“Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”
― A.A. Milne
For the first time, Muse In The Valley’s Author Of The Week is a children’s book author. I am very excited to introduce to you Lawrence H. Sola (Larry), author and illustrator of his soon to be released book: Jeremy’s Adventures: Miracle on Main Street a story about Jeremy, his friend Amanda, elves, and a magical Toy Soldier in an inspirational, adventure to never give up on your dreams.
Larry speaks to us about what inspired him to write a story 35 years in the making. It actually made its way through the U.S. Postal service to his mailbox (see below for deets). I am so inspired by this interview, and I am sure you will be too. As I read Larry’s answers, I could see how he was led by his “muse” to write what was brewing inside him for years.
Now for the Interview
Using your imagination, which piece of fruit describes you the most?
Grapes:Thrives in warm days and cool nights…sweet.
When and why did you begin writing for children?
I had started writing the story in the fall of 2011. At first, my goal was just to get the story out of my head. I had no target audience in mind; but as the story, message, and characters developed I quickly realized the market would be in the children’s genre. I’m very comfortable writing in the imaginary worlds of fantasy in which children relate to, so I’m sure I belong here. My overall goal for the stories is to have a positive message for kids while being an entertaining read for all ages.
What inspired you to write Jeremy’s Adventures: Miracle on Main Street?
I had a story about an adventurous boy in my head and couldn’t figure out why, or what to do with it. It wasn’t until a short story I wrote when I was ten about a Toy Soldier who prevented a Toy Shop from being robbed came back in my life. My mother found this story in her basement and mailed it to me in the summer of 2011. It immediately made sense and I was inspired to combine the stories: One boy’s wonderful imagination, positive outlook, adventurous life, and a magical Toy Soldier who represents the message to never give up on your dreams.
How did you come up with the title?
Jeremy’s Magical Toy Soldier was the original title. As the story evolved two things happened: One, Main Street became an important part of the story and two, I already had ideas for another story. A series following Jeremy adventures.
Is there a message in your novel that you want young readers to grasp?
Yes, positive thoughts bring positive results, and never give up on your dreams.
Are you the illustrator?
Yes, it was a great challenge that I am glad I completed. Ultimately, I knew I wanted the entire project to be my work.
What or who encouraged you to write this book? Who are your cheerleaders?
As far as the initial encouragement; it was the little voice in my head. Prior to this book project I spent a career climbing the ladder in the wine and spirits industry, and while I was creative, I had no time to even think about anything other than managing sales teams and hitting sales objectives. As one door closed, another opened. My imagination suddenly came out of hiding and wouldn’t leave me alone. The story filled my head in the summer of 2011. At first I didn’t even know how to explain it. I knew many people thought I was joking. As the process moved forward I began connecting with authors who were amazing! Their assistance and insight helped me tremendously. I’m very grateful.
What do you do when you are not writing?
I am usually spending time at the beach, movies, or a theme park with the family; my wife Marie, daughter Lauren (fourteen), and son Jerry (twelve). I also enjoy watching sports in my memorabilia room, working on my landscape, or just relaxing with a glass of wine and some friends.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I hope all readers enjoy it as much as I did writing it! I look forward to connecting with everyone! Thank you very much for your support!!!
When does your book come out, and where can we purchase it?
Jeremy’s Adventures: Miracle on Main Street is NOW available on the following sites: Friesen Press bookstore – which can be previewed now: click here . Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble and www.ingram.com along with bookstore events to be announced. It will be available in Ebook, soft, and hard cover.
Describe your writing space/ritual?
A table filled with notes, illustrations, and my lap top.…not pretty.
Describe your best “night” dream?
I can never remember them? …not sure what that means, but it’s probably best.
I do not leave my house without my: iPhone
What would we find in your junk drawer now?
My old beverage license, euros, digital video cassettes, cuff links, and an empty money clip.
Spider Man 2002 or Spider Man 2012? Why?
I did enjoy both, but have to say 02 wins. Tough to beat that story, and cast.
Lawrence H Sola was born in New York on July 30, 1967. Jeremy’s Adventures: Miracle on Main Street is his first book project. It was inspired by a short story he wrote when he was ten – its title – The Toy Soldier. He is currently working on Jeremy’s Adventures: Castaway Cove – the second book in the series. The goal for the book series is to have humorous and entertaining stories with positive messages (target age 5-9yrs) that are enjoyable for all ages.
Follow Lawrence H. Sola on Facebook for his latest updates and release of his book. I will let you all know on my Facebook Page as well.