Friday, December 6, 2013

Interview With Three MeeGenius Authors

Please welcome three amazing
 MeeGenius Authors... 
Terri Rowe, Lisa Rose and Romelle Broas!!!
All three authors have their second book published with MeeGenius. First, I asked each author two specific questions about their book with MeeGenius. Then, I asked all three authors the same five questions. 

     TR-With Emily Cat's Tale-I again drew inspiration from a true incident in my life. My niece was about 8 or 9 and she was going to be the flower girl in my wedding. She was already very poised and a great singer/performer/dancer even at that age. Someone said in passing-because she is also very good natured-that no one would ever have to worry about her being a diva-and she had never heard that term before---and wasn't sure if it was a compliment or otherwise. So I built the story around that. My husband and I have rescued cats before-so it seemed natural to have animals tell this story.
JLY-  Will you consider making this book into a play like your last picture book, GREEN GOO? 
TR- I would love to see this storybook come alive as a play-maybe be part of a set of sketches based on other storybooks. 
About Terri: My day/night I have been a factory worker for 20+ years, now I have moved into a logistics role. And this move will allow me a schedule to pursue the dream I have worked at for as long as I can remember, around age 4, to be a writer. I just keep working at it every free moment that I have-whether writing/reading/marketing/sharing.
Terri's blog- 
Terri's Twitter @TerrRowe 
The writing of this essay is what helped me focus myself and change how I related to my work and life:
Facebook page for Green Goo.

Second up...Lisa Rose 

JLY- Lisa, what inspired you to write your first picture book OH NO! THE EASTER BUNNY IS ALLERGIC TO EGGS!?



      LR- I wanted to write a holiday book that was fresh and new.  Something that wasn’t done and redone so many times.  On a long family ride to visit my in-laws in Syracuse, I composed the first draft.  Sometimes good ideas happen in weird places. But also something very unexpected happened with this story.  As I said, my inspiration was “holidays” but I received an even bigger reaction from families with children who have food allergies.  Parents expressed how much they loved how I addressed the issue in such a fun way.  They said that their kids loved that even the Easter Bunny had food allergies. Also, the ironic thing about this story is that I don’t celebrate Easter.  I am Jewish.                                              
       JLY -  How is your second picture book, OH NO! THE TOOTH FAIRY BROKE HER WING! similar and different than your first book with MeeGenius?
LR-This book is similar in pattern.  I consider it a second book in a series.

Third up...Romelle Broas
JLY- Romelle, what inspired you to write TUMMY MONSTER?

RB- It was two years ago when I participated in the Picture Book Marathon with Jean Reagan and Lora Koehler. I was sitting at my desk scribbling in my notebook trying to come up with a story to write when my tummy monster growled. He would not leave me alone. As time passed, I realized that my tummy monster was trying to tell me something. So I wrote about him.
JLY- Was your experience with publishing your second picture book any different than when you published your first picture book through Flying Books? 
RB- In my first book, I was able to work closely with the illustrator, Lydia Ferron, who was assigned to me by Flying Books. I had full creative control of my story. Lydia was great at keeping me in the loop with her progress and always checked in with me, making sure I approved her illustrations as she went along.

With MeeGenius, they have a creative director who manages the entire illustration process. So much of the design was left to them. When my book was done, it was like opening a present. Sam Luu did a wonderful job.

Casey Chameleon (eBook) by Romelle Broas available now at: Flying Books or visit the app store. Coming Soon in 2014:  Running Boy and Tummy Monster published by MeeGenius

Terri, Lisa and Romelle answer the same five questions...
 Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Terri: I find that I start off with wild enthusiasm, but I still need to work on my focus when it comes to seeing projects through to the end. 

Romelle: Ideas come pretty easy for me, but it's the execution of the idea that I find challenging. Writing a story with a complete plot in under 500 words is one thing. Writing a story that is supposed to create a visual experience with very few words, as in a picture book, is another thing. Writing picture books is so much different from writing magazine stories. It's a big learning curve for me.

2. Do you have any advice for other writers?
Terri: My advice-besides never give up-is-you never know what shape/form your dream will acquire along the way. When I started dreaming of being a writer at the age of 4...I could not have envisioned the digital era we live in now. We had just started using computers when I was in junior high. So far, all my books have been digitally published. It has been a great experience for me.
Lisa: If you want to be a writer, you have to be persistent and be prepared for lots of disappointments.  I was a swimmer, before I was writer.  I was used to swimming as fast as I could to cement walls.  It was excellent training.  Writers must always go hard and be prepared to make sudden flip turns. 
Romelle: Try to be an expert in the genre of your choice by participating and reading all things related to it. For me, I tried to enroll in writing classes specifically for picture books. I joined a picture book only critique group, and I read a lot of picture books. Get the picture?

3. Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Terri:. I am still editing my mid-grade chapter-book from last is a mystery-as that style of book is my first love. I am also converting a screenplay I wrote to a novel for young adults. It turns out that the screenplay is like an awesome, detailed outline!
This is from my mystery book: "Leah sleepily wondered what she might do as she chased the last fruity flakes in her bowl of neon pink tinted milk. It was so relaxing to be able to still be sitting in her pajamas at 8:30 in the morning. It was contrast to how the last few weeks of school had been. There had been the class picnic, the field trips, and field day. And of coursed, there was now the wait for the end of the year report cards that would be mailed out soon. Leah was a good student, but she worried anyway. All the time, actually. Today was Leah’s day to clean the bathroom she shared with her messy brother. She would rather clean the chicken coup. Her great hope was that Noah would trade with her. He didn't even like the chickens. Leah loved to gather their warm eggs and place them carefully in the kitchen towel that was folded in the basket. Her girls would come running, clucking their greetings. Thinking of the chickens running always made Leah laugh out loud. "What?" asked Noah as he stuffed the last of his toast in his mouth. "Nothing. I was just thinking," Leah answered, still giggling. "Why? We're not in school. My brain's on break. I don't have to think any more," said Noah. “Haven’t you learned anything in school yet? You think all the time. It’s automatic, like breathing,” said Leah."
Lisa: .     It is a really exciting time to be a writer.  The traditional publishing model is not the only way to produce books anymore.  Currently, I am working with rapper Eminem’s former producer, Jeff Bass.  He has a Grammy and Oscar for the film 8 Mile. Together, along with a fabulous team we are developing a new way to add music to digital books.  It is called BookJAMZ.  Also, I am developing a chapter book series for urban boys.  Fel3000ft who is a well-known graffiti artist in Detroit will be working on the illustrations. Visit Fel3000ft at:   
Romelle: I have another eBook coming out with MeeGenius, hopefully by the end of the year. It's titled, RUNNING BOY. I also have three other picture books that are making its rounds in the agent circuit. And soon, I will be fleshing out my story ideas from Tara Lazar's PiBoIdMo into picture books when Julie Hedlund's 12x12 rolls around again in 2014.

4. If you could know the answer to any question, besides “What is the meaning of life?” what would it be?
Terri:  I would want to know so it is hard to narrow it down...I to have confidence in any new situation. Now that song from The Sound of Music will probably be stuck in my head all day-"I have confidence in sunshine, I have confidence in rain..."
Lisa: I have always been interested in tales about the Loch Ness Monster.  (I like Bigfoot, Mermaids, and Aliens too.)  But I think I would like to know if Nessie exists.
Romelle: Is there life beyond planet earth? You know, an alternate universe. It would be cool to find out how far along they are in technology.

5. What was your favorite food when you were a child?
Terri: At first I didn't like tomatoes-but by the time I was around 9-I loved them-and I still love a tomato sandwich-bread, mayo, tomato-or bread Miracle Whip and tomato!
Lisa: My favorite food as a child is still my favorite food.  Ice Cream!!!  I believe a person can survive a long time on ice cream and diet pepsi.  I love chocolate, but as I grow older I like vanilla more and more.  There is something very comforting in the flavor—like mother’s milk.  It nurtures and loves you.
Romelle: I was a picky eater as a child. But there is one thing that I loved to eat- Mangos! I grew up in Hawaii so mangos were plentiful. I could eat it for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, and dessert! 

Thank you for the interview Terri, Lisa and Romelle!


  1. Thank you for introducing me to our fellow MeeGenius authors and their books, and for your thoughtful questions. I always learn so much from fellow writers!

  2. What a talented group of writers!

  3. It was interesting how the ideas came upon each writer. A lot of fate and luck involved with each story!

  4. I agree, love hearing the inspiration for stories, especially picture books. Always so interesting! :)

  5. Fun interview, Jennifer. Congrats to all three of you!

  6. Thanks for hosting, Jennifer! It was great meeting other MeeGenius writers. I really love Terri Rowe's cover and it looks like Lisa Rose has written that book for my son.

  7. Nice interviews. Always looking for titles to recommend to my family and friends who have little ones.

  8. I really enjoyed learning how each of your stories were invented. Thank you ladies for being on my blog today. Hope you come back in the future for more interviews :)

  9. Fun questions, and great to see what all the authors are working on next.

  10. I am in complete agreement w/Lisa- I want to know about Nessie too! =) Great interview everyone!

  11. What a great post, Jennifer! Thanks for bringing a number of writers together with a few questions. It's nice to see the different perspectives in comparison.

  12. Great interview Jennifer, I learned a lot.
    Romelle - I can't wait to read your new book "Mango for breakfast"


Love to hear what you have to say!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...