Starting at a new high school is hard, especially as a senior. At age 17, Derek moves with his family from North Carolina to Utah. Derek learns about the unwritten laws of dating in Utah, and that his mom and dad have a history at his new school—a history that threatens his future.
Set in 1986, “Bring Down The Rain” is a story of loss, grief, redemption, hope, and making life altering choices.
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Meet the Author
J. Lloyd Morgan is a bestselling author and an award-winning television director. He graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Communications and a minor in English. In 2014, Morgan earned his Master’s degree in Creative Writing. Morgan has lived all over the United States, but now resides in North Carolina with his wife and four daughters where he teaches college English classes. Aside from writing, Morgan is an avid reader. He’s also a huge fan of baseball and enjoys listening to progressive rock.
Today I’d like to introduce you to novelist J. Lloyd Morgan. He’s telling us a bit about his novel, Bring Down the Rain , and his writing and personal life.
Please say ‘hi’ to J. Lloyd Morgan in the comments so he knows you stopped by!
Tell us about your new book.
Bring Down the Rain is the story of a young man, Derek, who moves from North Carolina to Utah at the start of his senior year in high school. Due to an accident, his dreams for the future are crushed. Derek is a good kid, yet he finds himself in trouble with the school administration to the point where he may not graduate. He meets a wonderful girl, Tiffany, and struggles to learn the unwritten laws of dating in Utah. In the end, it’s a story of sacrifice, dealing with uncertainty, and being true to who you are.
What kind of readers do you think it will appeal to?
All of my books are “LDS friendly”—meaning they don’t contain swearing, graphic violence, or graphic sex. Some might see that as boring, but my stories, including Bring Down the Rain, are character driven stories with interesting conflicts. I’ve been told that Bring Down the Rain appeals to ages fourteen and up, both boys and girls. It’s a young adult book, but deals with issues with which adults can relate.
How did you come up with the title?
The title for Bring Down the Rain didn’t come to me until after I finished writing the book. Once I was done, I realized the story’s theme was sacrifice—on various levels. Derek was a baseball player, and the phrase “bring down the rain” means to hit a fly ball so high that when it comes down, it brings the rain down with it. A baseball player would attempt to hit a deep fly ball when trying to sacrifice himself to bring a runner in from third base, hence the phrase directly relates to sacrifice.
Complete this sentence for us: if you like The Fault in our Stars, you'll love my book.
Have you written any other books that we should read next?
I’ve written seven books, of different types of genres. My book which is closest in feel to Bring Down the Rain is Wall of Faith. My other books are set in medieval times, and are more action / adventure in nature.
How much of you - or the person you wish you were - is in your main character?
For Bring Down the Rain, Derek is very much the person I was and wanted to be in high school. I think that is why people have loved the book so much—the character feels real because in many ways, he is real.
How easily do new storylines come to you?
The basic ideas for stories come to me fairly easily—I get new ideas all the time. However, the details and depth of the story don’t come to life until I’m writing the story. For me, the best ideas come to me while I am writing.
If we give you four random words - Man, Woman, Mexico, Future - can you give us a brief storyline?
Sure. Just off the top of my head: In the future, Mexico is one of the few habitable places in the world due to environmental changes to the Earth. Technology has shifted from creating new and faster computers and gadgets to finding ways to clean up the atmosphere to keep the human race alive—but it is losing the war. A certain man is found who has the ability to thrive in the worsening environmental conditions. He is taken to a facility where he is introduced to a woman who shares his same abilities. The goal is fairly obvious: to create more people who can survive. The problem? The man and woman do not get along in the least—there are major personality differences to the point where they can’t stand to be in the same room together. However, they are told they have the moral obligation to save the human race. (Okay, that was sort of stream of conscious writing. It may not make any sense, but you get the idea.)
Where can we buy your book?
Bring Down the Rain is available in both print and ebook versions. Amazon is where most people buy the print versions. The ebooks are available on Kindle, Nook, Smashwords and most other places that sell ebooks.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what you like to do when you aren’t writing.
I am a husband and the father of four beautiful daughters. I have my MFA in Creative Writing and I teach English to college freshmen. When I’m not writing, I’m teaching, listening to music, reading, and hanging out with my family.
Where are you from?
I grew up in Utah, but now live in North Carolina.
What is your latest news?
I have a couple of other books I’m working on including one based on my experiences of working in the TV news industry. The other book is based on my short story “Howler King.” The goal is to have both books come out in 2015.
When and why did you begin writing?
I’ve always liked to invent stories, but I have dyslexia and can’t spell well at all. It wasn’t until I was older when I realized with tools like spell check and text-to-speech allowed me to get my ideas into words that people could actually understand.
When did you first consider yourself a writer?
Probably when my first book was published. I’ve realized since that being published isn’t the same as being a writer. Upon reflection, I became a writer when I made the decision to write my first book and I carried through with that desire.
What inspired you to write your first book?
I had a vivid dream one night. The next morning, I told my wife about it. She told me to write it down. I did. Then I got to thinking what happened before and after the events in my dream. The result? My book, The Hidden Sun.
Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learn something each time I write. That’s one thing I try to get my student to understand: the act of writing helps you learn and recognize ideas and concepts. For Bring Down the Rain, I learned more about sacrifice, as well as dating as a teenager can be complicated—more so than I remembered before writing the book.
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Yes! Here are the four best bits of advice I’ve gathered over the years:
1. Write what you are passionate about. If you are bored writing it, chances are, people will be bored reading it.
2. Not everyone will like your work, and that’s okay. You are writing for a particular audience. If someone reads your work and they aren’t your audience, most likely they won’t like it no matter how well it is written.
3. Write the whole story out—don’t just keep rewriting the first chapter. The story often isn’t discovered until further into the process.
4. Hire an editor to clean up your work. Technical and grammatical errors draw people out of the story faster than just about anything else.
Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
My hope is that once you finish one of my books that not only have you enjoyed the ride, but also that the story and characters helped you consider deeper concepts which can help you in your life.
Follow the Author
Come on the Book Tour
Read the Reviews!!
The Book Stalker ~ October 15, 2014
Espacular Aiesa ~ October 18, 2014
Cali Book Reviews ~ October 19, 2014
Sanity is for Those Without Children ~ October 21, 2014
A Bit Bookish ~ October 24, 2014
I Love to Read & Review Books ~ October 27, 2014 - Q&A
Totally Addicted to Reading ~ October 28, 2014 - Interview
Manic Mama of 3 ~ October 30, 2014
Book Worm & More ~ October 31, 2014
NOW FOR THE AUTHOR'S GIVEAWAY !!
Four lucky winners will each receive Signed Copies of
J. Lloyd Morgan's previously released books!!
Ending on Friday 31st October at 11.59pm EST
Enter Below & Good Luck !!