We’ve been lucky enough to get chatting to Rebecca Hunter, author of Best Laid Plans about all things romance! Read on to find out some top writing tips, book recommendations and exciting things to come…
Best Laid Plans is a hot read! Have you always written sexy storylines, or was this your first?
My stories seem to be getting sexier and sexier! It wasn’t a conscious plan, but I’m finding that I love to explore the sexier parts of a relationship. In real life, physical intimacy and emotional intimacy are intertwined, so I love to write stories that explore how both these parts of a relationship weave together. I also think the relationship drives the sexiness of a story—some couples are just super-hot together—so I still write other books where the sexytimes are less in focus.
What can you tell us about the inspiration behind Best Laid Plans?
First, I’m a huge fan of Lori Foster’s Body Armor series, so I jumped at the chance to write my own world of bodyguards! Then there’s the location: Sydney, Australia. My parents took us on a family vacation there long ago, and we loved it—so much so that my sister now lives there. That’s good for me to get on-the-ground ideas and information. The third piece of inspiration is more general: I love to write romance abroad, where at least one person (especially the heroine) is exploring a new country and falling in love at the same time. I’ve lived abroad and travelled a fair amount, and I love to relive these experiences in books.
How would you describe your heroine Jackson in three words?
Determined, adventurous, and funny. She’s trying to carve out her own path and doesn’t want to settle for a compromise.
What about your hero, Cameron?
Hot, hot and hot! 🙂 Beyond that? Determined (like Jackson!), driven by his internal moral code, and focused.
Do you envisage any celebrities when dreaming up your characters?
My approach is a little different: I usually look at celebrities AFTER I write a book, as if I’m casting the movie version! For Best Laid Plans, I found a picture of Channing Tatum that was perfect for Cameron, and Kate Beckinsale would make a great Jackson.
Do you read in the same genre you write?
Ohhhh, yes!! I read a handful of books every week, and at least half of them are hot contemporary romances. I love this genre, plus I can call my reading time research!
What are your top three books of all time?
Ack—only three?? Well…here’s a list of three amazing books, all of which I love and I’ve read many times:
- Willing Victim by Cara McKenna. For me, this is the ultimate erotic romance, emotional, edgy, gritty, a little sad, and beautifully done. McKenna’s writing is spectacular.
- Ashwin by Kit Rocha. Have you started the Gideon’s Riders series? If not, you have to read this book. Kit Rocha’s gritty dystopian world is built in the Beyond series, but this first book in the spin-off series is my favourite so far.
- Blue-Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas. I loved this whole series, especially the humorous commentary on Texas life, but I think Hardy Cates is my favourite hero of all. Blue-Eyed Devil deals so deftly with a very serious topic. The story manages to feel very real and, yet, gave me that swept-off-my-feet feeling I want in a romance.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to write but is too scared to start?
I spent years waiting around to get better at writing so that I could finally write a book. It took me a long time to realize that I wasn’t going to become a better writer by waiting around; I’d become a better writer by writing! As soon as I accepted that my first try at novel-writing would probably be mediocre, I finally went for it. That first books was, in fact, mediocre, and it’s still gathering metaphorical dust on my hard drive. But I never would have figured out how to improve if I hadn’t been willing to start at mediocre.
What was your biggest challenge in writing this book?
Best Laid Plans is actually the very first book I’ve written in both the hero’s and the heroine’s perspective! Before this one, all my books have been from the heroine’s perspective only. I had a lot of fun writing my first dirty-minded guy, but it took a while to get the hang of it.
And finally, when can we expect another book from you? We loved this one!
Thank you so much! You’ll meet the three other guys on Cameron’s team in Best Laid Plans, and you can read their stories in the future Blackmore Inc. books. My second book in the series, Playing with Fire, is out early next year. Simon Rodriguez gets tangled up with his first love, Marianna Ruiz, as she risks everything to regain control of her company. This book is intensely sexy and emotional with some suspense. The third book is Max Jensen’s story, and he falls in love with quirky marine biologist Natasha Petrova. It’s laugh-out-loud funny (I hope!) and takes place on Green Island in the Great Barrier Reef.