Interview With New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine and latest news
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Interview with Rachel Caine

Rachel Caine is the #1 internationally bestselling author of more than forty-five novels, including the bestselling Morganville Vampires, Weather Warden, Outcast Season, Revivalist, and Great Library series, as well as the Young Adult novel PRINCE OF SHADOWS. Her upcoming release, STILLHOUSE LAKE, reached #1 in the paid Kindle Store.

TKA: Please tell us a bit about your upcoming release, STILLHOUSE LAKE.

Rachel: I'm a voracious reader of both thrillers and true crime novels, and it occurred to me one day that while the families of serial killers are often mentioned in passing, we never really know what their lives are like later on. 

As I thought about that, it occurred to me that being married to someone truly notorious—Ted Bundy levels of notorious—would be incredibly difficult in today's world of 24-hour news, social media, and the unbridled ability of fanatics and trolls to destroy lives.

So STILLHOUSE LAKE is the story of Gwen Proctor, the ex-wife of an imprisoned serial killer, who's spent years moving and changing identities to protect her two kids from attacks, and has now found peace in a remote, rural area. But as secrets and bodies start to emerge, she has to make a choice: run, or fight. And Gwen is a fighter. 

The book has plenty of twists and turns, and I'm delighted that I got to write it.

TKA: Did you face any unexpected challenges in writing something quite different from most of your previous work?

Rachel: One thing about my career: I've never stayed in my comfort zone. I started out in media tie-in, migrated to horror, then romantic suspense, then urban fantasy, then romance, over to young adult... I love taking chances, and jumping into suspense felt fresh and exciting to me.

As far as unexpected challenges, I think it was a bit of a shock to me how much darkness I found lurking around inside me that had a chance to come out... I had to struggle a bit to keep it from getting too dark. (I'll save that for the second book.)

TKA: Do you usually start off with a character or general idea? How do your stories develop?

Rachel: It very much depends. STILLHOUSE LAKE started off absolutely with a character; I knew who Gwen Proctor was from the very beginning, so everything formed around her. In the Great Library series in YA, it's very much an idea-driven world, so the settings came first, characters second. In my urban fantasy Weather Warden series, it was once again the character foremost. I like to just follow wherever the concept leads me. 

TKA: How does it feel when you see someone reading one of your books?

Rachel: A little unreal! I often have to take a second look to make sure I really saw it, and then it feels both thrilling and scary. Watching them read something in real time feels surprisingly weird. Also, I'm sure they don't feel great about me staring at them, trying to read their approval from their expressions!

TKA: Can we expect more thrillers from you? Please give us a hint of what's next.

Rachel: Yes, absolutely ... the third book of The Great Library, ASH AND QUILL, comes out July 11. The second book of the Stillhouse Lake series is called KILLMAN CREEK, and it'll be out in November 2017. My friend Ann Aguirre and I are teaming up for a brand new outer space YA series called The Honors. The first book, HONOR BOUND, will be out in February 2018. I'm also working on a new book in the urban fantasy Weather Wardens series, RED HOT RAIN, for early next year too. More to come! 

RACHEL'S AUTHOR TIP OF THE MONTH:

When you see sets of how-to-write rules that say "always do this" or "never do this"... remember it's not an exact science. Writing is such a personal process that there's no right or wrong way to work. There's no "perfect pace" or "perfect approach." If you're making progress, it's right for you. But remember: circumstances change, so don't be afraid to change with them. If you love to write at night, but you get a job that doesn't allow that anymore, you have to decide: will you switch it up and find a new way to work? Flexibility is key to surviving those challenges for the long term.

Also: writing is not a sprint. It's a marathon. Find your stride, and don't worry about measuring yourself against others. They're not your competition, they're your colleagues. Celebrate everyone's success, because the more good books people read, the more they want to pick up.

Click here to listen to Rachel's special interview on the Once & Future Podcast!

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