Rachel is a wife and mother from Central Pennsylvania. Her favorite season is fall, for hockey, changing leaves, pumpkin everything, and bonfires often. She’s also a coffeenista with an insomnia problem. When Rachel isn’t playing with the people inside her head, making her family believe she belongs in the loony bin, she enjoys spending time with her family, friends, species confused cat (he believes he’s part dog, love him), and finding new books and music.
Regarding writing, her first love is Young Adult Paranormal, but she’s venturing outside of her comfort zone and opening up to writing more genres.
What inspires you to write?
I write because I have to. My characters and stories came to me for a reason, so I write them and then let my readers feel the meaning. Inspiration comes from everything, but above all, its love. Without love in my life I wouldn’t have started writing.
Tell us about your writing process.
When a new idea comes to me, I write down everything. From there, I need time “alone” with the idea or character. This is probably the only part of my process that I won’t listen to music. Complete silence and in a relaxing environment. I keep a note pad and pen close and just think about what had come to me, if a song was playing when it first struck, I’ll repeat some of the lyrics in my head. Sometimes this works and I can get more of a feel for the story, scene, or character. If this doesn’t work, I have a small group of people, my Critique Circle, and I talk out the idea with them.
My next step is individual characters. I have a difficult time in the first draft describing characters well enough that a reader can visualize. This led me to follow the advice of my editor and find a picture that resembles the image in my head best, an actor, model, singer, etc. From here, its playlist and story line. I take notes of everything that comes to me before starting. But I do not write out full scenes. I can’t write out of order and if I don’t get a scene just right, I have to go back and fix it before moving on. I don’t necessarily outline, but I definitely make sure I feel the story and characters before writing.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I do listen and “talk” with my characters. It’s their story, they just chose me as an outlet or means to tell their story. If I can’t “hear” them, I can’t “feel” them, which means I won’t be able to do the story justice.
What advice would you give other writers?
Don’t be afraid to reach out to others in the community for help. The writing community is vast well of all types of people, and the majority are very helpful in sharing information or tools to answer questions.
Advice on writing: Write what’s in your heart, use your passion and get the words out on paper or in a file on your computer. Don’t worry about what anyone will think if they read it, don’t worry if anyone will love or hate it, just write it. You were given a brilliant chance to show the world your unique talent of storytelling. Use your passion to string the words together. Then hire an editor once you’re sure you’re ready for that step. It’s an important step that you mustn’t forget.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
For me, the decision maker is the control and freedom. I’m not the greatest person under a strict schedule. I know my limits, I know when I need to switch gears, and I know when I need to step away. Someone else may not know these things about me. I want to be the one who decides the type of cover that will represent my book or choose the cover designer, which would be Regina Wamba because she does all of my covers. I love my editor, I would have missed out on the wonderful relationship and learning experience she’s given me. Deciding when to release is intimate for me. If I feel it’s not ready, I refuse to publish. I love a lot of traditionally published authors, books, and the industry as a whole, but I like the control I have. One day I may opt for sending query letters in hopes to become traditionally published, but for now I’m comfortable where I’m at.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
I hope books can become about the most important thing again: Delivering a deserving escape for readers everywhere. The story and its characters as well as the readers are the most important part of our career. It’s not about lists or making more money, it should be about the story and the reader.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
Young Adult Paranormal Romance, Adult Contemporary Romance, and Young Adult Contemporary Romance
What formats are your books in?
Both eBook and Print