Back in the misty dawn of time, before cell phones existed and when the Encyclopedia Britannica was still a set of books, Lisa Shafer had a year of unrivaled self-discovery. She was eight at the time.
At this age of wisdom, she discovered two very important traits about herself. One was that, although many of her friends liked to "play school," she was the only one interested in using obsolete textbooks to plan lessons and teach them to an odd assortment of dolls and stuffed animals who never did very well on the quizzes. The realization of the other trait came when she wrote a poem for the school literary magazine and it was selected for publication. Thus, both her teaching career and her writing hobby began within months of each other.
In the early 1990s, Ms. Shafer completed her first YA novel manuscript. Titled How Nothing Really Happened At The Haunted Mansion, it was stunningly mediocre, yet she still found her students eager to read it. Encouraged by their interest, over the next few years she wrote three more YA novel manuscripts, each growing progressively worse. At that point, she gave up on fiction and began writing poetry, much of which won small prizes in amateur contests and a fair amount of which was published in obscure anthologies and magazines.
Then, in the autumn of 2003, Ms. Shafer created the character of Eric the half-vampire while trying to get a group of 9th-graders to remember reflexive pronouns. That same year, she also began to create a character she called "The Dark Man," a mysterious fellow who walked from story to story and who later developed into Dougal in Becoming Brigid. These novels showed a vast improvement over the earlier ones because Shafer had finally found the previously missing element: humor.
Small successes followed: one of her short stories was chosen for the October, 2004, edition of MsLexia Magazine, several of her pieces appeared in publications of the SUISS program, she won a competition for humorous poetry at The View From Here, and her work was selected for inclusion in The Literary Lab's 2011 anthology, Notes From Underground.
At this point, she decided it was time to follow her father's entrepreneurial habits and go forward with her own way of publishing her work, as she finds it rather fun to write tales, design covers, and come up with ways of promoting her writing.
When she is not teaching junior high, reading, or writing, Ms. Shafer enjoys traveling. She has crawled into pre-historic tombs in the Orkney Islands, climbed the Pyramid of the Moon in Teotihuacán, Mexico, driven through the Swiss Alps, gazed in awe at Rainbow Bridge, been jostled by hundreds of tourists while viewing the terracotta warriors in Xi'an, China, stood at the very top of the Eiffel Tower, eaten paprika in Budapest, Hungary, and even spent New Year's Eve in Santaquin, Utah. Someday she hopes to visit Peru, New Zealand, and Iceland -- but probably not on the same trip.