (R.A.I.L.). “Ray and Mae” and “Let’s Stick Together” are a few of Barnes’ other published books.


I want to give thanks to God, my late grandparents, and my close-knit family for the gift, guidance, love and support. These attributes keep me writing day after day and book after book,” Barnes said.


Barnes said she will continue to write simple, reader-friendly books geared toward special needs and the general elementary education population.

“My books are for anyone of any age who desires to learn. My motto is ‘There is a need, learn to read!’,” Barnes said.

The books mentioned as well as future books by Barnes can be purchased on If you would like to contact Barnes, please email or find her on Facebook: Fannie Lewis Barnes.

Fannie Barnes Books