The Fast Five With … Lyla Payne

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By Christine Duval

USA Today bestselling novelist Lyla Payne (you can also find her books under author name Trisha Leigh) is one busy girl. With three books coming out this fall, she certainly has this writing thing down. Lyla is best known for her New Adult Whitman University series, but she’s also written ghost stories, a time travel Young Adult novel, and this month releases Mistletoe and Mr. Right, a holiday romance set in Ireland – just in time for Christmas. Here she offers up a bit of insight into her world and how she gets it done.♥

1. What is the most difficult thing you’ve ever written?

The YA time travel book that just released last month, for sure! My original edit letter was 38 pages long, and that was only the first of many – keeping those details straight and trying to figure out what actions in the past would change the future … it’s brain busting for sure! But, I think, worth it in the end.

2) If you could collaborate with another author on a project, who would it be and why?

Old school, Madeleine L’Engle because she’s a huge influence on my writing life. Currently, Leigh Bardugo because I am obsessed with the Grisha trilogy.

3) What do you like most about being an author?

The creativity, first and foremost – getting to tell stories and have people read them. Connecting with other readers. After that, the freedom of being able to work from home, which I know is a privilege. I’m thankful for it.

4) How do you motivate yourself to write?

Deadlines, mostly! After that, holding off on watching the new episode of a television show. Or chocolate!

5) What do you feel are the top three qualities one must possess to make it as an author today?

Confidence, perseverance, and a willingness to learn and change. Is that three things?

Lyla Payne has been publishing New Adult romance novels for a little over a year, starting with Broken at Love and continuing with the rest of the Whitman University series and the Lowcountry Ghost stories. She loves telling stories, discovering the little reasons people fall in love, and uncovering hidden truths in the world around us – past and present. In her spare time she cuddles her two dogs, pretends to enjoy exercising so that she can eat as much Chipotle as she wants, and harbours a deep and abiding hope that Zac Efron likes older women. She loves reading, of course, along with movies, travelling, and Irish whiskey. If you want to know more, visit her at If you’re a fan of Young Adult fiction, check out her work that’s published under the name Trisha Leigh at

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