Author Spotlight – Annie West

In Guest Articles, Interview by RWA Blog Coordinator1 Comment

Author Annie West

How did you discover you wanted to be a writer?

As a kid I always had my head in a book and by my teens I was playing with story ideas (very badly) and imagining the fine, easy life of a writer – ha! But I never went as far as believing I could be one. I think it genuinely hit me when I found myself reading romances and loving them until the last quarter when I thought the ending didn’t fit or the characters suddenly stopped caring about whatever it was that had driven their actions all through the book. It didn’t happen often, but enough to make me itch to try writing a story myself.

What did you do to actively pursue writing? (Joining RWAus, Mentorship etc)

I started writing a long epic about a woman working in the public service who inherited a gorgeous but rundown house in the mountains, who threw in her stressful job and moved to the mountains to renovate. Along the way, she found true love. Of course, it had nothing to do with my own yearning to escape the office treadmill. I learnt so much from finishing that story.

At the same time as I was discovering the joys of writing I found a book by Valerie Parv on writing romance. It was wonderful! So much practical advice, and it included contact details for RWA. I still recall my first conversation with anyone from RWA – Malvina Yock rang in answer to my query about joining. I felt like I’d found a kindred spirit. I immediately joined the RWA Canberra group and began attending conferences. That feeling of support, friendship and camaraderie, not to mention sharing knowledge and experiences, is what sustains me through the joys and disappointments of writing.

What do you find are the advantages of being part of RWAus?

It’s twofold. One is information – I knew so little and learnt so much. I still learn so much. That’s one of the joys about writing – it’s such an evolving landscape. Twinned with that is the people – fantastic friends I’ve acquired and acquaintances I’m just getting to know. From the start I’ve found RWA members warm and welcoming and my life is so much richer for the people I’ve met in person or online.

What is your favourite genre and why?

I read across genres but romance IS my favourite. It’s what I come back to all the time. It’s so satisfying. I love the thrill of anticipation when sparks are flying and you know this pair will need to eat their words and admit it’s not hatred they’re feeling. I adore the warm and fuzzy feeling of a happy ending. Above all, it’s the emotional journey in a great romance that hooks me every time. The genre has always reflected readers’ expectations and I particularly enjoy the way heroines now are taking charge of their lives and solving their own problems, while still falling in love with that one special person.

Share a little about your writing process?

There’s a process?

It varies from story to story but I can tell you I’m definitely not a planner who lists all the things that will happen in each chapter. Friends of mine do that and it works wonderfully for them. My process is more organic. Occasionally in the past I’ve started a book because I had an idea for a particularly dramatic opening scene (I love drama) with no idea what happens later – I’d write to find out. Generally though I need a good solid conflict and two characters I can relate to and I’ll go from there. If I have some idea of the black moment that’s wonderful, but often I’ll work that out as I go along. I spend a lot of time asking my characters how they feel when the other person says/does something and discover how they react. It’s a great way to get to know your characters and I find that if I understand my characters and what drives them, their story unfolds naturally from the conflict.

I also tend to edit as I go. The first thing I do when I open my wip is read what I wrote the previous day to get back into the characters’ minds and emotions. In the process I try to tighten and improve what’s there. For me it’s time well spent because by the time I’m writing new words I feel like I’ve got a cleanish slate and, more importantly, I feel what my characters feel.

Tell us about your book…

It’s basically a reunion story, something I don’t write often but always enjoy. It starts with two strangers enjoying a holiday fling but by the time they separate it’s turned into something far deeper. Then things go wrong so when they’re forced to deal with each other again it’s a huge challenge. I adored writing Laura and Vassili. Both seemed such straightforward characters yet both were complex with fascinating experiences that drove the way they viewed the world. I won’t say more as I hate spoilers. I’ll just say it’s got sizzle and a whole lot of emotion.

A Pregnancy Bombsell to Bind Them

Model Laura is filming on location when she’s swept off her feet by wildly attractive Vassili. After a lifetime of lies, Laura’s drawn to his honesty—he doesn’t do commitment. Until she learns he’s engaged, and that she’s pregnant…

Greek tycoon Vassili is furious his family fabricated his engagement, especially as Laura now won’t return his calls. When a newspaper reports she’s expecting, Vassili tracks her down and discovers it’s true! A convenient marriage would secure his heir, but it will take more than a ring to rebuild their trust…

Buy on:

Amazon Kindle             Amazon Paperback

Amazon Aust.               Amazon UK

Author Bio:

Annie has adored books all her life and discovered romances in her teens. Her love of storytelling led her to swap drafting government reports for writing romance. One of her best decisions! Now she writes passionate, contemporary love stories and is currently working on her 58th book for Harlequin Mills & Boon. She’s a RBY winner, USA Today Bestseller and proud RWA member.  Annie lives at Lake Macquarie, between the sea and some great vineyards, so when not writing there are always plenty of excuses to avoid housework.

Social Media:

Facebook      Website


  1. Great highlights into Annie West and her writing. Thank you for the insights. Annie West has been a favorite writer of mine since the first time I read one of her books. I am never disappointed. I keep her books and go back and reread them several times.

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