A Bit About Me

MARY ELIZABETH RAINES is an award-winning author of both fiction and nonfiction who has a home in Sedona, Arizona. Her most recent awards include the Writer's Digest Writing Competition, where she was a top prize-winner in the mainstream literary/fiction category. Readers can find this tale, "Easter Breakfast at Denny's," in her short story collection, "The Man in the GPS and Other Stories," which she also illustrated.

Raine’s fiction ranges from the serious and symbolic ("UNA") to gritty contemporary fiction ("The Secret of Eating Raspberries") to her whimsical collection of short stories.

She started out writing stories for children’s magazines, and later spent several years as a newspaper reporter and features writer. More recently, she has taught writing classes for OLLI at Yavapai College in Sedona. Her work, which also includes plays, personal essays, and filmscripts, have won a number of awards over the years.

Most of her nonfiction is related to hypnosis. The founder of the Academy for Professional Hypnosis Training, she is a leading hypnotherapist who has been hypnotizing people for more than half a century, and who has trained hundreds of professionals in hypnosis. Raines is a regular contributor to professional hypnosis magazines and books about hypnosis, and since 2010 she has been a columnist for "The Journal of Hypnotism." According to the National Guild of Hypnotists, she is “recognized as one of the leading practitioners of the art and science of hypnotism.”

Her formal education was in piano performance at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. As an adult, she pursued independent film studies at the University of Wisconsin, winning a number of awards for a short film she wrote, scored, and directed during her studies there, including first place with the Wisconsin Communications Council. She still plays the piano, and occasionally directs or acts.

In addition to being a writer and hypnotist, she has the diverse work background that is requisite for any good writer, including having been employed as a professional background actor in Hollywood, a court reporter, a pianist and piano teacher, an aerobics exercise teacher, a play director, a church organist, a medical receptionist, a psychiatric nurse’s aide, and the world’s worst piano tuner.

Her pastimes are equally diverse. A backyard beekeeper, she has an immense respect for the natural world, is an ardent environmentalist, and agrees with Marcus Aurelius Antoninus that "all things are interconnected." Raines loves history, and in particular has a passion for ancient Rome, France in the late 1700s, and the 19th-century transcendentalists of Boston and Concord. In addition to writing and playing the piano, she paints, loves to cook (see her cookbook, “The Voluptuous Vegetarian”), enjoys walking, is fond of classical music, jazz and early Broadway songs, likes to drive cross-country, gardens, crochets, creates professional fractal art on her computer, and illustrates and designs all her own book covers.

Mary Elizabeth Raines is happy to have Louisa May Alcott in her family tree as a distant cousin, and she is also increasingly fond of the Oxford comma.