Reina Lisa Menasche
I wrote my first book at the age of seven. Granted, it was a short book, with a cover crafted of orange construction paper featuring a sleeping cat drawn in crayon. The title was: Tiger the Lazy Cat. This first effort of mine was rather a sleepy tale (or tail?), about--yes, you guessed it--a cat that slept a lot. Not a thriller. Actually the cat in the story slept the entire time that his owners were on vacation in Tucson.
I've learned a lot about the craft of writing fiction since that simple handwritten book. I've learned to develop plot, and keep the story active, and bring in human characters who might actually talk. I wrote more stories. My Grandpa paid me a silver half- dollar for one, making me a paid author. In high school I completed four novels, all about teenagers like me doing things that I did but doing it more eloquently--and with a more satisfying story curve to their young lives.
In high school I became interested in psychology and counseling. For a long time I couldn't decide between that and writing for a living. I tried journalism for a while but was told my articles sounded more like fiction. Finally I fully embraced the field of social work--and continued to write fiction. I believed then, as I believe now, that working with people can provide me with all the story ideas that I'll ever need to find. And it's true. Plus I enjoy it. I enjoy seeing the small miracle of growth that happens in the most surprising of places: a theme that eventually led to my first novel, TWICE BEGUN. A year later came my second novel, SILENT BIRD. Now, in 2021, my first ghost story, THE SPIRIT OF SHY MOON LAKE, has been released. Yay!
When I'm not working with clients, students, other social workers, or spending time with my characters, I am absorbing myself in my other job, the one I probably cherish most: being mother to my now-grown son. I am a dedicated family person and have spent weekly gatherings with my parents and siblings for the last twenty years. I still participate in those gatherings though life has changed a great deal with the passing of my wonderful father. At our Sunday dinners we have always laughed, and argued, and debated, and played Charades, and sang songs. My one little eccentric family probably provides as much fodder for fiction as any other real life characters I've ever encountered.
Regarding my other hobbies, you may see me playing a historical character in Old Town, camping it up as a stock character of Commedia 'Dell Arte at an outdoor fair, or pretending to be a witch or tree or donkey in some other play. I love to play, period, whether it be in real life or in my imagination. I hope that you will enjoy my books as much as I've enjoyed writing them.