Elysandra Winters has always yearned for a life of adventure on the rolling seas and is willing to do whatever it takes to fulfill her dream. When her Privateer father continually refuses to allow his only daughter to sail, Ellie defies him, disguises herself as a boy, and goes in search of a captain who will give her a chance to prove her worth.
Thanks to the cursed selkie blood coursing through his veins, Daniel O’Rourke needs the sea to survive. After giving up on his humanity and spending three years in seal form, he decides to give his human side another chance. Daniel goes in search of a job and a sense of normalcy, earning himself a position aboard Captain Winter’s ship, The Surf Runner. However, his new captain’s first assignment has nothing at all to do with sailing, and everything to do with his headstrong young daughter.
Years later, when the leader of a band of bloodthirsty pirates murders Captain Winters, Daniel and Elysandra’s lives come crashing back together with the force of a hurricane. Both experts in deception, they must find a way to trust each other if they are to have any hope of hunting down the captain’s killer.
Joining us today is adult paranormal romance writer, Rebecca Hart. A single parent of three, she lives in Upstate, NY. When she doesn’t have her nose buried in her laptop as an IT Specialist, Rebecca spends as much time as possible outdoors, writing instead. Ms. Hart will now take your questions:
1. We love your cover. It’s mysterious and suggests adventure. Can you tell us anything about what inspired you to write this story?
I have always had a rather unhealthy obsession with pirates and old tall ships, even as a child. About eight months ago, I saw a call for submissions for an anthology featuring pirate tales and thought, “this is right up my alley. I need to write something for this.” So I sat down with my laptop and the start of Ellie’s story came bursting out. The original short story never made it to the intended publication, having gotten lost in the world of cyber mail. The entire time I waited to hear back from them, Ellie was in the back of my head telling me she had a lot more to say, maybe even enough to fill a novel. She can be very insistent, so figured the best way to get her to hush was to write it all down – and Call of the Sea was born.
2. When did you first start writing?
In high school. I used to be a voracious historical romance reader, consuming sometimes 3 books a week. Something in one of the stories I had read bothered me – ALOT. I didn’t like what happened to the MC’s, the way the tale ended. Being young and full of myself, I decided that I could write a story just as good as the author had, and started on a historical romance novel. I only wrote the first three chapters of the novel before college started and my notebooks got put away, but I still have the story. Believe me, it is terrible and cliché, but it was the first story I ever wrote. Every so often I take it out, give it a read and giggle at how terrible it really is.
3. What sort of books did you read as a teen? What do you like to read now?
In my younger teens I read Nancy Drew mysteries, Judy Bloom, and what would be my favorite books of all time, the Chronicles of Narnia. As I got older, my tastes turned to romance (like most girls, I suppose), and I moved into historical romance novels. If there was a ship or a pirate theme to the story, I scooped it up.
4. Your cover gives a sense of romance, too. Are you a romantic at heart?
Absolutely. I don’t think you can absorb the amount of romantic fiction I did growing up and not have romantic spirit. Besides, I have the best example of true love in my own life. My parents have been happily married for 42 years now (who does that anymore?). I don’t think you can grow up around that kind of love and dedication to each other without it affecting how you look at relationships and what you strive for in your own.
5. What advice can you give young writers who are just getting started?
Read everything you can get your hands on and write something every single day. Even if it is complete drivel, the act of making yourself commit and write will only help as you get further down the road. The other piece of advice — never give up on yourself. If you have the desire to write, the need to do it, don’t let anyone stop or discourage you. I’m forty-two and this is my debut novel. I consider myself living proof that you are never too old to chase after a dream.
***Please note, Rebecca Hart is an adult romance writer.