Writing is a journey and through the years it’s taken me on quite a ride. A few months ago I was at a crossroads in my life and in my writing as well, and as the old saying goes, I took a road less traveled. It led me straight to the Young Adult genre and I’m loving every minute of it. It’s not that I never thought about it before, because I had – countless times. Why? Because I have eight grandchildren, six of whom are girls.
They all knew Grandma wrote stories but until a few years ago, none of them were old enough to read them. Some still aren’t. They kept begging me to write something they could read. Something that was funny and exciting and something of which their mothers would approve. For all of you who are grandparents, you know how hard it is to tell your grandchildren no.
So, remember I was at this crossroads when a girl’s name popped into my head. Her name was Tara Luna. I could see her as clearly as I see my own face when I look in a mirror. She had issues – boy did she have issues – and she wanted her story told. She was psychic. I know people who are psychic, so that wasn’t all that foreign to me. And she saw ghosts. I live in a haunted house so again, I was on familiar ground. However, unlike Tara, I was raised by two perfectly normal parents, not an old hippy uncle and two ghosts. But Tara Luna was persistent, and before I knew it, I was telling her story.
My Lunatic Life is the first in what I hope is a long series of stories about a remarkable young girl who’s had to learn to survive in a pretty crazy world. It begins with being the new girl in yet another new town and school, and it’s her senior year. She doesn’t fit in, but it doesn’t make her sad. It’s not her problem that people have issues with
that. She’s got her hands full solving crimes and saving lives and making sure Uncle Pat doesn’t mix all their leftovers up into one pot to reheat just so there won’t be so many dishes to wash.
There were so many ways I could have taken Tara’s story, but the way I see it, real life is hard enough without making entertainment all dark and gloomy, too. So Tara’s life is often funny. I mean…one of the ghosts who’s helped raise her hasn’t been able to give up her attachment to bubble baths although she’s been dead for over one hundred years. Because she’s just a blob of pink smoke, she has to satisfy herself with overflowing bathtubs and using up whatever soap will make bubbles.
Tara’s life is also exciting. In the very first book, one of the head cheerleaders goes missing, and it’s Tara Luna’s psychic abilities that eventually save her life.
The second book, LUNATIC DETECTIVE, will follow
soon. Like the first one, it’s non-stop excitement as the reader gets
another peek into a teenage girl’s lunatic life.
I set the stories in Stillwater, Oklahoma, home of Oklahoma State University, as well as the famous burger joint, Eskimo Joe’s. Of course there is a real Stillwater High school, but it’s not the one I created for Tara. Tara has her own Stillwater High, and…oh wow… I almost forgot. She has her very own hunky boyfriend – a bad boy named Flynn O’Mara, who is really a nice guy with a heart of gold. That made Tara happy, which made my granddaughters happy, which made me happy, too.
Check us out. We’re the funky house in the middle of Duck Street.
The one with an angry ghost and the body buried in the back yard.