Today I’d like to introduce the award-winning and wildly prolific author, illustrator, songwriter, and composer, Elyse Bruce. Her children’s book character, Missy Barrett, travels the world on countless adventures. I’m sure you’ll enjoy reading about Elyse (and Missy) and their many amazing pursuits!
Q. Please tell us a little bit about yourself and your books.
A. Stories – whether literary, musical, or visual – have been part of who I am since I was old enough to hold a crayon. Long before I could read and write, I was creating stories and sharing them with whatever audience I had.
The first story I remember making up goes back to when I was three. We were on a family vacation that required hours of highway driving. When I was growing up, cars didn’t have movie screens for passengers in the back seat. Kids didn’t have iPods and tablets that would keep them occupied for hours on end. We had passenger windows and whatever books or drawing pads we brought with us. That was what we had for entertainment to make the hours pass by.
My first story was about a three-year-old girl and her best friend, a rabbit, who were having a spirited discussion sitting behind a barn. The girl shared with the rabbit all the great things she saw on the highway from electrical power grid towers she described as aliens to outer space to animals she saw in the fields along the way, and everything in between.
I became an award-winning visual artist on the national level in Canada when I was 15 years old. I’m also an award-winning songwriter and composer. Currently, I have 25 published and self-published books to my name as well as hundreds of published essays on important global issues, along with a number of self-published books and short stories under my pen names.
Q. Tell us something about your greatest success or your latest success.
A. This is a difficult question to answer because I believe every success needs to be celebrated for what it is. I have successes on many different literary levels (as well as artistic and musical levels).
For example, one of my children’s chapter books is being vetted by a national not-for-profit for promotion via their chapters. Another example is that one of my three blogs is regularly used as a source for research papers and studies by reputable and respected professionals in the legal and medical science fields.
When I’m asked about my greatest success, it’s impossible for me to hold one success above the others and say this one is greater than all the rest.
However, I do feel that one of my greatest successes has to do with my fictional 9-year-old character, Missy Barrett. She’s equally at home speaking with children and adults on her Twitter and Facebook pages as well as on her WordPress blog.
Q. What has been your biggest challenge?
A. The challenge I have is in deciding which projects get scheduled where on my timeline. This means leaving space to insert surprise projects I didn’t know were going to get added to my timeline along the way.
Recently, I was approached by Sophia Conerly of Relay For Life. She had a compelling idea that fit perfectly within Missy Barrett’s world that straddles the real world and her fictional world. This meant readjusting a few other things on the timeline to insert this new project.
Like everyone else, I have the same twenty-four hours in a day. The challenge is in making sure that I don’t overload my schedule while I’m busy making that schedule work.
Q. What are your plans for the future?
A. I plan on writing more Missy Barrett stories, and to continue with her WordPress blog as well as her Twitter and Facebook pages.
I plan on writing more short stories and novels that are for a more mature audience (PG-13 and up) than the audience that enjoys my children’s books (E for Everyone).
I plan on painting more paintings, writing more songs, and composing more music.
And I plan on mentoring others just starting out on their creative journey.
Barnstormin’: The love of black-and-white movies, an interest in Amelia Earhart, and a taste for adventure take Missy somewhere she never expected to find herself. After all, it’s not every day you get to fly in a 1927 Waco Straight wing biplane with an expert pilot. With help from her grandfather and Marc Hightower, Missy Barrett becomes a real live, modern day barnstormer!
Q. Where can people keep up with you and buy your books?
A. Missy Barrett has her own site at www.missybarrett.com where you can check out the other books in the series, the Missy Barrett Year in Review books and the Missy Barrett Conversation books. I also have my site at www.elysebruce.com.
They can also purchase my books on Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/Elyse-Bruce/e/B0086P2QJY
Missy can be found online at these locations:
Elyse can be found online at these locations: