Rachael Eliker and I sat down and had a virtual lunch at Chez Writer Cafe'. She's drinking jamacia and I have a flavored lemonade. Today I picked elderberry in honor of my down-home friend.
Sabrina: We haven't had the chance to meet in person, but I feel like I know you already.
Rachael:Well, we’ve never met in person but you were in my in-laws' ward in Lincoln and you know my oldest sister Kristin as well as various other church friends, so we met via Facebook. You have been a wonderful mentor and have allowed me to help do some beta reading for you. Your enthusiasm for writing is contagious.
Sabrina: Oh, now you have me blushing. I've only tried to do what others have done for me. Speaking of writing, we're creative, so let's put together a better story for how we met.
Rachael:A better story is that we met on a cattle drive. A cow kicked at my horse who spooked, dumping me from the saddle and taking off to high heaven. Unfortunately, my boot was stuck in the stirrup so you galloped alongside and grabbed my horse’s reins while I was drug helplessly on the ground. I was lucky. Only a few minor bumps and bruises so I got back to work moving cattle. That night around the campfire, you played trilling songs on your harmonica while I followed along, picking at my banjo. The other cowboys sang or listened while they helped themselves to platefuls of pork and beans with enormous slices of cornbread dripping in honey.
Sabrina: I hope that's some of the honey from your own bees. This is great! Keep going!
Rachael: Out of nowhere, a couple of fugitives sprung themselves on us, having seen the campfire. They both wielded pocket knives and told us if we did what they said, we wouldn’t be harmed. You and I looked at each other and rolled our eyes. Getting out our lassos, we snagged those two convicts and tied them like calves ready to be branded before they could flinch. The entire camp let out whoops and hollers of admiration. We took a bow, reassuring everyone it was all in a day’s work.
We became pretty good friends after that.
Rachael: In a nutshell, it is about a girl who switches places with her horse at a very inopportune time. For this particular novel, I’ve often wondered what on earth the horses I’ve ridden were thinking and since a great deal of my time is tied up in running a fixer-upper house, herding a small herd collection of animals (including children) and making sure my rocket scientist husband is listening to common sense (i.e. me), I don’t get to devote as much time to riding as I’d like. Writing about riding has been a great way to reminisce and keep dreams for future riding goals alive. Overall, I’ve always enjoyed writing as a creative outlet and mental exercise.
I’ve been tickled pink to see how successful it’s been in the UK with sales rivaling those from the US! For a limited time, it will be on sale for $0.99 so if your readers are looking for a fun, quick read that involves a girl-turned-show-horse, a mortal enemy that’ll make their skin crawl even if you feel sorry for her and a dashing farrier who’s not sure what to make of a show-horse-turned-girl, they might enjoy my novel!
Sabrina: As someone who got to beta read the story, I agree that horse fans will love the story. You already have several great reviews on Amazon and it hasn't been out that long. So, how do you spoil your fans?
Rachael: I L-O-V-E doing giveaways. Not only does it entice new people to check out my novel or social media platform, it’s also a great way to get already devoted fans re-excited. It’s always a good feeling to win something, even better to give something away.
Sabrina: Who doesn't love a freebie? Tell us abut your writing process. Do you outline your stories or write by the seat of your pants?
Rachael: If I have time to sit down and write, I want to do it writing, not doing outlines (I never liked them in school anyway). However, I DO spend A LOT of time thinking about what I’d like to write between chasing around three little girls, hanging precariously from ladders painting and trying to keep some semblance of organization in our home, so stories seem to work themselves out while I’m pondering. I will jot a quick note in my phone to remember a plot or character I’d like to include. So, I guess I’d classify myself as writing a basic outline by the seat of my pants.
Sabrina: Works for me. <grin> And if people want to read more about you hanging from ladders and generally running a small farm, those stories are at logged on your blog. People can also find you a couple other places. Your website and on Facebook. I love reading the blog and you have a lot of money saving tips and do-it-yourself ideas. What if you didn't have to stay on a budget? If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it?
Rachael: I’d pay off my debts, finish some home improvements, spoil friends and family a bit, and save. I’d probably also buy myself a soft-serve ice cream machine because I’d be okay splurging on a little something for myself.
Sabrina: I love those ideas -especially the ice cream maker if I could figure out how to make dairy-free ice cream. Well, the check is here so let's have some fun before we go. How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
Rachael: Hopefully enough to stoke our wood burning stove for the duration of winter.
Sabrina: Ha! Sounds like you've gathered wood a few times. I have memories of that myself. What is your favorite joke?
Rachael: Why did the cowboy adopt a dachshund?
To get a long little doggie.
Sabrina: I'm going to have to remember that one. Thank you for being my guest today and telling us a little more about you.
Okay folks, where are the horse fans? Leave a message and ask any questions you might have for Rachael.