Please join us in welcoming Lisa Ann Sandell as our Author-in-Residence for May-August 2010. During her stay, Lisa will be hanging out at our blog and chats. We are honored to have her among us.
Author's Real Residence: New York, New York
Favorite Hobbies: Reading (obviously), writing (even more obviously), riding my bike, going to plays, traveling, hanging out with my dog and my husband and my friends, taking long walks along the Hudson River, sculpting, and I'm trying to learn how to draw.
Favorite books on writing:
On Writing by Stephen King and Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
Favorite YA books:
It's hard to pick favorites, but here are what I think might be my top three: Looking for Alaska by John Green, Martyn Pig by Kevin Brooks, and Incantation by Alice Hoffman.
Please take the time to grow familiar with Lisa's esteemed body of work. Check out her book covers and summaries below.
Lisa informed us that her first novel, The Weight of the Sky, is loosely autobiographical. This book tells the story of Sarah, an American teenager who travels to Israel on her first trip away from home by herself.
In Israel, Sarah volunteers on a kibbutz, or communal farm, and falls in love with the land - and a boy - and comes to appreciate what really matters to her in life, what she wants to do and who she wants to be. A coming-of-age story about self-discovery.
Published March 2006
Song of the Sparrow tells the story of Elaine, a young woman who, with her father and brothers, lives in a military camp led by Arthur of Britain. The men fight against invaders from many directions, and Elaine does what she can to help the Britains by learning the healing arts to tend to wounded soldiers. There is romance and lots of adventure.
Lisa says, "What I love best about the stories of King Arthur are the themes of friendship, equality, and justice - I think these ideals are what make the human race noble. I also tried to inject this novel with the notion that girls can be as strong as men, even if they aren't doing the same things. We all have a role to play and the role of girls and women is just as important as that of men."
Published May 2007
In A Map of the Known World, Cora Bradley's older brother has died in a car crash. Now she finds solace in drawing maps of and envisioning herself in exotic locales. Then, as she begins high school, Cora begins to spend time with Damian, the handsome, brooding boy who was in the car with Nate the night he died, and she uncovers her brother's secret artistic life, and realizes she had more in common with him than she ever imagined. The themes of this novel cover the redemptive powers of art, friendship, and love.
Published April 2009
Did You Know?
Both Song of the Sparrow and Weight of the Sky are verse novels.
Lisa's short story entitled See Me was published in the anthology 21 Proms.
How do you think Art Saves? In July 2009, we challenged readers to show us their answer to that question creatively. Lisa created a beautiful collage for the project.
Lisa took us on a walk and showed us some of favorite writing spots in New York City.
Lisa then showed us some of her favorite works of art.
Next, Lisa considered representation and the history of art.
Finally, Lisa talks about storytelling - and drawing inspiration from reality - in Glacier National Park, MT.
Listen up! Lisa selected the following tracks to represent music which has touched her life and her books.
Paint it Black by Rolling Stones
Fight Test by The Flaming Lips
This Time Tomorrow by The Kinks
Just Like Heaven by The Cure
Love Story by Taylor Swift
Let My Love Open the Door by Rilo Kiley - their cover of the Pete Townshend song
Fidelity by Regina Spektor
All My Little Words by The Magnetic Fields
Carey by Joni Mitchell
Rocky Raccoon by The Beatles
Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window? by The Hold Steady
Time to Pretend by MGMT
Chinese Translation by M. Ward
If You Could Read My Mind Love by Gordon Lightfoot