1. When did you first decide that you wanted to be an author, as well as a freelance editor?
Welllll, I actually did that one backwards. ;) I wanted to be an author first. I wrote novels long before I edited them. I opened my editing business sort of on a whim, but I had already begun to pursue publication for Diamonds.
2. Can you tell us a little bit about your journey towards achieving those dreams?
I'd love to. Research was the most important thing to me. When I decided I wanted to be a novelist, I put effort into researching how to do that well. Elements of story. Good writing. The industry. Writing blogs helped immensely. I followed much the same process with freelance editing. I peppered a friend with questions--she had hung out her shingle before I had even thought about entering that line of work. And I went back to blogs, researching how to open a business, edit well, interact with clients. Basically I read everything I could find! :)
Great question! I never even really thought about my age as an impediment to my achieving those dreams--instead, I viewed being young as an asset. I figured it would be a long time before I achieved publication because I've heard that it takes years; I decided to use those years to study the craft of writing and editing.
4. Were there any doubts or obstacles that you faced along the way?
I assumed I'd be a decade down the road, married with children or something, when first I held my book in my hands. God flipped that on me, but you'll hear no complaints here. Just surprise and gratitude. :)
The biggest obstacle came when I entered Diamonds into the Genesis and didn't semi-final. Disappointed, I sat down on the stairs that night and considered quitting.
I didn't. Instead, the next day I queried the publishing house that would later sign me. :)
5. Do you believe that teens/young adults should strive for the impossible? What advice would you give to those who do have big dreams, such as writing?
Absolutely. Dream big! But I would caution with patience. It's incredibly easy to make the impossible in this industry happen on your own now: you can self-publish. And for some that is exactly what you want to do. But if you want to be traditionally published, never be discouraged. It can happen to you, if you are willing to put in the time and effort to make it happen. Maybe it won't happen as young as you would like. I know authors who have waited ten or twenty years to hold their book in their hands. That kind of patience pays off. Don't give up on your dream. :)
~ ~ ~
Rachelle Rea plots her novels while driving around the little town she's lived in all her life in her dream car, a pick-up truck. An Oreo addict, she is also a homeschool graduate and retired gymnast. She wrote The Sound of Diamonds the summer after her sophomore year of college.