Saturday, 9 June 2012

A Month Of Rural Romance Writers: Rachael Johns

Hi everyone,
Thanks for joining me here today for my first interview with Rachael Johns.
Rachael is a rural writer who writes for Harlequin Australia and she'll be sharing some information about her inspirations, writing career and her current release 'JILTED'.
So please, give her a warm welcome and feel free to find out more about her in the following places:

So Rachael, did you grow-up in the country, or like myself, did you live in the city and gain an interest?

I lived the first eight years of my life in Sydney and the next fifteen in Perth - so I definitely grew up in the city, however I've always loved the country. In 2005 when my first son was only three months old and my hubby was unhappy in his job, we jumped when the opportunity came to go rural. We've lived in a small country town ever since (two all up) and I think the benefits FAR outweigh the negatives. I miss my friends from Perth (although I've made good ones in the country) and the shopping (although with recent advance in online shopping, this isn't so bad)!
Haha, I don't think you'd be the only girl who is thankful for online shopping.
So tell us, has your own life have a great impact on what you write? Most of my inspiration comes for those around me and I was wondering if the same goes for yourself.
Hmm.. tough question. I'd say yes, to the extent of the inspiring country people I interact with every day. The people I've met and the massive community spirit I've experienced in country towns, inspired me to start writing rural-set novels.
I don't think you could have put it any better.
Which  of your novels would you say is closest to your heart?
I'd have to say JILTED. It's my first print novel, but also my first longer novel where I got to focus on more than just the hero and heroine. I've always been a bit of a sucker for secondary characters (It was one of the reasons M&B kept rejecting me), so I love that in Jilted, I got to play with a wider cast and explore the stories of more than simply the hero and the heroine.
I'm a sucker for secondary characters too. I think it comes down to those rural influences. I always warn my friends that they might end up in one of my novels. :)
Now, I believe that with every story I write, a part of myself, whether it be a philosophy or a personal trait, is embedded within the main characters. Is this the same for you? And if so, which of your heroines do you think is most like yourself?
I think it's definitely true. My first published heroine Peppa was a voice talent (a career I'd love) and had a car I've always wanted. Ellie from Jilted is an actress and I did a minor in drama at uni. Are you seeing a theme here? LOL. In the book I've just subbed, Imogen has the name I would have used had I ever had a daughter. After three boys I've given up that dream, so decided to use the name for one of my beloved heroines. All of my heroines are feisty at their core and I'd say I am too.
I have to say, I hope you don't become an actress. You're to good an author LOL.
Now for your current release JILTED. Can you tell describe it to us in ten words or less?
JILTED - Australia soapie actress returns to town where she jilted farmer.
Sounds great. :)
Now Rachael, I know for a fact that you also write urban fiction. Are you a woman who’s divided between country and city life? Or do you just enjoy writing urban romances?
I'm well and truly a country girl now. The reason I wrote/write urban romances is that I was once targeting my stories to Mills & Boon and the line I wanted to publish with required urban settings. Personally I prefer the rural ones because stories about small communities are what I like to read best.
Small communities really are the best, aren't they.
So, I heard you've got a new story in the works? Would you mind sharing a little about it?
I've just subbed MAN DROUGHT (working title) about a widow (city-chick) who moves to a small country town and buys the rundown pub. Of course, she encounters a red-hot country boy who not only doesn't think the pub needs fixing, but he seems to have a vendetta against her as well.
Sounds like my kind of read.
Thanks so much Rachael for allowing me to interview, it's been a pleasure and I hope to see 'MAN DROUGHT' soon and 'JILTED' in the bestseller's. Best of luck with your career. It's been an honour to have you. 


  1. Hello Whitney and Rach,

    Everywhere I go I see Jilted. It's a great read if you love that small town story. The hero Flynn is quite yummy, and Ellie is lovable. I've only read up to about chapter six, due to the Write in June, but guess what I'll be doing later on this afternoon. :)

    I can also see some of Rach in the novel, just little snippets and the story gives a good insight to small country towns.

    Best of Luck Rach,

    Waving to Whitney.:)

    1. Thanks for popping by, Suzanne. Both Rach and I really appreciate it. :)
      Best of luck with your own career. :)
      Whitney K-E

    2. Aw thanks for those lovely words about Flynn and Ellie Suz. Good luck with your current novel and hope you enjoy the rest of JILTED. x Rach!

  2. Great Q&A, ladies.

    Like Suz, I'm seeing Jilted everywhere which is fantastic to see. Makes me so proud!

    1. Thanks Cathryn! Ditto when I see your books. x Rach!

  3. It certainly is everywhere isn't it haha. :)

  4. Carolyn de Ridder9 June 2012 at 19:25

    Wonderful interview Whitney and Rachel. Rural Romance seems to be getting very popular which I think is great.

    1. Me too. Rural has always been a favourite of mine. Close to my heart. Rachael Treasure was one of my firsts and has always been a favourite.
      Thanks for stopping by, Carolyn.

    2. Well I love reading it Carolyn, I just wrote the kind of thing I wanted to read. x Rach!

    3. That's exactly how I started, Rach. :)

  5. Ooooooh, she made you tell it ten words, Rach!That's mean. LOL But it is so important to be able to be succinct. It means a tightly structured story (which it is) that doesn;t fly all over the place. Great interview, both of you :)

    1. Thank you, Jenn.
      Good pitching practice, don't you think? Not that Rach needs to pitch LOL.
      Thanks for stopping by Jenn. :)

    2. THAT was a hard and evil question Jenn!

  6. Good on you Rachael, and yes every where I look I see your "JILTED"" even here in country Victoria.

    1. Thanks so much Rob!! Great to hear all these sightings. x Rach!

  7. Thanks so much for having me on your fab blog Whitney. x Rach!

    1. No Problem, Rach. I was very happy to have you. Anytime. :)