Home

Monday, October 31, 2011

Guest Author Dawne Prochilo!!

Please welcome Dawne and leave her a comment to show your love!  :)

____________

Over the years I have changed my writing genre from romance (sweet, happily ever after love stories) to erotica (lust, hard driving sex scenes and the possibility of love). Much to my surprise, I'm thoroughly enjoying the hotter-than-hot sex scenes, the intermingling of F/F contact and explosive sex scenes involving monogamous relationships.


That being said, I'm curious if any other romance or erotic romance authors are having the same question floating in their mind or life.

Do you see writing erotica as an enhancement or hinderance to your own love life in the bedroom?

Do you find yourself exhausting all your sexual foreplay in your writing? Or do you keep it all bottled up and get 'wild and fiesty' with your partner?

Seriously though, do you use your ideas in writing and transfer to the bedroom or vice versa? Or do you feel completely satisfied with writing the scene, visualizing it and calling it good?

For me personally, I've had it both ways. I've written about scenes I've experienced (WOW, those were great), I've imagined what the scenes could be and try to re-enact and I've been totally aroused while writing and felt the need to release, whether alone or with my partner.

I'm not sure which is healthier but either way I'm enjoying this newfound writing style and genre. It's a pleasure every day to start tapping on the keyboard and delve into the deepest, darkest crevice of my creative mind and let it out.




Dawne currently has six erotic and contemporary romance books out. In the fall of 2011, a short erotic F/F/M will be released in an anthology with Romance Divine and her seventh book, His Holiday Seduction, an erotic M/F, will be released in October 2011 also with Romance Divine. Her ninth novella Insatiable Kate released on October 3. Her first novel, On Her Own, is being re-released with Secret Cravings Publishing in November and she's under contract with Ravenous Romance for an early 2012 release of her eleventh novel.

She's the Promotion Director for a publisher, she's a freelance writer for a newspaper, writes web content and is the administrative editor of the WM Connection Freelance Writers website and a contributing editor for the WM Connection Review. She writes relationship articles for mademan.com, yahoo.com and associated press. She's also a reviewer for Eden Fantasy products and writes for their sister website, Eden Cafe. She does book reviews for Coffee and Romance Times, Simply Erotic Reviews and Sexy Reads.

Follow her on facebook

Sunday, October 30, 2011

L.A. Witt Interview!!

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.

http://www.loriawitt.com/

I’m L. A. Witt (also Lauren Gallagher), and write erotic romance. I’ve just returned to the States after three years on the lovely island of Okinawa, and will now be shifting my reign of terror over to the unsuspecting Midwestern city of Omaha, Nebraska for the next three.

As far as a list of books, for the sake of space, I’ll just link to my two backlists: Hetero romances by Lauren Gallagher and Gay romances by L. A. Witt. My newest release by Lauren is Disengaged, a contemporary romance from Champagne Books. As L. A., I have two books coming out in November: The Closer You Get (the sequel to The Distance Between Us), due out from Samhain on the 15th, and A Chip In His Shoulder, a vampire/cyberpunk novella from Riptide Publishing on the 14th.

How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?

Sometimes they just come out of nowhere. My mind starts wondering (when is it NOT wandering?), and trips over a plot bunny. On the rare occasion I can’t think of anything to write about, I’ll look at a bunch of pictures of random people until I start seeing characters among them, and from those characters, the conflict just kind of emerges on its own. I have been known to get ideas from eavesdropping, billboards, movies, conversations with friends, you name it.

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

Time off. My biggest problem is burn-out, so I find that if I just can’t come up with anything, or write on my current project, then I need time away. First I take time off the current work-in-progress. If that works, then I’m either burned out on that project or there’s something wrong with it. Either way, I revisit it later, once I’ve had a break. If I find I can’t work on anything at all, then I take a week or two off from writing altogether. Usually by the end of that, I’m chomping at the bit and dying to write.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

I can’t really speak much about writing workshops because I’ve never been to one. I’ve been in Japan for the last three years, so wasn’t able to attend workshops, conventions, etc. Ask me again in a few months. :D

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?

I always have music playing. I can’t concentrate without it. I listen to a pretty wide variety, and I’m forever buying more music because I get bored. When you listen to the same playlist every day for hours on end, even a list of 2,500 songs gets repetitive. As for what I listen to, well, anyone who’s ever been around me for more than five minutes won’t be surprised to learn I am a huge 30 Seconds to Mars fan. I dare say I’m a bit of a fan girl, but don’t tell anyone. I also listen to a lot of Breaking Benjamin and Awake! Awake!, both introduced to me recently by Andy, my loyal Minion. Beyond that, I have tons of country, trance/dance, Europop, American pop drivel (don’t judge me), and…well, pretty much anything.

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

I mostly read science fiction and fantasy just because I enjoy it. I do read romance and its various subgenres, too. I enjoy them, but I also like to keep up on what readers like and what they don’t.

What is your process from idea to first draft?

I figure out who my characters are (the basics: name, age, occupation), and nail down the conflict. Then I come up with a loose outline, which will invariably change about 300 times before the story is finished. Once I have a basic outline, I start writing. I usually write the first chapter first, but then start bouncing all over the story, working on bits and pieces of scenes and chapters until they come together as a cohesive narrative. Once it’s done, I print it, give it an edit, and it’s finished. (I edit as I go, so the manuscript is usually reasonably clean by the time it’s fully written) Then I send it off to the land of betas and editors. This process takes about a week to 10 days for a novella, 2-4 weeks for a novel, 4-8 weeks for a large novel (110-120K).

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

The single biggest thing for me was related to Static, which is a SFF novel about a person who can shift genders at will and loses that ability. I’d recently learned a great deal about transgender and genderqueer issues, and that book was my way of processing all of that. A few months after Static came out, a reader e-mailed me and said the story resonated with them very deeply, and caused them to rethink their views about their own gender identity. Nothing in the world tops that moment when a story reaches someone like that.

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

Probably buy a large chunk of property with a house in the middle and no neighbors nearby. Reclusiveness, FTW! And as for charities, I would definitely donate some. Not sure to which ones…I’d probably end up dividing chunks of it between wounded veterans, battered spouses/children, and LGBT charities.

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Write. Write. Write. And when you’re done, write some more. Be persistent. Be patient. Oh, and write.

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

A cat. Cats are both evil and lazy. They’re like supervillains on sofa cushions. I’ve got the evil part down pat, and I aspire to be able to sleep like a cat (hell, I aspire to be able to sleep at all).

If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

Film directing immediately comes to mind, but damn if I can’t think of any others. I’ve been writing full-time for the last three years, and this has always been what I wanted to do when I grew up (well, not that I’d ever grow up), so I haven’t given any thought to other careers in a long, long time.

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

Put on a backpack, buy a one way ticket to some remote place (Komodo, Easter Island, Bhutan). Check it out. Then buy a one way ticket from there to some other obscure place. Continue until I’ve checked off every place on my bucket list.

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

A heart and a spine. I don’t find assholes endearing, and nothing annoys me more than wimpy characters. Everyone has their weaknesses, but I don’t like reading about – or writing about – insufferable jerks or complete doormats.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

I would eliminate stupid and douse everyone with a serious helping of common sense. Maybe those two are the same thing, but still.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

The ability to function without sleep. As my good friend Aislinn Kerry often says, the body’s need for sleep is a serious design flaw.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Guest Author Suzanne Rock!!

Please welcome Suzanne to SNSD and leave a comment to show your love.  :)

__________

Persistence Pays


Hi everyone! Thanks so much for having me here today. I'd like to take this opportunity to talk to you a little bit about a book that is near and dear to my heart -- my latest release from Elloras Cave. It’s called Unholy Pursuits.

I came up with the idea for the worldbuilding in this story after watching the Lord of the Rings movies. Back then, I was fascinated with the elves (Orlando Bloom anyone?) and I liked how they were both fierce fighters, yet gentle healers as well.



I wrote my story, and in doing so created a race of warriors called the Iators, which means "physician" in Greek. Not only does this all-female race have healing abilities, but they are proficient with swords and knives -- something very useful when fighting demons.

I wrote up my novella and submitted to every epublisher I could think of -- including Ellora's Cave. It was rejected by each and every single one. Frustrated, I buried it deep on my hard drive, determined that it would never see the light of day again.

Has this ever happened to anyone?




Fast forward two years later. I had six books under my belt, all with different publishers, but the characters of this story, remained in the back of my mind. Darien in particular wanted me to give him a second chance. When I had a break in between novels, I decided to pull out my old, dusty novella to see if I couldn’t breathe new life into the story.

I didn't realize just how bad it was. My quick polish became extensive rewriting, including adding depth to the characters and plot. After many cups of coffee and even more late nights, Unholy Pursuits was resubmitted to Elloras Cave. This time there was a new editor and well, after all of that rewriting, a new story. She loved it. The rest, as they say, is history.



If you try and try to do something, but aren't successful, I'm here to tell you to never lose heart or give up. Persistence pays off, at least it did for me. In my case, I needed to grow as a writer before Darien and Arianne could be brought to life. The fresh perspective, in addition to my new writer’s skills, made this story so much better than the original. I love the characters and hope to write many more books in this world. I hope that you love them just as much as I do.

Book Trailer:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C0tVxVJmTuc


Blurb:

Darien let his guard down once, and Arianne stole the demon stone from under his nose. Now he has to get it back, no matter what the cost. It doesn’t matter that the feisty redhead clams the voices in his head, to that her body tempts him beyond reason. Only the stone will ensure his survival. He decides to appeal to her feminine side and use gentle seduction to get it back. As he begins, something inside him changes, and the voices in his head compel him to use pain to heighten desire.

As Darien’s touch turns dark, Arianne’s lust escalates, and a connection forms between them. Yet despite her need, she can’t let the sexy FBI agent have what he wants. If placed in the wrong hands, the stone would releasean unholy force intent on destroying everything she loves – including him.

Buy from publisher: http://www.jasminejade.com/p-9638-unholy-pursuits.aspx

All Romance Ebooks: http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-unholypursuits-615627-144.html

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B005VQSFE6/ref=as_li_tf_til?tag=suzrocaut-20&camp=14573&creative=327641&linkCode=as1&creativeASIN=B005VQSFE6&adid=1GAA07C0GYH2XXEXJJYZ

Barnes and Noble (Nook):

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/unholy-pursuits-suzanne-rock/1106674434?ean=9781419936746&itm=1&usri=suzanne%2brock


Excerpt:

“Don’t worry, I’ll take care of everything.” Arianne ran her fingers over Darien’s chest. “Don’t think or over-analyze, just feel.” She bent down over his body. Her warm breath fanned out over his skin and her clean, floral scent filled his nose. He relaxed his muscles as her tongue and lips danced over his skin. She started at his collarbone and worked her way down, setting his chest on fire wherever she touched.

Then she flicked her tongue over his nipple. Darien sucked in his breath as pleasure tingled over his body and numbed his mind. Ari, his sweet Ari. There was no one like her. She could be both strong and gentle, both kind and hard. Her tongue felt like the finest silk against his skin. Nothing ever felt better.

She did it again, this time drawing lazy circles around his nipple before giving the tip a final flick. Pleasure rose up from a deep, dark place inside of him, threatening to burst out from his core.

He arched his back, pressing his hard, swollen cock closer to her wet heat. He could hear her breathing quicken, smell the scent of her arousal. Desire surged through his veins. He wanted to bury himself inside of her, to feel her muscles contract around his shaft. He moistened his lips and rolled his hips, moving himself up, back and forth through her slick folds.

“Mount me,” he ordered. “I want to feel inside of you.”

“Not yet.”

“Why?”

“Because I’m not done with you yet.”

“Are you sure?” He hooked his feet into the mattress and arched his hips up off the bed, taking her with him. Fuck, she felt so wet and hot. He needed to feel more, to have her inner walls grip his shaft as she shivered with ecstasy. He wanted to bury himself deep inside her and blank his mind in pleasure. If only he could remove those damn handcuffs.

Arianne groaned and slid her tongue once more over his sensitive nipple. He gasped and fell back onto the bed, his mission forgotten in a haze of pleasure. She then took his taut tip in her mouth, rolling the hard nub between her lips. The pressure felt fantastic and tingles of pleasure sparked out over his skin.

He groaned and wiggled beneath her, eager for more. She continued to lave and tease, creating a swirl of sensations running through his body. First she’d move in circles, coming close but never quite reaching his tip. Around and around she’d go, creating a madness inside him.

“Please.” He arched his back, pressing his sensitive nipple toward her mouth. She nipped it, creating a flash of pain that made his inner darkness hum with approval. He moistened his lips as his body heated and the air became charged with sexual energy.

She moved to the other nipple and continued the same, sweet torture. The circles were maddening. He both loved and hated the attention. He moved his hips beneath her as she worked, and was satisfied when she had to stop and groan her pleasure. She slid her wet pussy over his shaft, creating an urgency deep inside his core. He tightened his muscles and focused his mind on one single thought.

Mine.

He had to take her, had to consume her. Darien wanted to drag her body down next to his and join them in a fast and furious coupling. Yet she continued to circle his nipple with slow, steady movements, making him dizzy with anticipation. With each rotation she inched closer and closer and yet refused to place her tongue where he needed it.

The blindfold had slipped and he could peek out around the edges. Darien raised his head from the mattress and watched her. He could only see the top of her head and he watched it move from side to side as she first nipped, then licked his chest.

“Please,” he said again, his voice a mere whimper of emotion.

She chuckled and bit his sensitive tip, sending a blast of pain through his body. He bucked beneath her as his mind numbed and focused on the pain. His inner darkness sighed with satisfaction.

Then she moved back to his other nipple.

He closed his eyes and groaned, focusing on the sensations she was creating inside of him rather than his eyesight. Her hair felt so soft and smooth against his skin. He wanted to touch it, to let the strands flow through his fingers. He contented himself on the sliding of those silken strands over his chest, the feel of her tongue against her nipple. She was so focused on his pleasure, his comfort. The knowledge increased his desire and made him hot all over.

Mine. The voice in Darien’s head was captivated by her. It wanted to give her pain and pleasure, it wanted her to give those things to him. Only in her presence could Darien managed to keep the voice under control. There was significance in that, but at the moment, all rational thought seemed to be slipping from his mind.

He continued moving his hips back and forth until his shaft slipped deeper in between her folds. He groaned as her heat surrounded him and her wetness spread over his cock. He moistened his lips as she continued to tease and stroke his nipple. This woman was going to cause him to come apart at the seams.

Around and around her tongue moved in teasing motions, with each flick, each rotation, his inner darkness growled and his desire rose. In all of the times he had sex, he was the aggressor, but with Arianne… He loved the fact that she liked to switch roles, be both dominant and submissive, depending on the situation and need. Life with someone like her would never be dull, that was for sure.

With the blindfold on, his sensations heightened and the feel of her hot, wet tongue on him was magnified ten-fold. Every nerve ending tingled and a deep, dark need rumbled in his core. She felt good, so damn good, but he needed more. He wanted to give her pleasure, wanted to make her lose herself in pleasure.

His mind drifted back to the tree and how he had buried himself deep inside her core. She had been so tight, so wet. Never before had he felt anything so wonderful. It was as if he was finally arriving home after a long journey.

The next time she raked her teeth over his sensitive tip, she bit harder than before. Pain stabbed his chest, and the darkness within him purred with pleasure.

“Mother Earth—that feels incredible,” he said after he recovered.

“Good, because there’s more where that came from.” She did it again to the other side. She circled his nipple, the sweet torture making him come apart. Then pain lanced through his body and beat his deamhan into submission. He cried out with both pain and surprise, as she had bit harder than before. His inner darkness sighed with happiness, allowing him to relax deeper and to focus fully on her.

Then she ran her velvet tongue over the bite, soothing away his pain and increasing his need. Soon his mind blanked to everything but how her delectable mouth teased and her hot, wet pussy slid along his shaft. He groaned as his body bathed in the sensations she created, how good she made him feel.

If only it could be like this forever.

His heart beat quickened, thudding in his ears and causing his cock to jerk beneath her. He wanted to touch her, to hold her head to his skin. He pulled against his bindings, but they didn’t budge.

“I want to touch you,” he said.

“Soon.”

“Now.”

“Soon.” She bit him again, hard. Pain shot through his body as she sat down on his lap and pressed all of that sweet, wet heat against his shaft.

His deamhan roared in frustration. It stomped and paced through his mind and body, demanding release. Mine, take her.

Then he felt something cold, hard and metallic pinch his nipple.

What the—he cried out as pain blasted through his body. His deamhan roared with him, the noise almost deafening in his head. Then it fell silent.

When the pain finally passed, he found himself panting like an animal. His quick intake of breath echoed off the walls and filled the room.

“What was that?”

“Something I had in my bedroom.”

“In your bedroom? You use this?”

“Sometimes.” She flicked the metal object, sending a ripple of pain through his torso. “When I’m lonely.”

Fuck, she used this? The beautiful woman must love pain as much as he did. What did she do after she clamped her nipples? Did she flick the metal or did she play with her clit? Perhaps she’d be impatient and slide her fingers into her core.

Yes, that’s what she’d do. The thought of her alone in her room, clamping her nipple and sliding those long, delicate fingers into her pussy, was almost too much to bear.

Fuck.

“The queen assigned me to look after you and sometimes, after a long day of watching you from afar, I needed to find some release, to relax.” She ran her soft fingers down the middle of his chest. “I thought you might enjoy them as much as I did.”

“I do.” His throat felt dry and rough. When Ari pleasured herself, did she use one finger or two? Perhaps she’d use three or four. An image flashed through his mind of Ari sprawled out on her back, clamps on her nipples and fingers in her pussy as she strained for release, a release she couldn’t find on her own, a release only he could give her.

She flicked the metal once more, causing him to hiss. “Is the pain too much?” she asked.

“No, it’s perfect.” More than perfect. The pain appeased his deamhan, cleared his head and made him able to feel more like himself. Now that the initial shock had worn off, he felt better than he had in months, since before he entered the portal into hell.

“What are you planning to do to me?” he asked. God, he needed her, needed her bad.

“You’ll see.” She leaned over his body and ran her velvet tongue over his other nipple.

Again? He gasped and pressed his head back onto the pillow, the movement causing the clamp on his nipple to move and a burst of pain to slice through his body. The deamhan purred with delight as a mixture of pleasure and agony rolled through him. Sweat beaded on his brow, and dampened the blindfold. Sweet Mother Earth, he wasn’t sure if he was going to survive this.

***


Website: http://www.suzannerock.com/
Facebook: www.facebook.com/suzanne_rock
Twitter: www.twitter.com/suzanne.rock

Friday, October 28, 2011

Guest interview with Erin Dameron Hill!!

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.

http://newconceptspublishing.com/erin-dameron-hill/



The Legend Series:

Legend: The Wolf, Legend: The Fey, Legend: The Chimera. Coming soon: Legend: The Pride







The Dior Saga:

Dior. Coming soon: Dior: The Joining, Dior: Dreamscape



Edge of Reality Series:

Edge of Reality: Hans, Edge of Reality: Hood

Short stories:

Alpha Worship. Coming soon: Demon Lush, Dark Revelation



Bio:

Erin Dameron-Hill constantly searches for a story that is both intriguing and precarious to the reader. There is not a depth of darkness that she will shy away from. Life is an epic journey filled with courage and happiness and that is what Erin Dameron-Hill strives for in her novels. Born into a life of travel, Erin Dameron-Hill never stayed in one place for too long, instead she roamed about the country searching and expanding her knowledge of love, mythology, and folklore.
Upon her entrance into Flagler College, she met her soulmate, her husband, and finally knew what true romance was. She now writes in the hopes that others will find true love and be swept off their feet just as she was swept off hers.

How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?

Ideas usually just slam into me as if I’m standing in the middle of a busy intersection not paying attention to the signs. I could be doing anything from cleaning the house or cooking or eve shopping and all of a sudden, Bam! An idea!

Sometimes a dream will inspire me and I’ll go from there but usually ideas just appear out of the blue.

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

When my creative mojo is lacking, there is really no one and nothing that can bring me out of that funk! I just have to plow ahead and hope the snow melts away!

Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

I don’t really have a mentor but I do have authors who inspire me to become a better writer. Just reading other books and falling into their realms pushes me to new heights.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

Writing workshops are an integral part to the learning process. The best workshops that I have been to have been found at coffeetimeromance.com

What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

I would like to thank my husband, Cameron. He is my rock and my soul mate. Every hero that I fashion has been made in Cameron’s image. Cameron constantly encourages and supports me. Without him, I would never have taken the first leap into romance.

Have you ever used songs for inspiration?

Oh yes! In fact, “Alpha Worship” was inspired by Rihanna’s “S&M”. I loved the song so much that I had to explore that realm!

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?

I have to have silence so that I can completely immerse myself into the world that I create. However, I always need a creative boost so when I stop for a break, I jam to techno/trance/dance. Paul Oakenfold and David Guetta are two of my favorite DJ’s and they always manage to pump me with more energy!

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

Yes. I do read in different genres other than I write simply because I don’t want my writing to be heavily influenced by other authors. I try to keep my writing fresh and original! I read genres such as futuristic/ménage because they are completely different from what I write every day. It keeps the paranormal romance from becoming monotonous and boring.

What is your process from idea to first draft?

My process is simple: 1) An idea comes to me 2) I hurry to my keyboard while 3) My kombucha green tea is boiling 4) I drink the tea and type like there’s no tomorrow! I can usually hammer out around 7500 words in a day when I’m swept away by a brand new idea!

After I reach the end of the first draft, I then start at the beginning and read/re-write or fill any holes that might have happened. Once that stage is complete, I send my husband the second draft and he edits it, tells me what I’m missing, or if something doesn’t make sense. I then re-read/re-re-write (:D) and try to finish in timely manner. Once I feel confident in my piece of fiction, I send it off to my publisher and let them decide if it’s fit!

Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

Considering I’m a new author myself, I haven’t really had the opportunity to help others but I have been given great advice from fellow NCP author, Skhye Moncrief.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

Being published! Just getting my very first novel accepted after only one rejection makes me proud! I am completely satisfied with just that one accomplishment because it’s a doozy.

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

First, I would pay off all my debt which includes college loans, credit card bills, etc. Once all that was taken care of, then I would continue to give to my favorite charities such as Defenders of Wildlife, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, Coweta County Humane Society, Surfrider Foundation, Ocean Conservancy, and Nature Conservancy. Regardless of how much money I have, I always manage to send them money. They are worthy causes and I support them full-heartedly.

As for selfish spending, I would purchase a 1967 Ford Mustang Fastback. I love classic cars!

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Stick to your guns! There is a lot of advice out there and many of it is conflicting. So, trust your instincts and always love what you do! You can’t go wrong if you’re passionate about your ideas!

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

My husband would say that my mascot should be the lion. I’m fierce, dedicated, and strong. I’m loyal to my family and very protective of them. I would have to agree with my husband because I have adored the lion since I first laid on eyes on them! They’re both frightening and beautiful which my husband would say describes me perfectly!
If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

1) Astronaut—If my mind was more apt for math and science, then I would study the universe and find a way to traverse it’s infinite roads!

2) Opera Singer—I love opera! If my voice was stronger, I would be singing right now! Instead, I have to hide in the shower and bellow! I’m sure with enough money someone could do some throat surgery or something and make birds envious of my new found talent! :-D

3) CIA Agent—If I wasn’t afraid of killing someone, then being a spy would be interesting. Knowledge is power and stealing knowledge from my enemies sounds both dangerous and exciting…also downright scary because I’m not a fan of pain or being tortured!

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

I would love to fly around the world like Amelia Earhart. I have a horrible phobia of flying otherwise, I would pilot the plane myself and soak in the immensity of this fair planet!

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

My heroes have to be intelligent, kind, and devoted. Muscles are always helpful but muscles can’t show a girl true love!

A good heroine has to be strong in order to keep up with the big boys! She has to be clever to avoid potential harm and she has to have a sense of humor. Life is far too short to take it seriously! I believe laughter really is the best medicine so whenever I can joke in my stories, I do.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

Only two things?

There are many things I would fix but two things…I would have to focus on eliminating all disease which also includes any and all handicaps. Anything that would hamper a person’s ability to live life to the fullest would have to be erased!

The next thing would be famine. There is already a disgusting amount of food wasted that shouldn’t be! In today’s modern, technological society, famine should no longer exist. There are genetically enhanced foods which produces more fruit/vegetables than normal. I would love to see starvation wiped from the world. It should not be an issue.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

Okay, I have thought about this one since I first discovered supernatural fiction. I have jumped from elemental mastery to super strength and even Jedi mind tricks (for those testy groups of people at the DMV. I know they’re just doing their job, but seriously, smile sometime and help!) But the ultimate super power for me would be extreme speed. Even though my physical boy would turn into a pile of mush because of the intense propulsions, I would love to be able to run on water and accomplish at least a million tasks in one day. Think of how much you would get done! Time would not stand in my way! Well, until the day ran out anyway…

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Guest Post with Tilly Greene!!



The Research Phase Never Ends


I enjoy the research phase of writing a new story and the information reveals, especially if it’s unexpected. The surprise element involved is exciting. Some are good and others are great, but once in a while the rare truly memorable ones happen and those can’t be matched. Recently I had the latter happen and I’m still smiling over the discovery.

Let me share the delightful connection I recently found and most definitely hadn’t expected to ever find.



Recently Missing in Paradise was released over at Ellora's Cave, but the delightful surprise linked to the ebook was revealed the day I sent the final edits back to my editor and stepped out of the writing cave. Briefly, the locations this novella travels through are places mainly in Malibu with brief stops in Hollywood, LA and NYC. The hero is professional surfer forced to retire after a shark attack, and the heroine hosts a tv show highlighting ideas for reusing things. They are lovers who hit a rough patch on their way to forever or it's over. Missing in Paradise is a contemporary erotic romance with a bit of bondage - hmmm, bondage on the beach...nice!

Sorry, I was sidetracked by the heat for a moment - okay, I’m back. That's one side of the connection, now let me back track for the other.

There are so many great blogs that offer interesting stuff on and about books, ebooks, and the publishing industry, to name but a few subjects. I seek them out and subscribe to ensure I miss nothing. Unfortunately there are times when a week or more will go by and I haven't had time to check them out, but when I do, boy do I get lost in the wealth of fascinating information they share.

So, once the final edits were with my editor, I had a bit of free time and started to delve into the treasure trove of good book stuff when I found a connection to Missing in Paradise I hadn't know about, and it was utterly delightful! I thought I had already unearthed a great deal of exciting information about a particular person during my research, but it looked like I missed one of the most important bits.

Agatha Christie, the celebrated mystery author, was a surfer!




Agatha Christie surfing.

Photograph from the Agatha Christie Archive Trust as found on Guardian.co.uk



I kid you not! You can read about it on the British Guardian newspaper site or wait for a book called The Grand Tour: Letters and Photographs from the British Empire Expedition of 1922 by Agatha Christie. The book is comprised of her detailed letters home which have never been published, edited by her grandson and will be released in April 2012 by her estate*.

How fun is that?!? I knew the woman was fabulous and unique.

And there you have it, an unknown delightful connection between Agatha Christie and my hero in Missing in Paradise, a book she inspired and plays a small role in - they both enjoyed riding the waves!

Ahhh, wondering how she inspired an erotic romance with bondage in it is another story, and one I actually shared in an Author’s Note at the end of the novella - a first for me.

Tilly Greene

Scorching romances full of twists, turns and ties.

http://www.tillygreene.com/

FacebookTwitterBlogARe Cafe

*Discovered this books release in another Guardian article and, yes, this is one of those places I mentioned earlier that stalk for wonderful book stuff.



Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Interview with Anya Delvay!!

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.


anyarichards.com

Night of the Cereus


The Pearl at the Gate


Breaking Free


Awaken (also in print in the anthology Enchanted)

Glorious Enslavement


Beyond Prudence


Rescue My Heart found in the Steamlust: Steampunk Erotic Romance Anthology

What the Mistress Did



Bio: After living a checkered past, and despite an avowed disinterest in domesticity, multi-published author Anya Richards settled in Ontario, Canada, with husband, kids and two cats who plot world domination, one food bowl at a time. Her alter-ego, Anya Delvay, writes unabashed erotica.

How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?


Most of my story ideas start with a tidbit of information—sometimes from a reference book, TV, an anecdote etc.—that leads to a question. For example, inspiration came one day after I watched Pride and Prejudice (the version with Colin Firth, in case you were wondering ) for the umpteenth time. While the little sister, Lydia, was what we would now classify as too silly to live, there were other examples in literature of girls who, for one reason or the other, found themselves married to rakes or libertines. What happened to them later on? Women in those times were obliged to do as their husbands decreed. Were any of them drawn, against their will, into their husband’s shadowy sexual escapades? Exploring that question led to the plot of Breaking Free.

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

There are times when I think I’ll never write again—when everything seems to have dried up and I feel I’ve been kidding myself, thinking I can sustain my dream. When that happens, my husband is my biggest cheerleader, reminding me that these droughts usually come after I’ve churned out three or four stories in a row. He never pushes, but encourages me to rest and recharge and then, when I start fussing about not writing (because it really is an addiction I can’t give up) he gives me the room to start creating again.

Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

I would have to say Jennifer Haymore. When we first met, through a critique group, she was so encouraging and she’s never stopped urging me to strive to get to the next level. I can see her path and use it as inspiration, ask her any question at all and know I’ll get a straight answer, or just get her opinion if I’m going in a new direction. I love her books for their intense emotion and her ability to put her characters in situations that make you gasp in horror or in sheer delight, and I feel so proud when she asks me to Beta read for her.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

I personally haven’t taken a lot of writing workshops, but I think every author, if they are serious about the craft, needs to be honest with themselves. When I first started, I did a lot of research into the business, and I think every new writer aspiring to making a career needs to do that. What I realized at that point was how little I knew, both about the rules of writing and also the processes that should be followed when submitting books to publishers. There were certain things that came naturally to me, and others I had no clue about, so I concentrated on the ones I felt I was weak in and found help in those areas. To me, that was the logical course to take, and I think each writer has to be honest enough with him- or herself to recognize where they may need some assistance, and find the appropriate workshop or self-help book. If writers can’t do that for themselves (and many of us can’t see our own faults) then find honest critique partners who you trust, and see where they feel you need some work.

My only caveat? Be careful. Too many people spend all their time trying to learn how to write, rather than writing. It’s an insidious trap!

What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

Without a doubt, Amy Ruttan, my friend and critique partner. I’m not sure where I’d be without her constant support and the occasional *whippah* coming through on instant message. We prop each other up, cheer each other on, commiserate when things are rough, and go to the bookstore together. Amy never seems to doubt my ability to get stuff done, and that’s gold during the times I have little faith in myself.

Have you ever used songs for inspiration?

Occasionally. Bare Naked Ladies’ Lovers in a Dangerous Time inspired the second book I ever wrote. The Goo Goo Dolls Iris is the inspiration for a book I’ve been working on for a while, but put aside to work on other things. Every time I hear that song, the hero (in particular) comes to mind and I want to get back to it.

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?

I love all kinds of music, and when I first started writing I used it to drown out the noises of the house. I tried to stick to instrumentals, because otherwise I tended to listen to the lyrics. Then I tried music themed to the books I was writing, but I couldn’t always find appropriate songs and, since my writing time has always been severely limited, I didn’t want to spend too much time searching for music rather than writing. Then I went through a phase where I needed complete silence but, of course, that’s almost impossible when you live with others. When the aggravation of searching for silence got to me, I went back to music, and now I listen mostly to reggae, opera or classical, depending on the book.

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

I read almost anything, including the back of cereal boxes, but try not to read in the genre I’m currently writing. I’m human, and know how easy it is to absorb and regurgitate someone else’s cadence or ideas. Instead, I read outside the genre, favoring police procedurals, mysteries, women’s fiction or non-fiction. When I’m not writing is when I devour romances of every shape and form!

What is your process from idea to first draft?

I’m a pantser at heart, but I’ve learned that sometimes I have to plot—usually when I’ve hit a wall or written myself into a box—and write an outline. Recently I let myself be talked into entering a pitch contest and, when I made it into the final round, ended up having to submit the first three chapters and a synopsis of an unfinished book. It was vaguely horrifying, since I usually write the synopsis after the book is finished! It all worked out in the end though, since the editor requested the full and then acquired the story. It wouldn’t be my favorite method of writing, ever, but now I know it’s possible, and it’s another weapon in my arsenal.

Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

I love critique groups, since I think that’s a great way to help new writers, and that’s where I got my first encouragement. I’ll never forget the authors who helped me recognize the rough spots in my books and offered suggestions as to how to smooth them out. It’s an art to be able to do that without crushing the person’s belief in their abilities. I’d like to think I’ve, in turn, encouraged a few newbies to persevere, but unfortunately I’ve also found some writers don’t want help. What they want is approbation—to be told their story is the absolute best, ever. Honestly? I don’t have a lot of patience for that anymore. Either a person wants honesty, so as to learn, or they don’t really need me! For those who think I can help, I’m always available. I love seeing other authors grow and succeed.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

Every time I get an acceptance I think of it as a new accomplishment. I’m huge on being thankful for each mercy received and when a new editor likes something I’ve submitted enough to acquire it, that’s one more hurdle successfully navigated.

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

I’d first make sure my kids were taken care of in some way, but I’d definitely give some to charity. My eldest son has type one diabetes, and has had since he was four, so that would be my first choice. My family has also been affected in many ways by cancer, so I’d donate there too. But, if the lottery payout was big enough, I’ve often thought I’d like to set up an author trust, similar to those available to literary writers, for romance writers. Maybe with a nice retreat where aspiring authors can go for a few weeks to write in peace, with the trust providing a stipend equivalent to what they would earn at their evil day jobs, so their families don’t have to suffer financially while they try to achieve their dreams.

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Read everything. Acknowledge you have lots to learn and be willing to grow.

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

LOL! An elephant. I love elephants for their beautiful eyes and spirits, the way they band together and also that they are, in some cultures, considered good luck. I’d like to channel some of their strength. The only quality I can think of that I share with elephants is a long gestation period, since I was a late bloomer!

If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

Lawyer, psychologist, and Kung Fu master.

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

I’d take as many years as I could and travel around the world, living for a few months in all the countries that fascinate me.

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

I always seem to write protective heroes. Even when the heroine can take care of herself, my hero wants to be her rock. Heroines are more difficult because usually, often even more-so than the hero, she has to grow to become open to the relationship, so where she starts out isn’t really as important as the journey to where she ends up. So, I guess, to me the one necessary characteristic in a heroine is the potential for growth.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

I would make it mandatory for every teenager in the developed world to work for a year in either retail or food service. I would also make it mandatory for every teenager in the developed world to change places for a year with one from an under developed country. It would be a great way to instill one of our most underrated and often scoffed at characteristics—empathy. In a couple of generations (if there were no cheating) we’d have a completely different, and I think better, world.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

Oooo, unfair question. Just one? Hmmm…despite my fear of heights, I’d like to be able to fly. You wouldn’t be able to get me out of the air. Failing that, super strength. I’d go around popping bullies in the chops and, since I’m a pretty small person, they wouldn’t expect it!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

CONTEST and interview with W. Lynn Chantele!!!

Please welcome our author guest - and stick around for her contest news!! ** More on that later

______________________

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.

I have two published books. One is a full-length novel, Seducing His Wife, with Whispers Publishing and an erotic novella, Breaking Delia’s Rules, with Breathless Press. Two more on under contract, both short stories. Keep an eye out for Decadent Seconds and Mistletoe Mambo.



Blurb:

Haunted by nightmares, Sheridan Sinclair just wants to get through one night without reliving the terrible accident that led to her miscarriage. And she longs for the arms of the man who betrayed her. Matthew Sinclair has always loved his wife, but when she refuses to speak to him after her accident, he's left to wonder what went wrong. When a stolen kiss ignites their forgotten passion, he'll use their love as a means to get her home and in his bed again. Will a husband’s plan of seduction be enough to heal a wife’s broken heart?

Buy Link: http://whispershome.com/erotic/seducing-his-wife/






Blurb:

Delia has just three rules for dating. First, a man should never assume he’s the only one. Second, he must stick to his scheduled day and time. Third—and most important—no sex. Enforcing the rules has never been a problem until she meets the hottie from the pool.


Jace has only five days to make every moment count. The more time he spends with Delia, the more he realizes she may be The One. With the clock ticking, he realizes there is only one course of action left to take if he wants Delia’s heart. Can he convince Delia that rules are meant to be broken?

Buy Link:  http://www.breathlesspress.com/content/breaking-delias-rules




A little about me? I live in a small rural community in Michigan, married my high school sweetheart, and we have three children. I write African-American and Interracial sensual and erotic romance. I love milk chocolate, especially Dove’s chocolate truffles or the caramel-filled squares (Godiva and Ghiradelli are acceptable), and play the bass guitar when the Muse begs for a bit of distraction. I can be found

Blog: http://wlynnchantale-decadentdecisions.blogspot.com/

Email: wlynnchantale@gmail.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/wlynnchantale

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/W.LynnChantaleAuthor


How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?

I’ve never written a story from a dream, I don’t keep a journal. Too many bad memories from school, but I have pulled story ideas from eavesdropping, newspapers, and real life.

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

A little time away from the computer helps. Right now I’m really looking forward to spending time away from home so I can sit in a hotel room all day. lol. But long, hot showers and jam sessions in the garage are great ways to inspire my lagging mojo.

Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

I can’t say I have one. I have some wonderful CPs whose advice and guidance I cherish. And I’m also the type to ask questions. Lots and lots of questions.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

I enjoy writing workshops and am participating in one right now. And it’s free. Candace Haven started a group some months ago and I was fortunate to participate in all of the workshops she’s posted via this group thus far. As far as recommending a workshop, I enroll based on what I’m interested in. But anything that deals with getting a better first draft, the editing process, or queries I would suggest.

What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

I always thank God and my parents. They’ve always encouraged me to use my talent.

Have you ever used songs for inspiration?

Oh definitely. When a love scene isn’t working for me I pull out a little old school music. Keith Sweat, Jodeci, Teddy P., Barry White, um. And I wrote a manuscript based off of a Nickelback song.

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?


It depends on the mood I’m in. Often there is background noise, unless it’s first thing in the morning or late at night. Usually the TV is blaring and if the TV is irritating my Muse I’ll flip on some music. Anything from the Funk Brothers to the Isley Brothers is fair game. I’ve even been known to listen to a little Paramore.

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

My preferred genre is historical romance and mystery and if you can combine the two, happy, happy, joy, joy. I absolutely love the era of knights, lords, ladies, and the ton. When I read contemporary romance it’s more or less to keep up with what’s being published and since I’m still new at the erotic genre it’s interesting to see the different heat levels.

What is your process from idea to first draft?

When I have an idea I usually write a quick blurb, then flesh out my hero and heroine. That’s as much plotting as you’re going to get from me.

Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

I have usually in the form of publishers because that’s all they want to know. As for someone coming to my aide. I can’t thank AJ enough. She has a way of getting me to see the error of my ways like no one else can. :-)

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

My greatest accomplishment thus far would be having multiply books published in such a short amount of time.

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

Yes, I would give to charity. My church would get a portion as well as research for Retinitis Pigmentosa. After that I would set aside a specific amount to just blow. ‘Cause with that much money I gotta go shopping and buy whatever I want, even though I don’t necessarily need it. Then I would set up trusts for my siblings, children, nieces and nephews. My parents would be taken care of as well as my mother-in-law.

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Don’t stop writing. No matter what hardships come your way, never give up on your dream.

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

I would choose the meerkat. Have you seen these little animals? At the most they’re about 15” tall and that’s when they’re standing on their hind legs. They are very family orientated, protective, and only one dominant female is allowed in the house. Yep, that’s me.

If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

The three careers I would attempt would be a coroner/medical examiner. I always wanted to be Quincy M.E., a Forensic Accountant, or a Pastry Chef. Those careers would be so cool.

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

This might be cliché, but to travel around the world would be a grand adventure for me. I don’t know if I would do it in 80 days, but being able to take my time in different locations would be wonderful.

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

Hmm, I had to think about this one. All of my heroes tend to be romantic to some degree or another, as well as honesty, and a bit of mystery. I think strength is one of the main characteristics I place in my heroines. I can’t stand a weak, wimpy woman who can’t change a tire.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

Hunger and Racism.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

I would want telekinesis. To be able to move things with my mind would be phenomenal. I wouldn’t have to lift a finger the entire day. I could think it and it would be there.

 
*** CONTEST ALERT *** CONTEST ALERT *** CONTEST ALERT ***
 
One lucky commenter will have her choice of Seducing His Wife or Breaking Delia's Rules and a mug full of goodies!! So leave your comment now!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Interview with Em Petrova!!

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.


You can find me at http://www.empetrova.com/

Skin Truth: http://www.jasminejade.com/p-9525-skin-truth.aspx

Deux: http://www.breathlesspress.org/Book/305

Trois: http://www.breathlesspress.org/Book/290

Quatre: http://www.breathlesspress.com/content/quatre




Tattoo Dream: http://www.breathlesspress.org/Book/273

Silk: http://www.breathlesspress.org/Book/356

The Tempest: http://tiny.cc/78ydb

Runes: http://tiny.cc/rh5yl

Trefoil: http://www.eredsage.com/store/product859.html

Runestone: http://www.eredsage.com/store/Runestone.html

Forbidden: http://www.eredsage.com/store/Forbidden.html

Wilder: http://www.eredsage.com/store/Wilder.html




Market Place: http://tiny.cc/l1gch

Bound for Romance: http://tiny.cc/k7huy

My Sexy Valentine: http://tiny.cc/2w5ea

Isolde’s Wish: http://www.loose-id.com/Isoldes-Wish.aspx


Em Petrova lives in backwoods Pennsylvania, where she raises four kids and two feral kittens and pays too damn much for utilities. But seeing her sexy husband tromp out back with a chainsaw in hand is well worth the frustration of living miles from a mall. She adores writing sex scenes and anything paranormal. When she has the opportunity to mix the two, she’s in her element. You can learn more about her smutty reads at www.empetrova.com.

How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?

My stories begin with characters, not plot. The plot is usually derived from the type of characters who present themselves to me. I clean houses part-time, and you wouldn’t believe the voices I hear while scrubbing floors and dusting!

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

Usually a long drive helps clear my mind. The mindless activity helps me recharge.

Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

Anne Rice. No, we’re not on speaking terms, but I study her works and strive to find her chi.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

As a novice, I took many, many workshops—up to four a month. I glutted myself on everything from deep POV to blurb writing. I took about ten workshops on pitches alone, but never could master it. Please don’t ever ask me to write a three-line pitch!

What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

As a child, my mother let me curl up with my notebook and pen until the wee hours of the morning. She urged me to follow my dreams. Now, my husband supports me by not complaining too much when none of his socks are folded or the dinner is burnt after I’ve gotten involved with my work!

Have you ever used songs for inspiration?
I’m also a musician, so appreciate all music. I couldn’t live without my Tori Amos or Bush. When I start a new manuscript or am writing a difficult scene, music helps to center me.

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?

Always have my iPod going—sometimes when I have insomnia 24 hours a day!

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

I read all genres, from lit fic to sweet romance. I do read a lot of erotic romance because I love to support my fellow authors. There’s so much good smut out there! Who could walk away?

What is your process from idea to first draft?

In general, I’m a pantster, but I start with a characterization chart. I need to know my characters’ goals and desires, as well as what will break them before I dig into the plot. When I hit the saggy middle, I do plot scene by scene with something I call a ‘plotting wheel.’ This is like a bull’s eye with the story goal in the center. The rings around are broken into segments. Inside each segment is a bit of the scene that will push the plot toward the goal. It helps me over the hump, and then I’m off full speed toward the climax!

Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

I love to help new writers. I edit for a small press, and I like the teaching moments the best—the places I can point out something that will not only make that piece stronger, but make their writing stronger next time.

I have a writing partner who pushes me each day. When we can’t connect via instant messenger to do writing sprints, we check in with each other. She also nudges me to reach higher with my goals.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?


When a reader contacts me personally to let me know she loved my book, I’m on top of the world.

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?


I’d give a portion to the American Heart Foundation. I have a personal struggle with heart disease in my family. My grandmother passed away from it and I lost my daughter in 2000 to a heart defect. Recently I learned I have a severely leaking valve and will need it replaced. So this cause is very close to me. I even have a tattoo representing our struggle—a line from Edgar Allen Poe’s Annabelle Lee. “We loved with a love that was more than love.” It has two hearts—small and large to represent mine and my daughter’s.

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Write, write, write, and learn your craft. Don’t give up. Everyone says that, but I had over 80 rejections on one manuscript before it was published. One more thing that’s really important is—don’t put out the first book you’ve ever written. It’s usually crap. LOL. Once you know what you’re doing, go back and rework it. Then sell it.

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?


Hmm. A kangaroo? I have five kids and carried them all in a baby sling, which is similar to a pouch.

If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

Three careers? Hell, I can’t think of one. My best career choice has been to become a mother.

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

I’d like to sail around the world and spend decades learning about the people. And having lots of sex on the beaches. *wink*

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

A hero needs to not be too stupid to live. I recently read a very popular author’s work, and that hero needed to be knocked off! I swear! I kept stopping mid-sentence to scream at him.

A heroine needs to have a strong character journey, because we as women have them. I’m sure men do too, but I don’t live in their heads, so can’t tell you they think outside of sports, beer and sex.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

I’d stop people from hurting children. And I’d have a Starbucks in my house with my very own hunky barista.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

Elastic arms in multiple number. I simply need those to get that mountain of laundry folded while I’m writing!

Thank you for having me, Tina. This was a blast!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Zombie Goodness for Halloween

Zombies are all the rage right now on television, in books and movies. It doesn't appear to be a fascination that is going anywhere soon, much to the disappointment of many who find them gruesome and gross. Why do I like zombies? I actually find them quite disgusting, but what I DO love is the creative fun ways people deal with the idea of fighting zombies. I've sat around the table with my teens and their friends debating what weapon would work the best during a zombie Apocalypse. We came up with some cool ideas, and had a lot laughs. We've also had some pretty deep discussions on the science of creating zombies. Try it some time!

I have a few fun zombie related quotes from books and movies below, plus an easy, cheap method for turning yourself or someone else into a zombie for Halloween.

In those moments where you're not quite sure if the undead are really dead, dead, don't get all stingy with your bullets. I mean, one more clean shot to the head, and this lady could have avoided becoming a human Happy Meal. Woulda... coulda... shoulda. ~Columbus from Zombieland the movie.

Max Brooks wrote The Zombie Survival Guide:
Complete Protection From the Living Dead. He gives us the following advice:

1. Organize before they rise!
2. They feel no fear, why should you?
3. Use your head: cut off theirs.
4. Blades don't need reloading.
5. Ideal protection = tight clothes, short hair.
6. Get up the staircase, then destroy it.
7. Get out of the car, get onto the bike.
8. Keep moving, keep low, keep quiet, keep alert!
9. No place is safe, only safer.
10. The zombie may be gone, but the threat lives on.”

“Zombies smell worse than anything you can imagine if you haven’t been hunting things on the dark side of the world. It’s a ripe, gassy odour, like rotting eggs and meat gone bad, crawling blind with maggots. It’s road kill and decayed food and body odour all rolled into one package and tied up with puke.” ~Lilith Saintcrow, Strange Angels

Nick scoffed. "This aint' the army, boy. It's every man for himself. Fall behind. Get eaten” ~Sherrilyn Kenyon, from Infinity

“I just find it interesting that kids apparently used to cry when Bambi's mother died. George and I both held our breaths, and then cheered when she didn't reanimate and try to eat her son.” ~Mira Grant, author of Deadline


How To Become a Zombie: I lightly hair sprayed his hair, then "wooshed" some baby powder onto it all over. Then I hair sprayed it again lightly. Wooshed the powder one more time, then hair sprayed again. On his make-up, we started out with white sponged on but it had dried and didn't work well. So, I grabbed some grey, dark green and black then splotched it on his face, neck and hands. I had black make-up in a stick and used that on his eyes and mouth. Then we wooshed powder all over him again, and gently dabbed it with tissue.

Happy Halloween!


Brenda Hyde has been a freelance writer of home and garden articles for over 20 years, and now she's also writing paranormal romance through short stories and novellas. You can find her at the Wayfaring Writer blog here: http://moonsanity.blogspot.com/.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Interview with Author Denyse Bridger

Please give us your website addy, a list of your books and a short bio.


Canadian born and bred, and a lifelong dreamer, I began writing at an early age and can’t recall a time when I wasn’t creating in some artistic form. My life has had several on-going love affairs that shape much of what I write, the American West, Victorian England, cowboys, a passion for pirates, Greek Gods, and Ancient Egypt. The other endless love affair in my life is Italia and all its magic, beauty, and dazzling culture. That passion spills into all aspects of my life.

My first major fantasy novel is AS FATE DECREES. (Available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon’s international sites.) The novel relies heavily on Greek Mythology, and is set in Ancient Greece and modern Athens. If you enjoy a tale of Gods, Destiny, and the battles of an Eternal Champion, this is the book for you! Not surprisingly, there’s a touch of romance throughout, of course! A visit to my website will show the diversity of what is currently available, and the mixing of genres and styles that will be employed in many up-coming projects as well. The Italian influence is in evidence with several of the more important works, as many people already know.

WEBSITE: http://www.denysebridger.com/

BLOG: http://fantasy-pages.blogspot.com/

Newsletter: Romance and Fantasy

Chat Loop: Denysé Bridger News

Sensual Treats Magazine: http://www.sensualtreats.webs.com/

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/denysebridger

MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/denysebridger

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/denyse.bridger

Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/Romance.and.Fantasy

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B003LUHE96





How do you usually come up with a story idea? Dreams? Writer’s journal? Eavesdropping on conversations? Newpaper?

All of the above… I never know where the ideas will come from. I listen to songs, lyrics give me ideas, I look at images and they speak very loudly. I’ve often written stories based on a picture I’ve seen somewhere. A couple of times I’ve dreamed complete stories, but that’s rare.

Who or what inspires you when your creative mojo is lagging?

Mostly all I have to do is go away for an hour, listen to music, go for a walk, and I’m back on track. It helps to have the stories planned out in advance.

Who is your Yoda—your seasoned mentor?

Believe it or not, I don’t have one. The closest would be Lucy Monroe, who is recognized as one of the leading authors in romance today. She’s a wonderful and special lady, and a cherished friend. I admire her, love all her books, and she’s always been so supportive and encouraging. A truly amazing writer and person is Lucy.

What importance do you place on writing workshops? What workshops would you recommend to us?

Well, to be truthful, I’ve never attended a workshop. I think some people benefit greatly from them, especially in the early days of their writing careers. We all learn by leaps and bounds as the market changes, and for me, writing is something that comes naturally and easily to me. It always has. I believe there are natural writers and those who work hard at the craft, both are good, but realistically it does come easier to some than others. I’m blessed to be one of those to whom it comes with relative easy.

What person would you like to thank for inspiring you in your writing aspirations? How did this person help you?

There are several key people. Actor friends who early on told me I had talent and should pursue writing. My junior high school teacher, Jacqueline Warlow who told me long before I ever suspected that I’d make a fine writer – she attended my first release party a few years ago, too. Wonderful English teacher, and a very good friend. Also, Lucy Monroe again, for believing in me always. The people at Amber Quill Press who worked with me as a professional for the first time, Karin Story and Trace Zaber in particular. They’ve all helped me achieve the dream of being a writer. Now, my fabulous editor at Ellora’s Cave, Jillian Bell – she’s a great editor, and very supportive, as well as a whole lot of fun!

Have you ever used songs for inspiration?

Many times. In fact my newest novel borrows it’s title from a song by my Italian friend Riccardo Foresi, it’s called Grande Amore, a song Riccardo wrote and recorded about a year and a half ago. Lyrics can contain entire stories if you listen to the right music! Another of my best-sellers was called Bella Signorina, again based on a song.

Do you play music when you write? If so, what kind? Or, do you have to have silence or background noise to set your writing muse free?

I always have music on when I work. Even now I’m listening to something, it’s called Jazz Wolf, and I love it. If I don’t want words intruding into my consciousness while I’m writing, I listen to wolf song, environmental sounds, instrumental stuff… but it’s always there. My muse can speak to me in the middle of anywhere, I don’t need to have silence or be in the mood. I’ve reached that wonderful place where I can work anywhere, anytime, I just have to open the notebook and start if there’s no computer.

Do you read in a different genre than you write? If yes, why? If you read in the same genre that you write, do you feel that it influences your writing in any way?

Always. It’s simply far TOO easy to be influenced and commit inadvertent plagiarism if you read in the genre you’re writing in. If I’m writing paranormal, I read historical… if I’m writing historical, I read contemporary… It’s not work the potential disaster if you have a creative mind that draws from everything it filters!

What is your process from idea to first draft?

First, I sit down and write out a point form outline. This is really necessary for the novels and complicated plots. Once I have a solid start to finish outline, I start working on the story. First draft is then polished and edited by me. From there, proofreaders who also edit – then it’s submitted. I’ve never received a manuscript back that I wasn’t able to complete edits on within a few hours, so it’s all a great process!

Have you ever given assistance to a struggling new writer? Has another writer ever come to your aide? How?

I make it a habit to help new authors as much as I can. No one really helped me out, I had to learn as I went along, and anyone in this business knows it’s NOT easy at any stage. So, I really do try to help new people, even if it’s just to promote for them, and provide them with the lists I make of groups and sites that can help them. I have them all in a document that I offer anyone who wants it.

What do you consider your greatest accomplishments in your career so far?

Apart from still being here? :) Seriously, I think in real terms, the most successful accomplishment at this stage is getting my first major novel (As Fate Decrees) published by one of the biggest publishers in Canada. It was a fantasy, based on Greek Mythology, and six months after release it was on the final ballor for a major fantasy award! Reviews have been amazing, and it’s being sold all over the world, so I’m always in awe of that!

If you won the big lottery, what would you do with the money? Would give any of it to charity? If so, which one?

Absolutely. I’d give a huge chunk of money to the foundations that are helping to fund the rebuilding of the towns surrounding L’Aquila in Italy. Entire villages and towns were leveled by the 2009 earthquake there, and it’s been all but forgotten. Riccardo and I wrote an article about this to raise awareness last year, and at that time there were still 18,000+ people without homes. It’s tragic. The article is on my new website, extras page.

What is the best advice you want to give to a new writer?

Write, don’t just talk about it. And, this is a biggie I see with a lot of would-be writers, once you’ve completed a story, move on… your work will improve more with each story/book, it’ll actually be like the record of a journey in some ways, so don’t keep revisiting what’s already been done. Take what you’ve learned and use it with the next book, otherwise you’ll never have a next book. I cringe when I look at my first works, and I know I’d write them better now, but when they were written, they were done with the knowledge I had then. It’s a journey, it never ends, and you never stop learning… embrace it and enjoy it!

If you could choose an animal for a mascot, what animal would it be? What do you admire about this animal? Do you feel you have qualities similar to this animal? If so, what are they?

Wolf. Loyal, dedicated, intelligent, protective, social, playful, faithful…I have often said that wolves are among the Creator’s finest work. I’d like to think I possess a few of those wonderful traits, but you’d have to ask others if I do. 

If money, education and fear factors were set aside, what three careers would you like to attempt other than writing?

Law, Design (Fashion), Cooking.

If money, talent and fear were no object, what big adventure would you like to have?

I’d spend at least a year in Italy, exploring the small towns, visiting the museums, living in the place that for my heart is the most beautiful place on the planet, and the richest in culture and history.

What characteristics do you like to instill in your heroes? What characteristics do you feel are necessary for a good heroine?

First and foremost a good hero has to be strong, and honourable. He needs to be intelligent and dedicated to his personal code of honour and ethics. When he meets the heroine, he has to be faithful to her. Those same traits have to exist within a good heroine, too. The hero has to be masculine and secure, and the heroine should enjoy being female, and be secure and confident in her own strengths. Great chemistry is natural when you have characters who like themselves as much as they like each other.

If you had the power to change two things in the world, what would those two things be?

There would be no more hunger/poverty, and we would live in a world where ALL people were equal and accepted.

If could have a super power for a day, what would it be? Why?

I think it would be rather cool to control the weather, don’t you? Storm, in the X-Men movies. Imagine the destruction you could stop if you could control weather? Would be awesome!


Thanks so much for having me here as your guest, Tina! It’s been great fun! Blessings to all… and thanks for chatting with me!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Sweet N Sexy Soulful Quotes

Hello everyone and welcome to another addition of Soulful Quotes. Today, I have several great books I think you will like for this month's feature. And since it's nearing Halloween, I've chosen books that have a paranormal theme to them.

So, grab a seat, pick up a pen and paper so you can add these to your TBR list, and enjoy! Remember, these are all lines from authors unafraid of getting a little soulful, sappy, or even suggestive in their books.

Please feel free to let me know which ones interest you. I'm sure the authors would be glad to hear some feedback.
Happy reading!

"I wanted you since the moment I first saw you downstairs."

So, he had been watching her. She buried her fingers in his hair, arching her neck as he pressed his lips to the hollow behind her ear. "You have a thing for Greek goddesses then, huh?"

He chuckled and lifted his head to gaze down at her. "Only when they’re as beautiful as you are."
~ Paige Tyler, Unmasked




Hunter raised his head, and Fisher could see the light of mischief in his eyes. "You want to know if being a vampire keeps me from getting it up?"

"That's a crude version of my question, but yes." Hunter had a way of seeing through everything he said or did, he always had.

Hunter took Fisher's hand, and guided it to his bulging crotch. "Does that answer your question?"

"Pretty much, yeah," Fisher tried to sound casual, although his voice managed to jump a complete octave, in spite of his best efforts to contain it. The feel of Hunter's hardness, the immediacy of having it beneath his palm, was having a definite effect on him.

"Don't worry, darling," Hunter whispered in a husky contralto that was meant to be amusing but was only serving to raise Fisher's blood pressure, "I won't get you pregnant."
~ Julie Lynn Hayes, Leonardo DiCaprio Is A Vampire



"Do you want me?" Eamon asked in a brogue so sweet she wished she could taste it. "It's forever, acushla, if you'll have me."
~ Lee Ann Sontheimer Murphy, Would Without End, Amen








"I wish we had more than this one night. I know we can talk and be friends and all, but I don't know how I'll manage to wait a whole year until we can make love properly again." Spyridion's eyes were dark and glittering with suppressed tears.
~ Berengaria Brown, Ghostly Indulgence



Past Soulful Quotes segments for those who'd like to increase their TBR list...

Places to find Renee Vincent: