Author Lisa Yee Inspired!

Ideas can come flying, so look out, she says

  • Grades: 3–5, 6–8

Lisa Yee has been an inventor, a hand model, and a member of a creative think tank. At Walt Disney World, Yee was a writer and producer. Once, when she was the only short person on hand, she actually got to be Mickey Mouse.

What Yee likes to do best, however, is write.

"I always knew I wanted to be an author," said Yee, who has so far published nine books, including her latest, Bobby the Brave (Sometimes). "It was my dream, but I never told anyone."

Reading books has always been her inspiration for writing. When she was in school, Lee said she could not pass by a library without going inside.

"I love to read books and there is nothing more wonderful than getting lost in a great book," she said. "I remember being in awe of authors who could draw me into their books and take me to places so unlike the suburbs of Los Angeles where I grew up."

Yee's ideas come from everywhere.

"Some just hit me on the side of the head when I least expect it," she said. "I observe whatever's going on around me. I watch and I listen."  

To keep track of all these fast flying ideas, Yee carries a notebook wherever she goes. When she gets home she reviews her notes. Some make it into books, while others get tossed into the garbage.

Yee's office is filled with stuff that she calls inspiration and her family calls junk. Her secret to being a better writer, she says, is listening to music.

"Not with words though," she laughed, "or I will start singing."

Her favorite—and first—book is Millicent Min, Girl Genius, which took her six years to write. Proving, she says, that writing is not always an easy process. When asked what she considered the hardest part about writing, she joked, "It is all pretty hard."

Her hard work was recognized recently when she received the Sid Fleishman Humor Award. She has received recognition for other books as well.

"However, the best recognition I have ever received has come from my readers," she said. "When they tell me, or write, that they have enjoyed my books, it's what and author lives for."

Be sure to check out Kid Reporter Lexi Cornell's review of Lisa Yee's book Bobby the Brave (Sometimes)!

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