Laurisa White Reyes is a children’s book author and editor-in-chief of Middle Shelf magazine. She is also a mother of five, ages six to twenty, and active in her community. We met when her teenaged son was looking for book donations for his Eagle Scout project, and we soon realized we had much in common around reading, writing, and publishing books. I asked her to be a guest on my podcast so that we could get to know her better and to learn more about writing and publishing fiction through traditional publishing houses.
She shared with me that she had wanted to be a writer for as long as she could remember. Laurisa wrote a poem at age five that launched her as a writer, at least in the eyes of her family. After college, she spent thirteen years writing for various magazines and newspapers, working as a book editor, and teaching creative writing. But what Laurisa really wanted to do was write novels. So about six years ago she turned her attention to fiction. She reads to her five children at night before bed. One night her oldest son, the one who just became an Eagle Scout, asked her to make up a story instead. That story eventually became a fantasy entitled The Rock of Ivanore. She spent a year writing it, two years submitting it to publishers, and three years getting it from contract to publication. She says that it’s been a long process, but well worth the wait. Laurisa also has a second book out, The Last Enchanter, and both of these titles are a part of a series she calls The Celestine Chronicles.
We discussed the writing process, especially for those of us with busy schedules. Finding the time to write regularly is her biggest challenge right now. We also talked about the process of going through an agent and a traditional publisher. It’s a very different world from what entrepreneurs are able to do with self-publishing.
I know you will enjoy this interview with children’s book author Laurisa White Reyes. Her books are available on Amazon, if you have an interest in this fascinating genre.