Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Meet Middle Grade Christian Author Alice M. Roelke

Today I welcome MG/YA Christian Author Alice M. Roelke. I first met Alice about three years ago. We both took an online writing class, and once the class was finished, we decided to put together our own writing critique group. Alice was the first one to read Young Knights back at the begining. She writes in a variety of genres, including science fiction, fantasy, romance, children’s, and young adult. She is addicted to reading, cats, and farmer’s markets.

Alice, why did you pick to write books for young adults?

Actually, I just write the stories I want to read!  Sometimes they’re also a good fit for children or young adults, sometimes not.  I wrote most of the original draft of this story when I was a teenager, so I was literally just writing it for myself and my age group.  Writing it helped me figure out some things I was dealing with regarding life and my beliefs.  It was also a lot of fun to write my very own dragon story!

What types of books do you like to read?

Lots of different sorts.  My current favorite authors are Alexander McCall Smith, Ray Bradbury, Richard Adams, and Georgette Heyer.

When you are not writing, what do you like to do?

Read.  Watch TV.  Play with my cats.  Shop at farmer’s markets.  Surf the internet.  I want to take up quilting again, but I’ve been too busy and intimidated by it lately.

Tell us about The Girl and the Dragon and how the story came to be.

My story is about a slave girl and the dragon who is her best friend. They are on the run for their lives seeking the cure for a plague and redemption.

How it came to be:
When I was a teenager, I wanted to read about dragons and a heroine my age with whom I could identify.  At the time, nobody seemed to be writing quite what I wanted to read, or else I just couldn’t find it.  So I wrote my own. 

I also wanted to write about some of the things I was figuring out and trying to make sense of in life.  It took me several years to finish the story, including a long bout with depression when I couldn’t write any of at all.  Finishing this story became one of my life goals during those dark days, and I’m so glad I was eventually able to.  :)

Being published by MuseItUp Publishing is very special to me, as well.  My publisher, editors, and cover artist helped me improve this story and make it stronger without changing my vision.  Respect and integrity are watchwords they seem to live by.  :)

Have you written other books? If so, tell us a bit about them.

I’ve been writing ‘books’ since I was eight.  So yes, I’ve written a lot.  You can read more about the stories I’ve had published at My Live Journal: Roelke.

What’s next for your writing? Are you working on a new story?
I’m always working on a new story, sometimes several at once.  (They don’t always end up finished or published, though.)  Right now I’m working with Annie Duguid (an amazing and very patient MuseItUp content editor) on my YA romantic fantasy / coming of age novel Watch Over Me.

What advice do you have for other authors?

Don’t give up. 

Write from your heart. 

If you get jealous of other writers, don’t let it make you bitter.  Just tell yourself, “If they can do it, so can I.”  It’s really true!

Where can readers find you and your books?

Better ebook distributors everywhere!  Sorry.  I had to say it…. 

My blog at my Live Journal http://roelke.livejournal.com and my older blog The Writing Life For Me.

Anything else you want readers to know?
This story has some religious and Christian elements, for readers who care one way or the other about that.  I think lots of different people might enjoy this story, but the primary audience is going to be young women.  If a fifteen-year-old girl like I was finds my story, and it touches her, I’ll be over the moon.  :)


  1. Neat idea for a book. Reminds me of "Heart's Blood," by Jane Yolen. :-)

    1. Thank you! I loved that book when I was a kid! But I don't think I could write anything like it, to be honest. (If only I had that talent!!) :)

  2. Personally, I'm relieved to read Christian books. It's such a break from so much stuff I'd rather not know about in other books. I'm definitely going to buy your dragon book. I've been eyeing it for quite some time.

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Suzanne. Hope you decide to participate in the Kid Lit Blog Hop.

    2. Thank you so much. :) I'm really touched that you'll buy my book! :D I hope you will like it and not be disappointed. (There is some violence in it... I hope you won't be disappointed!)

  3. Like Alice, I find writing therapeutic. When we get those bouts of depression, writing helps in many ways. At one time, my goal was to publish something - anything. Now, when I am writing and I do not think it is good enough for publication, I think, that's okay, it is helping me feel good about myself.

    1. Hi Randy. Always nice to know that you are not alone. Thanks for stopping by.

    2. I think that's an incredibly healthy attitude, Randy. I know it's true for me, as well. Often focusing on creating something, especially through writing, helps pull me out of a downward spiral of sadness.

  4. I love that Alice just up and wrote what she was looking for in a story! Thanks for sharing and linking to the Blog Hop Cheryl! ~Shaunna from Mudpies & Melodies

    1. Thank you for stopping by. Alice is a remarkable writer.

    2. Thanks so much for your comment, Shaunna! :) I appreciate the kind words. Actually, that's often the way I write. I don't know if I'm strange or what, but it's not always easy to find exactly what I want to read. I think the nice thing about writing is that you get to be pickier. If you don't like what's available, you can always write your own! :)

  5. That book cover is amazing! Because I now have a daughter who is close to tweendom I'm always on the lookout for books with a strong female character. This book may be a bit too old for my daughter still (or maybe that's just my denial of her aging/my aging!) but it looks fabulous.

    Thanks for linking this post into the Kid Lit Blog Hop Cheryl and thanks so much for joining us as co-host! :D

  6. Alice, I love the cover, and the story sounds wonderful--I'm looking it up!!!

    Thanks for the LGG alert. :D