Lisa Loucks Christenson is the second oldest of five children. Lisa’s love for books has been lifelong, with the earliest documented pictures of her with her books at around 2 1/2 to 3 years of age. Lisa’s love for writing and illustrating stories began at age 4 and Lisa’s love for photography began by the time she turned eight. By age 14, Lisa began marketing and publishing her images, winning her first national photo contest.
Since her youth, Lisa’s spent most her time reading, writing, or exploring the great outdoors with her camera’s. In the mid 80s Lisa worked for some area publishers in various departments from: sales, design, distribution, tele-sales, advertising, reporting, journalism, and later as a traveling photographer for another publisher.
In the late 80s Lisa formed her own photo studio/stock and writing agency. She was hired to travel around the country shooting photos and covering assignments for most major publishers, books, text books, corporations. Later, Lisa expanded into broadcasting and started a talk radio show, and enlarged her studio/stock agency to form a new division: a publishing company featuring her books, wildlife art prints, paintings, and original art.
Lisa writes fictional Children’s books, Young Readers, Middle Grade, Young Adult, and New Adult and non-fiction wildlife documentaries, articles, and presentations, exhibits from her outdoor experiences in the wild. Over the last decade, Lisa’s developed a handful of Christian imprints for her select works, each with its own intended age group. All of Lisa’s story releases have achieved International Amazon Best Seller status on various lists.
January 1, 2016, Lisa began her 12th year on Lisa’s Bald Eagle Documentary™, he journey covering the lives of bald eagles and their offspring in their wild environment. 2015 marked the 10th year of Lisa’s Walk the Talk Show™, a radio show featuring entertainers, celebrities, authors, businesses and in 2016, Lisa has added a new show to Book Divas for authors to promote their books.
Some of Lisa’s credits: IBM, HyVee, Harcourt, Heinemann, Disney, Self, Esquire, Woman’s World, Perspectives, Career World, Rigby, more.
Lisa is a member of the ASMP, RWA, NATJA, and SCBWI.
Lisa’s work has won many national writing and photo competitions and her wildlife documentaries, exhibits have been featured in print, television, local news, and rotating exhibits between her galleries and the National Eagle Center.
Lisa Fiction: Children books, mysteries, romantic suspense, Inspirational, and YA. She’s the author of the following series: Bow Wow Detectives®, Meow Meow Detectives™, Wolves of Whitewater Falls, Wa Pu Ta Creek, Minnesota (Lisa’s first book in the series: Hawk of Wa Pu Ta Creek was a 2014 Harlequin® Love Inspired® Search for the Killer Voice Finalist), Owls of Huoulah, and more.
Lisa’s Nonfiction: Lisa’s Bald Eagle Documentary™ is still in progress, twelve years with a wild pair of eagles; Winter Bugs! 1st Edition sold out but a second expanded edition will soon be released, Struggling for Existence, Spirit Trees of Whitewater, Hapless Harry: The Minnesota Muscovy Duck Documentary, Walk the Burn, Blue Eyes, The Paper Wasp Documentary, Lions in the Blufflands, Canada Goose Documentary, and more.
Winter Bugs: Ten Year Anniversary Edition is a documentary filmed in the Whitewater Management Area on the land where the former town of Beaver, Minnesota once stood. A real Minnesota ghost town now shrouded by insects and wildlife who live and die each year, but as this books shows, death doesn’t always come during winter.
It’s a pleasure for us to be interviewing Lisa and we hope that you’d enjoy reading this post while getting to know her better.
- Where are you from? I’m a native resident of Rochester, Minnesota.
- Why do you write? I enjoy writing as a way to share stories that inspire and lift others and teach them about our wildlife, or give them a reading escape, a new fictional world to travel to.
- What do you write about? Most of my work, both fiction and non-fiction is in someway connected to Christian topics, lessons, God’s hand in our daily lives and in our beautiful world. I like writing in many genres: mystery, suspense, cozies, thrillers, sagas, fantasy, dystopian and in many age groups: Children, Young Readers, Middle Grade, Young Adult, all ages.
- Do you have a specific writing style? I always try to add inspiration or encouragement, whether fiction or non-fiction, it’s always there in every story —it’s a matter of discovering how to pull it out.
- What are obstacles that come in the way of writing? Time has always been a hard thing to navigate. I closely adhere to three priorities in only in this order: God, family, work. It’s amazing how when you stick to this, words I’ve been trying to find ten minutes to write, literally burst out from inside me and pour out so I don’t worry about having writing time any more, like the verse.…Though it Tarry wait for it…it will surely come.
- What’s the most memorable thing asked/said by a reader about your work? I was at my gallery in Stockholm, Wisconsin. There were three brothers, the youngest was 6 and his older brothers were 11 and 12. The youngest boy had the most impressive ability to stand in front of my wildlife pictures and watch the pieces, almost like they might move if he paid careful attention. We started talking about my Bow Wow Detectives® books and what they liked to read. The youngest boy said, “I don’t like reading.” I couldn’t imagine my life without a book, so I asked him if I could read him a sample of my Bow Wow Detectives book I was working on. He listened as intently to the book sample as he did watching my art on the walls. I had 100% of his attention. After I finished, he said, “I don’t like reading but I’d read your books.” That’s when I realized art could be a hook, but our conversation gave us each a little movement that day.
- How long have you been writing? All my life I’ve had opportunities to write different works: ads, copy, educational materials, fillers, short stories, scripts, articles, novellas, novels, and my documentaries. I thank god for such a garden of opportunities, and helping me change gates when I needed a different view.
- When did you first realize you wanted to become a writer?Writing fell into my life, through my photography, through my experiences, through opportunities that kept presenting themselves. I was in fifth grade when Wilson Rawls author of Where the Red Fern Grows came to our school. It’s still one of my favorite childhood memories, he changed my life that day and I knew in that moment I wanted to write stories and give others a story, whether fiction or non-fiction, and experience like he’d given me. To me it was the greatest gift I could offer without cost: photography was still costing me my allowance every week.
- What is your work schedule like when you are writing? We all have busy lives. My life, as my father-in-law and husband joke that “Lisa is always going up the backside of the mountain, but what a view she sees.” My paths up the mountain change every day, my climb really does affect and present what view and path I take next. When I’m doing house work, running errands, visiting a friend, driving, or out on a family outing I think about the scenes and words I want to write. I memorize key words that will help me remember my experiences and later in the day I pick an area (I have many writing spaces) I can put a couple thousand words down in about 45 minutes. Editing is something I block time out for, later.
- What would you say is your interesting writing quirk? Change. I like change and need a new writing environment, always. Sometimes I write in my woods, next time I’m in the woods by the river, my gazebo, my storage shed, my office, my kitchen table…I need loud music, no music, pets by my side, no pets, family near, family—I always need my family, even if we are a room a apart or a miles away.
- How long does it take to write a book? (if you’ve written one -published or non)My documentaries can take years and I don’t rush them many are still in progress like my Struggling for Existence, one of my most important books in my life, showing how animals and nature struggle to exist, their battles, their losses. Winter Bugs! was written over one winter in Minnesota up to the very minute of spring. Now, I’m releasing the Winter Bugs: 10 Year Anniversary Edition, a complete book of the majority of my exhibit, the experiences, and how things have changed.
A fiction book, like my Wolves of Whitewater Falls, I write those 50K-75K books during NaNoWriMo, each November, I’m just hitting 20,000 words now ten days in, for Book 7, For the Love of Termite Bridge. I had nothing outlined, nothing mapped, I didn’t even know what the story would be, but as I sat down to write it, every night a chapter comes to me. Other fiction stories, especially my children’s books are written in a few days, it’s the editing that takes so much time, and any illustrations.
- Do you have suggestions on how to become a better writer? We can all learn from each other, read someones work you admire and re-read and read it again and then figure out what you liked, why you liked how the writer presented the words, then take your own experiences and do the same. We all have memorable experiences to pull from.
- What challenges do you come across when writing/creating your story? I don’t have too many issues writing. If I get stuck on a chapter or concept, I skip to another scene or concept I want to write about, sometimes I change the point of view character. I don’t feel I need to write sequentially.
- What do you think makes a good story? A good story to me is one that can get me thinking about the characters or the subject of the book and how they come out at the end. Whether the ending is good or bad I can usually find a gem inside the book.
- What does your family think of your writing? Isn’t family remarkable? They can not only show you a path you can’t see on your own, but line it with every sort of expression that cheers you on to your finish line. My family has always supported me, I’m one of the lucky ones.
- Do you see writing as a career? Yes, writing is in my soul. I use my both fiction or non-fiction, with my art or my photography (documentaries) to create stories and document life as I experienced it.
- Do you have anything specific you’d like to tell the readers? I’d like to thank each and every person who has taken their time to write, email, or wave a hello, encouraged me onward. Truly, your support, your honest opinions of my work are always appreciated, good or bad reviews are always something I can learn from.
- When did you first consider yourself a writer? When my first feedback started coming in. My first story, my first essay, my first competition, my first … I hope I never run out of “firsts” that’s what keeps me thinking of more stories.
We’re so delighted to have you on our page, Lisa! Thank you very much for the wonderful interview and we enjoyed getting to know more about you. I believe our readers too feel the same!
Check out these links below to get to know more about Lisa or to buy her book.
Winter Bugs: 10 Year Anniversary Trailer:
mailing address: Lisa Loucks Christenson, P.O. Box 9177, Rochester, MN 55903