Sunday, July 31, 2011

Interview With Author Lisa Eichlin of The Bravest Boy I Ever Knew

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I am a mom of two kids, my son Jesse is 11 and my daughter Sadie is 7. We live in NJ and I have been a teacher’s assistant for 3 going on 4 years. Before that I was the director of a preschool and taught 4yr. olds for 13 years. I am married to my high school sweetheart, we are celebrating our 16th wedding anniversary in August.

Why do you write children's books?

I write children's books because after looking for books to read when I was teaching preschool I realized there weren't too many good ones out there that really taught important messages.

What inspired you to write The Bravest Boy I Ever Knew?

I wrote "The Bravest Boy I Ever Knew", about a cousin of mine who lived with a disease called Familial Dysautonomia. This disease affected so many parts of his body, but didn't affect his outlook on the world or how he lived. My cousin Michael was not supposed to live to be a teenager. He lived to be 43 years old. My sister and I thought Michael was the "bravest" and most special person we had ever known. We loved spending time with him when our families got together. We would even argue over who was going to push him in his wheel chair. The thing that bothered us the most was when people would look and stare at Michael. We didn't see him the way others did. He was just Michael to us.

What else do you love to do, other than write books?     

Besides writing books, I love to spend time with my kids, baking with my daughter, watching my son play baseball, and exercising.

What’s a typical day for you?

 A typical day for me is- getting up, showering, breakfast for the kids and myself, off to school for the three of us, homework for the kids, start dinner, showers for the kids and getting ready for the next day(make lunches, etc.), do laundry, and then finally check emails and other things for the book.

What would be a perfect day for you? 

 My perfect day would be for my kids to not fight, and for my husband to do the house work for the day!

What do you hope your story will impart to children? 

I hope anyone who reads my book realizes that just because someone is disabled doesn't mean they don't have the same likes, dislikes, talents, and interests as others. Being disabled is not negative, that with love and encouragement disabled people can do so much.  

Describe yourself in five words.

Five words to describe myself are- happy, caring, friendly, funny, and loving.

Do you have a new book you are working on? If so give us a sneak peek.

I do have a new book finished. No title yet(still working on that). It's about a girl named Sophie who likes to wear her shoes on the wrong feet. After her teacher points out  things that could happen, Sophie has some pretty crazy dreams. 

What were some of your favorite books as a child?

Arnold Lobel was one of my favorite authors as a kid( and still is). He wrote Mouse Soup, Mouse Tales, and others. My other favorite stories were from Hans Christian Anderson.

Do you have any advice for others interested in writing books for children?

My advice for other children's writers is, believe in what you are writing about and love it. Have a good time writing and don't let too many people influence your decision on what to write about.

What did you do when you held the first copy of the book in your hands?

The first time I held my book, I just sat there and looked at the cover. It took awhile to actually open it.

Do you have a website or fan page?

My fan page on Facebook is Facebook Fan Page

Where can we buy your books?

Part of the proceeds from the book goes to The Familial Dysautonomia Foundation in memory of my cousin Michael.  
You can find my book on Amazon

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