The MockingOwls are a bunch of weirdos, goofballs, and fun-loving word nerds who just happen to have a similar vision: see the world become a better place. We’ve invested a lot of time in our vision, encouraging folks to share their thoughts and dreams through loving, non-judgmental, and honest images, performance pieces, and stories.
And because our whole purpose is connection and community, we thought you’d like to get to know us each a bit and better understand who we are, especially since most (all?) of us do some of the writing here at the MockingOwl Roost. We love hearing from folks, too, so if you feel like one of us would be a great friend, hit us up on social media or send us an email. We’ll be glad to hear from you!
Kitten Queen & MockingOwl Roost Mascot
Princess Lady Stardust McKittyton Pike – Another Queendom, Another World
The Princess celebrates her Coronation Day every September 6, on the anniversary of her coming home to take up residence in the Mock/Pike palace. Both this and the annual celebration of Her Royal Fluffiness’s birth, June 3, should be celebrated with much excitement, fireworks, and veritable banquets of fresh yellowfin tuna and king salmon. When not celebrating these all-important dates, the Princess spends her time enjoying books (they make for a great bed!), dining on kitten food (adult cat food = adulting, which she refuses to do), napping in awkward positions, stealing all the comfortable furniture (particularly Matt’s side of the bed), and playing with the irreplaceable yellow jingle ball.
Co-founding Editor-in-Chief & Commissioning Editor
Rita Mock-Pike – Illinois, USA
Editor-in-Chief of The MockingOwl Roost, Rita Mock-Pike (she/her) is the granddaughter of aviatrix, Jerrie Mock, first woman to pilot an airplane solo around the world. Rita has found inspiration from her grandmother’s life and flight and pursued many of her own dreams in theatre, podcasting, novel writing, and cooking up delicious food from around the world. She now writes on food, travel, pets, faith, and the arts. She’s happily married to Matt, and faithfully serves the very fluffy kitten queen, Lady Stardust.
Follow her on Twitter where she commissions for MockingOwl Roost stories, Instagram, Facebook,
or LinkedIn. Or visit her website for short stories, fitness, and more. You can also get a copy of her cookbook The Unofficial Hogwarts for the Holidays Cookbook, I Love Trader Joe’s Air Fryer Cookbook, the forth-coming I Love Trader Joe’s Cooking for Two or
her novels Nobody’s Girl or Drop Dead Daisy (under the pseudonym Juanita Millhouse).
Commissioning Editor & Creative Team
Cynthia Ann Lublink – Midwest, USA
Cyndi (she/her) is the mama of two grown children and Oma to eight grandchildren, all of whom she adores. She’s a biker chick with a lady’s heart and thirty-nine tattoos that tell some of her life story. Not just a cancer survivor, she’s a life thriver. She also loves painting and finds the process like solving math equations. She has been a writer/poet since the age of nine, her first poem being about God’s Hands. She wrote for Christian Biker Magazine for five years. You may follow her on Facebook for more inspiration on a regular basis.
Artist-in-Residence, Staff Writer & Social Media Team
Sue Cook – Illinois, USA
Sue Cook (she/her) lives in Freeport, Illinois with her husband Randy and two dogs. Her passions include assistance dogs, rescue dogs, music, acting, theater, poetry, and Doctor Who. She’s been in both film and theater and is a regular cast member of the podcast Doctor Who’s Line is it….Anyway? Sue is an advocate for the use of Service Dogs to assist their disabled handlers to maintain their independence. Quigley’s Quest, her first children’s book, addresses how a dog becomes a Service Dog. You may follow Sue on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or view her filmography on IMDb.
Nancy Mock – Florida, USA
Nancy (she/her) was born in Montana, raised in Ohio, and moved to Florida almost 30 years ago. Mother of Rita Mock-Pike and her two siblings. Nancy learned to make computers “dance” in the early 1970s, with her husband’s encouragement, before most people had computers in their homes. She’s had a lot of experience formatting magazines, flyers, etc. throughout her life. As a retiree, her favorite hobbies are still crafting (mostly sewing) and reading.
Co-Founder & Creative Team
Annali Carmel – New South Wales, Australia
Annali Carmel (she/her) enjoys her life in rural New South Wales, where she listens to a lot of music, does some singing, and welcomes the occasional affection of Aria the cat when she deigns the peasant worthy.
Tandy Malinak – Illinois, USA
Tandy Malinak was engrossed in visual art, stage performance, and storytelling before she knew what the words meant. A second-generation homeschooler with a BA in Elementary Ed, she also knows kids and homelife; set her down with a cup of tea, and she’ll go until you stop her. She loves fantasy, sci-fi, Nintendo, board games, studying the Word, the smell of a campfire, the sound of ocean waves, and all things feline—to name a few! Originally from Seattle, Tandy now lives in Chicago’s northside with her husband, 2 dragon-loving kids, and 4 cats. Tandy recently perched herself on Twitter’s branch. She’s still figuring it out but will make noise there eventually.
Milene Correia – Caucaia, CE, Brazil
Brazilian multidisciplinary artist. Major in English Language and Literature, taking a specialization course in Teaching of Drama. I write, rewrite, draw and compose and expose because my heart can’t fit all these feelings. Leo, Queer, 92.Follow Milene on Instagram for more.
Co-Founding Commissioning Editor
Soren Porter – Illinois, USA
Soren Porter – He/him, INFJ, 30s-ish I think?, happily forever taken (sorry lads and ladies!). Writing reflections of faith and philosophy. LGBTQIA+ ally and sworn enemy of white supremacy. You might hear Soren ranting against evil policies, sharing ridiculous pop culture, or tossing around some theological thoughts on Tumblr or Twitter.
Staff Writer & Interviewer
Katie Daniels – Florida, USA
Katie Daniels (she/her) is a speech language pathologist in Florida, where she resides with her husband and their pup-child. She has dabbled in professional and personal writing over the years, but only recently began sharing her work with others. She is a proud Florida kid who enjoys meeting new people, seeing new places, and all things related to laughter, travel, faith, Disney, reading, and F.S.U. football. She is easily bribed with donuts or mac ‘n cheese. She would love to connect on Instagram.
– Scotland, United Kingdom
Emily MacKenzie is a Canadian-born writer who currently teaches Secondary English in Scotland. She studied English and Creative Writing at Carleton University in Ottawa, although her love of writing developed long before that. Emily loves exploring different narrative formats and styles in her own writing, and while she tends to stick with long or short prose fiction, the odd poem slips through from time to time. She can most often be found tackling one of several young adult fantasy stories she intends to publish, both on her tablet, and on the walls with stickies, markers, and poster paper.
Past Staff Members of the MockingOwl Roost Team
Helen A. Lee – Illinois, USA
Helen A. Lee (she/her) is a Kansas native and Chicago-area resident with 20+ years of writing and editing experience. She has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University and a master’s degree in biology from Miami University in Ohio. Her work has been published in many magazines, newspapers, books, and online publications, including Looper.com, the Chicago Windy City Guide, The Pretty Pimple, Simplemost, The Happy Puppy Site, the Chicago Tribune, and Gamespot.com. She’s a single mom with one child who enjoys volunteering in her spare time.
Elizabeth Mock – Michigan , USA
Elizabeth Mock is a Grand Rapids, Michigan native and senior in illustration studying at Grand Valley State University, where she is also the Vice President of the Student Interest Group of Illustrators, the university’s illustration club. Outside of school and The MockingOwl Roost, she is a community manager at Adobe. In the official Adobe Creative Career (ACC) Discord server, she helps host panels, challenges, and discussions to elevate members’ careers through mentorship. With hopes to pursue a career in graphic, layout, and information design, Elizabeth also enjoys community engagement, animation, and photography. You can find her daily in ACC.
Rachael Britton – Florida, USA
Rachael Britton is currently studying stage management at Florida State University’s School of Theatre. She loves all things Star Trek, Mamma Mia!, and can often be found hanging out in her favorite city (Chicago), relaxing on a beach somewhere in her home state of Florida, or decked out in her favorite Mickey ears at Walt Disney World.
Chris Hagberg – Illinois, USA
Chris Hagberg is a lover of dogs, travel, and photographing landscapes from a moving vehicle. She is happy for any time she gets to spend with her son, daughter-in-law, and grandson. In her spare time brought on by the 2020 pandemic, Chris joined a group of women forming a startup company that makes apps for the Amazon Echo. She aspires to be a writer someday, but for now, is content to polish up the writings of others.
J.P. Deneui – Illinois, USA
Joseph Paul “JP” DeNeui (he/him) is a basketball-loving missionary kid from Thailand transplanted to Chicago, Illinois, where he shivers through winters and writes fantasy and sci-fi. He is the author of the fantasy novel Shadow of Wings in paperback or e-book. Follow JP on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or his website.
Dana Reeves – Florida, USA
Meet Florida born-and-raised Dana Reeves: Wife, dog mom, certified personal trainer, and lover of all things reading and writing. What began as a hobby in writing short stories while in school soon turned into a full-fledged passion for all things writing as an adult. She loves to create fiction, poetry, and fitness-related articles. When Dana isn’t writing, she loves running, traveling with her husband and family, exploring the world via cruise ship, and, as always, searching the universe over for more exciting writing material. You can follow her on Instagram or read her blog.
Seema Prusty – Saudi Arabia
Seema Prusty comes from India and now resides in Saudi Arabia. She recently discovered that she can write poetry. While scrolling through Facebook, she found the MockingOwl Roost ad began reading the magazine and the beautiful poetry therein, finding inspiration for her own work. She received her degree in Civil Engineering in India, then married and settled in Kaust, Saudi Arabia where her husband works as a Research Scientist. She works at the same university as her husband. They have a 4.5 year old son.
Jeff Kirby – Illinois, USA
Jeff Kirby (he/him) is an avid doer of things, and can often be found on a bike in downtown Chicago, with a cup of coffee at hand. Jeff is a fan of Chicago, podcasts, witty comedies, and professional wrestling, and is just beginning to get his mojo back as a writer. He very occasionally Tweets.