Path to Publishing
by Lisa Maggiore
I wrote Ava the Monster Slayer: A Warrior Who Wears Glasses while I was working as a social worker. Unable to “leap off” my career because our oldest was in college and our family needed two incomes, I decided that while I could not pursue a writing career full-time, I would investigate what to do with this well-crafted and cute story.
I took a picture book class, offered by a wonderful coach, author, and teacher, Esther Hershenhorn. After the class I asked if Esther knew of any critique groups I could join. She referred me to The Writer’s Cramp, who I met with for over a year. That’s also where I realized that my well-crafted story was not so well-crafted. But it was cute, so I held onto that!
I went to the art show and I knew after looking, with a critical eye, he was the guy for the job. Ross and I met at my home to collaborate on a few illustrations. Ross then finished the rest. He amazed me. So many illustrations felt like they had a life of their own, and I loved it!
We met at a breakfast place that’s only a few blocks from where I grew up in Chicago. Loretta, also a Chicago native, grew up only ten minutes from my childhood home. Small world! Loretta loved the book and was thrilled with the illustrations. She asked to represent Ross and I. After careful consideration, Ross and I decided to sign with Loretta. Three weeks later, we had an offer with Sky Pony Press. And now the publishing adventure begins!