LV: My name is Laura Lance Villalobos. I am an American, born in Paris (France). I moved to New York fresh out of college with my Spanish boyfriend at the time, who later became my husband.
I worked in the Fashion Industry for fifteen years casting and producing photo shoots for high-end magazines and advertising brands, which nurtured my creative side.
About eight years ago I moved to Los Angeles with my two sons to carry on producing but five years ago I got inspired to start writing and I have been ever since. I now live in Canoga Park with my sons; one is in college and the other one in high school. I am a vegan and I also rescue animals.
LV: Mantis is, in my opinion, timely without being preachy. As its core is a simple message: If we don’t take better care of ourselves and our planet, bad things are going to happen. That’s the premise upon the story was built, and though it takes a turn into the science-fiction genre, I believe the message will be perceived by readers and, hopefully, make them think twice about their own actions. Furthermore, even though this book was written for a middle-grade audience, there are a number of other characters involved, so I think readers of any age will find a character to whom they relate. It’s my intention that anyone could pick up this book and find something, and someone, in it that they can appreciate.
BBB: Tell us about your main character.
LV: She is the heart of the story: young Sophia Miller, who at a glance is a fairly average preteen girl: she’s somewhat shy and she’s impressionable. She lost her mother recently, and has little control over the destiny that’s already been assigned to her.
I think she is a character to whom a lot of kids can relate to; they’re trying to figure out who they are vs. who they want to be, and so much is influenced by outside forces that are beyond their control. But Sophia’s problems are on a bit grander of a scale.
BBB: What other books have you written?
LV: I’ve written two other books currently on the market. Sometime this year which is a contemporary romantic comedy that demonstrates how technology has influenced the ways in which we communicate. Free Will is a drama that take place in the eighties about a narcissistic actor who earns his redemption by helping a wrongly-imprisoned man gain his freedom.
BBB: What are you currently working on?
LV: Right now I am finishing an epic saga story that details the life of the ruling class in a postapocalyptic world. It’s a departure from what I’ve done before, but it’s an epic saga, so I wanted to get a few other books out before I turned my full attention to this story, even though I have been carrying it with me for quite a while. Soon I’ll be starting another comedy, this one about how people perceive spirituality in our modern world.