Friday, May 14, 2010

Interview with Molly, one of the characters in Mary Cunningham's The Magician's Castle

Say Woof! to my special guest today: Molly! Molly is a fictional doggy in one of Mary Cunningham's fantasy/mystery middle-grade novels, The Magician's Castle. But she's not just a fictional character. She's based on a real Molly who was very close to Mary's heart. Now she lives forever in her books!

If you've never heard of Mary Cunningham, she's a super cool author who writes exciting stories for tweens ages 9-12. My mom has read all of her books and she loves them! So be sure to check out Mary's website at

Molly, I understand you're one of the characters in Mary's new book, The Magician's Castle. What type of character are you and what role do you play in the story?

Molly: Woof! My first interview! This is as exciting as taking a walk or getting a new chew toy!

In my author's book, "The Magician's Castle," I start out as a pretty unassuming little brown mutt, but do I ever change. Thanks to some pretty cool magic, I transform into the size of a Kentucky thoroughbred and save the day for Cynthia and Gus when they're threatened by a huge rock monster. I also do what doggies do best; dig up clues. When the two time-traveling best friends get stuck, I save the day with my clue-sniffing nose.

Mary told me your character is based on her beloved dog, who passed away not long ago. How does it feel to immortalize a real pet in such a way?

Molly: When I found out about how I was honoring the first Molly, I just wanted to chase my tail with joy. To be such an interesting and valuable character in a book is great, but to be able to immortalize a fellow canine that meant the world to her mom and dad, is more than I ever imagined. I knew from the start that the love and care Mary put into writing my character was not only her devotion to the series, but mainly her devotion to Molly.

What was the real Molly like? Are you any different than the real Molly?

Molly: The real Molly adopted her family when she was three years-old. Her first mom died and a neighbor took her to the Miami Animal Shelter. It was mutual love when her new dad spotted the solid brown, twenty-pound pooch with the inquisitive eyes, sitting in a pen behind two barking, obnoxious German Shepherds. She loved to run, until her knee got hurt, but even then she loved being outside helping her family with yard work and chasing squirrels. When they were inside watching TV, she had a whole loveseat all to herself. She loved to please and never made a mistake. She could sense moods and was always available for a loving pat or a tender hug. She had 13 wonderful years with her family, and I know they still miss her.

The only difference I can see between me and Molly is that, as far as I know, she never grew to horse size! But, had she been confronted with some big monster trying to hurt Cynthia and Gus, or her real family, I'm sure she would've been just as brave, even at her small size.

What is it like inside Mary's imaginative brain? Things must be pretty turbulent in there. I mean, this lady writes middle-grade fantasy, right?

Molly: Whoa! Are you sure you want to go there? Sometimes, her fingers are a blur on the keyboard. Then, other times, she grumbles about not being able to get over writers block, whatever that is. She also complains about all the stuff she has to do that has no connection with writing, but I guess that goes along with being an author. I've also heard her talk about the weird dreams she has and that she started writing "Cynthia's Attic" because of a recurring dream she had for more than 20 years.

When I dream, it's usually about chasing rabbits or squirrels. Maybe I'll write a book about that, someday!

Who is your favorite character in the story?

Molly: You mean, besides me? I like all the nice characters (there are some mean ones, too!) but the little fairy, Elly Elloway, is pretty special. She dresses in purple and is pretty cool, but talks funny! She introduced herself by saying, "Eloise Elloway, I am. But call me Elly, ye can." She helps find clues when it comes to finding a missing page in The Book of Spells. She also helps me grow to horse size so I can protect all of us from the Rock Monster.

What is your favorite part in the book?

Molly: My favorite part of the book is when Gus and Cynthia travel forward into the future and meet a very familiar pair of best friends. That's also when I first appear! The girls think I'm pretty cute, but don't consider me anything more than a nice, little pet...until later.

You must be feel pretty special, being in Mary's novel...

Molly: Arf! I sure do! Especially since my character was created because of a very special member of my author's family. I just hope Molly would like how I play her in the book. I'm identical to her in looks, and also have her independent personality, so I'm sure she'd approve.

Tell us where we can find The Magician's Castle!

Molly: Here are some links where you can buy all four "Cynthia's Attic" books. Thanks, Amigo, for inviting me to your blog!

Mary Cunningham Books
Quake/Echelon Press

Thank you, Molly! Woof!


  1. What a face! How could you not write about him! Sounds great. Thanks for introducing me to another dog author!

  2. 'scuse me, TerryLynn. I'm a her! But, that's okay, glad you liked the interview by my very special friend, Mayra!

    Molly Cunningham

  3. Thanks, so much, Mayra for the interview. I know the real Molly would approve. I see the "other" Molly from The Magician's Castle wasn't thrilled with being called "him," and hijacked my blogger acct. :>)

    Appreciate your comment, TerryLynn!

  4. Hey, Mary, I never say no to a pretty canine guest--even a fictional one! Woof!


  5. Cute, cute, cute. What's a book without a dog? In my new book Back to Bailey's Chase, coming out later this year, a dog plays a big part in the girls' lives.

  6. Oh, I'm so happy to meet you, Molly. You sound like a wonderful friend. Congratulations on your book, Mary. I love stories with animals in them.

    Good interview, Amigo (and Mayra.)

  7. Thanks, Marlis and Beverly. Molly is/was the best friend anyone could ask for. Appreciate the comments and thanks, again for the interview, Amigo (and Mayra)!

  8. Hi Mary, you may recall that I included your blog as one to learn from in an e-booklet "blogging for newbies" that I published about a year ago.

    I am doing a 1 year followup on my proteges and am delighted to find that you are still hard at it! KUTGW

  9. I'm glad Molly realizes she's a very special part of the family. This will help her self esteem. Too many pets are neglected and do not feel that they are important to the household.

    Stephen Tremp

  10. Knowledge is a treasure, but practice is the key to it.......................................................