My guest today is the lovely Rachael Thomas. Although Rachael is a fellow Write Romantic, it’s fair to say that she’s pretty hard to pin down! Then again, Rachael is not only a prolific writer with Mills & Boon, but she’s also a dairy farmer! Oh, and she managed to fit in a charity walk along the Great Wall of China last year, too. Phew! So it’s a treat for me to finally get her to sit still long enough to answer some of my questions. Hope you enjoy reading her answers as much as I have.
Welcome to the blog, Rachael. It’s a real pleasure to have you here. You’ve published many books now with Mills & Boon, and seem to write very quickly. How do you go about starting a new writing project?
I always get to know my characters first. I ‘interview’ them, find out all about them, who they are now and what happened in their past to make them that person. What do they fear and what do they most want?
Have you a favourite inspirational quote?
This is my favourite quote at the moment. Be someone’s sunshine when their skies are grey.
Aw, I love that. What was your favourite book as a child and how do you view it now as an adult?
Anna Sewell’s Black Beauty – I still love it and still have my much read childhood copy.
Oh, I love that book! I have a copy, too. It still makes me cry, especially that whole bit with Ginger and … anyway, what has surprised you most about being a published writer?
That you can still doubt yourself and your writing!
Yes, doubt seems to be part and parcel of a writing life. Is there anyone who has been particularly influential in your writing career?
Liz Fielding came to my local writing group and with her brought Kate Walker’s 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance. Liz left me so inspired and so determined I would at the very least write a book from start to finish and the book she brought along opened up a whole new world of romance writing and some fabulous friendships!
I found that book incredibly useful, too. What are your writing goals long term and/or short term?
To push myself as a writer and make each book I write better than the last.
Which genre would you like to write in but don’t think you could?
When my children were smaller I always fancied the idea of writing for children, especially when I found it hard to find books my son wanted to read as he got older.
What’s your favourite book?
Pride and Prejudice.
Mr Darcy *sigh*. Which book do you wish you’d written?
Harry Potter. Not because it was so successful, but because of the imagination of it all!
Which television show from your childhood would you like to bring back?
After seeing your recent social media posts about Follyfoot Farm, I think I am going to have to say that.
Oh yes! I just loved Follyfoot! Now, just imagine that your book is going to be filmed. Name your dream cast.
The inspiration for the hero and heroine of my very first book, A Deal Before the Altar, were Alex O’Loughlin and Eva Green, so this has to be my dream cast!
What thing or things are guaranteed to cheer you up?
Sunshine always makes me feel better, but if it’s in short supply funny videos do the trick. After all, laughter is the best medicine!
Your life always looks so idyllic, living on a beautiful farm in Wales and travelling all over the place, too. You post some pretty amazing pictures, although I know farming is extremely hard work, and there are tough times. Is there anything you would change about your life?
A few more hours in the day would be nice!
What’s your favourite social media outlet and why?
I love Instagram as I enjoy photography, whether that’s looking at other people’s photographs or taking my own. I also enjoy Pinterest and making boards for my books.
What do you think are the best and worst things about being a writer?
Best thing is being able to fit my writing around my daily life on the farm and the worst thing is trying to do this when a deadline looms ever closer!
What one piece of advice would you give to other writers?
Never stop believing in yourself as a writer.
Where do you write?
I write in what used to be the dining room. As a family we hardly ever used it, preferring to be around the kitchen table. So I filled it with bookshelves and turned the table into my desk. I also have a comfy sofa for reading and of course the very important bed for my golden retriever, Poppy.
Thanks so much for taking part today, Rachael! I have visions of you whipping out a pen and paper in the milking shed, or sitting at your desk in your wellies! 🙂
Rachael has always loved reading romance and is thrilled to be a Mills and Boon author. She lives and works on a farm in Wales, a far cry from the glamour of a Mills and Boon story, but that makes slipping into her characters’ world all the more appealing. When she isn’t writing or working on the farm, Rachael enjoys photography and visiting historic castles and grand houses.
Find out more about Rachael by visiting her website.
Hired to Wear the Sheikh’s Ring will be out May 2018 and is the first of Rachael’s books to have the lovely new cover style after Mills and Boon’s recent makeover! You can buy the book here.