Earlier this year I had the privilege of meeting Rebecca Raisin when she and her family came to the UK as part of their European tour. Bec is always so supportive of fellow authors, bloggers and readers so it's my pleasure to invite her to the blog as part of the blog tour for her latest book Secrets at Maple Syrup Farm to find out a little bit more about it.
In Secrets at the Maple Syrup farm we are taken back to Ashford, Connecticut, can you tell us a little bit about it?
Lucy makes her sick mom a promise, to take one year for herself and go on an adventure. She gets on the very first bus out of town and winds up in Ashford. She’s desperate for work, and finds a job at the Maple Syrup Farm, and is determined no matter how gruff Clay the owner is to stick it out! She needs the money to further her travels, and to send some home to her mom. She didn’t think she’d unearth a range of secrets about the small town, ones that threaten to change her life forever!
I'm assuming you didn't know much about Maple Syrup farming before you started writing so how did you go about researching?
Haha no, I didn’t! I bought a book about Maple Syrup tapping and the traditions behind it. It was fascinating to read how it was made. The trees only produce for six weeks a year, so it’s sort of a magical process, and something so sweet nature provides.
Describe Lucy and Clay in three words.
Lucy – artistic, loving, lost
Clay – gruff, sexy, deep
Have you got a favourite recipe featuring Maple Syrup?
I researched so many for the Sugaring-Off Festival in the book, but the simplest and best for me is French toast with HEAPS of maple syrup and cream!
I LOVE the sound of your new series, what attracted you to set these in Paris?
Thank you! I’ve always been in love with Paris, the romance, the beauty, the history. When I went on my Europe jaunt this year we spent five days in Paris, and I just knew I had to do some stories set there. Most tourists take photos of the Eiffel Tower, I was taking photos of the cobblestones, and street names, and strange little things so I would remember the sights, and scents so they can be evocative, and descriptive so you feel like you’re right there. And I am hoping by some miracle I have to go back for RESEARCH.
Did you always want to be a writer?
Yes, I always dreamed of being a writer. When I was in high school I wrote terrible poetry, and it wasn’t until I had my boys that I finally put pen to paper.
What is the best writing advice you have ever received?
Finish what you start.
If you could write in a collaboration with another author, who would you like to write with?
I’m actually collaborating with Helena Kendrick on a book at the moment! It’s great fun to fire ideas back and forth with someone!
Do you get much spare time for reading? And if so, does being a writer affect the way you see books as a reader?
I read every night without fail. If I don’t read I can’t sleep. With some books, I sort of edit in my head as I read, but I can usually switch off and get stuck into the story.
When you’ve finished writing a book, do you treat yourself to a reward?
By then the house is always a mess, so I clean. How depressing is that! But I do try and spend a day or two not writing, just to give my brain a break!!
Where would be your idyllic location for a writing retreat?
PARIS! Let’s all go there!
Maple sugar kisses
Lucy would do anything for her mom…but she never expected to end up promising to leave her. After her mom got sick, Lucy dropped everything to take care of her, working all hours in a greasy diner just to make ends meet and spending every spare moments she had by her mom’s hospital bedside.
Now, Lucy is faced with a whole year of living by her own rules, starting by taking the first bus out of town to anywhere…
Except she didn’t expect to find her next big adventure just around the corner! Especially when on her first day in town she bumps into grumpy, but oh-so-delicious Clay amidst the maple trees. Surrounded by the magic of Ashford, Lucy has the chance to change her life forever and finally discover a life she wants to live!