When author Rachel Dylan writes legal suspense, she knows what she’s talking about: Once a litigator in one of Atlanta’s most elite law firms, she now works as an attorney at one of the Big Three automobile manufacturers. The latest book in her Atlanta Justice series is Lone Witness (Bethany House): Prosecutor Sophie Dawson’s life is turned upside down when she witnesses a double homicide—and now she can’t outrun the target on her back. In this interview, the author explains how her legal experience informs her fiction, shares the background on the Atlanta Justice series, and reveals her favorite way to hear from readers…
Rachel, how does a practicing attorney make time to write fiction?
That is a great question! It can definitely be a challenge to try to balance working full time as a lawyer and writing. Basically, during the work week, I’m focused on lawyering. I will do social media and other marketing tasks, but my mental energy is spent as a lawyer during the weekdays.
I do my actual writing on the weekends. That does require getting up super early on Saturday, but thankfully, I have my furry pals who serve as my wake-up call so there are no excuses to sleep in. If I didn’t love writing so much, I wouldn’t do it, because it is a challenge to do both!
How does your legal experience inspire your novels? Are they based on real cases?
I don’t actually write about my specific cases, but my experience as a lawyer has definitely shaped how I create these stories. Writing the Atlanta Justice series has been particularly fun because I’m able to delve into the roles of different types of lawyers and areas of law.
I enjoy being able to show the reader both sides of two dueling attorneys and to demonstrate that the law and justice aren’t always cut and dry. I try hard to balance a realistic perspective while at the same time being creative to make sure the reader stays interested in the story.
Lone Witness is the second novel in your Atlanta Justice series. What connects these books together?
The Atlanta Justice series is connected through three women attorneys. They practice in different areas of the law, but their friendship and shared experiences as lawyers brings them close together.
Being an attorney can be a stressful job—especially for these women who find themselves in dangerous situations—but they can always count on each other. I’ve heard from many readers who have enjoyed the friendship these women have.
Without spoiling anything, what’s Lone Witness about?
Lone Witness is about Sophie Dawson, a prosecutor who is working a financial crimes case, but in the midst of that case she becomes the only witness to a double homicide involving a dangerous gang. As the lone witness to the crime, she becomes a target of the gang who doesn’t want her to testify.
Sophie has to take off her prosecutor hat and learn how to become a witness. But her work as a prosecutor still must go on, so she has to balance the two roles—and the danger that ensues!
What’s your favorite way for readers to support you?
I love interacting with readers on social media and via email. I’m active on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, plus readers can always connect with me at my website. I always appreciate when readers take the time to leave reviews because readers often look to reviews to decide whether to pick up the book.
Visit Rachel Dylan’s author page:
Atlanta Justice #2