Rachel Amphlett is the bestselling author of the Dan Taylor espionage novels and the new Detective Kay Hunter series, as well as a number of standalone crime thrillers.
Originally from the UK and currently based in Brisbane, Australia, Rachel’s novels appeal to a worldwide audience, and have been compared to Robert Ludlum, Lee Child and Michael Crichton.
She is a member of International Thriller Writers and the Crime Writers Association, with the Italian foreign rights for her debut novel, White Gold, being sold to Fanucci Editore’s TIMECrime imprint in 2014, and the first four books in the Dan Taylor espionage series contracted to Germany’s Luzifer Verlag in 2017.
An advocate for knowledge within the publishing industry, Rachel is always happy to share her experiences to a wider audience through her blogging and speaking engagements.
To celebrate the launch of her new book Will to Live (Detective Kay Hunter #2) here is a short interview with Rachel from an online Facebook launch party. Below are links to buy the book from amazon, kobo
Who are your favourite authors?
Michael Connelly, Peter James, Robert Harris, Ken Follett, Stuart MacBride, Ian Rankin, Angela Marsons, Robert Bryndza, Mel Sherratt, CJ Sansom and Lee Child – but that’s only the tip of the iceberg!
Before you wrote, what did you do, and to what extent has this influenced your writing or not?
I wrote my first short story at 8 so I think I’ve always had an over-active imagination, aided and abetted by playing in bands, being a film extra and having a love of travel!
How does a typical writing day look?
If I have to commute into the city, then I’ll get on the train and find a quiet corner, open my laptop and crack on with the writing for the 30 minute journey – that gets me anywhere between 700-1200 words. I try to do a bit on the way home too. If it’s a pure writing day with no commute, then I’ll get up early (about 5:30am), catch up with all of you on social media, deal with any quick emails and then hit my word count before I do anything else. It’s gotten easier the more I do this; I think it’s a case of training your brain – it’s exactly like if you go back to the gym after a long break – after six weeks, your brain is used to the habit.
If you could have written any book what one would you have written with a different ending?
If I could have written any book I tend to say the Jim Butcher “Harry Dresden” series because I think it’s such a cool concept – a Chicago PI who also happens to be a wizard! The action scenes and humour in the books – just awesome, and highly recommended. I don’t think I’d change an ending – I think writers have a reason for finishing books the way they do, even if all readers might not agree with the way they’ve done it.
If you could choose an author from a different century to write with who would it be and why?
I’m going to pick Charles Dickens – he was a savvy businessman as well as an author – you only have to look at how he serialised his stories in newspapers before releasing the whole story as a book. Also, great characterisation and scene setting – I’ll never forget the first time I read Great Expectations with that scene on the marshes…
As a recent convert to audio books, which of your books are available in audio?
We’re just at the end of recording the fourth in the Dan Taylor series, Behind the Wire and the rest of the series is already out on Audible and iTunes. I’m also pleased to announce that I’ve just this week contracted out the narration and production for the Kay Hunterseries, all of which should be available by June/July this year – including book three!
Click on the link to go to audible to buy the first two in the Dan Taylor series
Where do you get your plot ideas from?
I’m a news junkie, and a lot of my ideas come from a sentence or two in a news article or a headline or I’ll overhear something on a train or elsewhere – I’ve always got my ears and eyes open (and a notebook to hand!)
What or who has had been most inspirational to you and why?
My Grandad – he fed our imaginations when we were kids, encouraged me to start reading crime fiction at the age of 11 (aided and abetted by my parents) and has always been so, so supportive of whatever I’ve done with my life whether I was playing guitar in bands or writing books – he’s always been an inspiration. We still write to each other every month.
I think what has been a pleasant surprise is how much I really do enjoy everything about the writing. Even the business stuff is enjoyable because I learn so much and meet so many interesting people. I keep learning all the time, and I love being able to pass that knowledge on. It never seems an effort to work 16 hour days at this or more sometimes because I really do love it!
Other books by Rachel: White Gold (Dan Taylor 1), Under Fire, (Dan Taylor 2), The Legacy Device (Dan Taylor #0.5) , Three Lives Down (Dan Taylor #3), Behind the Wire (Dan Taylor #4), Mistake Creek, Scared to Death (Detective Kay Hunter 1), Before Nightfall, Look Closer
Links to get in touch with Rachel and buy her books
Photo courtesy of Joseph Calleja