17 July, 2015

#Interview with Summerita Rhayne, #Author of The Eligible Princess

About the Author:

Summerita Rhayne loves to write sensual and emotional romance in diverse genres like contemporary and historical. There's no knowing when some quirky - or sometimes even not so quirky - happening in daily life might trigger her right brain and then she's off craving a new story. She loves writing characters who learn and grow and find their way out of their troubles and emotional hang-ups. Hot, sensual heroes and sassy but sweet heroines mostly fit the bill in her stories. She also believes that a touch of humor never goes amiss in a book.

She divides her time between family, job and writing - and loves winding down with music, movies and the internet!

Author links:

Interview with Summerita Rhayne

When did you first realize that you wanted to be a writer/ a storyteller? 
When I was fifteen years old :) I took up science and realized that I found spinning stories much more interesting than solving numerical problems. In school, I found a few fans when I submitted stories to the magazine. My English teachers were always happy with me because I had no problem writing pages and pages of compositions. Even when I felt confused or overwhelmed by any situation, I would turn to writing down my feelings which helped me sort them out. I began to keep a notebook to keep track of my stories and characters. That's when I realized that writing could well be a career option. However, lacking encouragement from any source, I couldn't put thought into action.

What inspires you to write? 
Anything interesting happening in the world around me. Or even anything mundane. I see a vendor selling peanuts and poor kids picking them up around him and it gives me a character's background. I see a man with a spot of blood on his shirt and it makes me think of a hero being a prize fighter. It can be anything, if I'm in the story mode. If not, then I usually don't think much about my work. 

How did you come up with the idea for your current story?
It came to me when I was writing the first historical. I didn't plan it to be a series. While writing about the heroine Rukmani I wrote this line about her having suitors even when her elder sister was the eligible princess. That line set me off on this title and the idea for this book. So it came about that Lakshaya is supposed to be the eligible princess, the one who is of marriageable age but her suitor pays more attention to the younger sister. That's definitely problematic for her.

Tell us about your writing process. 
For every book I find there's a different writing process and sometimes you just can't control it. I started off this book writing as a pantser which means without much planning. I wrote the first few chapters totally off the top of my head. But then I felt I needed some direction for the story so I thought about it and wrote down the main events leading to the end. I must confess, it became very difficult to write then. As methodical as I like to be, I find that I don’t like it in my writing. I can tell you it was like trudging through treacle. So I decided to try another method. I began to research and edit it and add the missing portions. The interest revived as I found interesting facts about the period and gave me a host of new ideas to work with and then I was able to finish it.

What is your favorite scene in the book? Why? 
There are many scenes which I enjoyed penning down. For instance the argument when she finds out the truth about Kartik, the fight scene that leads to her walking out, the love scene after the wedding. But the passage I liked most was their first one together when she is masked and he all but takes advantage of the fact.
Here’s a snippet of the beginning of that scene:
He wasn’t immediately in her view. Frowning, she moved it from one wall to the other. Where had King Kartikeya gone? 
A hand gripped her wrist and she gasped, dropping the cylinder. She had an impression of hair sprinkled skin shaping honed muscles and gasped anew as she realized who it was. 
She had her answer as to where he had gone! 
He had caught her instrument as it slipped from her fingers and now turned it this way and that. ‘A device for spying? Or was it peeking for your own benefit?’ Dark eyes snared her gaze. ‘Why strain your eyes, charuta? Have a look at the real thing up close.’

Did any of your characters inherit some of your own quirks?
No. I don’t think so at least. Mostly my characters are much more interesting than I am :) They get into their own skins and personalities very soon after I begin the book, so there’s very less chance of it. For instance, Lakshaya is interested in math, physics and art. I’m not conversant with these subjects much. 

Do you read? Who are your favourite authors and how have they influenced your writing style?
Most writers are avid readers and I’m not an exception. I like to read certain genres and am somewhat fixed in my tastes. I find literary stories rather slow reading. I unwind with reading romance and for a break from romance usually I read thrillers. My favourite authors are Agatha Christie, Sidney Sheldon and Georgette Heyer. Georgette Heyer gave me a love of historical ficiton, Sidney Sheldon writes very pacy books and I like that style much. I also like the humorous style of P.G. Wodehouse as well. Sometimes I might insert something at the expense of my characters if it nudges my sense of humour :)

What is the best piece of advice you have received, as a writer, till date?
I read somewhere that an editor gave an author the advice to always ask, ‘why’ and, ‘what if?’  I have followed these and found this very helpful in mapping out the characters and the plot.

What is the best piece of advice you would give to someone that wants to get into writing?
If you have a favourite genre, why not start by writing in that? Don’t think of being published right away. First write for the love of it. Read extensively in your niche and find what you love to write. You will be surprised that what you started out writing may not be what you eventually find you love writing best. When you find what you love to write, then make it your niche. Develop it, hone it. Then look around for publishers.

What do you have in store next for your readers?
I’m working right now on a contemporary romance which is a story of conflict of beliefs and values between a film director and a Bollywood starlet who are married but on the verge of a divorce. 

Thanks, DDS for having me on your blog. It’s been lovely chatting with you.

About the Book

The Eligible Princess is Book 2 in the Kamboj Princesses Saga set in Early Medieval India. It is a sensual, historical romance. It’s a sort of prequel to Book 1 Hidden Passion, but you don’t need to read them together. Each is a separate story.

....After Hidden Passion, the Kamboj Princesses Saga continues with Rukmani’s sister Lakshaya... 

King Kartikeya must marry a princess. He's determined to do anything to keep the kingdom he has taken with strategy and sheer guts. If that involves charming a princess into marriage, then so be it.
Princess Lakshaya infinitely prefers the study of science to the art of impressing a suitor. In fact, she would rather have no more proposals at all. But refusing a king as opulent as Kartik is out of question. Drawn against her will by the force of his attraction, she begins to accept him, only to discover hidden secrets along the way.
Can she bring herself to go ahead with this marriage?
Set in Early Middle Ages in India, Book 2 in the Kamboj Princesses Saga follows Lakshaya in her journey to discover desire, passion, intrigue and love.

Other Books by the Author
ContemporaryAgainst All Rules, available as ebook and paperback
HistoricalHidden Passion (Kamboj Princesses Saga #1) available as ebook 
                  and paperback
                  The Eligible Princess (Kamboj Princesses Saga #2) available as ebook 
                  and paperback
Short story collectionUnexpected Valentines, available as ebook

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