With her latest "Have You Seen Marie?," Sandra Cisneros has written a picture book for adults (and kids too).

It's not what readers expected from Cisneros, who leaped onto the literary scene in 1984 with "The House on Mango Street" and continued with an acclaimed literary career. Her 1991 collection, "Woman Hollering Creek and Other Stories," was a finalist for the L.A. Times Book Prize; her many awards include a MacArthur "Genius" Fellowship.

Creating an illustrated book, she tells the L.A. Times' Hector Tobar, was a little like working on a film.

Cisneros grew up in Texas and went to the prestigious University of Iowa's writers workshop for graduate school -- an experience that was important but not entirely pleasant. "I first had the courage to say I'm a writer," she tells Tobar, "when I was in graduate school." Before that, she had always written in secret.

You can follow your own writer's path by playing our online How to Be a Writer game.

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