Friday, January 1, 2016

On Writing: Summerita Rhayne

Today on 'On Writing', we have Summerita Rhayne, a best-selling romance author.

Summerita Rhayne loves to write sensual and emotional romance. There's no knowing when some quirky - or sometimes even not so quirky - happening in daily life might trigger her right brain and then she's off craving a new story. She loves writing characters who learn and grow and find their way out of their troubles and emotional hang-ups. Hot, sensual heroes and sassy but sweet heroines mostly fit the bill in her stories. She also believes that a touch of humor never goes amiss in a book.

She divides her time between family, job and writing - and loves winding down with music, movies and the internet!

Welcome to 'On Writing' Summerita.

Buy from: 
You are a bestselling author but you write under a pen name. So people don’t know the person behind the wonderful stories. Are you planning to reveal your identity anytime soon?

         I prefer to reach my readers through my writing. Would they like my books more if I posted photo shoots all over social media? Today’s marketing trend seems to advise this. At the moment, I prefer not to follow it. As far as revealing is concerned, it’s not a big secret to be revealed with a fanfare. I’m always close to my friends and followers.

Your latest novels take the readers on a time travel to medieval India. What made you chose historical romance?

I would say historical romance chose me. I have always loved history and Indian ancient world is highly fascinating. The first historical I wrote developed from an image: A young princess going against her family to a king who is somehow constrained by circumstances not to accept her. That image went on to become a story that became Hidden Passion. The second historical, The Eligible Princess, literally came into being when I wrote that exact phrase while editing the first one. I typed something about her sister being ‘The Eligible Princess’ and just then I had a brainwave and the characters of Lakshaya and Kartikeya formed in my mind.

There’s a crowd of mythological books being written and rewritten. But somehow I haven’t seen historical fiction being created. I have read a lot of historical tales in my childhood –l think most of us have. But when it comes to writing, the fact is that historicals involve a lot of research. I can’t tell you how minutely it needs to be done. You can’t even have your character take a drink without knowing what material the tumbler was made of in that time. Leave alone what it contains. So to compose a simple sentence, you’ll have to study metallurgy and culinary sciences of that period in detail. I still like to go for it because I love the magic of stepping into that world and giving wing to my imagination.

You have authored a bestselling contemporary romance “Against all Rules”. How different was the writing journey for the historical romances when compared with the contemporary one?

Very different. The mental makeup of the characters is different, for one thing, so the story evolves in diverse ways. In contemporary, the research is much less. The character problems are more relatable. It is more difficult to make the historical characters relatable. However, most of the readers, I hear back from, seem to love the Princesses. 

Historical romance needs lots of research. What were your main sources of research?

I followed blogs of researchers and read books on ancient India.

You are a prolific writer. But do you get affected by writer’s block? If yes, how do you deal with it?

Writer’s block occurs when your characters refuse to speak to you. You can’t see further in your story. Most of the time it is because you have missed something they wanted to say. If you go back and read what you have written, you will find the turning you missed and get back on the right path. It might involve going back and taking a new road. That means you might have to waste a lot of written pages. But it gets you back on the track.
That’s what I do when I stall while writing. Otherwise, taking a walk, indulging yourself, catching up on your reading also helps.

What is your favorite time for writing? Do you have any particular habits or needs when you sit down to write? Coffee, chocolates, wine?

Anytime when I can find peace and quiet is good enough for me. I mostly avoid writing when research needs to be done because that is boring. However, a necessary evil. Chocolate helps. Coffee too. Wine is a no no.

Share a quote or snippet from ‘The Eligible Princess’/Hidden Passion?

Here’s an excerpt from The Eligible Princess. It’s not been shared anywhere before:
Her troubled gaze wandered from a parakeet plucking on green mangoes to smiling dark eyes and then dropped to his hand.
‘What is this?’
Not that she didn’t know. He held in his palm a hair ornament with a design of intricately shaped flowers surrounded by leaves. Gems – rubies, diamonds and sapphires – formed the centre and the petals, while jade inlay in gold formed the leaves.
‘It’s beautiful!’ She couldn’t help the exclamation.
‘Would you accept it then?’
‘You are asking? A change for you, my lord!’ she couldn’t resist saying. But her grudge was tempered by her delight. Hey Mahamaya! He knew how to win her over.
She extended her hand but he withdrew his. ‘I won the right to put this in your hair.’
He did, sliding it on the side with perfect ease. She trembled a little, all too conscious as the memories of the night by the pool came rushing back. His contact…the merest little of it when she wanted more...
He stepped back and a tide of disappointment swamped her. Did he not know she was the same woman he had wanted that night when he touched her? She blushed a little at her own wanton thoughts, falling into step with him as he began to walk. Yet her senses were attuned to his every movement. Mrignayani had it better. She had been able to touch him without fear...
She had to break the spell of magic he was weaving over her just by being near. She searched for something to say. ‘Would you really have banished your doot?’
‘You doubt it?’ He smiled.
She was confused. When he was like this, it seemed foolish to be uncertain about saying yes.
‘He was wrong, you know,’ he said, breaking the silence.
‘Who?’ Her heart was so eager to hear him. Really, it was unbecoming.
‘The doot.’ 
‘I don’t steal the maidens’ hearts when I look at them.’ His gaze bored into hers. ‘Only after I kiss them.’ His mouth tilted wickedly. ‘And that, my royal beauty, is no exaggeration, believe me.’
Looking into his changeable eyes, she did.

You opted to self-publish on Kindle and you are a very popular indie author. What advice do you have for those who are planning to go the self-publishing route?

Be prepared for a lot of work. You have to write the best book you can. Get feedback on it. Don’t get lazy when it comes to revising. Editing is the wind in your sails. Listen carefully to any criticism. It’s the only way to get better. Don’t dream of becoming a millionaire. Write to reach readers, not make money.

If you would choose one romance to retell, which would it be?

I don’t think I’m good at retelling stories. I prefer to craft new ones.

What are the three tips you have for readers of this interview who are aspiring writers?

1) Read a lot. Especially in the genre in which you’d like to write. It’s better to get an idea what is being published.
2) Don’t imitate anyone. Write the story you want to write. Once you get writing, don’t bother about genres.
3) Don’t write for the sake of writing. Write the words which you are compelled to write. Always ask yourself before you start writing: Why do I have to tell this story?

Thank you Summerita for that interesting chat!  I wish you all success in 2016.

Thank you. It was great being hosted by you, Preethi. 

Dear readers, 
you can connect with Summerita at the following links.

Follow her at Twitter @SummeritaRhayne

Friend her at Goodreads

Get her books here:
Buy her books here

That is all for now, folks. Do pick up her books.
Have a great day.

Much Love,



  1. Happy New Year Preethi and Summerita. Enjoyed reading this interview and love the excerpt. Simple and sensual:)

  2. Thanks for having me on your blog, Preethi. I enjoyed your insightful questions. Happy New year!

    1. Happy New Year Summerita. Glad to have you on 'On Writing'