What made you start writing?
RL: I’ve been writing for a very long time so I’m not sure what initially sparked my love for writing. I have a vivid imagination and I was a big daydreamer growing up (I still am) so writing definitely helps clear my head.
As a new author, did you think this series would garner so much attention? How does it feel to have a successful series right out the gate?
RL: Nope! I didn’t expect anyone to read anything I wrote. It feels amazing and overwhelming at the same time but a good overwhelming. It’s a good feeling to create something and have people to share it with.
Saving Sunflower. Endgame. Bunny. Thirty. Which one was your favorite?
RL: It’s definitely a close race between Bunny and Thirty. I love Bunny because I love the depth of Desmond and Logan’s relationship. It was an emotional rollercoaster to write. I love Thirty because it showed the growth of my storytelling abilities. I can see the improvement from Saving Sunflower in the conciseness of my writing, use of proper prose, and just overall story structure.
Which character was your favorite?
RL: This is a hard one! I think Andre has been my favorite character so far because he is very layered. Logan is my next favorite because she was such a fun character to write. Her character traits weren’t the most admirable (according to some!) but I thought she was one of the most realistic characters I’d ever created and according to an unofficial poll in The Sunroom (FB group for all the Sun Series lovers lol) most of the ladies in the group resonated with Logan the most out of all the female characters.
Name your top 3 authors.
RL: This is also hard! I can’t pick favorites but here are some authors I love and look up to (traditional and indie): Toni Morrison, Tia Williams, Nia Forrester, Takerra Allen, Jacinta Howard, K’Wan.
Can you tell us what you're working on now?
RL: Something new, lol. I hate chatting about something before it comes into fruition because I feel like that can taint it in a way but more good things are coming—more black romance stories—different ones. I have other stories I need to tell.
Will you ever consider writing in another genre?
RL: Sure! I like to challenge myself which can be a good or bad thing because I feel like sometimes readers *may* get comfortable and come to expect certain types of stories from authors but I am not that kind of author. I have to switch things up and constantly challenge myself to keep the excitement while creating.
What have you learned as a writer?
RL: To not take things personally. When people say you have to have tough skin as a writer, it’s true! I try to protect myself and my creativity in different ways such as not reading reviews, limiting my time on social media, and setting goals for myself. It’s easy to read something negative about your work and get discouraged but you’ll be doing yourself and your readers a disservice if you take those things to heart. It’s easier said than done though because my stories are literally my babies. Each one is special to me.
What advise would you give someone who wants to become an author?
RL: Always stay true to yourself and write for yourself first. If you write for yourself first you’ll always create your best work. Set boundaries. Stay consistent. Don’t give up.
Where can readers find out more about you and your books?
RL: On IG and FB: raelysebooks
My website: www.raelysebooks.com