Down Under Interview: Cynthia Terelst

NP: Today we have Cynthia Terelst with us.

CT: Thank you for letting me join you today. I’m looking forward to sharing something about me, my writing and Australia.

NP: You are a romance writer from Queensland. What style of Romance do you specialize in? Erotic? Sweet?

CT: I write contemporary romance. I chose the genre because I thought I would fail at the amount of research required for historical romance. Let’s just say that I was fooling myself. Contemporary romance requires a LOT of research, especially when I write about new subjects. I mean, before my current novel I knew nothing about no till farming or toilet training rabbits.

My tagline is heat with heart. While the stories can deal with difficult subjects, they will leave readers feeling warm and hopeful. And as the tagline indicates, they include some steam.

NP: What do you feel sets your novels apart?

CT: Well, let’s start with the titles – The Cat’s out of the Bag, Let Sleeping Dogs Lie, Get Off Your High Horse. They all revolve around animal sayings. And the animals in the titles are featured in the novels. I choose the titles and then come up with a story relating to that. For example, Let Sleeping Dogs Lie is a second chance romance where they need to not dwell on the past. 

Another aspect that sets them apart is that they are set in Australia. I like to share a little history, some Australian scenery and a whole lotta love. 

NP: Are all of your novels set in your native Australia?

CT: They sure are. A lot of the places in my novels I have been to myself. In The Cat’s out of the Bag, Evie and Jesse do a road trip across Australia. My daughter and I did that very road trip visiting the desert, outback ruins and ancient forests. I try to share the uniqueness of Australia with my readers.

NP: What is something common place in the Southern Hemisphere Us Northern Hemisphere people would lose their minds over?

CT: Natilie, have you ever heard of Tim Tams? Delicious (and I’m risking my life saying this, 1 million times better than vegemite). I’m borrowing this description – A Tim Tam is essentially two chocolate malt biscuits, coated in a thin layer of milk chocolate, with a chocolate cream filling right down the middle. Some people can eat a whole packet in one sitting. 

NOW I NEED A TIM TAM!

NP: If It is sunny and warm 285 days out of the year, what do you do for entertainment the other 71 days? 

CT: Ha ha, pretty much the same as the other days. I am a writer, so apart from work I don’t get out much. 

The sun usually hides in wet season. No one really wants to go out then in all that rain and stickiness. 

NP: Favorite Holiday? And any traditions set around it?

CT: I’m not sure that I have a favourite holiday. If I had to choose, I’d say Christmas because I get to spend it with family. And I eat chocolate for breakfast. And I eat so much food I can hardly move. 

NP: Barefoot, slippers, sandals? High heels? Cowboy, boots? These are important things your fans want to know. 

CT: Now we’re talking the important stuff. There are so many ways to answer this question. It’s summer here now so I am usually barefoot around the house or in sandals. Unless at work where steel cap boots are the go. 

NP: Are you a drinker at all? OR do you relax with the non-alcoholic stuff?           

CT: I drink, just not often. Vodka would be my favourite drink. But I don’t mind a cider or beer or a yummy cocktail. I have been known to try to work my way through the cocktail menu when we go out for dinner sometimes. 

NP: Any new works on the Horizon you want to share before I let you get back to your writing?

CT: Yes, my next novel is Down the Rabbit Hole, a friends to lovers romance with some fake dating thrown in. It’s in first draft stage at the moment. I’ll be self-editing a few times before sending it to beta readers.

NP: Wonderful. Thank you for chatting with us. I must say I do love your book titles. I have never seen that done before with quotes we all know by heart. 

CT: Thank you for inviting me to chat today. 

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