An Interview with Rachel Leitch (author of The Odd Duck Society)
Hello wanderers! I have another fun post for you today (although a little shorter). Remember the anthology, Springtime In Surrey, that I mentioned in my last post? Today I have an interview for you all from my friend and one of the featured authors, Rachel Leitch! I loved her answers to my questions and I'm so excited to read her story (which, with all the other awesome books in the anthology, will be releasing tomorrow!) So without further ado, let's get into the interview!
Welcome to W&W, Rachel! How and when did you start writing?
I started writing fictional adventures about me and my Sunday school classmates. I continued, writing various fan fiction and film rip offs. When I was fourteen, my momma pointed out that people write for a living. I thought that sounded like a great idea, so I began attending conferences and other events, signed up for the Young Writer’s Workshop, and learned a lot both about how to write and how I write over those next several years.
What inspired your book featured in Springtime in Surrey and what was the writing process like?
I blame it on having read Dearest Josephine by Caroline George and The Blackout Book Club by Amy Lynn Green back to back only a couple weeks before my pitch was due. I pulled the idea of letters from hundreds of years ago from one, then a diverse group of book lovers from another, and pushed them both together in a contemporary setting that just seemed to fit. And there I had it. The writing process was remarkably smooth. I had never written something this long under deadline before, and was worried about whether I’d be able to do it. I’m very grateful it went so well and that I had wonderful support from the rest of the Springtime in Surrey team. After outlining, I stopped my first draft halfway through because I had a better idea of the story. That eventually became my finished draft. From there, a couple rounds of edits and amazing feedback from critique partners and the rest of the team got it up to polish.
What inspires you with your writing in general?
So many things. I’ve gotten ideas from other books, from movies, from little interesting history tidbits I pick up, interesting things I see or hear about. Basically anything that says there’s a book in there.
What would your dream writing session look like?
Chai. First off and most importantly, chai. I love writing outside and would choose somewhere with a nice view. I’m working on a second draft, because that’s where I really feel like the story comes out and where I get to have the most fun. I’d have to have some kind of music, but it’d vary depending on the day. While I love my Froststudio Chambersonic, I have also been known to write to whatever film soundtrack has caught my fancy, classical pop, and Lindsey Stirling or whatever songs give me the vibes for the story.
And finally, where can we find you on the Internet?
The best place to find me is to sign up for my newsletter at racheljleitch.com. However, we also have quite a bit of fun on Instagram (@racheljleitchauthor) where I’m slowly getting my feet under me and figuring this social media thing out.
Thank you so much, Rachel! You guys should definitely go check out her blog from the link above - after you've finished this post, ofc (; There are still some exciting details to come on how you can get your hands on a copy of Springtime in Surrey!
About Rachel's story
The Odd Duck Society by Rachel Leitch
Jessamy Aubertine is too much for her university classmates, too little for her overstressed mum, and nothing in between. Then a mysterious letter signed by Jane Austen brings her back to her family’s fading tea shop and a pair of unlikely comrades. Will they find the letter writer—and perhaps discover themselves along the way? Or will their friendship fade with The Muses?
Doesn't it just sound like the sweetest story? Just take a look at these beautiful official aesthetics!
Rachel Leitch discovered the book of writing when she was seven. She’s been turning pages ever since! She lives her own adventure in northern Indiana, with her parents, three sisters, two brothers, and a dog who thinks he’s the hero of her story. She writes young adult historical fiction with a dash of adventure or a spark of magic. When she’s not hidden away writing, she’s trying to fit all her reads on her shelf in a somewhat organized manner, obsessing over character arcs, drinking chai, daydreaming at the piano, or teaching students to be just as bookish as she is. In all her adventures, she learns how to shine brighter for the Father of Lights. For more bookish ramblings (and a free digital short story involving a magical violin) follow her adventure journal at https://racheljleitch.com/!
About the Anthology
'Springtime in Surrey', the first collection releasing with Wild Blue Wonder Press, is a Christian anthology featuring eight lovely stories.
An orphaned young woman must fight to survive after WWI breaks out, praying her beau doesn’t die on a foreign battlefield like her father did years ago.
A former ballerina seeks hope amongst her lost dreams, as a sheep farmer tries to bring her joy.
An exhausted mother balances her duties to both her biological and evacuee children with preparation for an unexpected visit from her soldier husband.
A destitute woman is pursued by an unexpected suitor and finds blessings from God in the way she least expected.
A disgraced debutante flees to the country, only to meet a reclusive writer who may change her life forever.
An insecure university student returns to a tea shop after a mysterious letter summons her there.
A hard-working sister-of-seven struggles with contentment as her marriage is postponed by her fiancé’s absence.
And a young bride chases her husband into the forest to rescue him from himself, which goes about as well as one would expect.
From what I've heard, this anthology is going to be full of heartwarming, deep, God-filled stories, and I'm so looking forward to reading them all. As mentioned, this book releases tomorrow (July 25th), so be sure to head over to Amazon to snag your copy, or on to Goodreads to add it to your TBR!
However, there's also another way to get a copy in the official Springtime in Surrey giveaway! And if you're like me and don't live in the US (and nearly always miss out on giveaways), never fear - there's going to be both a US & and international winner, so be sure not to miss out.
All you have to do to enter is to follow the blog tour (from today to July 31st), commenting on posts and subscribing to the authors’ newsletters and blogs. The winners will be announced on August 1st and contacted by email!
The US Prizes include:
A print copy of Springtime in Surrey, two bookmarks and a quote sticker, a spring-themed mug, a bookish ornament, a spring-themed candle, an inspirational journal, and tea.
The International Prizes are:
An ebook copy of Springtime in Surrey, two bookmarks and a quote sticker, a gift card, an ebook of choice by Erika Mathews, an ebook from the winner’s Amazon wishlist, an exclusive epilogue of The Tussie-Mussie, and a phone wallpaper.
Entrants must be 18+ or have parental permission to enter. Two winners—one US and one international—will be randomly selected at the end of the giveaway and contacted by email. The winners must be comfortable sharing their shipping addresses. Any and all information provided through the giveaway will be used only for the purposes stated.
Feel free to check out Wild Blue Wonder Press on Instagram and Facebook, participate in the social media bookish challenge, or browse the other posts on the blog tour using the …
Blog Tour Schedule
Monday, July 24th
Kickoff Post at Lilacs & Reveries
Interview with Katja H. Labonté at Sheep Among Wolves
Interview with Faith Blum at Library Lady’s Kid Lit
Launch Announcement at Writing to Inspire
Interview with Rachel Leitch at Words & Wildflowers
Three-Novella Review at Miraculous Homeschool
Tuesday, July 25th (LAUNCH DAY)
Collection Spotlight at Of Blades and Thorns
Collection Spotlight & Single-Novella Review at Review from the Stacks
Collection Review at Emily Yager
Collection Review at The Book Dragon’s Alcove
Collection Review at Story of a Christian Girl
Wednesday, July 26th
Two-Novella Review at H.S. Kylian
Collection Review at Abbigail B.
“Tips from Editing 7 Novellas in a Month,” a Guest Post by Kellyn at Joyfully Natasha
Collection Review at Imperial Scribis
Thursday, July 27th
“Why We Wrote Stories Set in Surrey,” a Guest Post from Kellyn at A Handful of Quietness
Collection Review at Library Lady’s Kid Lit
Collection Spotlight at Kelsey’s Notebook
Single-Novella Review at Vanessa Hall
Interview with Andrea Renee Cox at Story of a Christian Girl
Friday, July 28th
Two-Novella Review at Read Review Rejoice
Collection Spotlight at Writing to Inspire
Collection Review at Graceful Reflections
“Why I Love Writing Women’s Fiction,” a Guest Post from Kellyn at Abbigail B.
Saturday, July 29th
Collection Review at Saraina Whitney
Collection Review & Collection Spotlight at Little Blossoms for Jesus
“Children’s Books I Drew Inspiration From,” a Guest Post from Kellyn at Library Lady’s Kid Lit
Wrapup Post at Lilacs & Reveries
Well then, that's it for now! Be sure to check out the links above, and I'll see you all in the next post (I have a few new ideas I'm working on...). Until then, have a lovely day!