EASTON, Conn. Elise Broach combines her passions for history and making up stories to create children's novels that have a real story at the core.
Her most recent novel, Missing on Superstition Mountain, is the first of a trilogy where the characters explore a real-life mystery: Superstition Mountain in Arizona.
"It's like a land Bermuda Triangle," said Broach, who traveled with her daughter to the see the mountain first-hand. "We were warned off it so many times ... it was the toughest hike I've ever taken ... it's such a silent place you cannot imagine the absence of sound."
Broach studied history in college and for her dissertation studied sacred landscapes, such as the Grand Canyon. "History helps me with everything it was such an important major for me," she said.
She then took a leave of absence from her college studies and took a writing course at Wilton High School. The class formed into an authors group that still meets every three weeks.
Broach also writes picture books . These, she says, come from a "burst of inspiration," during which she will write for a few hours and then do multiple revisions.
While writing novels, "I have an idea for the beginning and I know what the ending will be I get stuck in the middle finding a way for it to lead logically to the ending." It usually takes her about a year to finish one.
Her first book, a picture book, was published in 2000. Since then, she has published one or two books a year a total of 10 so far, four of them children's novels . Her first novel, Masterpiece, is a New York Times bestseller.
"I love to make up stories. Finishing a book is satisfying in the same way doing a puzzle is satisfying there's something about getting it right," said Broach.
She gets her ideas while walking her dog, Dixie. When at home, she writes in a quiet atmosphere, but she can often be found typing away at a local Starbucks.
In addition to her full-time job as a writer, Broach has been a member of Easton's Board of Finance since 2003.
"I came from the perspective of a parent. I live in the community, I care about the community I can make the most change and look most closely [at the town] as a member of the Board of Finance," said Broach.
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