Author R.A. Anderson: Writing Coming-of-Age Young Adult Stories

author ra anderson interview

When it comes to young adult fiction, contemporary authors try hard to make the story relatable and unique at the same time. Author R.A. Anderson succeeded in doing that with her latest book – Lakehouse Déjà Vu. The author has carefully weaved love, loss, and self-discovery within this book.

We, at Vowelor, had a chance to have an exciting conversation with author R.A. Anderson about her writing. But, before we continue with her interview, here’s a little something about her.

About the Author: R.A. Anderson

Author RA Anderson
RA Anderson, Author of Lakehouse Déjà Vu

R.A. Anderson is a writer and photographer, currently residing in the town of Clermont, Florida. She has recently published a young adult contemporary novel by the name of Lakehouse Déjà Vu.

The author has spent her entire childhood around horses and sailboats (which absolutely don’t mix), giving her some exceptional skills and nearly twenty-five titles. she has a particular love for travel, especially now that her kids have grown up and moved out.

Further, Ruth Anderson shared about her childhood, her writing journey, her inspirations, and more interesting things about herself. Here are all of her interesting answers.

Tell us about yourself, your family, passions, etc.

Three (now adult) boys— are my heart and soul. My husband and I are empty nesters, leaving more time to travel around the world. Adventure runs deep in my blood, and I travel whenever I can. My other love is the four-legged kind – animals. Especially, horses, cats, and dogs. I am a retired professional photographer but find myself holding a camera capturing the beauty of everyday life.

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I’ve lived all over, including California, Belize, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Kentucky, Georgia, a boat named the Western Star, and my home is currently a town called Clermont.

What were you like in your childhood? Any good memory you would like to share?

I grew up on horseback and have earned twenty-plus World’s, Reserve World’s, and National titles in the American Saddlebred industry – all before I was seventeen years old.

What do you think has been your biggest achievement till today?

My three sons – being their mom.

What made you decide to sit down and actually start writing?

I loved to write stories about my pets when I was young, and I continued journaling – even when the teachers got tired of reading my “pet” stories. My book The Girl Aboard the Western Star is my actual journal from the time I lived on a sailboat with my family.

Which writers inspire you?

Nicholas Sparks, Danielle Steel, and John Grisham because when I read their work – it’s as if I am watching a movie. Smooth and effortless I fall in love with their characters, and the location, and when I finish- it’s as if I don’t know what to do with myself without these people in my life.

Writing is stressful at times. How do you relax your mind?

When my mind starts swirling with characters, I jump on my little Hobie Wave sailboat on the 2300+ acre lake that I am lucky enough to have in my backyard. If the wind isn’t in my favor, I do Pilates.

What is your favorite motivational phrase?

My two favorite motivational phrases are:

Be the change you wish to see in the world.

Every day might not be good, but there is good in every day.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

Journal every trip/vacation and write down more about the location and how the place made you feel.

What kind of books do you like to read personally? What are you reading currently?

This is a hard question to answer. I’ll give you an example: When I traveled to Antarctica, I read several books about Antarctica and its wildlife. My favorite books were about the first explorers which included: Chasing Shackleton and The Last Viking.

All my books are about places I’ve lived or traveled – I love the fun facts about places, so I love to read nonfiction for exploration. However, reading fiction books is my way to escape from the world. Keeping me awake at night this week is Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan.

How is your day structured; do you have a special time to write or is it pretty much random?

I love to write in the early morning when the world is sleeping around me and watch the sunrise.

What is the reason you write for; is it for the readers or your own self or something else
entirely?

Writing is a form of sharing and I have these stories in my head that I want to share.

About the Book: Lakehouse Déjà Vu

Lakehouse Déjà Vu is a young adult contemporary fiction novel by the author RA Anderson, published in June 2022. The story follows Jessica and Rose, two best friends, and a spring break that changed the course of their lives.

Sailing through a plethora of emotions like love, loss, turmoil, and more, Jessica and Rose find themselves out in the world for the first time as adults on a vacation. But little did they know that their adventure holds a lot more for them than they ever expected.

Read Full Review of Lakehouse Déjà Vu

What genre is your book? What draws you to this genre?

YA but I like to call Lakehouse Déjà Vu a Novella for any age. I like to share stories – YA are sometimes shorter books, and mine come with a life lesson included but not forced.

Was there something that made you write this book?

A dream!

What makes ‘Lakehouse Déjà Vu’ stand out in this genre?

Hopefully, readers will want to go on a Florida spring break vacation with Rose and Jessica. This vacation will transform two lives forever – maybe they will want to know how.

Why do you think a reader should pick this book over anything else?

Lakehouse Déjà Vu has a sixth sense flare and after reading the book it seems to cause people to want to talk about it.

The book has aspects like friendship, love, loss, death and a lot more. What were the hardest and the easiest things or ideas to incorporate?

Easiest was the love and friendship between these two girls. The hardest part was explaining away the sounds – I don’t want to give away too much here but if you read the book, you know what I am saying.

Is there any special experience throughout the writing process of ‘Lakehouse Déjà Vu’ that you’d like to share?

Recently we suffered a loss in our family – the thought kept coming back to me about how Jessica and Rose helped one another through everything. Friendship is a bond that can never be broken, even after life.

Future Plans

What are your ambitions for your writing career?

To keep it up, it would be so much fun to talk to young adults, and classrooms, about Lakehouse Déjà Vu and see how the book made them feel.

Are you working on your new project? What will be your next book about?

I am working on two projects. One is very personal; it is about a sister dealing with a sibling with addiction problems. This is taking me much longer to get it onto paper than expected.

The second book is another “sixth sense” type of book but the location is on an airplane. My husband, who is a pilot, is helping me with the technical aspects. This should be, not only a fun read, but for those younger adults who want to know what happens beyond the cockpit door… this will be a good one!

What does success mean to you as an Author?

Success is when I hear someone read my book and liked it!

Do you prefer self-publishing or traditional publishing and Why?

I had a shot at traditional publishing but chose to self-publish. Maybe I didn’t make the right decision, but maybe I did!

One lesson that you’d like to pass on to young debut authors.

If you want to write – write! If you have a story to share – share it! Years ago, I had several stories written that traditional publishing companies turned down. They were animal POV and they thought they were unrealistic. Now these animal POV stories are hot. I wish there was self-publishing back then and computers that saved my stories! Second lesson – hire an editor or TWO!

Your opinion about Vowelor.

I have had some personal stuff come up in my life the last two months and the people at Vowelor have been so kind. Thank you!

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