Lisa Schmid enjoys conjuring up a good scare for her readers and family. When she’s not startling people (in the most loving way, of course) she takes part in charity work and pug wrangling.
Lisa is from Folsom, California, the home of the 1849 Gold Rush. She lives there with her husband and son.
Now that I’ve introduced you to Lisa let’s get to know her a little better.
Hello, Lisa, and welcome to Angel Kiss Publications. Thank you for agreeing to do this interview.
Thank you for inviting me.
What inspired you to be a writer?
My childhood was a bit chaotic and at times scary. Books provided me with a much-needed escape. I used to imagine that I was Lucy in The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe disappearing into Narnia or Dorothy getting whisked away to the land of OZ.
Because of that, I’ve always wanted to write a story that provides young readers with the same magical escape.
Is writing your full-time profession?
No. Writing is just something I love to do. This is my second act. I tend to write when the mood strikes, unless I’m on a deadline, then, of course, I’m all business.
How long have you been writing?
I started writing Ollie Oxley and The Ghost eight years ago. This is my first book. When I first started writing, I had no idea what I was doing.
After stumbling through a first draft, I attended workshops then joined SCBWI and a critique group. I think of Ollie Oxley as my book of learning.
Have you won any awards?
Not for writing, but many for my charitable work of which I’m quite proud.
How many books have you written?
Two. Ollie Oxley and The Ghost and a chapter book titled Bumble and Beans which is currently out on query.
Which genres do you write?
What do you find most challenging writing for these genres?
I love to write mysteries. Devising clues and ways to organically drop them in the story is challenging, but so fun!
What are you working on now?
Ollie Oxley and the Ghost-The Search for Stolen Loot (working title). I have another book rolling around in my head, but I just don’t think I am ready to write it now.
I keep trying, but I can’t seem to get the words on paper. It requires me to dig deep and unfortunately I am not that brave… yet.
Where do you find inspiration for your characters?
All around me. I base every character in Ollie Oxley on someone I know or a combination of people.
I based Aubrey, the antagonist in my story on a real-life bully (grown-up) who actually spoke with a fake accent. I think she did it because it made her feel exotic and special. In reality, it just made her look silly.
What has been your most rewarding experience since publishing your work?
I love visiting schools. Kids are so authentic. They say and think what’s on their mind. It’s awesome
What advice would you give to authors just starting out?
Join an organization like the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators-SCBWI. I wasted so much time and made so many mistakes that could’ve been avoided had I known an organization like this existed.
Not only is it a fantastic resource, but I have met some of my best friends through SCBWI. Find an organization that fits your writing, and you will find your tribe.
Is there anything else you’d like your readers to know about you?
I am a kidlit fangirl at heart. I get giddy any time I meet an author or illustrator I admire. I love attending the LA SCBWI conference.
You never know who you are going to meet. Last year, I chased down an illustrator whose work I love. I babbled and got a bit weepy when I met her. So embarrassing.
What message are you sharing in your books?
There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel, you have to keep moving forward. And above all, be kind.
What are your favorite books/authors?
I love children’s books. I especially enjoy books with magic like Harry Potter and The Chronicles of Narnia.
I think I am mentally stuck at age nine. My favorite authors are C.S. Lewis, L. Frank Baum, J.K. Rowling, Roald Dahl, and Jonathan Stroud.
Right now I am reading The Hotel Between by Sean Easley-the world building is fabulous!
I think we’re kindred spirits. I love children’s books too. I have a large collection of picture books and children’s novels and I’m always scouring the library shelves for more to read.
What are your favorite movies, TV shows?
I am obsessed with all things British. I love British dramas and mysteries, and of course Dr. Who. As far as movies, I love all the Harry Potter movies.
But right now, topping the list of all-time favorite movies is Mary Poppins Returns. I gasped with delight at the opening of the gas lamp scene.
When you’re not writing where can we find you?
Hanging out with my husband, Erik and son, Ollie. Most days I am shuttling Ollie to and from sports or guitar lessons.
A movie producer wants to turn your book into a movie and you get to make a cameo. What would you do in the movie?
I adore British actress Olivia Colman. I don’t even mind if she keeps the accent when playing me. That would up my cool factor.
An elf named 12-25 approaches you. He’s sneezing, wheezing, coughing and there’s a strange tattoo of a snoring dog on his cheek. What do you do?
Break out a pen and paper and ask his story.
Do you have a website/Facebook page, etc?
Where can we find your books?
Everywhere books are sold.
Thank you, Lisa, for spending time with us and sharing your story. We wish you continued success and lots of luck! Keep us posted on the status of your query for Bumble and Beans and have fun on your continued writing journey.