About the Author

Author M.J. Bell

Thinking back to when I first started writing, I would say it was in my junior year of high school when Mr. Thompson, my English teacher, gave the class a chance for extra credit by writing an epilogue to Silas Mariner. Before then writing was the farthest thing from my mind and I only did it because I needed to bring my grade up. So imagine my surprise when my story was the only one chosen and read out loud to the class. Not only was I embarrassed when all my classmates turned to stare at me, but I was also shocked that someone actually thought I had writing ability. I’ve never forgotten that feeling of pride and accomplishment. Though it has taken me decades to follow that destiny and become an author, I still consider myself lucky-for many people are never able to find their true calling.

I grew up in Iowa and enjoyed reading, but there were way too many other things I enjoyed more, such as spending the summers on my uncle’s farm, riding my bike and hanging out with friends. I do remember being completely hooked on the Hardy Boys’ mysteries and on a series call the Bobbsey Twins, however. And I will never forget reading The Haunting of Hill House-it scared the wits out of me and I couldn’t sleep without a light on for months afterwards. To this day, I still haven’t been able to watch the movie! But it wasn’t until I was somewhere in my thirties and the mother of four children that I truly came to appreciate books. I’m not sure what happened, maybe there was something added to the water that year, but suddenly and without warning, I was totally obsessed with reading. I would devour any book I could get my hands on and it made no difference the genre, I craved them all–suspense, romance, science fiction, and fantasy most of all. And when the Harry Potter series came along, I truly fell in love and started thinking again about writing.

Once I started jotting down story lines and playing around on my computer with them, my muse, Daniel, stepped in and took charge. I’m not sure how I became one of the lucky ones to be adopted by a muse, but I can tell you it’s the most incredible experience. Many times I have sat in front of my computer at a loss as to where to go with the story, but miraculously as my fingers hit the keyboard Daniel would fill in everything I needed to know. I worried sometimes when I didn’t understand where he was going with it, but he never failed to amaze me and always pulled it together. So I can truthfully say it is as much of an adventure for me to write the books as it is for my readers to read them.

My first book, The Secret Prince of Tir na-nÓg, was published in 2008. To my surprise, it received the honor of being chosen as the 2009 Gold Award winner in the fantasy category of the Mom’s Choice Award. Unfortunately, before it could even be distributed, the publisher went out of business and that was the end of that. However, I was not deterred. I changed the name, updated it somewhat and published it myself under the new title, Before the Full Moon Rises. I then went on to write Book II of the Chronicles of the Secret Prince trilogy, Once Upon a Darker Time, and Book III, How Dark the Light Shines.

I’ve been fortunate to have Daniel stick with me to the end-it is after all his story and has been from the beginning. He has made me laugh, made me cry and I’ve been shocked at times, but he and Deston know the story and where it goes and that’s really all that matters. I just feel privileged that they’re letting me go along for the ride!


You can contact M.J. Bell at:

Facebook:  MJ Bell Author

twitter:  marlabell2

email:  mjbell.author@gmail.com