5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… M. Raye Turner, author of Pretty Monster

JoeyPinkney.com Exclusive Interview
5 Minutes, 5 Questions With…
M. Raye Turner, author of Pretty Monster
(Faith Works Production, LLC)

m raye turner pretty monster on amazondotcom

Experience tears and laughter walking through the life and times of Tangie Waters, a resilient daddy’s girl who grew up in the suburbs of Chicago. Pretty Monster is an attention-grabbing tale of a young woman’s determination to survive that leaves one questioning their own maturity.

Despite her monstrous ego, Tangie finds humility through her faith in God and the wisdom of her grandparents as she struggles to be at peace while overcoming constant setbacks, family woes, and the complexities of being a single mother pursuing higher education. Pretty Monster is powerfully portrayed story told with raw honesty and love.

Joey Pinkney: Where did you get the idea and inspiration to write Pretty Monster? Is Tangie Waters you?

M. Raye Turner: Pretty Monster fell into my spirit as I was on the way to buy a cup of coffee one morning. The introduction just came to me: “I want to paint you a picture and write you a song about the love below…” I rushed home to write that down. The flow didn’t stop until I had outlined a whole book that had no title. I didn’t decide or plan to write a book.

It was just the next logical step with the purge that I began to share with others. I eventually bought into the idea to go for it and turned it into a tribute to my deceased parents.

Tangie was created to be a rare breed with a masculine appeal to male readers and from the daddy’s girl perspective. Misunderstood and envied by most women who can’t relate to her deep faith and free spirit tendencies. Tangie could very well reflect my alter ego and the twin I wished for but never had.Also, in retrospect I give some credit to Outkast and the movie Idlewild as it sparked something-something.

JP: What sets Pretty Monster apart from other novels in its genre where the protagonist is a single mother struggling with survival in the inner-city?

MRT: It’s succinct and lacks product placement/free marketing… It’s suburban, country, faith driven, intellectual and raw as hell. My readers say its real and that they can see and feel the movements in the literature. They laugh out loud, tears up and get mad based on the way the story pulls them into the characters.

Tangie is never a victim of her circumstances; she has book and street smarts. She knows what she wants and knows how to get it. She learns from the mistakes of others as well as hers and keeps moving.It has been compared to Lackawanna Blues.

JP: As an author, what are the keys to your success that lead to Pretty Monster getting out to the public?

MRT: Time and chance, Mr. Pickney. Word-of-mouth and public speaking opportunities have been awesome venues with positively powerful results. I have been blessed by people God has placed in my path that want to share the light and actually push me to the front of the stage and out of my comfort zone behind stage.

I was encouraged to publish my mental purge, harassed into self-publishing and delighted by the way Pretty Monster has begun to create its own following, interest and success.

JP: As an author, what is your writing process? How long did it take for you to start and finish Pretty Monster?

MRT: (Smile) I like a quiet workspace or a place of beauty (a beach or nature trails). I only write when I feel like it which means I might jump up at 2 or 3am and write until I get it all out of my head. I may not revisit that piece for days or months. I started Pretty Monster in October and finished it in January. The story took 3 months at best.

The revision process came as people showed interest in publishing my work. Months and months later, I found myself making notes to add comedy sketches, Gullah vernacular and the things I love about Chicago to the emerging list of revisions, time lines and the themes of the book.

JP: What’s next for M. Raye Turner?

MRT: I have 3 books outlined. I don’t feel compelled or inspired to move on those at this time. My focus is to take Pretty Monster to the next level, which to me means stage and film plays.


P.S. Join the Joey Reviews Newsletter at http://joeypinkney.com/joey-reviews-newsletter.html

P.S.S. If you want to be feature in a 5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… series, email me at joey.pinkney@gmail.com or myspace.com/joeyreviews

Please click on the banners to learn more about each JoeyPinkney.com sponsor:

Peace in the Storm Banner
Click here to check out Nanette Buchanan
Jean Holloway Banner
kiffany dugger banner
Barbara Grovner Banner
Teresa Patterson's Official Website
til debt do us part banner

You need to advertise with JoeyPinkney.com for just $20! (For more information click here.)

9 thoughts on “5 Minutes, 5 Questions With… M. Raye Turner, author of Pretty Monster”

  1. I thoroughly enjoyed the book. There is a realness about the character and her journey. At times it had me laughing out loud, and other crying uncontrollably.

    I am delighted to see that you fought throught he self publishing process. I am a firm believer that one should never pay someone for things they are capable of doing themselves for free.

    May God bless “Pretty Monster” in all of us, and bless you with an annointing to continue to do just what you did for many other publications inthe futures. There is a calling.

  2. Thank you for your comment. What M. Raye Turner has done is nothing short of amazing. It’s so hard for some writers to build a loyal fanbase after they work hard to get something published. Ms. Turner’s readership convinced her to get the book together and publish it so they could get their hands on it.

    Props to Ms. Turner!

  3. I could not put this book down. Once I started reading it, I was hooked. I had to find out what happened to the Tangie and how she would make it through her struggles.

    Tangie is raw, funny, smart, loving, yet she is vulnerable (I don’t want to give any of the story away!). Read this book for yourself.

  4. Pretty Monster is an amazing story about trials, tribulations and a girl’s determination to survive . Once I started reading it, I just couldn’t put it down.

  5. Wow. Thank you to everyone for coming to let potential readers know about this great book.

    I hope her story inspires future writers and these comments inspire future readers of Pretty Monster.

  6. Joey thank you for pulling the guts of the story out of me with your direct, no-nonsense line of questions!!! I wish you continued success in all that you are doing and future goals!

    To My readers! Your appreciation is overwhelming! Thank you for the constant love and support of my work!
    Until real soon!

  7. This is an incredible story by MRT. One that made me stop reading, light a cigar, sip some cognac and ride some mo’. I think everyone has either live this story or knows someone who has. MRT brings it to life hardcore with humor & tragedy. She’s definitely going places.

    Next stop: Hollywood

  8. Regardless of what side of the tracks you come from, you can relate to Tangie Waters. As I read, the words began to float off the pages and become living organism full of the tapestry of the timeline in which the characters exist. It is like listening to Biggie’s “Ready To Die”. I feel the passion, pain and triumph! Kudo’s

Comments are closed.