I decided to be a writer, as in “author,” when I was 11 and read my first romance. I dabbled in romance writing for years after that, actually penning a YA romance when I was 14 (it will never, ever see the light of day). It wasn’t until after the birth of my first child and I became a stay-at-home mom that I actually started writing for publication (during nap times).Tell us about the journey to publication. How did you get your first romance published? It took me a long, long time. When I started writing, I wanted to write for Harlequin Superromance. So I’d spend a year writing a book, submit it, wait for months to hear back, get a rejection, then start over. There were no other options for those books. Today, that is so different. If a big publisher doesn’t want your book, then one of the many small presses might. If they don’t, you can self publish. Or, maybe self publishing will be your first option, not your last. It’s such a great time to be a writer.
In 2008, I was a Golden Heart finalist. I thought that would be my magic ticket to Harlequin. Wrong. I ended up selling that manuscript (Borrowed Stilettos) to The Wild Rose Press; back then, small presses still didn’t get a lot of respect, but it was the best decision I could’ve made. I became an Amazon best-seller in romance, and have made way more money from that book than some of my friends who sold to “big” publishers. Obviously, I’m a small press fan.While you have been published in romance, your newest book is a diet book. Tell us a little about why you decided to write it. I’ve been a personal fitness trainer for more than 10 years and have worked with hundreds of people. For the majority of those people, their success or lack thereof is due to their diet. My clients knew I was also a writer, and they hounded me to write a diet book. So I finally did.
What do you find is the biggest difference when writing non fiction and fiction –besides the obvious fact that one is totally made up? The biggest difference is that fiction is way more fun to write. I could spend hours in front of my computer writing fiction, and my mind was always writing even if my fingers weren’t typing. But with non fiction, I couldn’t spend more than 30 minutes at a time without needing a break. And when I was away from the computer, I wasn’t thinking about it.What are the challenges of writing non-fiction? Well, you can’t just make stuff up. And you want to be conversational and interesting, and try to stand out from the bazillion other diet books out there. But you could say that about writing fiction, too.
Will you continue to write fiction and non fiction? I don’t know. If I come up with another non-fiction idea, then I’ll probably write it.Let’s talk about your fiction works. What do you like best about writing fiction? The plotting and planning stage (even though I’m more of a pantser) is my favorite, because the book in my head is always WAY better than the book that comes out of my fingers.
What are you working on now? I’m working on the follow-up to my first book, Borrowed Stilettos. I’ll be getting my rights back to that soon, then I’ll self-publish a 3-book series, with Borrowed as Book #1. I’m really excited about that.What would your biggest piece of advice be to beginning writers? Never give up. Don’t compare your success to others (I’m really guilty of that). Write every day. Read every day.
Is there anything else you’d like to add about being a writer and how you come up with your stories? Coming up with story ideas is usually the easiest part for writers. Sometimes it kind of makes me sad when I look in my idea file and realize there’s no way I’ll ever have time to make each of those ideas into a story.How can readers reach you or find you online? Readers can find me on my website at http://RebeccaJClark.com, or Twitter @RebeccaJclark, or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/authorRebeccaJClark
Thank you, Rebecca, for being my guest today. Any questions or comments for Rebecca?