I gave up on my writing dream shortly after the birth of my first child. It was too hard, and I was no good.
I have always loved history, and as a young girl, I often visited castles and medieval sites around Britain with my family. I also have a vivid imagination, and used to make up stories about the princesses and knights that might have lived their once. As I grew older, my love for storytelling did not leave me. But, my teachers at school advised that writing was not a valid career choice, and I should choose a more vocational option. I did not cast the idea of writing aside, merely put it on hold.
When I had a career break to have my first baby, I decided then was the time to write that novel. I had so many ideas, and a multitude of possibilities. But where did one start? I began with researching medieval history at my local library, and then dove into my first ever novel. After the first 50 pages, I read the manuscript back to myself, and sighed. What a load of rubbish. Who was I kidding? This writing lark was a lot harder than I’d imagined. I’d poured my heart and soul into those words, but they did not read anything like a book I’d buy from a bookstore.
Relinquishing my dream of writing, I went back to work as an administrator, and then started my own business. I decided to pursue a more viable career path, and so began a distance learning business degree, it would take me six years to complete at home, but it meant I could study while working and raising my now two young children.
After the second year of my degree, and nearly tearing my hair out trying to get my head around the complexities of financial accounting, I’d had enough. I wanted to study something just for fun. My brain simply wasn’t wired to understand mathematics. So, I had 60 credits of free choice available. I’d do creative writing. It had always been my favourite subject at school.
Two weeks into the course, and I was hooked. Why had I never thought to study writing before? I soon realised, that it wasn’t that I couldn’t write, I had simply never learned how to. I’d no idea about point of view, scene structure, character arcs or plot skeletons. The concept of tight writing or ways to evoke emotion had never entered my head. Studying creative writing gave me a newfound confidence and desire to start novel writing again. I read more books about the craft, and changed my degree subject from business to open, so that I could choose modules that would enhance my writing. I studied psychology, and advanced creative writing, English language, history and much more. Then, I possessed both the ideas, and the tools to write well.
One year later, ‘The Forgotten Princess of Elmetia’ was born.
Born and bred in England, Rachel writes adventure driven historical romance, and has three beautiful little princesses. She minored in creative writing at university and strives to entertain, inspire and encourage others through her work. She’s also captivated by romantic tales… combine it with a little history and a hot cup of tea, and she’s smitten! Find her at www.rachelajames.com for more information.
About the Book (Medieval Romance)
It is 616AD, and one fatal night the ancient Kingdom of Elmetia falls. Saxons kill the Elmetian King, and capture Princess Teagen. Teagen poses as a slave girl and works for the Saxons in the Kingdom of Deira, until she discovers her brother is alive. She finds a way to escape, and her path crosses with Ryce the Warrior.
Struggling with his past, and angry against the tyrant Saxon king, Ryce helps the princess in pursuit of her brother. But just as the connection between them intensifies, obstacles get in their way. The Saxon king now wants vengeance, and will stop at nothing to get it.
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