Interview with Rachelle McCalla

» Posted on Feb 16, 2010 in Blog | Comments Off on Interview with Rachelle McCalla

This week I’m hosting Rachelle McCalla with Survival Instinct and Christine Lynxwiler with Cowgirl at Heart. If you want to enter the drawing for the books, please leave a comment on one of the post during the week with your email address. I will not enter you without an email address (my way to contact you if you win). If you don’t want to leave an email address, another way you can enter is to email me at The drawings end Sunday (Feb. 21st) evening.

Rachelle McCalla’s interview:

1.What made you start writing?

I’ve wanted to be a writer since I was a kid. I love reading so I can’t think of any better job in the whole world!

2.How long have you been writing? When did you sell your first book?

It took me about five years from when I seriously started writing with the hopes of getting published until I landed that first contract, and then another year or so until I saw my book on the shelf. I just sold my first book last year, and it just came out! Survival Instinct is my first published novel, and the first of two books set in the Apostle Islands of Wisconsin.

3.How do you handle rejections?

Well, after the initial moping phase wears off, I try to sort out what I can improve for the next submission. It really helps if an editor names specific reasons why the work was rejected. I look back at each rejection and see a rung on the ladder to publication. They weren’t backward steps! Each rejection taught me something that helped me to eventually sell my first book.

4.Why do you write?

I write for a lot of reasons. One, because I love a good story. Two, I’m driven that way. God made me to be a writer, no doubt about it. There are a lot of other things God didn’t make me to be, but we won’t go into those! And finally, I hope my stories encourage people to deepen their relationship with Christ.

5.What would you be doing with your free time if you weren’t writing?

I spend a lot of time with my four little kids, who always keep my on my toes. Theoretically, if I had enough time on my hands, I would clean my house. But realistically, there’s too much exciting mischief to get into, and life is too short for housecleaning!

6.What are you working on right now?

I’m currently writing the second book in my Holyoake Heroes series, set in fictional Holyoake, Iowa. It’s a suspense, as all my books have been so far, and follows the adventures of two people as they work together to fix up a house where a lot of bad things happened, and where secrets are hidden that someone doesn’t want discovered. It’s spooky and spine-tingling and I’m having a lot of fun with it!

7.Do you put yourself into your books/characters?

Oh, of course! There’s a little bit of me in each of my heroines, except that they’re younger and skinnier and braver than I am! But their stubborn traits and quirky habits and insecurities that make them more real—they get that from me. ☺

8.Tell us about the book you have out right now.

Oooh, I’m so glad you asked. I just love my book Survival Instinct. It follows two people who get marooned together on a dangerous island, and they have to escape, and in the process they realize someone’s out to kill them, so they have to figure out who it is and why and catch them before they get killed! And of course, they’re both terribly attracted to one another, so there’s this whole falling-in-love bit going on, too. It’s a wild ride!

9.Do you have any advice for other writers?

Just keep writing. And reading. And don’t worry so much about cleaning the house all the time. No one ever said on their deathbed, “I wish I would have spent more time cleaning the house.” Or at least, no one’s ever said it to me. Anyway if they did, I had my ears plugged.

10.How important is faith in your books?

I liken faith in my books to the skeleton of the house. You can’t really see it, but it holds everything together and gives it shape. My characters don’t spend too many pages going on about exactly what they believe, but there are some moments where the light of heaven seems to stream down right out of the clouds.

11.What themes do you like to write about?

Love and adventure and trust and forgiveness, mostly.

12.What is your favorite book you’ve written and why?

Uh-oh, now you’re making me pick sides. I like them all for different reasons, although I think Troubled Waters, which comes out in June, is probably my most whammo-wow knock-your-socks off sort of book.

13.What is your writing schedule like?

I do things when I can, as soon as I can, because if I don’t they don’t get done. The writing is the same. I grab the writing moments as they come to me, and squirrel them away like the precious gems that they are. If you get enough of them and string them together just right, they make a book. ☺