Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Author Interview with Mj Rain

Melissa Lorraine Gulick
"Mj Rain"
Newton, Iowa by way of
Long Island, New York

What have you written? 

I have written my first novel 'A Telltale Secret', the first in a 5 Novel Series titled, 'A Telltale Destiny' series. It is about what became of the people and civilization of Atlantis. I am currently writing the second novel in the series, titled 'A Telltale Magic'. I have written many Poems with 4 in Progress. I have had two of my poems published this past spring, titled 'And We Fly' and 'It's Not For Us To Say'. I've also written a story about my niece, Bella titled 'Bella Muffin Bakes a Rainbow Cake'. I've entered it into The Katherine Paterson Prize for Young Adult and Children's Writing Contest. It's fiction for children based on the time when me and Bella actually baked a rainbow cake together.

What is your favorite genre to write?

I love writing Young Adult Fantasy which is the Genre of my Series. What I love most about it is that I'm telling a story I've never heard, read, or seen before, ever. I love that I have created a world that I would love to live in with characters who are so relatable. I love Fantasy because it allows me to create anything I want and there are no real rules as to what can exist. I love that the only limit is how far I can push my imagination.When I write poetry, I write whatever flows through my head. Though, I love writing the kind of poetry that evokes an emotion from my reader and I love creating moments of fantastic imagery.

Favorite food:

When I was a young child, my parents used to tell people that I would eat anything as long as it didn't grow legs and walk off my plate and if it did, I would chase it. As an adult, I love Baked Macaroni and Cheese from scratch, Mashed Potatoes and Gravy, and Crab Legs. Those are My Favorites.

Where would you like to visit?

I'm a world class Potterhead, so right now I most want to go to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Outside of the USA, I want to Go to England, London in Particular. I want to see all the places The Potter films were taped, stand inside an English phone booth, get my picture taken with an English Bobby, eat real fish and chips, do the Warner Brother's Studio Tour, all of it.

Favorite musical artist:

My favorite singer is Enya because she is vocally gifted and she writes ALL the music for every instrument in her songs. When I listen to Enya, I can completely disconnect myself from reality. My Favorite Band is LIVE, Ed Kowalczyk is an amazing singer/songwriter and I've loved the band since I was 14. Their music really speaks to me. 

How old were you when you started writing?

I've always loved writing ever since I was a kid in elementary school. I always got high scores/grades on any writing assignment I did and English was my best subject. I didn't decide I wanted to be a writer until I was a Senior in High School. My 12th Grade English teacher made me realize I had a real gift. Though, as a child in elementary school, I used to tell stories about two best friends I named Tissues and Towels. A box of tissues and a beach towel that did everything together.

Where do you get your inspiration?

I am inspired by everyone and everything around me. Positive and negative experiences I've had throughout my life. I have left nothing out of my series. How I see people and the world and I've written people, friends and family into my series. My main character is basically me. I'm writing my novels in the first person, so she's thinking with my brain. My readers will have a great knowledge of who I am, through Willow.

What do you do when you get a writer's block?

I sometimes read what I've already written and that helps. Sometimes I use my frustration to get some cleaning done and while I'm in the middle of scrubbing a toilet or the dishes, something brilliant will pop into my head. Listening to music also helps. It relaxes my brain and lets my imagination wander.

Who is your favorite author?

It's a Tie between Harper Lee and JK Rowling.

Best book you ever read.

My all-time favorite book is To Kill a Mockingbird and the end is my favorite part. I love the way Harper uses Scout and Boo to slap prejudice in the face. The Harry Potter series is right next to it because it saved me from my misery and inspired me to finally start writing my novels.

Who is the one person who has influence your personal life the most and why?

I would have to say JK Rowling. Just because, when I was in the beginning of a nervous breakdown 2 1/2 years ago, I had been through so much in my life and had so much traumatize me emotionally. My husband knew how much I love Harry Potter and what it was for me, so far beyond "Wizards and Magic". He put on her life story "Magic Beyond Words" and by then I had long devoured the books and had seen all the movies that were on DVD hundreds of times. It was the greatest escape from reality for me, because reality at that time was such a dark dismal place for me. After I saw her life story and I saw all that she herself had been through, realizing how strong she was and seeing how much courage it took for her just to let someone read her work and to see what she created and what it became, it was then in those moments, I was inspired more than ever to live my dream and really get serious about writing my novels.

If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why?

JK Rowling. Because I want to thank her, not only for Harry Potter but for being the catalyst that inspired me to live my dreams. Ever since I made the choice to write my novels, I have never been so happy.

What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a writer?

NEVER GIVE UP!!!! Don't be afraid of Failure or Rejection, because it's going to happen. When it does, take a deep breath and smile. Get to steppin. There will ALWAYS be a new opportunity for you. Carpe Diem, and take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way. Keep a positive attitude and Always accept things that don't go your way. I've so far Queried 96 Agents and received 32 Rejection Letters. One of those Agents read my first Chapter and another Read my entire Manuscript. The greatest things I've taken away from ALL of it so far is that I have yet to receive any Negative Criticism of my novel and my query letter so I know I don't need to change any of them, which means I just have to keep querying. My time will come and so will yours. It's all about Patience, Determination, Effort, Attitude and Gratitude. If you want it badly enough and you stick to it, it will be yours when it's meant to be. Believe in yourself and listen to those who believe in you. Make like Nike and Just do it, because You got this!!! ... Don't be afraid to ask for anything either!!! That's how I got to do this Author Interview!!! I ASKED!!! I live by a Quote now, that goes: "You don't deserve what you don't have the courage to ask for." ... Now, GO!!! Write that Novel of Yours!!! The world deserves to Read it!!!

Do you have any links you would like to share with us?


  1. Thank you, Mj, for stopping by this morning. You are a ball of joy and energy. It is only a matter of time before everyone knows who YOU are!

  2. Thank you so much Carol!!! It means so much to me!!! Thank you so much for doing this interview with me!!! I'm so excited!!! :)
    ~Mj Rain

  3. Great interview. You both sound like fun. Carol, I love the questions you ask and how you try to spotlight the author. And Mj, great advice to new writers. I see why Carol calls you a ball of energy. Good luck to both of you.

  4. Thank you so much Laura!!! :) I tried to be as honest as I can!!! Heehee I am a very happy, positive, eccentric, and perky person LOL. My husband says that his favorite thing about me is my Kookyness :) I really love the questions too!!! I apologize for taking so long to respond. I went up to my niece's elementary school to tae pictures of her final day because she's moving out of town. Then she came over my house and slept over :) She helped me make Baked Ziti and it's always a joy to have her over :) Thank you so much again Laura and have a great day!!! :)

  5. Thank you, Laura. We appreciate your continuous support and your lovely comments.