Former Beech Grove teacher Brad LaMar releases first children’s novel
By Jennifer Pherigo
Celtic myths come to life as characters Brendan O’Neal and his younger sister, Lizzie, take on a mad witch in an adventure to save mankind in The Obsidian Dagger. Author Brad A. LaMar is a former science teacher of Beech Grove Middle School and his love of creative writing has taken these bedtime stories from his home to allow readers to begin their own quest.
“I looked into real life to find inspiration for my characters,” said LaMar, now a Master Teacher at the middle school, responsible for helping other teachers to be better. His children, Evan, 11 and Paige, 9, are reflected into his main sibling heroines. The story began as a story for his children, where they travel to Ireland and experience a magical adventure with leprechauns. This sparked the idea for LaMar to look into Celtic myths and legends. The main characters are written as young adults in order to keep the action scenes more believable and to gear towards his middle and high school-age target audience.
Sitting at the kitchen table, LaMar wrote with life in the background – with the sound of cartoons and talking with his wife, Lori. He completed the novel in six months.
Once the book was finished, the next obstacle was finding the right agent or publisher to get the adventure in the hands of readers. After seven years of searching, Light Messages Publishing in North Carolina proved to be the best fit. The relationship he has formed with the publisher allowed the editing process to be smooth as they bantered back and forth to make sure that the story in LaMar’s head would translate just as easily to readers. His main goal with the novel is to allow his readers access to the world that he has created. “I’m hoping that they can relate to the characters,” he says. “I want them to feel a part of the story itself. It’s a classic kid vs. evil, but sometimes those can be the most rewarding books to read.”
The novel was recently released on Feb. 20 and is available at barnesandnoble.com and amazon.com. LaMar’s current plans are to turn the book into a trilogy with each book staying unique. “I want to make sure that I don’t tell the same story over and over again,” he says. Fantasy readers will be able to meet the author and buy their own copy at a book launch party on Feb. 23, 4 – 7 p.m. at Indy Reads Books, 911 Massachusetts Ave.
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