Name Patty Lesser
Where are you from Dundas, Ontario, Canada
A little about your self `ie your education Family life etc
After growing up in Hamilton, Ontario, I travelled to such places as England, Europe, the Middle East and Australia. While in Israel, I completed a degree in English Literature. I also lived in Toronto three times where I earned a great salary assisting me in further travel. I returned to the Hamilton area ten years ago and am now self-publishing my novels. I have 5 novels and 1 non-fiction book.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news?
I have just published The Perfect Hand, thriller about five poker buddies who uncover a conspiracy. If you love poker and enjoy suspense, you’ll love The Perfect Hand. It’s available on Amazon at http://amzn.to/1QixdhU
Also just recently published is Devouring Time, a mystery, about an historic family embroiled in the art world await the delivery of a mysterious package. It is also available on Amazon at http://amzn.to/1Qayzv3
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I began writing as a young child because I was in love with dragons. Writing rhyming poems about them came easily to me. I enjoyed creating and experimented with different formats. I completed many poems throughout my youth, a few of which can be found on my website: www.pattylesser.com
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Even though I call myself an author and have written six books, I’m nervous about calling myself a writer until my novels sell well enough to make a living at it.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My first novel was inspired by a dream. I woke up one morning with Locker Rooms in my head. I sat down at the computer and wrote twelve hours a day for four months until it was finished. I sent it to an editor and was very disappointed to learn that it wasn’t perfect. I put it in a drawer for ten years until I finally completed it a couple of years ago. It is now available on Amazon at
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style?
Yes, I think I do. I don’t spend a lot of time with descriptions. I don’t make a beach a character in the novel. I write simply, directly and to the point. I give readers an escape from reality since my novels are mostly my imagination.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
I read over Shakespeare and found the title in one of his sonnets..
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
That utopia isn’t possible in real life. That is an imaginary state even though most of my novels are geared towards obtaining a utopian society.
Fiona: How much of the books are realistic ?
Locker Rooms takes places in Hamilton, Ontario. I use specific streets and places to form the scenery. That Truthful Place spends some time in Florida and other cities around North America which I describe briefly. The Perfect Hand mostly takes place in Washington, D.C. I describe real places and streets as the characters drive through the city. Devouring Time takes place in Toronto, Ontario, but I don’t spend much time describing the city except in the beginning.
Fiona: Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
My characters are completely fictitious. I can’t write real people. They don’t act in a manner I can copy. Real people confuse me so my characters act, speak and behave exactly as I would if I were them.
Fiona: What books have most influenced your life most? a mentor?
When I was sixteen, I gained an audience with Irving Layton. He was the writer-in-residence at the University of Toronto. I showed him my poems and told him about my interest in travelling. He encouraged me to travel then come home and write, which is what I did.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I’m not reading anything at the moment. I have a few books around the house that I intend on reading at some point. Just been busy reading my own stuff and all the newsletters I receive from different author websites.
Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?
No. I haven’t read anything recent.
Fiona: What are your current projects?
I’m working on my seventh novel which is a modernization of the Book of Esther from the Bible. I was early to a funeral a couple of years ago and read through the Bible while waiting. It is the greatest piece of literature ever written and I thought I could find a new story idea in it. When I came upon the Book of Esther, I knew I had found my next story.
Fiona: Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.
I am very lucky to have my best friend and next door neighbour supporting me. She drives me to all my signings, takes my coffee order and makes herself available when I need the washroom. She reads all my books after I’ve finished with the editors and finds all those annoying typos everyone else missed. Miriam is the best supporter one could have.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I have accepted writing as my career. I keep steady working hours every day. I continue to write novels and do as much marketing as I can.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. Nothing. It’s exactly as I hoped it would be.
Fiona: Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
When I was ten, I fell in love with books and dreamt about writing one of my own.
Fiona: Can you share a little of your current work with us?
Based on the Book of Esther from the Bible, Where True Beauty Dwells revives those ancient characters and spins a modern tale. Thomas Edmonds is the President of Baltia and succeeds in pursuits. His wife Leah is a sophisticated and beautiful woman who cares only about her appearance. When Leah refuses the President’s request, he divorces her. After a few months of solitude, he meets a young woman who offers everything his wife didn’t. His new bride is a wonderful teacher just starting out in the school system. Marrying her changes Thomas’ life forever. However, the President’s chief political adviser secretly plans to assassinate the President so that he could take over the country. However, one man overheard the devilish plot and informed Thomas of the assassination.
Fiona: Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I find the marketing aspect the most challenging. I want to write books and not have to worry about selling them. However, being an author is not that simple anymore. You have to become a salesperson and learn all the tricks and trade of the marketing industry. It’s lots of work.
Fiona: Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
My favourite author is Thomas Hardy. I have read all his novels and love his characters and their lives. A Discerning Heart is my homage to Hardy.
Fiona: Do you have to travel much concerning your book(s)?
I have lived around the world. I’m quite adept at remembering places. I don’t need to travel for my present work since it is mostly based on my imagination. If I need a real place I’m unfamiliar with, I check with people from there for descriptions.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
Due to my lack of funds, my covers were created by Createspace with pictures I took.
Fiona: What was the hardest part of writing your book?
Writing the first chapter since it has to attract the reader and encourage him/her to continue reading. It takes a lot of time getting it just right.
Fiona: Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
Working with my editors has taught me so much about writing. I have learned the difference between show and tell and the importance of point of view. I have also learned how to write better dialogue.
Fiona: Do you have any advice for other writers?
My advice is to just write. Spend as much time as you can creating your novel. Don’t worry whether its marketable or its genre. Just write. Worry about those things after it is finished.
Fiona: Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
If you enjoy escaping from reality and being in a different dimension, you’ll enjoy my books.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
The first book I read was Mrs. Pickerell Goes To The Moon. I remember reading all the Nancy Drew books.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
The Ellen de Generes show makes me laugh. I only cry at commercials.
Fiona: Is there one person pass or present you would meet and why?
I would love to have coffee with Margaret Atwood and ask her about her editing process.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone and why ?
Here lies Patty Lesser. She tried.
I want to be cremated so will just have a small plaque above my remains. I just want people to know that I tried to live my life as best as possible.
Fiona: Other than writing do you have any hobbies ?
I have an old dog and cat. I love playing in online poker tournaments. I watch every Toronto Maple Leaf hockey game as well as every Hamilton Ticats football game. I follow the Toronto Blue Jays during the summer. I love movies and one is always playing while I work. I also love to travel and will go almost anywhere.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
My favourite shows are reality. I enjoy Masterchef, Amazing Race and Survivor. But won’t miss the last season of Downtown Abbey. I loved Dexter and I have the whole series on DVD.
Fiona: Favorite foods / Colors/ Music
I love steak. Medium please. And potatoes which I can eat any way. My favourite colour is blue. I only listen to the radio in the car and its set at a modern station but I love classic rock the best.
Fiona: If you were not a writer what else would you like to have done?
I have done many different types of jobs: legal secretary, teach English as a second language, factory, data entry, kennel work, secretarial, etc. I never liked working so I’m glad to be an author which is the only job I can find the discipline to achieve.
Fiona: Do you have a blog/website? If so what is it?
I have a blog on my website: www.pattylesser.com