Interview With Lisa Maria Lanno, Creator Of “The secret Cave”
In the present day, Tyler R. Tichelaar is happy to be joined by Lisa Maria Lanno, who’s right here to discuss her new kids’s guide “The secret Cave,” iUniverse (2006), ISBN 9780595405855. We’re additionally joined immediately by Brianne Plach, our ten-12 months old reviewer of “The secret Cave” who will ask Lisa just a few questions to start.
Lisa Maria Lanno was born in 1954 in Boston, MA, an only little one of first generation Italian-People. She was married in 1976 to her late husband, Frank, and they had three kids, Genevieve, Joe, and Valerie, born in Hawaii, the place the household resided for 5 years. Women’s Custom Paper Cut Snowflake Short Sleeve Tops Tees She has one grandson, Jedai, and she has three large dogs who live with her, together with Joe, Valerie, and two cats.
Lisa is trained in motivational talking and graphology (handwriting analysis). She loves to cook, enjoys her family and has a ardour for animals. She makes homemade, wholesome dog cookies for her dogs, gifts, and for sale. You may buy her canine cookies at [http://www.puppylovecookies.com] where a number of the profit goes to animals in need. Since age sixteen, Lisa knew she needed to be a author. “The secret Cave” is her first revealed e book, however she has extra on the way.
Brianne: Did you have got any enjoyable household vacations that inspired you to write down about two cousins exploring a mystery on their vacation?
Lisa: That’s a good query! Actually, as an “only baby,” my family holidays consisted of my mother, dad, myself and often different family members. As my parents had been of their mid-40’s when I used to be born, all my cousins have been much older, which I feel helped to cultivate my already lively imagination. You suppose up all types of fun issues when you’re the one child round!
Brianne: Did you’ve gotten a cousin shut in age to you while growing up? If so, is that who Joe and Ronnie are primarily based on?
Lisa: No, I actually didn’t have anyone in my family that was shut in age, but I did have a friend who lived one home away. She was the extra “logical” of the 2 of us, but was all the time willing to participate in my “imaginary” adventures. (Perhaps that is ’cause she was a 12 months and a half youthful than I was, and extra simply satisfied!)
I would drag her up the massive hill behind my home and she’d play “archaeologist” or “detective” with me. That is, until I fell down the hill head first, broke a tooth, and hurt my foot! Here’s one that my children nonetheless tease me about: We might go to a retailer with our parents, and off on our own, we would “comply with” people, pretending to be detectives. I had a pen, sure a pen, which I might discuss into, because it was my secret phone. Sometimes when i misplace a phone, my kids will hand me a pen, and say, “Here, use this”!
Lisa: You already know, now that I actually look again, I feel I always did (once i realized the “Princess” thing was probably out of the query). My first alternative was to work with animals, but I am SO delicate to them, that I knew I would take unhappy cases to coronary heart, which might most likely break. That is why I work with them as a passion and/or volunteer, not to mention all of the strays I’ve picked up in all these years!
Lisa: Absolutely! I’ve an concept swimming in my head (and partly on paper), about three teenage girls, who happen to get their cellphone “wires” crossed. Every day at the same time, they’ll “listen in” on a dialog between a man and girl. When the girl decides she’d truly prefer to go on a date with the man, the ladies hear more of his conversations, and understand he may be a killer! They’ve to find out who he is and who she is, before he probably kills this innocent woman. How’s that for starters?
Lisa: Effectively, when the boys find the “mystery notice,” and the “diary,” there is point out of the well-known pirate “Blackbeard.” I did my analysis to seek out out when he was alive and active. That’s how I got here up with the yr 1710.
Brianne: Thanks, Ms. Lanno. I merely liked this e-book and hope you write extra books sooner or later. You are very proficient and may captivate children’ imaginations.
Lisa: Thanks Brianne, as effectively. You might be an incredible younger lady, who can actually “see” what an creator is attempting to say and do. I truly believe you’re going to be an amazing adult as well, and that i hope all of your dreams come true!
Tyler: Thanks, Brianne, for helping us out. I actually appreciate it. Lisa, I understand “The secret Cave” is an thrilling journey story about looking for treasure and that it involves pirates. Will you tell us somewhat bit about the ebook’s plot and setting?
Lisa: The book takes place in the summer, on a scenic lake in New England. Two families take part for a fun-stuffed vacation. Joe and Ronnie, each thirteen, are cousins, their younger sisters, Anna & Emily are eight and ten, whereas their older sisters, Valerie and Genevieve, are fifteen and sixteen.
The boys take their first day of trip fairly seriously, venturing deep into the woods to collect anything they could find fascinating. They have no idea of the journey that lies ahead. While at the top of a tree, attempting to retrieve a birds’ nest, they discover one thing very strange in the distance. They see large, white rocks that appear to be shaped like a skull. Of course, the curious youngsters determine to analyze. This leads to plenty of adventures together with: *A mysterious word, *An outdated cup, *A diary, *Skeletons, *A secret cave, *A pirate named “Spike”, *Potential treasure, and *Lots of danger and pleasure.
The clues, which are written in rhyme, will have you scratching your head, as the boys try to decipher them. You will feel exhilaration every time a mystery is solved and anticipation because the boys attempt to determine the following.
Every day, the boys get nearer to solving each clue, whereas trying to maintain their dad and mom and nosey little sisters out of it. Their older sisters grow to be involved and assist them plot a midnight adventure that can have the hair on the back of your neck standing up!
At one point, Ronnie and Joe run into a really severe hazard. Your heart will race as they struggle to flee a terrible destiny.
The guide ends with some very passable, thriller solving, but just if you suppose it is over, there may be another clue to be found, another secret to be found. It’s going to all be revealed to you within rehabilitation clipart the “Secret Cave Two.”
Lisa: Since childhood, I’ve at all times been fascinated by thriller and adventure. There was a hill behind my house, the place I would play and pretend I was on some adventure or another, even trying to find dinosaur bones in my yard. My poor mom had to deal with me digging in her garden! I additionally lived close to the ocean and would imagine what it was like lots of of years ago, and would make up places where there could be a secret caves that hid treasure, nevertheless it was a visit to Disney World that made the pirate theme stand out. I took my kids on all of the rides and simply fell in love with the “Pirates” experience. As we rode by (over and over), a story started to emerge. I pictured my kids going on an adventure and finding treasure. Maybe I was residing my imaginative fantasies by them. I wrote a draft of the story years ago, but did not do something significantly with it till now.
Tyler: What’s your favorite part of the e-book, or what do you assume is essentially the most thrilling a part of the thriller?
Lisa: I might must say that I have three favourite parts that I consider most thrilling. The first is originally, when Joe and Ronnie literally come across a skeleton hand, the remains of the first pirate in the cave. Although they already knew there was some type of mystery, that is a component that makes you “hold your breath” and surprise what is going to occur next. Is somebody going to pop out and “get them”? Are the boys going to run, or proceed on? Now they know for positive it may be more horrifying than just discovering an old notice or dented cup.
The second part is when there is a cave-in that traps the boys. They assume issues are just high-quality till they realize they have a limited air provide. The more frenzied the boys change into, the sooner your coronary heart will beat as you learn!
The third part is the ending (which, after all, I will not reveal). In the final chapter, even though the thriller is “solved,” you, as the reader, know there’s one thing that is not fairly proper. One thing in your stomach will say to you, “There’s acquired to be something lacking right here.” Whenever you see a brand new mystery unveiled, your pleasure will build, making you need to seek out out what’s going to occur in the subsequent guide.
Tyler: What do you’re feeling units “The key Cave” aside from other children’s books that contain mysteries and journey?
Lisa: I feel the characters are very relatable to kids and the story is quite believable. Readers will really have the ability to image themselves within the mystery. Because the clues are revealed, the reader will discover that he or she will be desirous about what each clue might mean and the way to solve every riddle, in addition to how you can get out of the jams the characters find themselves in.
I am “all about imagination” and creative considering, and this e book will make individuals, young and previous, use their imaginations. One of the best half is, you do not even realize you’re doing it! The questions that the characters ask one another will immediate the reader to right away reply, mentally, and make selections in their own minds as to what “they” would do in the same scenario. If that doesn’t do it, the “Stop & Assume” questions at the end of each chapter will definitely spark your imagination.
Another factor I tried to perform whereas writing this e book was to maintain it impartial. There isn’t any point out of any holidays (for anybody of any religion) and the characters are simply described by hair & eye colour. Though I did have people in thoughts while writing the e-book, I need kids to be able to see themselves. Example: “Joe” is simply described as having very darkish, curly hair, dark brown eyes, and a darker complexion, which is strictly what my Italian son has. Nevertheless, any boy of any race would possibly have the ability to image himself because the character. There goes the “imagination” thing again!
Tyler: Lisa, your descriptions of how kids will be capable to see themselves within the characters reminds me of how youngsters will play out their favorite roles. For example, I remember pretending to be characters from Star Wars as a baby. I have typically thought that imaginative child’s play was an early type of my changing into a author. Apart from digging for dinosaur bones, what sort of an imaginative world did you live in as a child, and how do you suppose that has influenced you as a author?
Lisa: Nicely, one factor immediately brings me proper again to being quite young, possibly six or seven. I might watch Tv at night with my parents and lots of times, fall asleep on the sofa. However, it was Never a sofa to me. Typically, I was flying excessive above the bottom on a magic carpet, or on a raft within the ocean. I would wrap my blankets so that they formed a fin, pretending to be a mermaid, floating on the ocean flooring. Even one thing so simple as a bath towel wasn’t a towel to me. It might need been a protracted, flowing gown, and the towel on my head was lengthy, beautiful hair. After all, I used to be a Princess in Hawaii!
At about age 9 (boy, you certain are jogging the reminiscence banks), I started watching any detective thriller I may discover and by age eleven, there was a short lived Television collection referred to as “Honey West” with Anne Francis as the beautiful detective. That did it, and that i’ve loved mystery and journey ever since.
On a extra academic word, at age 9, I used to be fortunate enough to see the precise “King Tut” exhibit at a Boston museum. It was the most fascinating factor I would ever seen, and I think that’s when i stopped on the lookout for dinosaur bones and started hoping to seek out some sort of ancient treasure. (There goes mom’s garden once more!)
At all times with the ability to make issues up and “see” through my mind’s eye has definitely been an affect in becoming a author, other than the truth that I at all times did like to write, at the same time as a youngster.
Tyler: Lisa, am I appropriate that the kids within the book-I seen they share your kids’s names-have been inspired by your personal children? What was your children’s reaction to their mom changing into an writer and turning them into characters in a e book?
Lisa: The kids within the book are primarily based upon my own youngsters, and “Ronnie” is definitely my sons’ best friend (to this present day). His name can also be “Joe,” so we used his middle name. It’s so much simpler to “picture” your characters if they are real folks, and trust me, the kids actually act like the characters in the e-book. “Anna and Emily” were based mostly upon tales told to me by a friend about two lovely sisters, with very different personalities.
My “kids,” now in their twenties, think it quite amusing to examine themselves as they were over ten years in the past. They chortle on the characteristics of the children, seeing their own personalities as youngsters. There are some differences, however. Valerie is actually “the baby” and Genevieve is the eldest, with Joe caught in the center. Within the guide, Valerie is older than Joe. I have “thumbs up” from all three.
Tyler: Although they usually pretend to make every thing up, writers sometimes do draw on actual-life experiences they have had, and it seems like you’ve got carried out the same. What challenges or difficulties did you discover in taking people you knew and recasting them into fictional characters? For instance, what made you make the adjustments in the youngsters’s ages or sibling order?
Lisa: Taking my actual children and casting them into roles wasn’t too troublesome, as a result of I kept their personalities (flaws included) as they really are. The younger women I did must “make up” a bit extra, as I don’t know them personally. I received some fundamentals and built on how I believe they’d work together. As for the ages: I thought that 13 could be good ages for a believable journey. The boys aren’t too young, yet not too previous. I needed youthful sisters in order that younger readers may relate, and there had to be the annoying older sisters to antagonize the boys. I changed the ages of my women as a result of I might already decided on the boys’ ages and did not need to forged Valerie because the younger sister. I liked her better as a bit older.
As for “real life” experiences, I Want I might have performed the issues the youngsters in The secret Cave did!
Tyler: Lisa, I understand “The key Cave” isn’t just a straight story, but has instructional supplements included. Will you inform us slightly bit about those?
Lisa: In fact! I feel it has plenty of instructional value. I put in the “Stop and Think” part at the end of every chapter to ignite the imagination of the reader. The questions are usually not the standard “what happened on page 2” questions, rather, questions that can make you think. “What would YOU do in this situation?” “What would you have got happen if you wrote the guide?” “Do you assume there may be danger forward? Should they check things out?” “Why do YOU assume this or that occurred?”
I am not asking the reader to predict what I wrote, but to think about how they’d tell it in the event that they had been writing the e book. My imagination instructed me what to put in writing and it’s fun to find out what your imagination will tell you to write down.
I’ve additionally added a “Vocabulary Section” at the tip of the ebook. Vocabulary words are in bold, italics all through the e-book, helping youngsters to be taught and admire new phrases. The younger readers may simply learn the which means. A mid-degree reader might learn the meaning and spelling, while the higher-stage reader would possibly learn the that means, spelling, and be ready to put the phrase right into a sentence. I really feel it is a great learning device for teachers and mother and father, as effectively as the kids themselves.
Tyler: Why did you determine to include the tutorial supplements? You talked about they are not the “typical” questions, however ones that make you think. Did you’re feeling a number of the studying materials utilized by colleges was deficient?
Lisa: Although I am not as “in tune” with the varsity system as I used to be when my kids have been young, I decided to put the academic supplements in for varied reasons. My essential focus is on the youngsters and serving to them to “see” in their minds eye, as I did.
I also wished the guide to be appealing to dad and mom and teachers, in addition to the students. Everyone wins this manner! The children get a mystery to read and assist solve, and the questions are really just prompts to help them to be taught to just do that. Similar with the Vocabulary Part; youngsters can look up phrases on their very own, or a parent/trainer might want to use them as nicely.
As for reading supplies being deficient, I actually couldn’t say, but believe that issues in the faculties are positive. What I do know is that there is lots of testing performed as of late (MCAS, I believe) and many teachers say that there’s much less room for artistic writing. his means, they’ll get a little of included in their reading.
Tyler: I understand you truly work with faculties and studying packages. Would you inform us a bit about your work?
Lisa: Actually! I’m presently working with libraries, schools and bookstores, with Creator Readings, Motivational Talks, and inventive Writer’s Workshops. I’ve my own little “twist” on the normal “writer studying.” I am going to usually learn the first chapter of “The secret Cave,” and ask one of many “Cease and Assume” questions to the audience. (Trace: it’s about several, huge, white rocks in the distance that are formed like a skull). They get to inform me what they suppose the white rocks may very well be. The responses are amazing! There’s every part from “monsters,” to “Indian burial grounds,” to “doorways to different dimensions,” to “ghosts and goblins,” or “dinosaur bones.” Everyone has something different to contribute.
Now that they’re enthused and having fun, sharing ideas, we’ll speak a bit about motivation and the way to use what they’ve simply realized to day-after-day life. Some youngsters don’t discover it as easy to jot down as others, but now they know the way simple it is to imagine, which is all that is needed to start the method! I’ll work this into a motivational discuss life normally. Then, they’ll ask any questions they’d like.
The Inventive Writer’s Workshops that observe are additionally very interactive with what I call “brain exercises.” Instance: Kids (and grown ups) are requested to image themselves underneath a table, with a black sheet over it. I ask them questions like: “Where are you?” “Are you inside or outside?” “Who’re you?” “What noises do you hear?” From there, we find out how to add and construct to our story, and find out how to conclude. There’s quite a lot of viewers participation and youngsters “feed” off of one another’s concepts, creating a very energetic ambiance. I also have “exercises” for youthful youngsters involving drawing, reasonably than writing. As of September 2007, I’ll be teaching an eight-week course to youngsters ages 6-12. By the top, they’ll all have their own stories accomplished!
Tyler: Lisa, you’ve got talked about imagination several occasions. A whole lot of dad and mom suppose what’s important is math and science, and when college budgets are reduce, it’s usually the arts, which allow kids to precise themselves, which can be the first to go. Why do you suppose having sturdy imaginations are so important for children and for his or her progress into adults?
Lisa: Nicely, I believe math and science are crucial, and needed, however why take the things away that make us who we are? All of us have to study to learn and write, be taught math, etc, but our imaginations are “our personal.” They make us particular person and distinctive, something that can’t be taught in a math class. For instance, there could also be a baby who loves science, however with imagination added, he/she may turn into an awesome inventor. With imagination, there is actually no limit.
Sometimes as adults, life gets troublesome. I’ve heard many individuals say that when they’re stressed, they just “image” themselves on a stupendous seaside someplace, with the gentle wind blowing on them, whereas they soak up the rays of the solar. Our imaginations will be of a healing nature as we mature and “take us away” at occasions. Now possibly some of those people will take it a step further and paint a lovely image, write a poem and even find that pretty seaside to photograph. It all results in optimistic things.
Lisa: As I discussed, we are all distinctive, we all have our personal particular skills, and I was blessed with a vivid imagination (though don’t ask me for instructions or to stability a verify e book). I struggled in class with math and science, but any English and/or writing undertaking was not troublesome, with artistic writing being very simple. Figuring out I had this one good capability bought me by feeling somewhat “dumb” when it got here to other subjects. I focused my targets on what I used to be finest at, and all of it concerned imagination (cooking, art initiatives, writing, painting, and newly added, net design).
What I did not notice was how it will help give confidence in life as a whole! I may need to work more durable at math than other folks, but I do know I can do it if I attempt.
One other means it’s helped is with my very own youngsters. For example, after they had been very little, (1, three & 5), I had to think of inventive methods to entertain all of them collectively. I might lower totally different shapes out of building paper and have the kids glue them to make faces. Whereas one baby learned phrases, one would learn colors, and the opposite learned shapes. So, imagination helped us all (and kept three little ones all at one desk!)
Lisa: I find it most rewarding to be in a position to achieve kids as an creator, an educator and as a motivational speaker. I truly really feel that if the children have vanity, they will not want all of the “dangerous” things the world has to supply.
I fully get pleasure from my talks and workshops, irrespective of how many or how few are in attendance. In a recent workshop, a mom with two very inventive daughters said she was very “mathematical” and had “no inventive abilities.” After the workshop, even she realized she could discover her creativity and assist understand her women higher. Now, that is rewarding!
Tyler: Lisa, did you all the time wish to be a author? What influenced you in selecting to change into an writer?
Lisa: I have all the time been inventive and as I received older, I found that putting issues into words was the easiest and most natural manner for me to create. For instance, I can paint, but it takes numerous effort. Writing comes naturally to me and that i completely adore it. Everybody has some pure talent; they just need to seek out it. I’ve had serious ideas of changing into an writer for about 15 years, however I guess now was the precise time to do it.
As for becoming a “real” creator, I was at a turning level in my life. My husband handed away all of the sudden, and of course, that introduced some difficulties. I had a choice: get a job that I would probably be unhappy with, OR go for my goal. I decided to “follow what I preach” and go for it. It’s taken loads of work, however in case you believe in your self, you can do it! If you happen to may be pleased with the work you do, then day by day becomes a marvel, rather than a activity.
Tyler: I understand “The key Cave” has a forthcoming sequel. Will you tell us a bit bit about what we are able to count on from the sequel?
Lisa: It will likely be the same forged of characters, this time, with extra involvement from the sisters, now that they’re conscious of what is happening. Although the primary book has an actual ending, I threw in a cliff-hanger for everybody to consider. The kids will return to their trip spot, this time as “celebrities,” however they’ll secretly be making an attempt to unravel an enormous mystery with out letting anybody else in on it.
This one will probably be slightly extra “creepy,” with loads of secrets and techniques and adventure, chills and thrills, and dangerous escapades. The pirates will “go to” the youngsters, (I won’t tell you simply how), however are they really visiting the children, are the kids dreaming, imagining, or are there ghosts? Once again, the “Stop and Think” questions will make you wonder.
The ending will shock you, as it isn’t what you’ll utterly expect. I am not one hundred% positive yet, but I might add a personality or two. See, I’ve this habit of first writing the beginning, then the ending, after which filling in the center!
Tyler: Lisa, before we go, would you tell our readers a bit bit about your webpage? I checked it out myself and saw that it comprises several points of interest to your younger readers.
Lisa: Oh yes, the website [removed – not live] I’m very happy with it as a result of I designed it myself and do all the web site work. My new motto is “you possibly can train an outdated dog new tricks!” (Remember, I’m over 50 and realized net design without any instruction).
I’ve two “children’ pages” to this point, with animated clipart that pertains to the e-book, with questions and quotes from the ebook as nicely. There is a web page for jokes and facts that I update every month, keeping youngsters aware of historical occasions of the month, as well as family pleasant jokes (for teenagers, by children), all with corresponding clipart. More kids’ pages are within the planning levels.
There is a calendar listing of occasions, photos of events, and my family, press and reviews, tips for teachers, dad and mom, and a “inspire” section. I’ve made it quite private with household photographs, because I would like kids to see that I’m a “real, normal” particular person with an everyday life.
Tyler: I would say you are regular, yet extraordinary, Lisa. Thank you for joining me right now. Earlier than we go, do you will have any last words you want to say to your younger readers?
Lisa: First, I would like to say to Brianne: “Thanks” for seeing the value in “The secret Cave.” I’m so glad that you simply loved it. You are a very smart young lady!
“Regardless of the thoughts can believe, it could actually achieve.”
As for “The key Cave,” please get out of it what is best for YOU. Perhaps it can inspire you to put in writing, or simply take you away on an journey. Perhaps you will develop into a treasure hunter! Please take pleasure in, and completely satisfied reading!