Alyssa was born in Media, Pennsylvania, a town outside of Philadelphia. She was known as a happy child, until her favorite character from Winnie the Pooh switched from Pooh to Eeyore. No one knows what happened there.
Learning to read and write was the most exciting part of her childhood. Probably because her family of seven would often spell conversations they didn’t want her and her baby sister to hear. Understanding this new way of communicating, with all its nuances, felt like finding a key to a world full of secrets.
Her first novel was written in seventh grade, when her seventh-grade English teacher handed every student a black marble composition book and introduced the class to the NaNoWriMo – a challenge to write a 50,000 word novel within the month of November. Alyssa completed it, became bewitched by the whole process of creative writing, and announced to her family that she was going to become an author. It created quite a scene. Still, Alyssa often plays with the idea of writing an adult version of her seventh grade NanoWriMo. Stay tuned?
Throughout high school, Alyssa continued the NaNoWriMo and in college she wrote short stories and other small novels. She graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in psychology and minor in religious studies, nurturing her ability to create characters for her books. Through “Pitt in the Himalayas,” Alyssa spent a semester studying, trekking, and camping through northern India. In that program, she enrolled in a creative writing course. The course encouraged different styles of writing and proved to be challenging and exciting. Alyssa had not previously shared her fiction writing, other than with her teachers, so the positive feedback from her professor and her peers was encouraging.
Once Alyssa graduated and entered the real world, shit got real confusing, real fast. She experienced writer’s block for the first time – it felt like a blank void, and she didn’t really know what was happening, other than floating through the motions, leaving a trail of spicy sweet chili Doritos crumbs wherever she went, as she tried to figure out where her life was going and how to reclaim her creative flow.
Then the coronavirus happened. Not only did it shake up the world, it shook Alyssa out of her loop and back into writing. Holed up for months in her studio apartment in Philadelphia, Alyssa bought a black marble composition book, about one hundred pens, and decided she was going to write a book. She knew just the story.
And for the first time in her life, she wrote a book she is going to share with the world.
The first of many she hopes to share.
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