Rebecca is in the House! Please Welcome Rebecca E. Neely to the Blogathon!

Rebecca E. Neely
Today I’ve got Rebecca E. Neely at the Blogathon! Rebecca, tell us all about you! What would you most like your readers to know?

I strive to create stories that are fast paced, with real, vulnerable characters. I hope when readers pick up one of my books, they’re able to lose themselves in the story and escape, even if it’s only for fifteen minutes, whether they’re cozy on their couch, or if they’re waiting to pick their children up from (insert activity here) practice, waiting at the airport, or a doctor’s office, etc. I think that’s why we all read. I can’t count the hours I’ve spent enjoying stories by Nora Roberts, Heather Graham, Linda Howard, Stephen King and many others. When I read a story that I get lost in, I think, wow, I want to be able to create a story that’s memorable, and powerful and fun.

Let’s talk about romance. How do you set the mood for your characters, what do you draw from that helps your H/H achieve oneness with each other? And how much conflict do you give them, along the way?

Often, I’ll come up with a pivotal scene, with the hero and heroine at a crucial moment in their relationship, when they’re getting in each other’s faces, finding out the truth about the other one, or right after one of the characters has behaved badly – and I’ll ask myself: why do they stay? Why do they not give up on each other? It helps me answer the question: why is he the only for her, and she the only one for him? In this way, I can craft situations, events, conflicts, around them – what will push their buttons the most? Bring out the worst in them? The best?

What shining moment in your journey stands out the most as a real turning point for you as a writer?

Obviously, having my first book published was an amazing moment. But after I’d finished my second manuscript, I was still working at the kitchen table. My neck hurt so badly I went to the doctor. That’s when I knew I needed to make some decisions about my future and my health. I agonized over the purchase of a proper chair and desk until a friend I work with said to me, “You’re going to write until you die.” I knew she was right. I shopped around and bought a lovely secretary desk and an ergonomic office chair. Every time I sit down to work I’m truly thankful for the space and organization it gives me. The pigeonholes are cool! And, it never fails to make me feel like a real writer. (grin)

What is the most thrilling aspect of the writing process for you?

Having the characters come alive for me, getting an idea and rushing to the computer or grabbing pen and paper because you just know in your gut it’s going to work. I often talk to myself while I’m working, and taking walks – I talk to myself there too, while I work out details. People probably think I’m nuts!

How do you begin a story? Do you just sit down with an idea in mind and start writing, or are you a person who wouldn’t dream of starting without a detailed outline, character sketches, and pages of research data?

Great question. When I first started writing, I would sit down with an idea and write. But I quickly found that got me into trouble. I was writing myself into corners, and writing in circles. It wasn’t until my second manuscript I started using Scrivener, and that was months into the process. I took to it like a duck to water. Love it, and couldn’t do without it. It allows me to develop things in a non-linear way, and provides visuals, which I think are critical. Bottom line, I can get a nice overview anytime I want of scenes, color code things, etc. In addition, there’s a lot of world building in the story I’m working on now. Trying to keep all that straight would be impossible without Scrivener. Now I spend much more time outlining before taking the plunge. I read somewhere that every time you write another story, you think you’ll be faster, because you’re more experienced, but it actually takes longer, because you’re always reaching out for better ways of doing things. Too, I think every story demands a tailored approach. Of course, there’s things every writer comes to depend on, but I’m always learning and that’s part of the journey.

Tell us a little about what you’re currently working on.

I am currently writing the second book in the Crossing Realms paranormal romance series. The first book in the series, The Keeper, won’t release until, most likely, the end of the year. This is my first series, my first paranormal, so this is uncharted territory for me. After I read The Host by Stephanie Meyers, I was inspired to think outside the box for my next story. Too, I’ve always enjoyed books with paranormal elements. I had a lot of fun creating the lead characters of Nick Geary, a jaded clan leader of human guardians, The Keepers, and of skittish human accountant Libby Klink.

A big thank you to Soul Mate Publishing, and Acquisitions Editor Char Chaffin for working so hard to put together a fantastic blog showcase. Awesome!

Rebecca’s Debut Release with Soul Mate, A MIGHTY GOOD MAN:

AMightyGoodMan“What the hell?” Heart pounding, Hank retreated a few steps and threw her cigarette to the ground. Blood, bruises, panic—all of it oozed from this man who’d materialized like smoke.

‘Hank’ Jerry, in A Mighty Good Man

Her personal and professional life on the skids, a family emergency forces writer Hank Jerry to return to the small town and the aunt she left behind.

Fresh out of prison, Jack “Gent” Darcy is bent on cutting ties with the Creds, but when you’re a war counselor in a national gang, they don’t let you just walk away.

Injured and on the run, Jack lands on Hank’s doorstep, and makes her a proposition she can’t refuse: write his story about life inside one of the most powerful gangs in the country. It’s simple—she’ll get her career groove back, and he’ll bury the gang, then disappear—his version of freedom.

The only problem? They can’t help falling for each other, and they’ve both got something to hide that could blow up in their faces. With time running out and gang enforcers closing in, will the trust they’ve forged survive the ultimate test?


Get a sneak peek of the first book in the Crossing Realms paranormal romance series!

Rebecca, thanks so much for visiting with us today!

More about Rebecca:

Raised on a down home blend of Johnny Cash, Jack London, Sherlock Holmes, the Steelers, and all things small town, Rebecca feels blessed to have grown up in a close knit, fun loving and artistic family. Her mother, a voracious reader and scratch cook, and her father, an entrepreneur, English teacher and lover of literature, taught Rebecca and her brother to work hard, aim for the stars, and live life.

With music, books and laughter as constant companions, she grew up working, cooking and eating in the family’s restaurant business. A certified book and hoagie junkie, Rebecca thrives on live music, mysteries and the outdoors. She’s a cheddar enthusiast, lover of cats, teddy bears, hot coffee, cold beer, thunderstorms, the blast of a train’s whistle, the change of seasons, country roads, woodpeckers, spoon rings, cool office supplies, and the Food Network.

She’s a sucker for a happy ending, and strives to write the kind of stories she loves to read—those featuring authentic, edgy and vulnerable characters, smack dab in the middle of action that explodes from page one. Careers, past and present, include freelance writing, accounting, mother, problem solver, doer and head bottle washer.


About charchaffin2011

Writer and Senior Acquiring Editor
This entry was posted in 2015 August Blogathon, Blogstopping For Beckie!, Contemporary Romance and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Rebecca is in the House! Please Welcome Rebecca E. Neely to the Blogathon!

  1. Rebecca, you are so right about that “taking longer every time” thing with writing new stories. I am the same as you—always looking for better ways of doing things. That process is sometimes more time consuming than just bashing out a rough draft in 30 days and then spending two years reworking it, like I did with my first novel.
    But that’s why I love writing so much. Well, only one of the reasons. Actually, I love getting to live in my make-believe worlds with my make-believe characters. A little child in all of us, huh?
    Great post!

  2. MJ Compton says:

    Scrivener rocks. Love that you take yourself seriously enough to buy a desk and chair for writing.

  3. Karen Rossi says:

    Welcome, Rebecca! I also write stories that have real, vulnerable people, but they always stay on this earth, :O) I guess my imagination doesn’t fly as far as yours!
    Good luck with your writing. It’s a fabulous job to be in, isn’t it?!!

  4. Hello Rebecca,
    I like your question about “Why do they stay?” Good exploration question.

  5. Patty Taylor says:

    Hello Rebecca! And congratulations on your release – I’m looking forward to reading this one. I thoroughly enjoyed readying your blog post today.

  6. Examining the motivation of characters is a great way to give them added depth and make them more believable for readers. Thanks for the insights!

  7. laynemacadam says:

    Thanks for sharing your writing process Rebecca, and I wish you great success with A Mighty Good Man!!

  8. aliceakemp says:

    Great posting. I, too, like your question “why do they stay?” It’s more specific than “What if?”
    Continued good luck with A Mighty Good Man… A great story.

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