TAEM- The Arts and Entertainment Magazine always seeks new writers to display to our readership. In this way they can sample new venues and explore the many talents that are available to them.
One new writer who has made their way onto our list is Lisa Llamrei who hails from Toronto, Canada. Lisa, tell us about your home town and your urban lifestyle.
LL- I was born in Toronto, but except for a brief period while I was in university, I haven’t lived in the city itself since 1980. But I’ve always been nearby. Right now, I live about an hour’s drive away, in a town that has only a few hundred residents. It’s the best of both worlds. We can enjoy all of Toronto’s cultural experiences. My children have spent a lot of time at the Science Centre and the Metro Zoo, we sometimes spend a weekend watching the Blue Jays, and I LOVE the Royal Ontario Museum. I’ve been able to take the kids to world class performances of the National Ballet, and the theater district. At home, we enjoy open space, a small community, and a more relaxed pace.
TAEM- We learned that you had studied language and undertook acting early on. How have those areas of interests influenced your writing ?
LL- Acting taught me a lot about character development, and how to convey what a character is thinking or feeling through the use of gesture and expression. That is very helpful when I need to let the reader know what a character other than the point-of-view character is thinking. I also learned a lot about moving characters through three-dimensional space. When I’m writing a scene, I still picture it as a stage, and I’m choreographing the movement. Studying other languages has made me more aware of the nuances of English, which brings greater clarity to my writing.
TAEM- Lisa, we have many young writers and students of the arts who follow our publication in order to further their own careers. Please tell us about your education and the steps that you had taken to prepare for your writing career.
LL- My main teachers are other writers. Whenever I read, I make mental notes about what works and what doesn’t. I’ve bolstered this by taking workshops and learning what makes good writing good, and what can bog down a story. I always apply that knowledge when I read, and when I’m writing and editing my own work.
LL- Marion Zimmer Bradley and James Clavell are probably my biggest influences. My favorite genres are urban fantasy and historical fiction.
TAEM- You have just completed writing your first novel, ‘Reflection of the Gods’. What is the theme behind this book and what genre is it written in ?
LL- The overarching theme is the search for belonging, and it is urban fantasy.
TAEM- Who are the main protagonists in the story and what is their relationship with one another ?
LL- Aislinn and Das are the main protagonists. Aislinn is a half-Sidhe immortal who is running from a Sidhe civil war and those who wish to punish her. Das is a regular guy who’s just been through a nasty divorce. In the beginning, Aislinn is using Das to conceal herself from her enemies. Das is protective of her, but is always a little discomfited because she is quite odd, and he can’t quite put his finger on why.
TAEM- Does the story have any connections to real life events, and if so please tell us about them.
LL- There are no connections to events in my own life, at least not on purpose. However, Aislinn’s backstory moves through several historical events. Most notably, she lives out a human lifespan as Alice Kyteler, better known as the Witch of Kilkenny. Alice, along with her maid Petronilla, were the first people ever sentenced to burn as witches. Alice didn’t – she escaped from prison, and no one knows for sure how she did it. Petronilla was not so lucky.
TAEM- How did you publish this work ?
LL- I self-published.
TAEM- Please tell our readers about the recognition that your book has received.
LL- In 2013, Reflections of the Gods was chosen as a finalist in the Indie Excellence Awards, and also won bronze in the Independent Book Publisher Awards. And just last week I received notice that it was chosen as a finalist in the International Book Awards.
TAEM- Where can our readers find your novel and can you provide any links for it ?
LL- The print version can be purchased through my website at: http://www.alcherapress.com/product/reflection-of-the-gods/
It’s also available for Kindle here:
And for Kobo here:
TAEM- Lisa, you have entered an exciting field that will certainly hold much promise for you. We want to wish you the best of luck and hope that you will keep us in the loop for any new novels that you produce in the future.
LL- Thank you. I will.