Welcome to YA Books Central's "Indie Superstars" column. This event will spotlight the best and brightest of the indie community.

You don’t want to miss out on these talented authors


This week we’re interviewing Marissa Allen, debut author of Born Royal



Welcome to YABC, Marissa!


Caitlin Haines: Can you tell us a little about your book?

Marissa Allen: It’s a science fiction action adventure ride. I believe it delves into the psychology of going through a traumatic event. I fell in love with these characters and I hope you do as well.


Caitlin: What inspired you to write it?

Marissa: It all started with a day of wine day drinking, a Castle marathon and an obsession over hunger games. I’ve been working on it for a decade almost. I started with a year of just plotting no writing, to make sure it came together and didn’t fall apart. It looks nothing like it did then but I’m happy with the change it’s gone through.


Caitlin: Have you always wanted to be an author?

Marissa: I didn’t think about actually being an author until I started plotting this book when I was 21, but I’ve been writing my whole life. I actually learned to write on Neopets in the role play guilds and Inuyasha fan fiction, even though it took me years to admit that.


Caitlin: This is your first book, congratulations! Did you do anything fun to celebrate?

Marissa: I had a lot of mini celebrations when I got to different steps, by the time the book was officially out I just relaxed and enjoyed the feeling.


Caitlin: Who is your favorite character other than Vi and why?

Marissa: Gwen. She’s the embodiment of girls lifting each other up in my story and I hope that others love her as much as I do.


Caitlin: In the book, Vi is held captive for years and experimented on. How does she handle that? How is mental health incorporated into this story?

Marissa: Mental health is a huge theme in my stories. I want to show that not everyone is okay all the time, it’s driven by a lot of personal experiences. Not being tortured, but just feeling down, pretending to have a smile when you don’t feel it. I hope that my stories can help destigmatize talking about one's mental health.


Caitlin: Vi discovers something pretty major about herself that challenges everything she knows. What’s something you have learned about yourself while writing and publishing this book?

Marissa: I didn’t think I was someone who finished projects. I never though this book would ever be published I have been working on it for so long. I’ve realized I’m a lot stronger than I gave myself credit for. Now I’m powering through book 2 for National Novel Writing Month.


Caitlin: If you were a scientist with unlimited means, what kind of experiments would you do?

Marissa: I would do cancer research. My mom survived breast cancer, and my sister is struggling with cancer as well. It’s something I hope we can see eradicated soon.


Caitlin: Throughout the book, there are people skilled in technology, strategy, weapons, etc. If you had one super-skill, what would it be?

Marissa: Learning, I would love to be able to just download new information and practice to become skilled in many things!


Caitlin: How many books are going to be in the series? What can you tell us about what’s coming in the sequels without giving too much away?

Marissa: There are going to be three books in this series. Then there is a plan for a spin off of at least a duology of one of the characters after the series is over. There is a lot of love, friendship, and heartbreak coming up, but I believe everyone is going to find what they are looking for at the conclusion. That and it’s not going to end how you think… I can pretty much guarantee.



Meet Marissa

Marissa Allen is a finance guru by day and writer by night. She currently lives in Mountain View, California with resident artist Sean Eike. She was raised in Omaha, Nebraska and still feels like a midwestern girl at heart. Currently she is working on finance and wellness blogs. As well as working on her trilogy. She has two self-published short stories titled Dragon Rider and Dragon Rider 2, a New Home. Born Royal her first full length novel is available on Amazon. She has a bachelors and masters in Creative Writing from Southern New Hampshire University.

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Imprisoned and experimented on since she was twelve, Princess Genevieve “Vi” Astor is ready for revenge.

After manipulating her way to the throne of Kabria, Queen Esmerelda caused the death of the king and kept Vi as a royal hostage. For six years, the queen poked and prodded her stepdaughter. The world thinks she’s ill, but Vi’s childhood friends know better.

Working with the Rebels, they break her free. The Rebels, however, have their own motives and are calling the shots. Vi knows the corruption of power firsthand. And when she discovers the secret they’ve all been hiding from her, she finds she doesn’t know whom she can trust.

As war begins, Vi is forced to decide if she’ll join the Rebels against the queen or take her newfound freedom and run.

Perfect for fans of Legend by Marie Lu, Graceling by Kristin Cashore, and The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer.


One (1) winner will receive an ebook edition of Born Royal 


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