Thursday, November 15, 2012

Please Welcome Author Rachel E. Fisher

Today I am very pleased to welcome author Rachel Fisher to The Cover Contessa for an interview!

I am a wife and entrepreneur living and working in Florida. I am also a graduate of Mount Holyoke College, where I majored in Biology. It was always my assumption that I would end up making research my life. Though it did not work out that way in the end, my passion for Biology remains intact. 

I have always loved biology-based science-fiction and the young adult genre. It is in this vein that I offer my work.









And perhaps you have heard of Rachel's books?


 Given my own enthusiasm for this sort of thing, I’ve decided to release the original backstory of Eden’s Root. For those of you who love the science-fiction aspect of Eden’s Root, I think this will be a winner. I also wanted to reveal this to show how drastically a story can change from first to last drafts. This entire backstory was in the first version. It is MUCH more in the vein of traditional science-fiction, which I love, as you know. It has a ton of POVs, and covers a wide range of locations and time periods. In other words, it’s kind of epic. And Eden’s Root began this way. BTW – This is a story mostly of the adults featured in Eden’s Root, so there’s a bit more colorful language. (Plus they’re facing the end of the world people. Give them a **&^% break.) For those of you who wanted to know some of the characters more deeply…here you go
Publication Date: July 18, 2012
Buying Links:
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The year is 2033 and the world hovers on the edge of explosion as unexplained crop deaths lead to severe global food shortages. In the United States, the Sickness is taking lives slowly, creeping its way into every family. Fi Kelly has already faced the Sickness in her own family, toughening her beyond her years. But a shocking confession from her dying father will push her toughness to its absolute limits. Saddled with an impossible secret and the mission of saving her little sister, Fi sets out to transform herself into the warrior that she must become to survive the coming collapse. Along the way, she will discover that evil can be accidental and that love can be intentional.

Publication Date:
Buying Links:
Amazon
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Seeds of War is the second book in the Eden's root trilogy.
The mission of Eden must be fulfilled and Eden’s best Seekers are needed. Forming a new group they dub the Seeders, Fi, Asher, and Sean are joined by a new addition as they set out to bring hope and support to the Topsiders in the form of radios and heirloom seeds. Their experiences Topside prepare them for the threat from marauding gangs they call Lobos, but it is a different, less obvious sort of threat that takes them by surprise. As radio broadcasts begin to reconnect Eden and the Topsiders, the Seeders stumble upon mysterious broadcasts from unknown stations. When two of their own new radio stations go silent within days of each other, Fi and her companions realize that something is terribly wrong. Eden finds itself pitted against a growing and unknown force as their very mission lights the flames of war
Publication Date:
Buying Links:
Amazon
Smashwords
                                                        Barnes and Noble


So let's hear what Rachel had to tell us!


Did you always know you wanted to be a writer or did you want to be something else? 
I wanted to be a scientist.  I read and I wrote and I painted, but I always thought science would be my life.
How long does it take you to write a book from start to finish?
That depends.  So far I've only written two, but I'd say 6 - 12 months given the editing cycle I've got going.
How do you come up with themes for your stories? 
I think they derive from philosophical questions that kick around in my brain.  Issues of ethics, morality, life and death...those kinds of things and the actions that ripple out from their associated consequences...that's what fascinates me. 
Do you have a schedule of when you write? 
I have a schedule of when I don't write.  :)  Given the choice I'd write all day every day I think.  But I have a "real" job still, and I am a small business entrepreneur.  I am VERY lucky to have this opportunity but it requires focus and effort and it's hard to have a foot in both, to be honest.  Also, writing is very isolating.  I have to make sure I don't neglect my family and friends.  In an alternate plane, where time is unlimited, I write and write and write and write...
How are you able to balance other aspects of your life with your writing? 
Perfect question, given the above.  I limit myself.  I devote my first attention to my business and my family and friends.  My next level of devoted attention is writing.  If it were my paid career (God Willing!!!! - Please check out my books.) I would write every day, but right now I can't always do that.  AND, no one tells you how much time away from writing will be spent promoting.  It's almost the biggest time-suck, actually.  
What elements do you think make a great story line? 
Complicated characters that feel real.  I have trouble with characters that lack layers.  I want my characters to grow and react to the world in the complicated, emotional manner that seems real to me.  I also think you need tension.  Is there a clock ticking?  Is there a goal "or else?"  I love that kind of story.  
What was the hardest thing about writing a book? 
Convincing yourself that it's worth the time and concentration away from the rest of your life.  That sounds...I dont' know.  You can decide how that sounds.  But I feel guilty at times because if I'm not making money, how can I justify wandering for hours in my dreamlands?  (Not that I have no sales, but I could use a little more recognition, truth be told.)  If I were still in high school or college, it *might* be different, but I don't know.  Times are hard.  You have to concentrate on the things that help you to build a life.  Dreams don't do that.  BUT...I am a cancer survivor and I wake up every day trying to remember that I am SOOOOOOOOO freaking grateful to be alive.  For that reason, I write.  Because it fuels my soul.  Writing a story?  That's easy.  I feel like I have stories inside all the time.  Justifying it to myself, that has been harder. 
How many books have you written so far? Do you have a favorite? 
Two plus a backstory novella.  My favorite is still Eden's Root because it was my first and because Fi was still so innocent.
Do you have a favorite character? 
My MC, Fi (fee), short for Fionnuala (finoola).  She is just...awesome.  I love her.  She's tough and stubborn to a fault.  She's confident, over-confident, and she's the most determined character I may have ever written.
Where do you write?  
At the local coffee house.  In my bed.  On my phone.  Wherever it finds me.  When I run on the treadmill I can sink into the stories and they write themselves and then I just transcribe.
When deciding on how to publish, what directed you to the route you took? 
Impatience.  I didn't know how to go about the traditional route, and I didn't want to wait years to get feedback.  I DID know how to use technology, so that pretty much pushed the way I went.  I figured, it's pretty darned hard to succeed either way so I'd go with what was comfortable first.  The bonus is that I got free feedback, editing, advice, and support.  But I'm still seeking traditional representation and publication as well.
Have you gotten feedback from family about your book(s)? What do they think? 
My family is very proud of me.  My dad is the sci-fi fan, so he's into it and helps me with some of the harder science questions.  My mom is a writer, reader, and word lover extraordinaire...so she's obviously bursting with pride.  I've had a lot of cousins and aunts and uncles read it and give me the thumbs up.  What always makes a difference to me is when they say it made them think.  I really wanted it to be food for thought, after all.
What kinds of things do you like to do outside of writing? 
I love to be outdoors and am obsessed with tennis.  Watching the U.S. Open final while I type this.  It's awesome.  Wish it weren't so windy...
What kinds of advice would you give to someone who wants to start writing? 
I'd advise them to just start writing and not worry about the other stuff yet.  As you go along you'll learn more about promotions, your options, the paths people take.  All that information is out there, on the internet.  If you want to take classes, take classes.  If you want to join a writer's group, join a writer's group.  But mostly write.  AND seek critical feedback.  You need critical feedback to improve.  If your family and friends can't/won't be critical, find someone who will.
What is your favorite book? favorite author? Do you have an author that inspired/inspires you to write? 
My favorite authors were Madeleine L'Engle and Isaac Asimov.  I love science-fiction.  I love ya.  I also love Rudyard Kipling.  I read his stuff now and it seems so dated (since some goes back to 1800s I guess that's to be expected), but I still LOVE his sensibility when it comes to children and storytelling.  I have an old, beat-up hardbacked copy of the Just-So Stories from when I was a little girl.  It's a prized possession.  
Do you have any go to people when writing a book that help you with your story lines as well as editing, beta reading and such? 
Yes.  I have excellent, literary, critical friends who help me to separate the wheat from the chaff.  They're great because they encourage but also criticize as and analyze as well.  
Are you working on anything now? 
Yes!  I am finishing the Eden's Root trilogy.  Book three will be titled Emergence.  I am also started on a separate novel that won't stay out of my brain.  VERY sci-fi.  Looking forward to both.  They are both enjoyable. 

I want to thank Rachel so much for stopping by and answering my questions. It's been great having her here. You can stalk Rachel in the following places:
Goodreads
Rachel's Blog
Rachel on Twitter

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