Aurora Rey published her first book ‘Winter’s Harbor’ in November 2015 and hasn’t looked back since. ‘Winter’s Harbor’ is set in Provincetown in the winter and follows the life of two beautiful characters Alex and Lia. Lia has come to Provincetown to find herself after a horrible breakup and café owner Alex can’t seem to stay away from her. This was one of the first Lesbian Romance novels I ever read so it holds a special place in my heart.
Quoting my own review about ‘Winter’s Harbour’:
I have nothing but happy thoughts and warm feelings when it comes to this book and can’t wait to see what comes next from the Aurora Rey! Unequivocally 5 stars.
The Lesbian Review reviewed ‘Winter’s Harbor’ and one of the many great things they wrote was:
Well worth it. I adore Rey’s characters and the picture she paints of Provincetown was lovely. I could almost feel the crisp air on my cheeks as I strolled through town with Lia and Alex.
Aurora’s second novel, ‘Built to Last’ was published in April 2016 and it didn’t disappoint. The characters had me glued to the page from the first chapter. The main protagonist Olivia buys a house in need of repair and her handsome contactor is none other than Joss the woman of her dreams…
Quoting my review:
I was captivated from the start and ended up finishing the story in one sitting.
But the biggest shock was Aurora newest book ‘Crescent City Confidential’ and it completely blew me away in a way I was not expecting. The little twists and turns gave this romance novel an injection of thrill that the reader just isn’t expecting.
So like I say, it’s been an interesting 3 years for Aurora Rey and I thought it would be a good time to check in with her and ask some questions that I know Les Rêveurs readers want to ask. Some questions are just for fun and others are because after three books we all want to know more about Aurora Rey and what is coming next…
Hi Aurora, thanks for doing our February Author Q&A! We all want to find out more about you and your wonderful writing! So here we go…
LR: What inspired you to write Lesbian Romance Novels?
AR: A few years ago, I recommitted myself to writing. I did NaNoWriMo on a dare and won, but what I had wasn’t very good. Around the same time, I discovered lesbian romance. (I’d read straight romance since high school.) I finally gave myself permission to write what I loved, what I wanted to read. Winter’s Harbor was the result.
LR: Was becoming an author always an aspiration and if so, what originally drew you in?
AR: First and foremost, I was a reader—total nerd as a kid. In college, I abandoned biochemistry for English. I took a creative writing class with my best friend at the time and became obsessed with the idea of being a writer. After grad school, I got a job and had a relationship and writing took a back seat. When that ten-plus-year relationship started to crumble, I went back to writing. It took be another couple of years to pull it together, but here I am.
LR: What’s your writing kryptonite and how long can it take you away from your writing?
AR: I get sucked into the internet and social media far more than I should. Other than that, it’s being outside. We have close to fifteen acres of land and a garden. There’s always something to do. For me, the key is to write in the morning. Whether I have to go to work or mow the pasture, I never have much energy or focus after.
LR: Do you use people from your life to make up characters or do they come directly from your imagination?
AR: I pull snippets—quirks and interesting bits of conversation. I like to think of it like I do cooking. See what’s good, what I might be in the mood for. Throw in a little of this, a little of that.
LR: What’s the hardest scene you’ve written and why?
AR: Emotionally hard? I think conflict is always a challenge, but I struggle most when characters do and say things that hurt one another. You can’t have a compelling story without it, but it’s wrenching to make characters make terrible choices, say horrible things. More specifically, I found it hard to write Joss and Olivia’s fight about priorities. As a woman who tends to juggle a lot of balls, I know how easy it is to miss the forest for the trees.
If we’re talking hard as in drag my feet and whine about it, it’s more the filler stuff. A good story needs transitions and moments of introspection. They’re super important, but not nearly as fun as some great dialogue or a sex scene.
LR: Your third novel, ‘Crescent City Confidential’ was written a little outside the box. Was it harder to write than your previous two novels?
AR: I wanted to dabble in intrigue and I think plopping a mystery writer down in New Orleans was a fun way to do it. The result was more intrigue-lite. Readers can rest assured romance stays front and center.
LR: I know authors hate this question… But Which of your novels is your favorite and why?
AR: Such a hard question! I love them all for different reasons. Winter’s Harbor was my first and will always have an extra special place in my heart. Built to Last fulfilled my DIY fantasies. Crescent City Confidential is like my love letter to New Orleans. Since I grew up in Louisiana, I definitely wanted to set a book there. Do I get in trouble for providing a non-answer?
LR: How can give your into trouble when your another was so… diplomatic!
LR: Will you make either of your novels into a sequel or novelette and if so what direction would you take the characters from the novel next?
AR: I have a short story coming out this summer in Girls Next Door, an anthology from Bold Strokes Books. It’s a prequel of sorts, a peek into how Gina and Kel from Built to Last got together. Beyond that, we’re going back to Provincetown. I’ve contracted with Bold Strokes to do one book for each season. It’s not officially a series, but you’ll get to check in on the characters from Winter’s Harbor.
LR: Which of your characters from your three books would you say is most relatable to you or your life and why?
AR: The way Lia, from Winter’s Harbor, wrestled with the end of a relationship is very personal to me. And I don’t know how much I’m like Olivia from Built to Last, but I love getting my hands dirty and I definitely want some goats.
LR: Publishing three novels in two years big goal that you smashed. What’s your next big goal?
AR: I just made the leap to two books a year. It’s ambitious, given that I don’t have plans to quit my day job anytime soon. I love a deadline, though, so I feel okay about it.
Ok some questions for fun…
LR: Who inspires you in your non-author life? And why?
AR: I have so many amazing women in my life who go beyond the expected. From second careers to unexpected hobbies to fighting for social justice, I’m inspired by those who say, “Yep, I’m going to do that,” and then they do.
LR: What writers/novels inspire you?
AR: I’m inspired by people like Nora Roberts and Radclyffe—writers who’ve honed their craft, developed a loyal following, and are masters of both writing and selling books. I want to tell really good stories, but I’d also like to make a living doing it.
LR: Do you have a favourite book/novel? Why?
AR: I’m old school. Pride and Prejudice has been my favorite book since the eleventh grade. Classic romance, clever dialogue, and learning that there’s always more than meets the eye.
LR: What is your favourite film and why?
AR: It’s wrong to say Pride and Prejudice again, isn’t it? I do love the version with Colin Firth, though. Generally, I love romance in movies as much as fiction—light, sweet, fun. I’ll watch You’ve Got Mail anytime it’s on. And the house/bakery porn of It’s Complicated can’t be beat.
LR: What is your favourite motivational phrase, positive saying or quote?
AR: It’s not technically a motivational phrase, but I love “Ay, there’s the rub” from Hamlet’s “To be or not to be” soliloquy. It’s quirky and strange, perhaps, but it is a constant reminder that things are more complex—and by extension, more interesting—than they may appear. It’s also a useful phrase when trying to make challenges less daunting. Major plot hole? Bah, merely a rub.
LR: What advice would you give to aspiring writers in the LGBT Community?
AR: Read a lot and write a lot. If you can make writing a near-daily routine, do it. Even if it doesn’t all fit together, or isn’t something that you can ultimately use, it hones your skill and gives you material you can revisit later. A crappy first draft is way easier to work with than a blank page.
LR: What has been the best part of being a published author so far?
AR: The people, hands down. The readers and other writers I’ve gotten to know are amazing. It’s like I’ve finally found my people. The royalty checks are nice, too. They helped us put solar panels on our barn. By this summer, we’ll be producing all the power our house needs.
LR: Where can you see yourself and your writing in 5 years time?
AR: The dream is to write full-time. I’d love to be able to continue writing romance and also have some time to dabble in other genres—memoir, mainstream fiction, maybe some academic or freelance articles. The only thing I’d rule out is poetry. I write really bad poetry.
LR: Can you tell us a little bit about what’s coming next?
AR: Three more books in Provincetown. I’m calling them the Cape End Romances. Summer’s Cove is up next. It’ll be out in October and—teaser—it opens with Alex and Lia’s wedding.
LR: And that a wrap. What a wonderful way to get to know another amazing author bring Lesbian Romantic Fiction to our eyes. Thank you Aurora for being our Author of the month. I can’t wait to see what comes next.
AR: Thank you so much for having me! It’s been a lot of fun!
I am a big fan of Aurora Rey Novels. Check out my reviews:Winter’s Harbor by Aurora Rey Built to Last by Aurora Rey Girls on Campus: In the Stacks by Aurora Rey Crescent City Confidential by Aurora Rey
Aurora’s bio below and if you would like to buy an Aurora Rey Novel please follow the link below…Bold Strokes Books
Aurora also writes a fun and inspirational blog on her website… Check it out!Aurora Rey’s Website
Aurora Rey Bio
Aurora Rey grew up in a small town in south Louisiana, daydreaming about New England. She keeps a special place in her heart for the South, especially the food and the ways women are raised to be strong, even if they’re taught not to show it. After a brief dalliance with biochemistry, she completed both a B.A. and an M.A. in English.
When she’s not writing or at her day job in higher education, she moonlights as a baker and is slightly addicted to Pinterest. She loves to cook and dreams of a big farmhouse in the country with a garden and some goats. She lives in Ithaca, New York, with her partner and two dogs.