She's giving away a copy of Million-Dollar Amnesia Scandal to one (non-Minxy) commenter, so don't forget to leave comments when you get to the end of this post to stand a chance to win.
What is your writing process?Slower than I’d like! :) I need to give my editor a synopsis of the book for approval, so I always know where the story is going before I write it. Then I break the plot down into quarters from the synopsis and write one section at a time. By the time I move onto the next quarter, I’ve edited and polished the one before it then sent it out to my critique partners who are pretty ruthless with telling me what’s not working. Then when I have the four quarters done, I do some more editing on the book as a whole. I’d love a simpler process, but this one seems to be working for me so I don’t want to mess with it!
Everyone who writes knows it's not easy - what methods do you use to keep at it on days when it would be so much easier to go shoe shopping?Deadlines. No question. Which is why, when I was unpublished, I found the contest circuit invaluable – not only for feedback, for to keep me writing to deadlines.
Keeping fit: Do you have an exercise regime to counter balance all those hours sitting at a computer?I play dog tennis twice a day (I hit the ball with a tennis racquet and the dogs retrieve it), but that exercises the dogs more than me, so I also have a walking machine in the lounge room.
Do you believe in writer's block?Yes and no. I think lots of things can get in the way of writing, from stress to tiredness to fear to burnout. What you need to do about it depends on what the ‘writer’s block’ really is.
Have you ever used an incident from real life in a book? If so, did it get you into trouble?I’d find it hard to stay in the character’s head if I knew the incident had really happened to me or someone I knew, so it’s not something I’ve ever done.
In what way is being a published writer different to how you thought it would be?I had a few friends who were published before me, so I was already aware of most aspects of the life of a published author, but it’s still amazing how much writing time gets lost in non-writing activities aspects of the job.
Promotion is no longer a dirty word. In what ways do you strive to reach more readers?I blog at the LoveCats DownUnder and eHarlequin, have Facebook and twitter accounts as well as a website. But I’m also wary that promotion doesn’t take over too much of the time and brain-space I need for writing.
What is your top promo tip for other authors?Pick the promo methods you enjoy the most and do those ones well.
What did you learn while writing this book?I researched New York and New Jersey pretty thoroughly to give me a feel for the setting, and I had pictures of random NY and NJ scenes on corkboards around my walls. I *love* immersing myself in new settings and learning about other places!
What was the most fun part of writing this book?I really enjoyed the spark these two have – part of that comes from them having known each other so well as teenagers, and part from their personalities.
And I loved writing the little appearances of Winston, Pia’s cat. :)
And just for fun: what would your hero’s honeymoon destination of choice be?JT spent most of his childhood and youth moving around, so going away somewhere wouldn’t appeal as much as it would for other heroes. JT simply wants to be alone with Pia – anywhere that’s possible is good with him. :)
He's returned for a fortune and is confronted by memories. Though tycoon JT Hartley is a success in his own right, he's set on claiming his share of his late father's legacy. But first he has to get past the estate executor - none other than Pia Baxter, a woman he's never forgotten.
Theirs had been a fast-and-furious union that ended all too suddenly. And though desire still courses between them, JT knows starting anything with Pia again is just asking for trouble. His future is set in stone. But even the best-laid plans are no match for true passion.
* * *
You can find Return of the Secret Heir at Amazon, Amazon UK, Book Depository, Barnes & Noble and Harlequin.
You can find Rachel at her website, LoveCats DownUnder, on Twitter and on Facebook.