The La Crescenta resident comes up with ideas then runs them by her children, who range in age from 15 to 20, and their friends, she said.
Ferraro enjoys writing for young adults because she likes that particular time in life when everything is still ahead of you, she said.
“And I also relate to the pathos of those changing times in a person’s life,” she said.
When she needs a sounding board about how a character would react to a situation, she said she goes to coffee with longtime friend Patricia Mills, a marriage and family therapist who lives in Burbank.
Ferraro takes a lot of care in her writing, Mills said.
“She’s very thorough in her research and how she develops the characters and, in my opinion, she’s very accurate when she portrays characters in age-appropriate developmental situations,” Mills said. “I’m impressed with her ability to convey real life situations.”
Ferraro wrote for romance magazines for 20 years before Delacorte Press, a division of Random House children’s books, published her three books.
Ferraro writes about things middle- and high school-age teens face, and tries to have a moral woven between the lines and not so much in your face, she said.
Her first book, “Top Ten Uses for an Unworn Prom Dress,” was published in March 2007. The main character is dumped two days before the prom.
Its moral is being true to yourself, she said.
“I had actually seen a book ‘101 Uses for a Bridesmaid Dress,’ and started brainstorming,” she said. Her second book, “How to Hook A Hottie,” published in January, taught the value of money.
“Money can’t buy me love,” she said.
It’s about a 17-year-old girl who wants to start a business right after high school and ignores her parents’ wishes for her to go to college first.