I originally wrote it because a friend asked me to put him in one of my books. Of course I only used his first name and his physical build. Everything else is made up. It’s a friends-to-lovers novella set around Christmas when one too-small elf suit shows Dean in a completely new way. A way Talli is forced to examine her feelings for her best friend.
2. How did Christmas Wishes come to be published?
Like all books, I wrote it to get published but having it released with Harlequin Australian’s new digital first line – Escape Publishing – was a fluke. I sat with Kate Cuthbert at the RWAus Awards dinner this year and during our conversation she mentioned she wanted to have an ‘intimidating’ editor persona. If you know Kate you’ll agree she’s one of the nicest people you could meet and in no way intimidating. She’s too friendly. Anyway, I said I’d send her something to pull apart and then when she rejected it I’d badmouth her all over the place. I was joking of course but Kate wouldn’t take no for an answer and by the end of dinner I had her email address plugged into my phone and I’d promised to send the ms the minute I got home. She then made me write the sequel. See, intimidating.
3. You also have a follow-up novella, New Year’s Kisses, that’s recently been released. Do you plan on writing a series of novellas along the same lines?
I have one more in the series, Valentine’s Dates, which will be out early next year, and then I’m planning to just write one Christmas novella each year. Although, I wouldn’t be surprised if Kate talks (twists my arm) me into writing more.
I don’t have a preference. I write what the characters tell me to write. A novella and a novel are definitely different. You have room to add more characters and a deeper conflict/plot in a novel. Novellas are short and sharp. Each word has to count but you also have to be sure you give enough detail on your characters and their story to deliver a satisfying read. Nothing worse than disappointing a reader. I often hear readers say novellas aren’t long enough but as long as the story has reached a satisfying conclusion you’ll be leaving them with that feeling because they don’t want the story to be over, not because you’ve left anything out.
5. What do you love most about being an author?
Going to work in my PJ’s. :)
6. Describe yourself in three words:
Wife, mother, writer.
8. Do you have a writing schedule you follow, or are you a ‘write whenever I can’ type of author?
Whenever and wherever I can.
9. What advice would you give to aspiring romance authors out there?
Never stop writing or reading. Writing because the more you do the better you get. And reading because you have to fill the creative well and you need to remember why you write. To give a reader that ‘fall into a good book’ experience. I think you need to keep your passion for both well fed.
WIN! Rhian is kindly giving away a copy of a book from her backlist (winner’s choice) to one lucky person who leaves a comment below… Good luck! Competition open worldwide and winner will be announced and notified on 14th December.