Hey there everyone.
Here we are sitting pretty in the middle of the week again. Well done for making it this far into hump day and remeber the weekend is just around the corner.
For tonight’s guest on the Author Interview series, may I introduce to you all fiction author, poet and songwriter Rana Kelly, as she talks to us about her creative endeavours and what inspires her.
Thanks for reading and as always, enjoy the show 🙂
Hi there Rana, thank you for being here to talk about your writing and helping us to get to know more about you as an author.
Let’s start with your novel “Until Her Darkness Goes”, a tale of sex, drugs and rock n’ roll set against a backdrop of a story of true love and raw emotions. Please tell us more about your protagonists Rachael Sullivan and Nicky McCallum, what is at stake for this fated pair and the adventures that they find themselves thrust into, in their pursuit for some semblance of happiness together.
I would actually like to flip that statement. I think that Until Her Darkness Goes is a story of true love and raw emotions. The backdrop is the sex, drugs, and rock n roll trope.
I really wanted a powerful woman as the main character. Rachael, if she were real, she would be the only female producer in the country. In fact, women are so relegated in the music business that while doing research, I interviewed a professional musician/music producer. It was quite a revealing interview. He read a specific scene of Nick and Rachael in the control room during a recording session. The first thing this guy said was, “no women in the control room.” And I was like, “say what? She owns it.” He had no reply, haha. So, I wanted a woman that was comfortable in her own skin, talented, sharp, witty, but with some baggage.
The other main character, Nick, is a newbie rock star, just getting his big break in the music business. For the formulation of my male character, I wanted a softer personality. He’s vulnerable and naive at times, and I think that makes him very believable and human. Not everyone can pull off a Gene Simmons attitude, of course.
Together, they have electrifying chemistry immediately. But they’re figuratively ambushed by tragedy at every turn. They suffer a great deal. To the point where no stick can bend that much, it has to break. One of the themes of this book, actually the main theme, is that people are broken sometimes. Sometimes there is so much significant damage done, that we never really heal. The ends of our fairytales don’t always turn out to be easy or forever. You must never take forever for granted.
If your novel was to be made into a film (or even a TV series), who would you cast in the lead roles?
Ha. It’s a bit embarrassing, but I thought about this for a long time both while I was writing it and after, when I was shopping it around. I thought of a few fits, but not all of the characters, of course. I think most writers, when they’re first starting, that first novel, are convinced that they’re the next King or Rowling. That they’ll get published immediately and sell movie rights and be a bajilliondyaire, haha. So yes, I thought about this a lot.
For Nick, I think Benjamin Barnes would do a fantastic job. I’ve always liked him a great deal.
As far as Rachael goes, this is a little tougher. Even in the early stages, I pictured Rachael as Kat Von D. That was the exact image in my head. I would be thrilled in the event of success with movie rights, but I don’t think Kat is experienced at acting, unfortunately. But that is what Rachael looks like.
Cable, one of my favourite secondary character took a while to find someone that I think could do it and also have the physical attributes. I finally chose Sam Heughan. He’s a bit of a newcomer on the Hollywood scene and plays Jamie Fraser in the Outlander series. He also looks great with ginger hair.
That is the main cast of my ridiculous fantasies, haha.
You also mentioned to me that you dabble in poetry, along with songwriting too. What does it mean to you personally being a poet and musician? How do you feel that this influences how you see, feel and interact with the world around you?
Poetry is my life blood. I almost feel like it’s wrapped around my DNA sometimes. I’ve written it since I was young, a lot of times with success in publishing it. A long time before I tried fiction on, I had been a poet. I wasn’t even sure I could write a novel. With my poetry, I think the core of it, at least mine, is expressing love and all that entails, whether is lust, heartbreak, betrayal, what have you. When the muse strikes me, I can write a quality poem in seconds…Just one stroke and it comes out beautifully. I’m so lucky in that.
As far as music goes, I’m not as experienced at it, honestly. I play guitar, and have played for many years, although I don’t really play anymore. I was never much good at it. Music is in your soul, your heart, your guts. If you have it, you have it and you have no choice but to express it. It’s the same with writers and artists. Anything creative, really. Growing up, I couldn’t be arsed to practice enough to be very proficient. Now, I just play for catharsis, really, only when I’m alone.
(Superstition by Rana Kelly)
What do you find the most difficult thing about writing? And what do you find the easiest?
For me, I think the most difficult things about writing are having patience and persistence. I’m not at all what you would call a patient person and I get discouraged if something takes longer than I think it should. When your words dry up, picking up that pen is pretty damned hard. Especially when Facebook is just a click away, haha.
The easiest part of writing for me is finding the voice of a novel. I can get to the guts of my characters quite easily and I pride myself on authenticity and verve. I’m so blessed in that, I think.
Who are some of the authors and historical figures that inspire you?
Oh boy! Great question. As far as authors go, my influences vary widely. My idols are Plath, Janet Fitch (especially Paint it Black, which actually influenced Until Her Darkness Goes quite a bit, even the title, and Louise Erdrich. Her prose ties me up in knots. I also adore Diana Gabaldon. Her characters are so very, very human in the way that they love. I absolutely worship Hunter S. Thompson and I wish that he was still around. I would be curious to get some insight from him regarding our current political clusterf#ck. Gaiman, George R.R., Vonnegut, Bukowski, the list goes on and on.
Music influences me quite a bit, like it does a lot of people. My two main influences are Passenger (Mike Rosenberg) and especially Chris Whitley, who almost no one has ever heard of, unfortunately. They broke the tortured soul mould when he was born. I cannot explain how his music affects me, it goes so deeply. And, Tori Amos. She is a Goddess of a woman. So amazing, so kind, and her activism for women is truly rare and precious.
Historical figures. Crazy Horse is a hero. Lincoln. The Jacobites.
What sort of research do you do to write your book, poems and songs?
It really depends on the subject matter. With Until Her Darkness Goes, I had some experience with the music business already. I did a lot of interviews with musicians. Read up a bit on how producing and mastering is actually done. My favourite part of researching I did for this novel was studying English and Scottish slang. Quirky, witty language really turns my head. It wasn’t really research either. It was more gaining friends in England and Scotland and having a bit of a banter and imitating their wordplay. So much fun.
My next novel is much more involved with historical research. Reading, reading, reading. It’s set in New Orleans at the end of the 19th century. It’s so much fun, though. New Orleans is my favourite city in the United States, by far, far, far.
Why do you write? What inspired you to become a writer?
I write to express my heart, cope with my bipolar disorder, and especially learn new things about myself. Writing is very much a core part of my personality. Sometimes I think that if I didn’t have my words, if I didn’t have this gift, I would have nothing at all.
People that read my work were the main inspiration that helped me continue to do it.
What keeps you motivated during creative slumps? How do you deal with Writers Block?
Motivation and I aren’t good friends in the first place, honestly. When I’m up against a wall, I will try to put it down for a short time. When I pick it up again, I force myself to get down a thousand words a day, no matter what words they are. Even if they’re “all work and no play” nonsense that has nothing to do with my work in progress. Just the act of writing helps unlock my doors. It’s maybe cliché, but it is very true: you can’t wait for inspiration, you have to create it yourself.
You have access to a time machine. What advice would you give to your younger self?
I don’t think I can answer that question. To be honest, I’ve led a very difficult, complicated, and painful life thus far. Part of me is okay with that because it made me strong and resilient and kind. The other part of me wishes I didn’t make the many bad calls that I did and wonders if I could have avoided a lot of punishment.
How do you spend your free time when you are not writing?
Ha, I’m terrible. Social media is a huge part of my life. I can’t live without my Facebook friends, even if they are just little faces in tiny boxes; they are very real and very close friends to me.
Also, horses. Horses get me out of my own head. It’s an elemental need for me, honestly, which is strange to a lot of people. But if you’re born a horse person, you are born a horse person and it never leaves you. When I’m not around horses, it feels like there’s a big chunk of me missing.
Tell us more about your upcoming projects. Are you working on anything specific or have plans in the pipeline?
I’m pretty excited about my current work in progress. I’m writing a Southern Gothic, which, I think took a lot of hubris to try and take on. The Gothics are sacred to me and I’m not sure I can live up to the story I really want to tell. But I’m going to try like hell.
After that, I’m tossing about an idea for a very dark comedy containing a certain woman and her incidental Satan worshiping, people eating boyfriend.
Finally, are there any nuggets of wisdom that you can impart to other aspiring writers?
A whole hell of a lot has been said about this subject, and a lot of it is repeated. For me, I think, my advice is to make writer friends. Lots of them. You just “get” each other immediately, receive advice and help that can’t come from anywhere else, and have a blast with someone as weird as you are.
And that’s a wrap! Thank you for spending time with us Rana, it has been a blast and we look forward to thoroughly enjoying more of your stories and poetry 🙂
Rana Kelly was born in Alabama in 1977 and grew up in the southeastern United States and spent much of her childhood traveling the world. She’s been writing for most of her life and prefers pens, pets, and good cheese to other people. The love of her life is language, especially British slang and profanity. These days she barely survives in the desert of Arizona and hopes to move to Scotland as soon as she can and never look back.
You can connect with Rana on the following Social Media channels:-
You can buy Rana’s book “Until Her Darkness Goes” here:-
If you too would like to be interviewed on my blog at TooFullToWrite and you have a book or a series of books that you would like us to chat about then fill out the Contact Me form here with your details and we can arrange a future interview slot.
Still want more? Well, Rana’s book has a rock n’ roll backdrop. For more articles on the theme of ‘Sound’ then check out these excellent links below:-
1. A Escritora – O Barulho da Mente
2. The Tragedy of Life (3 min read). – Keep On Moving
3. Sound – law abiding brunette
4. Faith Unlocked – For the Sake of The Gospel
5. New Ideas And Inspirations – Sound
6. My Mixed Blog – Harmful Sound
7. Voice of God – True_George
8. Tales from Bohemia – Banshee sponge melody
9. Life Out of Tunes… – Disturbing the Sound of Silence
10. Therapy – This is Nobody’s blog
11. The Showers of Blessing – The Sound of Music – Austria
12. A Tale of Two Half’s – The Harlem Experiment
13. Mr. Crush – stitches and poems
14. MC’s Whispers – Say nothing
15. Hear – High in a Pine Tree Bed
16. A peek into diaries-“Times have changed” – Yuhu
17. Just Too Much – Sunken Thought
18. Scissors and Earphones – Truer than true
19. singer sings, people listen. – koolest1uknow
20. Accept the Challenges – alfaazmeredilse
21. Vibrations – blackcattwriting
22. Juicy… – If you had to eat your words, would you leave hungry?
23. Around The WORLDPress Amazing Race : Team Donkey – Sunken Thought
24. Positively Un-broken – Music
25. eatingwithsavages – 02-16-17 The Bus Stop
26. In A Nutshell #14 – Sound of Hunger – TerraForm
27. Sara Ackerman, author – untitled #1
28. “Sounds of Silence.” – Nomadic Adventurer
29. themomfred – Sound
30. Sound – …Illusive…Road…
31. Observations of The Urban Spaceman – Proud Lizzie [Flash Fiction]
32. An Emotional Sound – Whole, Hearty, Happy
33. INSPIRED LIVES – Is Anybody Out There?
34. Heart Breathings – Help Me
35. Sound: Memories of a Kitten–Day 6 of Getting Dressed – Shelby’s Starlit Crossing
36. Silent Screams – The Lazy Wanderer
37. More Than One Dress – Patches of Light, Pieces of Grace
38. Silly Old Sod – The Sound Of Silence Is Golden
39. musings and mishaps of an unconditional lover – morning bustle
40. Heard Unhearing – The Chaos Within
41. the world of others – Love it Now
42. Silencing doubt – Debbie Gravett
43. tinyfawns – tiniest
44. Acrostic – Sound – Mick E Talbot Poems
45. A bit of a geeky mom – Silence
46. Haiku Sound – Mick E Talbot Poems
47. Qatar-based company uses fat-shaming to sell – Get Lost
48. Nairobi Poetry House – ORGASMIC ILLUSIONS
49. To Be Free… – writealineblog
50. The Flittering Soul – Our Angel
51. Sounds and Associations – rupalislale
52. Issa Brain Monkey Brain – Click Click Tap Tap
53. The sound of the voiceless…. – Suzhalgal
54. Isabel Caves – Haiku: The Sound of Rain
55. Fine Tuning – Leigha Robbins
56. Sounds of Victory – Snapshots of Life
57. Success Inspirers World – The Eagle
58. Sound – DeepikasRamblings
59. My Personal Blog – Safe and Sound
60. A Momma’s View – Your River
61. Moonlight Reflections – Sound
62. Tangled Webs – Do You Hear What I Hear?
63. A Little Tour – The Chicken Grandma
64. The Romantic Quill – Birth (03 min read)
65. February 15 – My 365 Life
66. Silence Speaks – What is Inside Johann’s Head?
67. wordsareallihavesite – Sound
68. So Long Oolong – Hurdles & Girdles
69. Sound – thinkinkadia
70. Sound – The Bag Lady
71. I Will Fight Site – A Blink in Time …
72. You & Me – The sound of respite.
73. Shattered Glass – Beacons of Life
74. Music – sparksbeforetheblaze
75. Musings of a Random Mind – Finally Saw the Light
76. Sandra Pavloff Conner – Daily Post Prompt: Sound / ‘The Approaching Silence’
77. I Would Prefer to be Deaf – Girl Writing
78. The Showers of Blessing – Sound of Silence
79. It Sounds Like . . . – Sascha Darlington’s Microcosm Explored
80. Nuts. – Dangerspouse
81. Chirping at the Galleria – 25more
82. Sounds like Republican propaganda anew – Your Nibbled News – 2017 YNN
83. Sound Song – Pourquoi pas fou?
84. Three Months & Two Days – Crystaleyes20
85. Peaceful Assembly – Inner Whispers
86. Le Petit Prince – Run and Travel
87. Into the Hush – Written By
88. Fluffy Pool – I Always Sound Like This
89. Sound Of Snow – Chadmattician
90. Sound – Image & Word
91. manvsloneliness – Day 223: The Man and the Sizzling East-West Crossover; ‘Sound’
92. Sound – Earthlings305
93. Following Him Beside Still Waters – Feel No Shame
94. Laurel Grove loves… – Another kind of Tea Party
95. Coffitivity – Nick Momrik
96. Sound Familiar? – Wanna Read My Mind
97. Night Sounds – April’s Perspective
98. Noisy But Glorious – mycreatorscreation
99. 1.5 – They – The Eternity Acts
100. Listening to the Rain – Sounds Flood Us with Memories of Our Pasts – Jacki Kellum
101. theblackwallblog – Winter Rumbles
102. Invisible Illnesses – Sound – Daily Prompt
103. Ideals – Just me and us blog
104. Sounds Like an Orchestra – Pastoral Symphony
105. Silence of Music – Word Adventures
106. Sound Of – thehouseofbailey
107. Sound Box – thehouseofbailey
108. Sound Song – thehouseofbailey
109. The Sound of Baseball – Jukz.Shoes
110. Sound – A Thomas Point of View
111. Daily Post-Sound – All About Writing and more
112. Sound: Acrostic – And so it starts…
113. WOTD: Sound Goodbye and Thanks for all the Fish (poem) – In the Abstract
114. Everything you’ve come to expect – themanbehindtheglass
115. Um, Um Good – My Second Act, Scene One
116. Mainline_Matter – Melodic Sound
117. Sound – The Shore of Consciousness
118. A colorful conversation? – Your Guided Journal
119. Attuned Photography – Ocean – sound of harmony
120. Frois – Poemsicles (& Other Literary Desserts)
121. A Caregiving Marriage – Quietness
122. Toortsie, Kameel en Bokbaaivygie se blog – Farm sounds
123. Collateral damage or embarassment? – Your Nibbled News – 2017 YNN
124. The Sound of Being Warm and Dry – Facts and Fiction
125. The Good Seats Aren’t Reserved for Me – CD-W, Author Flawed to Perfection
126. Weekend In Tacoma – Who I Was
127. The Consulting Writer – TMJ: Hearing Loss
128. Delicious Soulful Self Love – Shoehorning into Lycra
129. in 25 words more or less – #cyw/daily post: senses
130. Sound – Wings Of Poetry
131. The Process of Letting Go (poem) – stephentotheplate
132. Kipling’s IF and Graduate School. – kindergartenknowledge.com
133. The one thing your Facebook friends don’t care about
134. Did Lady Justice Make a Sound when Truth was Broken? – Growl for Justice
135. GLAÇON – icicle
136. Flowers and Breezes – Sound
137. There Are More Poets than Stars in the Firmament – always read the fine print
138. Writing with Spirit – Ancestral Voices in My Head
139. My World With Words – Carry a What?
140. Shail’s Nest – The sound of difference
141. The one – Me and the Keyboard
142. Look for the Good – The Quiet and the Storm
143. The Sound Of Garbage – Rambling Kori
144. The Siren Sound of Spring – Light in Colorado
145. How to describe sound to a deaf person. – plotlessone.com
146. lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown – Sounds of Morning: Two Portals
147. The Eagle – atrangizindagieksafar
148. My Own Little Wars – Sound
149. Lets do this together – Sounds
150. 4 A.M. – Secrets of a wife
151. Daily Post Prompt: Let us Dance to The Sound of Beating Hearts – Sumyanna Writes
152. Dark Delights, Noisy Nights – The peepal
153. logged off lives – The Rucksack
154. In the World of Thoughts – Silent Sound of Humbleness
155. Wotd sound – Kimo’s Den Of Iniquity
156. bombtune.com – fades in…
157. Charron’s Chatter – Harmony of the Sph’ears
158. Sound…and fury – If you had to eat your words, would you leave hungry?
159. Court House – ARJUN SHIVARAM
160. House of Heart – Ben Huberman’s Daily Prompt : Sound
161. The Voyages of Travel… – Nomadchasingwaterfalls
162. The Sound of Stigma (Daily Word Prompt is Sound) – My Loud Bipolar Whispers
163. Write Here: Write Now – Today’s Earworm
164. The happy Quitter! – Sound asleep
165. Covert Novelist – Sound
166. Toortsie, Kameel en Bokbaaivygie se blog – Skommel
167. SOUNDS OF A BABY’S CRY – Grief Poetry
168. Where Fancy is Bred – The Page Turns
169. The Cat Chronicles – Daily Feline Prompt: Feline Sounds
170. All I wanted was clear, decent sound! – Chronicles of an Orange-Haired Woman!
171. Act of Defiance – november child
172. Sound… word play – heLp! those help themselves
173. kristinakoti – It’s Sarcasm Time
174. Lamont and Dude Reminisce about Life in L.A. – I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am!
175. sonja benskin mesher – . noun uk
176. The Sound of Writing… – Success Strategies
177. Waiting, wondering, why… – My Struggling Heart
178. Japanese Wh1spers – Guilty Pleasure
179. SERENDIPITY – SOUND, MOVIES, AND TELEVISION – WHATEVER HAPPENED TO REALLY GREAT SOUND?
180. inspiration – Brain and Music
181. LadyLebz – DANCEHALL QUEENS OF SOUTHERN AFRICA
182. Na’ama Yehuda – The Sounds In The Silence …
183. Soundwaves – The Red Bearded
184. LadyLebz – LIFE HACK: HOW TO STOP SWEARING
185. MEUS VERSOS #4 – Fenix Verde / Green Phoenix
186. SOUND OF MY SOUND HEART – Rainbow
187. LadyLebz – A YOUNG BLACK WOMAN CHOOSING TO REMAIN SINGLE FOR LIFE
188. Spiral Up! – Fearless Authenticity
189. Natural ways to boost your skin’s appearance for anyone even kids! – art of being fabulous
190. Miss Pelican’s Perch – Sound Healing
191. andsoitisborn – Communication Breakdown
192. Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss – The sounds
193. CopyCat Cafe: Good Morning! – Rexine Rawhead
194. DCMontreal: Blowing the Whistle on Society – Use The Vaudeville Hook On Those Who Try To Evade Media Questions
195. Our Sounds, Our Emotional Expressions – SHINE MAGAZINE
196. Zachary W Gilbert, Author – Under Wooden Giants
197. thelonerose – An invite
198. Consumed – emotionsoflife2016
199. theempathyqueen – The Sound of Silence
200. Love the sound of his voice – In my world
201. (Don’t Be) Gone – These Things I Write
202. White Noise – Everything Lovely & Good
203. The sound of her voice… – Shattered in Him
204. Of Talking About Movies – Of Opinions
205. How do you fall in love? – Think Creative
206. Art – … SoundEagle in Erik Otis’ Sound Colour Vibration (Music
207. In A Perfectly Windy Sky – The Sound of Life
208. The sound of his breath – Sarahs Crazy Mind
209. #Abortion Discussion with @tacollin & @ArtisticLayman for the #Sanctification Hour – Jerome Danner
210. poor haiku – From Where Does Inspiration Come
211. Who is hurting the most here! – Elaine’s Journey of Spiritual Awakening.
212. SoundEagle – … SoundEagle in Art, Aphorism and Paramusic
213. slideaways – Aime-moi ne m’aime pas
214. Kim Knight-Author – Writing Prompt & Thriller Novel Teaser: “The Voices in Her Head”. #amreading #thriller
215. Sound – The Mind of Nox
216. juantetcts – Daily Post
217. kStan(ly) kSays – off-kilter
218. Forever – Thoughts of Words
219. And then there was one – Sounds of Silence
220. mylocalweb – the sound of your silence
221. Haughty Hoots – Back On The Grid
222. kStan(ly) kSays – what did you say?
223. kStan(ly) kSays – lulu isn’t well-behaved
224. kStan(ly) kSays – when the sun goes down
225. My Sound. – Irrationally Stable
226. Sound… – Emotions That Matter.
227. Your Name – Poetry On My Mind
228. The silence in my head – As I was saying…
229. Hot Dogs and Marmalade – My Mother’s Voice
230. B_ live – Butterfly Blue
231. SoundEagle – Facing the Noise & Music: Grey Barriers and Green Frontiers of Sound, Society and Environment
232. The Most Unromantic Movie on V Day – The Hope Filled Addict
233. Ellen Grace Olinger – Haiku Art Site – Sound
234. Ladyleemanila – Sound – Daily Prompt
235. the15thday – the15thday, 1 year on
236. If words fall on deaf ears do they make a sound? – Art, Poetry, Insight KAM
237. Intently Listen – Pete Gardner Psalms
238. SoundEagle – …SoundEagle in Love and Dove, Art and Heart on Valentine’s Day with Gifts
239. Relax – Near the lobster pound
240. Zombie Flamingos – Apparently I can draw!
241. SoundEagle – … SoundEagle in SoundCloud: Art, Music and Compositions about New Sensations, Love, Life, Country, Nature, Dreaming, Meditation and Spirituality
242. Sound #DailyPrompt #WritersWednesday – Of Glass & Paper
243. Etymology and the Art of Forgiveness: â€œVergeblichâ€ and â€œIn Vainâ€ – Jim
244. Arriving in Style – CROOKED LITTLE GIANT
245. The Inner Sounds – Its PH
246. Autism in Our Nest – Resetting Expectations
247. Devil Doll Musings – The Sound Of Silence
248. It starts with me – The sound of overcoming trauma
249. MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO – Sound
250. Southern By Design – This War
251. Hot White Snow – Hello Silence, My Old Friend
252. Write Ally! Write! – Sound (Haiku: Of a broken heart)
253. Apartment Living, Oh YES! – Elaine’s Journey of Spiritual Awakening.
254. Of Johannesburg Dogs and Cupcakes – Liberty on the Lighter Side
255. Science Traveler – Thomas Edison and the Talking Doll
256. the liquid beaded sigh of sound – Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky
257. Just Empty Shoes – Sound
258. Heartbeat – NOOKS&CRANNIES
259. Designer Sophisticate – Soothing and relaxing or nothing at all.
260. Bird sounds – Don’t hold your breath
261. Sound – All About Writing and more
262. I wrote a book. Now what? – That sounds right
263. Night Noises – Just Writing!
264. It’s official – Elaine’s Journey of Spiritual Awakening.
265. Back Into the Wild – a moment teller’s
266. The Wandering Poet – Some soothing summer wind and water
267. confessions of an indian curry-eater – Jumaira, Ecclesfield, Sheffield (74%)
268. Lantern Words – The Unfurious Sound
269. Lost Property Repository – In the dark