The child of a general surgeon hailing from Cebu City, Philippines and a nurse hailing from Westminster, Maryland, Marisa de los Santos grew up in Baltimore and Northern Virginia. She was a happy, if somewhat neurotic, kid, and had a little sister, Kristina, whom she both antagonized and adored, usually at the same time.
Inspired by her heroes Louisa May Alcott, Lucy Maud Montgomery, Helen Keller, Joan of Arc, and Clara Barton, founder of the American Red Cross, Marisa read extensively as a child, sometimes while skating, turning cartwheels, descending stairs, or bathing, often with disastrous results.
Marisa went to school for a very long time, earning a degree in English from the University of Virginia, as well as an MFA in Poetry from Sarah Lawrence College and a Ph.D in English and Creative Writing from the University of Houston.
Marisa found early literary success with the publication of her poetry collection, From The Bones Out. However, soon after she settled in Philadelphia with her husband, David Teague, their son Charles arrived. Along with being handsome and brilliant, the infant Charles screamed more than any baby on the planet. Nearly three years later, Charles’s sister Annabel, also lovely and brilliant, also a screaming maniac, made the scene. All the noise in combination with Marisa’s distractingly large love for her children made mustering the obsessive attention necessary for writing poems difficult, and she produced fewer and fewer of them. That’s her theory, anyway. When in doubt, blame the kids.
Fortunately, around this time, Marisa started hearing a voice in her head. While this was initially disconcerting and a little weird, the voice turned out to belong to a fictional character, Cornelia Brown. She kept right on talking until Marisa had to write Love Walked In so that Cornelia could have a place less cluttered than Marisa’s head in which to live.
Charles and Annabel turned out to be great kids. They live with their parents in Wilmington, Delaware, where Marisa is finishing her second novel.
Contact Marisa at