Markelle Grabo

Young Adult Author


The Journey into the Realm Series

  1. How many books are in the series?

    There are six books in the Journey into the Realm series, with the sixth book acting as more of an epilogue to the series rather than the conclusion of the main storyline. 

  2. Does Ramsey's character reflect your own personality?

    I remember when I was first writing The Elf Girl and I had discussions with both my best friend and my mom about the storyline and characters. And whenever they would comment about a particular part in the story, they would always refer to me as Ramsey. Example: "So you have to journey through the Realm to save your sister?"

    I didn't realize just how alike Ramsey and I were until they brought it to my attention. So, yes, Ramsey and I are very similar in beliefs, attitude, choice of speech, thoughts, etc. But there are a few distinct differences - besides the fact that she is a magical creature. But those differences are very subtle, and are only in place for the purpose of the storyline.

  3. What is Ramsey's secret?

    You're wasting your time with this question. Honestly, my lips are sealed...

  4. Why introduce the love triangle of Ramsey, Stellan, and Nathan? Was it just because the subject is popular in YA lit?

    WARNING: Spoilers ahead!

    I introduced the "love triangle" idea for a reason that may surprise readers. It's not about choosing who is better. It's not about who Ramsey loved more. It's not an either/or dynamic. Ramsey loved Stellan and Nathan equally but in different ways and at separate stages in her life. This "love triangle," if you can call it that, is about the different kinds of love one may find in life. There's the "first love," like Stellan, that rests heavily on new experiences, infatuation, and exploration. And then there's the "love from friendship," like Nathan, that rests on companionship, common interests, progression, acceptance, and eternal bonds. The multiple love interests were introduced to show Ramsey's growth and transition through life. Ramsey and Stellan's relationship couldn't last because it was based on first love infatuation and on who they were before Ramsey discovered her secret and Stellan left for war. During their time apart, they went through too many changes on their own to keep their relationship alive when they were together. They grew in different directions, and in the end, knew their relationship had had its time and wasn't meant to last. On the other hand, Ramsey and Nathan grew closer as they experienced change together. During their time as friends, they formed a bond that inevitably developed into lasting love. Throughout the rest of the series, I'll be introducing and examining other forms of love and how they leave their marks on those who experience them. 

  5. The ending of The Spell Master was a cliffhanger just like The Elf Girl. What can readers expect in book 3?

    I can't give too much away yet and I don't want to include any spoilers for those who haven't read The Spell Master, but book 3, The Stolen Child, will begin in Tarlore, the capital of The Elf Realm. Ramsey is grieving recent deaths and struggling to balance her personal life and her public duties. She knows it's her destiny to end the war, and when the opportunity presents itself, she begins an exciting and dangerous journey that will test relationships, beliefs, and past choices.

  6. Why does the time span between each book release differ?

    Writing takes a lot of time and energy. As a current college student, my main focus must be school, so if I'm writing, editing, or publishing a Journey into the Realm novel in the middle of a semester, the process will automatically be much longer, as I'm always buried in school books and homework. It's also difficult to communicate with my editor, my publisher, and my mother (who is always a huge help with my novels) during those times because college feels kind of like another world to me. I'll be able to have much more time for writing after I graduate.

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  1. How do I get my work published?

    There is no easy answer to this particular question. Writing is hard enough work on its own, and publishing is a whole other avenue. I myself can't tell you how to publish your writing. The process is up to you and you alone.

  2. What inspires you to write?

    Everything around me inspires me to write. What I see, what I hear, what I feel. Writing is such a part of me that I can connect it to every aspect of my life.

    I would have to say that I was first inspired to really sit down and write when I was in 5th grade. Two major things happened to me that year that basically got me interested in both the writing and fantasy fields. First, meeting one of my very best friends, Sofi. She introduced me to fairy artists like Amy Brown, and I was immediately hooked. She was the start to my love for all things fairy-like. Then, that winter, my Aunt Kim died. She was an artist herself, and I inherited some of her paintings and fairy memorabilia. I used her memory and my newly found inspiration to discover my passion for writing.

    But all of that leads back to God. He is the source of inspiration for everything that I do.

  3. Where do you get your ideas for writing?

    I honestly cannot answer this question very well. I have absolutely no idea where my ideas (haha) come from. I don't try to think of ideas, they just materialize when I least expect them to, usually when I have a clear head, thinking about nothing particularly important. That's when the magic happens.

  4. Do you have plans for other novels unrelated to the Journey into the Realm series?

    I have tons of ideas and outlines just waiting for me to focus on. But that can't happen until I've finished Ramsey's story. She is taking priority at the moment. But I can say that the series following JITR is completely set in stone and I'm absolutely in love with the storyline I've created. Still fantasy, but you won't find any elves. That's all I'll give away for now.

  5. Has your writing style changed since The Elf Girl was released?

    I wouldn't say it has changed, but it has definitely evolved and matured. Studying in college has improved my vocabulary, grammar, and sentence structure immensely. So you can probably notice a shift in language style after The Elf Girl and maybe even The Spell Master. I'm okay with that because I'd rather keep getting better than get worse!

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  1. How do you pronounce your name?

    For my first name, the last "e" in "Markelle" is silent. So it's not like "Markelly" (I know, it sounds ridiculous, but it's happened!) The "Elle" is the same way you would pronounce Reese Witherspoon's character "Elle Woods" in Legally Blonde.

    "Grabo" is pronounced "Gray-Bow" Like the color and something a girl puts on the top of her head to look pretty. :D

  2. Green is mentioned a lot in your writing, whether it be in your book or on your website. Is it your favorite color?

    Not at all! But I do love the color (my Irish blood talking). When I started writing The Elf Girl, green was just a central idea throughout the novel. When I think of elves, I think of nature and forests, which lead me to green. So I decided to make it the general color base of my website to keep up with the theme.

    My actual favorite color is purple, and it always will be. Literally half of my wardrobe consists of it and my room has many purple garnishes. :D

  3. What is your favorite book?

    I actually have two favorites. Fire Bringer by David Clement Davies and The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.

  4. Any other passions besides writing and reading?

    I've developed a huge passion for television. In a way, a book series and a TV show are similar because they both have continuing stories. I love storytelling in all forms, but I would say that television has become second to novels for me. I'd love to get the chance to write for a show one day. I know the process is different, but I would really like to try it.

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