Meet Rachel Lulich, author of The Red Door, a light sci-fi/fantasy novel for middle grade readers. If your kids enjoy friendship stories with a bit of danger, read on to learn more!

Tell us about yourself!

Hello, my name is Rachel!

I enjoy stories in all forms. Obviously, I love reading, but I’m also a fan of film, television, and theater. When I’m not writing, I keep busy with a day job, volunteering at church and Civil Air Patrol, and spending time with family and friends.
I’m fond of board games, singing, and travel. I am not fond of bees.

Tell us about your books.

The Red Door is my first novel for middle grade readers. It’s light sci-fi/fantasy aimed at kids eight to thirteen years old, but it reportedly works well as a read-aloud for younger kids too. The main character, Aster, will especially appeal to neurodiverse readers.

The Fractured Galaxy trilogy is about three Air Force astronauts who find themselves on an unexpected adventure when their experimental spacecraft malfunctions, stranding them in space. The series is suitable for teens and anyone who enjoys space, science, or adventure stories about resilience and teamwork.

I have also written a collection of poems of faith (To Do This Right) and a historical play about Christians in 1930s Germany called The Confessing Church (suitable for older teens and adults).

What kind of child are you trying to reach with your books?

The Red Door will probably appeal most to introverts, kids who feel like outsiders, and neurodiverse readers. Kids who enjoy stories with a bit of danger in them or stories about friendship will also find much to love here.

Give us a little flavor of some great characters or the setting.

The main character, Aster Temple, is in many ways a reluctant hero. All she really wants is security, and she’s worked hard for it her whole life.

What I like about Aster is that however important her own safety is to her, she is still willing to take risks for the sake of truth and friendship—and she has a strong sense of what’s right, in spite of the society she’s grown up in.

What inspired you to write this book?

The Red Door was initially inspired by a mysterious locked red door in the middle of a chain-link fence wall at a base I lived on while deployed to Afghanistan (I’m an Air Force veteran).

I was also inspired by a short flash fiction piece I read about a kid whose senses were easily overwhelmed, but also made him special. I liked the idea of someone being set apart because of a sensitivity to something or ability to do something we take for granted (in this case, dream).

How did you know you wanted to be an author?

I have wanted to be an author for as long as I can remember. I’ve always loved books and became a serious reader in third grade, and I knew early on that authors exist because my mom liked to write.

What’s one middle grade book you always recommend?

The Good Master by Kate Seredy

What advice do you have for aspiring writers?

Read widely in a variety of genres. Don’t bother reading things you don’t like, but try new things every now and then—you might find you enjoy a genre at fourteen that you didn’t care for when you were ten. Reading widely will help you learn how to write well by showing you how others do it and what you like.

The same goes for practicing writing: I recommend you write in a variety of genres and periodically try new genres, POVs, and techniques. That will help you find your “voice,” figure out your writing process, and get better at your writing weaknesses.

Find someone who will be honest but encouraging, and let them read your work and give you feedback (and encouragement!).

Finally, remember to have fun! Write as often as you can, but if you need a break, take a break.

What formats are your books available in?

  • Paperback
  • Ebook

Find them here.

How can parents find you?

People can find me on or on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@rachellulich).

The books are available on Amazon, Bandersnatch Books, your local bookstore, or my website.

Liked that?

Try these!

If you’re in the market for middle grade books, I’d love to share my series with you!

Power Pup is a Christian superhero adventure series for readers ages 9-13.

Calvin Quinn is a long way from the corn fields of Nebraska.

The rookie canine reporter dreams of bringing criminals to justice with his front page headlines, while working alongside famous investigative journalist team Mittens Meow and Alex Digger.

But Calvin has a secret:

He’s also a rookie superhero!

After months of training, Calvin Quinn is ready to hit the streets and defend the innocent as . . . Power Pup!