Find a Christian store

Interview with Rachelle Rea

A fun-loving and enthusiastic homeschool graduate, Rachelle Rea found her calling early in life. She wrote her first novel while still in college and signed with her dream publisher only three years later.

Each title in your Steadfast Love series involves a jewel or precious metal. What was the inspiration behind this theme?
The title of Book One came to me first, and the titles of the next two books were so difficult to decide on! I renamed them several times each. Fun little tidbit: alternate titles included Abandoned and Absolved. I’m really glad, though, that the books now have the titles they do—ties them together nicely. 

Who is your favorite character in the book? Why?
Dirk is my favorite character. Not only is he one handsome hero, he is exactly what Gwyn needs. Where she is fragile, he is strong. Where she gets fiery, he can calm her down. If the essence of a good love story is that they’re better together, Dirk is Gwyn’s perfect fit.

Which was the hardest character to write? Why?
Gwyn! By far. Dirk and Gwyn’s story is the first historical series I’ve ever written; Gwyn is the first heroine I’ve written who is so little like me! Because she and I are so different, it took me a while to figure her out—and just when I think she has, she surprises me.

What helps you the most when you're developing your characters?
Character journaling. If I move away from the computer and write free-hand a bit of a memory or something that I tell myself need never make it into the actual manuscript, I get a much better handle on that character’s heart. I went back to Gwyn’s journal time after time when I needed to know what she would do next.

What led you to choose the genre in which you write?
Writing a historical romance was a natural choice—it’s my favorite genre to read! Ever since I first picked up MaryLu Tyndall’s Legacy of the King’s Pirates series, I’ve been addicted to authors like Laura Frantz, Joanne Bischof, Melanie Dickerson, and Roseanna White—who just happens to be my amazing editor now. :-) So amazed and blessed to work in this industry of authors I so admire and love to read!

Reflecting back, what do you see as most significant to your publication journey?
My decision to keep at it after I entered the Genesis and didn’t so much as semi-final. I had heard about great writers entering that great contest and going on to publication—it was a real bummer to me when I didn’t place. But I contacted WhiteFire the very next day and began a whirlwind of a journey that led to me signing my first contract.

What’s your biggest challenge in balancing writing time with your other responsibilities?
Balance? What’s that? :-) I’ve learned this year that writing will always be writing to me. It’s an escape, it’s exhausting, it’s fun, it’s work. It’s something I have to make time for, and something that time after time works on me. My biggest challenge this year has been managing the editing of this series as I work on my next (top-secret as of yet) project, but I’ve so loved the opportunity to polish these books until they shine. I certainly have a stunning team of editors whom I’m blessed to work with as we make my books the best they can be!

How do your faith and spiritual life play into the picture and affect your storytelling?
I would have no story to write were it not for the one God is writing with my life. And no story I write will lack His fingerprints because what I want most is to impact people with the Love that has changed me…it’s not just about these earthly love stories but the greatest Love Story of all time.

What do you think makes your style of storytelling unique?
On the surface, I could say I’m one of the few who write this genre from the first-person point-of-view. On the heart level, I would say I come at Story like most other authors in this industry (stick with me here, this does get unique, promise), with my own eyes and heart and experiences. No one person writes like another person because all our hearts are different. Unless you’re trying to mimic, which is good as an exercise but stifling. Be you on the page. 

What is the funniest thing that has happened to you as an author?
Well, I find funny the looks on people’s faces when I mention that all three novels were completed by the time I signed the contract. I wrote these books while I was in college—mostly (I finished Book Three the summer after I graduated). I like that unbelievable! look people give me. ;)

Any parting words?
Hold to hope, friends!

Thanks for sharing with us, Rachelle!

For more great interviews, visit our Author Interview Archives.

ACFW Members, click here to apply for an author interview!

Developed by Camna, LLC

This is a service provided by ACFW, but does not in any way endorse any publisher, author, or work herein.