Wednesday, June 01, 2011

A Special #WW - Soraya Lane

This #WritersWednesday I have a real treat for you - this is what happens when all your hard work pays off! Please welcome Soraya Lane - debut author with Harlequin Romance! I'm absolutely thrilled that we're paired together in our UK and Australian releases, and she's here to answer a few questions about selling her FIRST BOOK!  Soldier on her Doorstep is out in June in the UK, and in North America in July. Ready? Here we go!

This is your debut Romance/Cherish! Woo hoo! We’re burning to know – what led up to you getting The Call?

It seemed like a very long journey to The Call! Now that I can look back on it, it wasn’t that long, but just before I sold, I did start to wonder if I’d ever make it. I’d been writing seriously for about five years, and this was the tenth manuscript that I’d completed, so I had been very committed to becoming published. During that time, I had some awful rejections and some lovely detailed ones, and I can honestly say that the heartache of being rejected so many times was worth it when I received the call!

What led you to want to write about the US military? Where did the idea for Soldier on Her Doorstep come from?

To be honest, I don’t know where the idea for Soldier on Her Doorstep came from. I’ve always loved reading about and watching US military stories/movies, and the hero and heroine in this story entered my mind one day and bugged me until I wrote their story. Once I started, I wanted to explore the idea of falling in love for a second time, as the heroine, Lisa, has already lost her husband, who she thought was the love of her life. Lisa also has a young daughter, and I also wanted to explore the very real concept of a child losing a parent who’s been serving overseas.

You live in a gorgeous part of the world, but one that’s seen its share of hardships lately. What’s it been like to be in Christchurch over the last year?

Christchurch is the most beautiful place to live, but the last six months have been hard. It’s hard to explain how terrifying and unsettling earthquakes can be – I could certainly never have imagined it had I not experienced it first hand. Our lovely city has been completely devastated, and it may be a decade before it’s rebuilt, but one day it will be restored back to its former glory.

You’re also a brand new mum! How’s the time management thing working out for you? What’s your work schedule like?

With the ongoing earthquakes and a new (and first!) baby in the house, our lives have changed drastically! Unfortunately our little son has had dreadful reflux and hardly ever sleeps, so writing has been more difficult than usual. Add to that my parent’s losing their home when the last big earthquake struck, and we’ve had a lot going on! I’m lucky that my Mom is here every day to help me, so I can still squeeze in quality writing time. I work as a full-time freelance writer too, so there’s always lots of writing to be done!

The first year after selling is, well, full of firsts! Which things have been terribly exciting?

Oh, all the wonderful firsts! Signing my first contract was pretty exciting, and seeing my first cover up on Amazon was incredible. But nothing can beat seeing the mailman arrive with a huge bag and ripping it open to find your author copies inside! Holding my first hardback book was amazing J

What are we going to see from you in the near future?

This year is actually very exciting for me, as I have Soldier out in the UK in June (paired with my favourite author Donna!) and in July in the USA. Then my second book, The Army Ranger’s Return, is out in the UK in July and the USA in August. They form a duet called Heroes Come Home. If that wasn’t exciting enough, I have my third book, Rodeo Daddy, out in the UK/USA in November!

I’d love to give away a copy of my debut book, and to make it even better, I’ll give away a UK edition, so you can read Donna’s latest release too! Donna was my mentor the year I sold, so it’s incredibly special to me that my first book was paired with hers. Leave a comment and I’ll randomly pick a winner!

Soldier on Her Doorstep

“Soldier Alex Dane promised his dying comrade he'd make sure his wife and daughter were okay, and so he finds himself on a doorstep with his heart in his mouth.

Lisa Kennedy loved her husband, but she must focus on her daughter, Lilly, who hasn't spoken since her daddy's death. Still, the least she can do is offer this battle-weary hero a place to rest.

When Lilly's little hand reaches for Alex's big, strong one, for the first time Lisa feels her buried emotions begin to stir.”

I’m also giving away a copy of Soldier on Her Doorstep on my blog this month, so head over to www.sorayalane.blogspot for another chance to win!

Donna's note: Did you also know that Soraya scored a coveted 4 1/2 star review from Romantic Times and a TOP PICK? Way to kick off your career with a bang, Soraya! Congratulations!


  1. Congratulations, Soraya, on all the wonderful books you have coming out!

    My heart goes out to your family and the residents of Christchurch. We experienced a hurricane in Halifax six or seven years ago. The destruction was minor compared to what you've experienced, but I still remember how distraught I felt.

    Glad you and your family are safe. Congrats on the new baby! Hope the reflux settles down.

    Pam Callow

  2. Anonymous11:34 a.m.

    Congratulations Soraya. Your books sound very touching. I remember when you won Donna's contest to be mentored. Congrats on your new son also.

    Donna has been a friend of mine for years and of course I love her books and have them all so far. I don't have them all read yet, but will eventually.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win one of your books.

    Michele Payne

  3. Wow Soraya - what a fab post! 10 rejections, new baby, earthquakes - what a trooper you are to keep going. I love that you are paired with Donna - am I right in thinking that Donna mentored you when you won her pitch competition? Best of luck in your writing career. Can't wait to read you books. Caroline x

  4. Oh my! What a year you've had. I'm glad you've had lots of good to balance the bad. Congratulations on the new baby and the first sale. I've followed your journey in sub care, too. How appropriate to be paired with Donna in your first UK and Aussie releases. It's like the Mentor introducing the protégée to the world.

    P.S. How do you pronounce your name? I've never seen it before you.

  5. Congratulations! How very exciting that you were paired together, Donna and Soraya! Since I'm a book club member I know I will eventually get both of your books to read, but it is hard to be patient. You have certainly experienced some high-highs and (I suspect) a few low-lows over the course of this roller coaster year. Thank heavens for the good times, hopefully they acted somewhat as a balance to the devastation of the earthquakes. (But can anything really help when it comes to natural disasters.)

  6. Congratulations on your new books and on being a new mom Soraya! How fabulous to have two firsts in the same year:)

    I can't imagine the devestation that has taken place in your area and hopefully things will get back to normal soon, though it's nice that your mom has been able to help you on a daily basis.

  7. Sorry to take so long to get back here - it's a real pain having such a major time zone difference!! Thanks for all the lovely messages!

    Yes, I won Donna's contest and had her as my mentor for a year, and it was so beneficial. Although I was a little star struck for awhile as she has always been one of my favourite category authors :)

    Someone asked how to say my name ... it's actually very easy. SO (as in so what!) RAY (as in ray of sunshine) A. SO - RAY - A.


  8. Soraya was the easiest person to mentor, I swear. She was already pretty much set for selling. Mostly we just chatted about stuff. LOL

    And I'm all aflutter that she said the words starstruck. That doesn't seem to compute, you know? LOL

  9. Donna is being very modest! She helped me heaps, especially lots of little things on the partial of another ms I was working on, and that ended up being the next book I sold!


  10. Wow! What a year of first for you!

    Congratulations on your first book out and your first child (boy do I remember those sleepless nights LOL) So glad your parents are safe too...the loss of their home is sad and hard but I'm sure the extra time with you and their grandchild helps.

    I also remember Donna's "firsts" and when her mentoring contest went out and think it is so awesome that the circle has come to both your books coming together.

    Congratulations on both your releases!!

    (Country on eharl)

  11. Caroline is the winner! Picked by my husband to ensure it was completely anonymous!!

    Caroline, can you please go to my website and send me a message on the contact page with your postal details.


  12. Ohhh thanks so much Soraya (and lovely husband of course for picking me!). Heading over to your web page now....Caroline x