Mary Elizabeth Raines

Biography

MARY ELIZABETH (LEACH) RAINES writes novels and plays, as well as books about hypnosis. She has won national, state and local awards for her writing. Her writing ranges from inspiring literary fiction about serious life themes, as in her novel, UNA, to contemporary (THE SECRET OF EATING RASPBERRIES) to whimsical and satirical (THE MAN IN THE GPS AND OTHER STORIES).

She was one of the 2015 top prize winners in the coveted Writer's Digest competition in the category of literary/mainstream story, and was also a prize-winner in 2016 for nonfiction. She has won other awards in the past for her writing. Ms. Raines' lengthy publishing history began when she sold children's stories to magazines in the early 1970s. She has been a newspaper reporter and a freelance editor, and is currently a columnist for "The Journal of Hypnotism." She teaches writing classes for adult education in Sedona, Arizona, where she resides.

Her formal education was in piano performance at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, and she also spent several years in independent film studies at the University of Wisconsin in Oshkosh. She still plays the piano, writes plays and film scripts, and has a long history of acting and directing. Ms. Raines is also an internationally recognized hypnotist and the director of the Academy for Professional Hypnosis Training.

She is happy to be a distant cousin of Louisa May Alcott.

Smashwords Interview

What do your fans mean to you?
I have the greatest respect for my readers and fans, for they are people just like me--people who READ, and share similar passions, integrity, and a love of good stories! My writing is diverse; none of my work fits in quite in the same genre as anything else. My first novel "UNA," for instance, is very intense historical fiction with moments of darkness and light, based upon one woman's experience of learning to survive in the woods on her own in Nazi Germany. In contrast, "The Secret of Eating Raspberries," while it has the theme of how people who are vastly different can learn to get along, is much lighter reading and I think of it as a romantic dramedy (a light drama with a lot of humor). "The Man in the GPS and Other Stories" has short stories that vary from whimsical to satirical to heavy, and they have a completely different texture from spirit-inspired book, "The Laughing Cherub Guide to Past-Life Regression: A Handbook for Real People."

Some of my readers are fans of just one of my works, such as my novel or my past-life book. Others love everything I've written. Regardless, no author writes just for the satisfaction of stringing words together. There is a completion to the process of writing. Just as a chef is recognized when people eat what she has cooked, and the musician when an audience hears her perform, an author's final joy occurs when people read--and appreciate!--her words. That connection is for me nearly palpable. My fans are hugely importantly to me, and I am ever so grateful to them!
What's the story behind your latest book?
My most recently published novel, "The Secret of Eating Raspberries," stemmed from something that actually happened to a friend of mine. Like the heroine in the book, my friend is a sweet, innocent, elementary-school teacher. One summer she thought she was getting a job in the parks department teaching arts and recreation to little kids. Instead, they mistakenly assigned her to the maintenance crew. She kept the job. She needed the money.

The people on the crew were from another world. They were unbelievably crude, horribly rude, and some were the kind of people you don't want to meet on a city street late at night. Some of the rough dialogue engaged in by the crew in the story was taken from what my friend shared with me.

I began to ponder. How could people from two different worlds learn to get along? In movies, that happens when one side or the other becomes transformed and "sees the light." What, I wondered, if neither side were to change? Could there be harmony? This question, along with my friend's amusing and yet shocking story, was the basis for "The Secret of Eating Raspberries."
Read more of this interview.

Where to find Mary Elizabeth Raines online


Where to buy in print


Books

The Man in the GPS and Other Stories
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 32,840. Language: English. Published: April 8, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary, Fiction » Humor & comedy » Satire
The Man in the GPS and Other Stories is a sometimes salacious, sometimes poignant, sometimes sardonic, sometimes whimsical, but always entertaining collection of short stories told in the masterful and unique voice of award-winning writer, Mary Elizabeth Leach.
The Secret of Eating Raspberries
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 44,790. Language: English. Published: April 8, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Literature » Literary, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
The Secret of Eating Raspberries tells the riveting story of worlds that collide and an unlikely romance. When a gentle schoolteacher finds herself thrown into the midst of crude, foul-mouthed young people and their surly, enigmatic boss, she faces the nearly impossible task of trying to get along with people who are very different from her.
You Might Like Some of These Poems
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 2,920. Language: English. Published: March 29, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Poetry » American poetry, Fiction » Anthologies » Poetry - single author
This 28 poems in this small volume by Mary Elizabeth Raines were written in the 1960s and 1970s. The author re-discovered them after they sat in a box for many years, and found them interesting. Simply written, reflecting whimsy, tenderness and sometimes deep emotion, these are the timeless musings of a young woman. You might like some of them.
The Road to Happy Hills: A One-act Play
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 3,380. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American, Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
This short (15-20 min.), comic one-act play has a cast of 2 women and 1 man. Laura, an uptight librarian, hates George, whom she met through an internet dating site, until they begin discussing routes and maps. The dialogue is full of cute sexual innuendo, and is intended for adult audiences. No costumes or sets are needed beyond a table and 3 chairs. Premiered by Fly-by-Night Players.
The Transformation of an Egg: A One-act Play
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 2,310. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American, Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
In this short (12-18 min.), comic one-act play, three eggs in a nest discuss their fate. Cast for two women and one man, the clever, light-hearted script is G-rated. No costumes or sets are needed, and movement is minimal. While it is equally funny in large venues, this is the perfect low-budget one-act play for small theaters, clubs, churches, schools and living-room readings.
Triplets: A One-Act Play
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 3,310. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American, Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
This short (15-20 min.) funny one-act play for two women and one man has mildly adult content and slightly racy dialogue. "Triplets" is about three people who find themselves reincarnated as babies. There are some cute twists in the script, which takes a comedic look at topics of adultery, bisexuality, racism and reincarnation. No costumes or sets are required, and actors remain seated.
Love on the Subway: A One-act Play with Monologues
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 2,970. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American, Fiction » Literature » Plays & Screenplays
In this short one-act play (10-20 min), three strangers stranded on a subway swap stories about the first time they fell in love. The play consists of a brief segment of dialogue, followed by three monologues. It can be performed by 1 woman alone, 3 woman, or 2 women and 1 man. No sets are required, and actors may remain seated, making it an ideal venue for small theaters/performance spaces .
One-Act Play: Why Can't They Just Eat Flowers?
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 4,820. Language: English. Published: February 25, 2010. Categories: Fiction » Plays & Screenplays » American, Fiction » Young adult or teen » Drama
In this short (30-min.) one-act comedy, Myrtle and Rose are two fairies who dislike human beings. They temporarily take human form, with surprising consequences. There are three scenes. Cast for either 2 women, or 1 woman and 1 man, this play was originally written for h.s. play competitions, and went to state level. With minimal cast and sets, it is ideal for h.s., church or small theater groups.
The Laughing Cherub Guide to Past-life Regression: A Handbook for Real People
Price: $1.99 USD. Words: 42,630. Language: English. Published: February 24, 2010. Categories: Nonfiction » New Age » Reincarnation, Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Self-realization
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What is a past-life regression like? Do we all have past lives? Why would someone want to learn about who they were in a former lifetime? Aren't most past lives made up? What if I remember something unpleasant? Mary Elizabeth Raines, an internationally recognized expert on past-life regression, answers these questions and shares the secrets of how past-life regression works to heal and transform.

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