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Anatomy of a Mental Breakdown



Mystery Man cover/ photo credit: Melissa Moriel

Writer Eva Rojano is at it, on her new controversial novel “Mystery Man”.

Almost a year ago the name of Eva Rojano became of the public domain after the independent writer made headlines alongside famous Hollywood screenwriter Ed Neumeier (RoboCop 1987, Starship Troopers, 1997) thanks to her self-published book “The Black Butterfly” in which she writes a passionate dedicatory to her favorite movie writer.

Interestingly the story does not end there, as Miss Rojano also informed the media in subsequent interviews that her book was also paying a tribute to actress Nancy Allen, who was the female lead of the RoboCop saga in the 80’s and early 90’s.

Although the young writer has disclosed that the Butterfly saga is not over and that two more sequel books are in the way; lately she decided to take a different path with her new fictional story, “Mystery Man”, a psychological thriller that takes place in the Big Apple, New York.

In this new intriguing story written by Eva, she takes us into the depths of mental breakdown; it tells the story of Emily Roberts, a journalist in her mid-30’s suffering from depression that has been commissioned to write a piece about a famous writer of theatrical plays; James Vann Neroni, for the magazine she works at.

James, in the story, is famed for having created 3 fictional characters at his young age that were aimed at children, but that later on can become darker than we think. Emily and James live a brief romance, and from that point on, the journalist will painfully try to prove to the whole world that James, in reality, suffers from DID (Dissociative Personality Disorder) and that she’s not crazy by thinking there is more than a fictional man that contacts her, that could be James in reality.

The book captures your attention as soon as you start reading the first pages. I contacted Eva briefly for this article, as I wanted to know more about the making of Mystery Man.

1. Eva, last year you had a great moment of fame when The Black Butterfly was released. We wonder, why didn’t you follow that path and you decided to write a new story, instead?

I was very surprised when the American Reporter reviewed my book, and that review surely helped my book to rank up in the Amazon Kindle top 100’s. Having said that, the story of Matt and Anna is very dear to me and I have to plan to follow it up in a way that people that read the book like the outcome.

As for Mystery Man, it was a story that started to ‘bang’ inside my head and I had to let it out.  It started as a poem though! I love stories about split personality disorders, I am a big fan of M. Night Shyamalan’s work, and Split is one of my favorite movies, I took some inspiration from the film and I thought about writing a thriller that would touch upon the mental illness subject and the emotional suffering that sometimes can become an inner, silent, painful fight.

2. Eva, can you tell us more about the character of Nick Lee, and why does he carry an important message?

Well, I like to paint my characters with real-life people’s colors, so Nicholas Lee is a character that I made to honor my editor’s request to create awareness about racial discrimination for Asian Americans in the US. He himself is Asian American and I’ve gotten to know about his struggles and all the injustice he’s gone through during his writing career.

In reality, in the plot, I needed a second man, another journalist co-protagonist that could play James’ love rival and that could jump between the role of best friend/love interest for Emily, as James is more or less a Houdini kind of character throughout the story. So, Nick fills more than one purpose!

3. Then you can say that you are interested in portraying racial and cultural diversity in your stories?

I am, yeah. In the Black Butterfly, Anna Sirena is half Latina. Matt Lamoreaux has French heritage, there is a Lebanese dancer in the strip club, and so on. In this new story, I also try to portray cultural diversity among the characters. As a Mexican writer that writes for international audiences, I am always interested in creating awareness about racial/nationality stereotyping in my stories.

4. Going back to Mystery Man, the book synopsis lets us know that Emily is planning to commit suicide in 40 days. Do you think love can kill?

The book is written from the first-person perspective, Emily’s journal and journey on trying to unmask James Vann Neroni’s past. Being in love with a narcissist that plays mental games can lead to mental breakdown, plus Emily’s mental state is not that good either, then a bad mix between a bizarre love affair and her internal demons is what makes her come to the sad conclusion, that it is only by committing suicide, that the real man, behind “Mystery Man” will manifest.

5. Does Emily survive in the end?

You will have to read the complete book!

6.- Just out of curiosity, if the Black Butterfly saga continues and you suddenly are in a position to share book royalties with Mr. Neumeier or Mrs. Nancy Allen, would you do it?

The ball is in their court, methinks. It depends on how much they’d like to be involved in the making of the books or the further development of the characters that were based upon them. Up to this day, I am thankful they’ve never complained about me naming them in the advertising campaigns I’ve run for the book. I want to think they still feel flattered by me giving them stellar roles in my story!

Seriously speaking, they both know my doors are open to them, but they’re the ones that would need to approach and really get engaged in my writing work beyond just me creating tributes to their longtime careers and them thanking me as a writer-admirer, and then sure, I’d share everything I can with them.

7. Finally, we want to congratulate you for your recent credit on the Netflix show “The Movies that Made us”

Thank you! It was surprising to be named in the special thanks section alongside my Robocelebrity heroes! Being a fan for this long, finally paid off.

We thank you for your time, Eva!

Mystery Man is currently available on Amazon Kindle, and it is free to read for Kindle Unlimited members: