AuThursday – Anny Cook

Please welcome fellow Resplendence Author Anny Cook.  So Anny, How long have you been writing?

I’ve written for many years. However, it wasn’t until three years ago that I first submitted a story to a publisher. That was Dancer’s Delight which I submitted to Ellora’s Cave. Imagine my shock—and delight—when they offered me a contract. Since then, I’ve had thirteen books released.

Q: To date which of your books was the hardest to write and why?

I think it was probably Love Never-Ending. That was my longest book at 70K+. Since it was the fifth book in the Mystic Valley series, there were a million details to check, double check and match with the other books.

Q:  Which country would you most like to visit and why?

Peru. I would love to visit Machu Picchu. Although in reality, I would probably need an oxygen mask because of my asthma.

Q:  Which author would you most like to meet and why?

Shall I confess? I’m a total fan girl of Jayne Ann Krentz. I would love to have time to sit down with her and discuss writing. She has a fascinating mind.

Q:  What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both? Do you use mood music, candles, no noise, when you write?

Ohhhh. First I put on my sexy lingerie and my pink heels. Then I wrap my favorite feather boa around my neck… NO? Actually, I sit in front of my computer with the minimum noise I can manage (this is after all real life!) and I write. I don’t outline though I have a general idea of where the story is going to go. After that, I just write with a counter running in the back of my head…every 3500 words is a chapter.

Q:  What do you feel is the most important aspect for all new authors to remember when writing or creating their own stories?

Write every day unless you are so sick you have to stay in bed. Write a grocery list. Write a blog. Write a letter to you mother. Write SOMETHING. It’s very important to develop and maintain the habit of writing. And once you develop that habit, understand that anything written can be revised and changed. But a blank page is impossible to revise or change.

 Q:  What do you think is the biggest misconception in erotic romance fiction?

A) that we as authors have done everything we’ve written about. B) that we as authors WANT to do everything we write about. C) that we’re all just looking for a few GOOD men… NOT.

 Q: We all know “SEX” sells, have you ever been asked to “sex-up-your books”?

Yes, I have. Sometimes I’ve complied if it seemed the story called for it. Sometimes I’ve declined. Clearly, if we’re writing erotica we already know the expectation the publisher has. Mostly, I believe if you don’t want to add sex, then don’t submit to that genre.

Q:  What is on tap for the rest of 2009?

Wow. Well on November 10, my newest story, Prisoner of the Heart will be released from Resplendence Publishing. It is part of an anthology, Carnal Reunions. There are seven stories in all—about seven young women who return to their college for their tenth reunion. While there, each of them reconnects with the fellow who got away.

 Aside from that, I have several works in progress that I hope to finish before the end of the year—a vampire story, a fantasy, a futuristic/apocalyptic, a Mystic Valley story, and a contemporary older woman/younger man.

Q:  When a new book comes out, have you ever been nervous over readers’ reaction to it?

Oh, yeah. I’m always nervous. It’s impossible to please everyone, but even knowing that, it still stings if someone doesn’t like the book. Every time. You never get past that.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web? www.annycook.com and www.annycook.blogspot.com 

I also have MySpace and Facebook pages.

Thanks for a wonderful interview Anny!  Join me on Saturday when Anny shares a steamy excerpt.

See you then,

Tina

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AuThursday – Regina Carlysle

Welcome Naughty Boys and Girs!  Give a warm Welcome for fellow Resplendence Author Regina Carlysle.  Let’s Jump right in So Regina- What is your process for writing a book? For example, are you a plotter or a pantzer? Do you start at page 1 and write your book sequentially or do you skip around? Do you start with your characters or the plot?

 First off, thanks, Tina for having me on your blog! Process? Umm..what process? I’m a total pantser. I begin with a germ of an idea and begin to form my characters. I imagine their strengths, weaknesses, flaws, everything and then I’ll jot down some plot ideas. I start on page one and continue to the end. I know lots of writers will write ‘scenes’ and put them all together later. Haven’t tried that and I’m not sure I could do it. As I move along, I’ll stall for short periods until my characters eventually tell me what they want to do next.

 

 Q:  Do you use any techniques, tools, or aids to help you write?

 No, not really. I don’t hunt down pictures or imagine ‘movie stars’. The characters’ faces are already formed in my mind. I need total silence to write because I’m easily distracted but sometimes I’ll play ‘background’ music…rainfall, wind, or flutey-stuff.

 

Q: How do you make time to write?

 Ah, that’s easy. I don’t work outside the home. Once I’m up, I answer emails and do my blogs. Usually I begin writing about mid-morning and will write until my brain is frozen or dead, whichever comes first. During the evenings, I chat on line with friends or spend time with the family. I often write on weekends too. We are real ‘homebodies’ around here.

 

 Q: What advice do you have for other writers?

 Don’t give up! Keep following your dream and improving your craft. Also be careful when subbing your work to be aware of what kind of stories any given publisher is looking for. For example, don’t send your erotic romance to an Inspirational publisher or your ‘sweet romance’ to a company that specializes in steamy stuff.

 

Q:  What do you think is the biggest misconception about E-Pubs?

 I think many people believe that e-published work is substandard to the books published by the big New York houses. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is good work and poor work to be found in both places and many of my favorite writers are to be found in the ‘e-world’.

 

 Q: If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?

 My dream was always to own a quaint little bookstore somewhere. If I weren’t writing, I would be running my own small shop where people could browse, we’d talk books and I would serve the best coffee in town.

 

Q: What books can we expect to see in the near future?

 I’m currently smack dab in the middle of a new paranormal series. The High Plains Shifters series Books One (Highland Beast) and Two (Lone Star Lycan) are available at Ellora’s Cave. Ringo’s Ride, Book Three, releases on August 28th. This is a series about a lonely, desolate town in west Texas that is completely inhabited by lycans. I’ve had a lot of fun putting cowboys, Texans, and lycans all together in one mix.

 

Q: Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

 

You can check out my website and blogs here:

 http://www.reginacarlysle.com

http://www.reginacarlysle.blogspot.com

http://threewickedwriters.blogspot.com

Please join me again on Saturday when we get a naughty shifter excerpt…just in time.

AuThursday – JL Wilson

by JL Wilson

by JL Wilson

Please welcome fellow Resplendence Author JL Wilson.  Let’s get started.

 

Q: What advice would you give to writers just starting out?

Be disciplined. Writing is a job, more creative than some, but a job nonetheless. You can’t wait for inspiration to strike or the Muse to come visiting. You have to sit down and work at it, making sure to continue to learn as you write.

Q:  What were your feelings when your first novel was accepted/when you first saw the cover of the finished product?

My first acceptance was a real soul-searcher for me. I wasn’t sure I wanted to be with an e-publisher, but a fellow author whom I respected had a good experience with that publisher, so I signed with them. Suffice it to say, the experience was NOT a good one; the publisher went out of business but I got my rights back unscathed and later sold that book to another publisher. So my first contract was a bit of a mess and my first covers were awful – I can say that because they were changed, but the one that I finally got was still not what I wanted (it’s not one of my mystery books but a romantic suspense book; I’ll leave you to figure it out ::grin::J. ) So the whole ‘ooh, look at my cover’ experience was not a good one.

 Since then, though, I’ve had great editors, covers, and publishers, so I guess I got all my bad experiences out of the way early.

Q: Are you working on any books/projects that you would like to share with us? (We’ d love to hear all about them!)

I’ve got a new series starting in September with The Wild Rose Press called “The New Human Intercession”. Human Touch is the first book, followed by Living Proof then Leap of Faith.

It’s set on another planet and features telepathy, shape shifting, and the overthrow of a government. I had a LOT of fun writing it. The first book comes out this year, the second next year, and the third in late 2010 or early 2011. They’re all written & submitted & almost done with editing.

I also have 6 mysteries I’m waiting to submit then I’m moving on to a new phase in my career: I plan to work on an alternate America, a post-apocalyptic urban fantasy. I’ve got 8 books planned in that ‘world’.

Q: What is the hottest love scene you’ve written to date and why?

The hottest scene hasn’t been published – I deleted it from the book because I think it was just too over the top. Most of my books are only moderately steamy and my first-person mysteries are “closed door” sex books (they close the door so you don’t get the details).

When I had that sex scene in one book, I was toying with the idea of delving into erotica. Then I realized it just didn’t really fit with that book or those characters, so I deleted it. It might appear in a later book, though. You just never know.

Q: How anatomical are you when describing sex organs?

I’m not at all detailed. I like to leave some things up to a reader’s imagination.

Q: What are the best reviews you’ve received so far?

I’ve gotten quite a few good reviews, but one of the ones that pleased me a LOT is from a totally unexpected source, a mystery review site (http://www.fmam.biz/reviews/mar08.shtml#ifnotforyou). It was for the digital edition of If Not For You, which just came out in print. The reviewer totally got what my heroine was all about. That heroine (Layla Whitford) is a favorite of my critique partners (one person said, “I want to be Layla when I grow up.” I totally agree).

It’s always fun to get reviews you don’t expect!

Q: Have you ever encountered “negative” feed back on your work?

Oh, sure. My very first review was sort of negative. The reviewer thought it was odd that I had a car chase in Iowa, like car chases don’t happen in the Midwest or something (believe me, there’s crime in the Midwest. Oh yeah, there’s crime). It was an odd review because I got the feeling the person didn’t like reading about older heroes and heroines, but that’s what I write, so … I didn’t get too discouraged by it, not when later reviews all said how refreshing it was to have the over-40s main characters.

Q:  What makes a book a page turner?

You’ve got to have a hook. Remember in Gypsy – ‘you’ve got to have a gimmick?’ In writing, you’ve got to have a hook. You’ve got to have a reason why someone wants to keep going. You need unique characters, unusual plots, or an unusual setting. My books all feature regular people like you & me who get caught in unusual situations (someone is murdered at work; they’re present when someone is killed in front of them, etc.)

I think if a reader can identify with a character then that reader will keep turning those pages.

Q:  Does a hero always have to be good looking and why or why not?

I’d rather have a hero who is unique. Handsome is fine but it’s more important that they have good character and be just good people. That said, in Endurance the hero is drop-dead gorgeous, but he’s in love with a woman who’s not a stunning beauty. I love that about him!

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

I’ve got a web site (of course): http://www.jayellwilson.com. The best place to find me is Twitter (@JLwriter) or just check here: http://tinyurl.com/ak8hl8. It lists my hang-outs

Join me on Saturday when we read an excerpt from “Human Touch.”

Love,

Tina 

AuThursday – Kayelle Allen

Kayelle-Heroes-banner468x130Welcome back one of my co-authors from Liquid Silver Books, Kayelle Allen!   It’s a challenge finding new questions but it’s a great opportunity to learn more about this wonderful author.

Q:  Where are you from?

I was born in Idaho, but my parents moved to New Mexico when I was a few months old. Since then, I’ve lived in almost every state and parts of Central America. However, from 7th grade up, we lived in Henderson, Nevada, right outside Las Vegas. So I consider Vegas my home town.

I love Vegas.  My favorite town.  Q: How long have you been writing?

Since I could hold a pencil! I wrote a Science Fiction book at eighteen, filed it away and got it back out a few years later and created a map of the galaxy as it would be in the story. I put it away to attend college. You don’t make the dean’s list while raising three kids under the age of six unless you really knuckle down, and I did. Once all my kids were in school, I got the book out again, but the editor I sent it to made so many suggestions about changes that I got cold feet and tucked it back in the closet for a few years. In the meantime, I submitted a short story to Writer’s Digest Magazine for their annual “Short-Short Story Contest” and was one of the Honorable Mentions. I started working on a book of rules and laws, a compendium of races and background info for the universe I’d created. Finally, all my kids were in high school, and I thought, when is it finally going to be time for me? I realized no one would give it to me, and I wouldn’t “find” it. I had to make it for myself. That December I joined a critique group online, submitted my first chapter, and by April, I had a finished book and a contract. I haven’t slowed down since.

Q: To date which of your books was the hardest to write and why?

It was one I never got published because the hero and heroine absolutely refused to cooperate with me. I’m not kidding! I rewrote it completely three times in one year, using different plots, trying to get them together. However, the hero’s younger cousin kept flirting with the heroine, and she kept flirting back. What was I going to do? Finally it dawned on me like a smack to the head that the cousin was her hero, and until I got them together that story wasn’t happening. Trouble is, I write on a timeline for an overall series that this book fell into, and the young cousin was too young for an erotica. He might be old enough to flirt, but not be the hero. Their story would have to wait a few storybook years. So that one is out in the future and it’s tentatively called Rebel Son. It will be an older woman younger man story, but he will teach her more than she ever thought she could learn. From that one “failed” book, I got the ideas for five more, three of which have now been written and published. So not a total loss!

Q:   Do you have a specific writing style?

Yes. I do things editors tell you not to do. *grin* I use fragments, change the pacing in the middle of scenes, and tend to use ellipses and dashes at the ends of sentences. Why? Because my characters sometimes forget what they’re talking about (like I do) or interrupt each other. Their thoughts ramble. They get so riled up at the idea of making love to the one they love that they can’t speak in full sentences. Especially the males. I do not head hop, however. I hate it when we’re seeing through Mary’s eyes and suddenly we’re John and then Mary again. Arrggh! I always make sure that changes in point of view are clear between characters. Another aspect of my style is to show, not tell, so I use narrative only where absolutely necessary. I also refuse to use the word “said” unless it’s in a sentence such as, “She said you’d take the kids today.” Instead, I use gestures and action. One of my favorite authors, Susan Johnson, used to write dialogue tags like “She lightly said,” and so on. She doesn’t write that way now, but her earlier books were full of such examples. If you think about it, it’s simply describing how someone speaks, and “lightly” is not a precise description. However, if your heroine lifts her head, tosses her curls, and gives the hero a shy smile before speaking, you not only know she is speaking lightly, you see her doing it. The main thing I’m known for, though, is that I lead readers down a path where they think they know what’s coming, and then I pull the rug out from under them and send them in another direction. I get comments all the time about plot twists and how riveting my stories are, which delights me no end. I love it when people email me to ask a question about a twist or a change I made that they didn’t expect. One reader wrote, “Think you know what’ll happen next? No way, it’s by Kayelle.”

Q:  How did you come up with your titles?

My first book title came from something the hero’s master warned him to avoid. The young hero would be working with an older woman whose genetic enhancements could addict him to her. His master warned, “If she subjects you to her passion, you’ll be at the mercy of her pleasure forever.” At the Mercy of Her Pleasure received multiple four and five star reviews, as well as being named as a “recommended read” and was awarded the Most Memorable Paranormal Romance of the Year. Everyone loved the title, and the moment I told people what it was, their eyes would light up. Each book’s title tells its own story about the hero. For Women Only had a line explaining to a man that the hero was like the company he worked for: For Women Only. I have two short stories, The Last Vhalgenn (from an EPPIE Finalist anthology) and A Romance for Christmas (in the anthology Naughty is Nice). Vhalgenn is a title for the king’s (or queen’s) companion of the opposite sex who learns everything they learn. How to rule, how to fight, how to judge. Why this Vhalgenn is the last one is the crux of the story. It was nominated for a Tiptree Award, which is for challenging traditional gender roles. A Romance for Christmas is literally that, in all senses of the word. My three Tales of the Chosen books revealed stories about three Chosen — the servants of immortals called the Sempervians. Wulf, Alitus, and Jawk all related relationships of the three to one or more of the immortals. Surrender Love is the first of a trilogy which will include the titles Surrender Trust and Surrender Will. It’s about one couple who must go through three stages before they are completely bonded to one another. First comes love, then the ability to trust, followed by the surrender of will to the other person in total trust. Each aspect goes both ways.

Q:  What books have most influenced your life most?

Interesting question! I would say as a child it was reading The Languages of Pao by Jack Vance, then as a teen, The Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov, as well as many of his short stories. Later, I read the Chanur series by C.J. Cherryh, and Little Fuzzy by H. Beam Piper. I also attended a Bible college for three years, studying to become an adult teacher. Learning the King James version as well as others helped me learn the beauty of words in rhythm and balance. I understood the King James easily, because I had a strong background in English literature. Not only did the book have an impact on my spiritual life, it also gave me a deeper understanding of symbolism, which I’ve always found fascinating. When readers learn that I attended a Bible college and write gay Romance, they sometimes think these oppose one another. That’s not true. If God is love, then He should certainly want His children to know love and experience it fully. I don’t use my books to preach religion. In fact, most of my characters are far from religious, but the symbols are there if you search for them. And later, I will have a character whose spiritual beliefs lead her into war. That should create some talk!

Q:  If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?

Wow. I have so many! I really listen to other authors. However, I’d say Barbara Karmazin was the first. I truly love this woman. When I’d email her a reply, my spell checker always wanted to change her last name to Amazing. That would certainly fit! A lot of folks call her Chainsaw for her critique techniques ^_^ but I’ve come to know her as BK. Her first critique sent me reeling for three days. I was angry, upset, and confused all at the same time. I thought briefly of giving up, but I’d come too far for that, and I finally realized that if I couldn’t take a critique from someone who wanted to help me, how could I take reviews? I made her suggested changes, tried to learn how to watch for those mistakes in the future, and resubmitted the manuscript. When Barbara saw that I was serious, she took me under her wing. It was through her recommendation that I received my first contract. I owe her a great debt.

Q:  What do you feel is the most important aspect for all new authors to remember when writing or creating their own stories?

The most important is never to quit. You won’t fail until you quit. The winner keeps going back no matter how long it takes. Sherrilyn Kenyon had multiple rejections for her books and used the last stamp she had to send out a query to someone she had heard was now an editor. Imagine if she had quit. If she hadn’t sent out that one more query. We’d have a world without the Dark Hunters, Dream Hunters, without Acheron or Simi. What a terrible loss! Never ever quit.

 
Q:  What do you think is the biggest misconception in erotic romance fiction?

That it’s porn. Porn is a sex scene with no concept or plot. It’s sex for the sake of titillation (what a great word to describe porn!) and excitement. Erotic Romance is the developing relationship of lovers revealed with — and often by — their sexual relationship. In this type of story, the sexual aspect of the characters’ lives is as important as all the others. For me, writing erotic romance was like getting a box of thirty-two crayons after having only eight before. Gay Romance gave me a box of sixty-four. I could never go back to eight and be satisfied with the end result.

 

Q:  What is on tap for the rest of 2009?

I’m completing Surrender Trust and hopefully starting into edits for an early release in 2010. I’ll be doing various interviews on the net and continuing to guide Marketing for Romance Writers. http://groups.yahoo.com/group/MarketingForRomanceWriters/  I created this group for the purpose of helping others learn how to successfully market their work and create a name for themselves. Our motto is “Seek, teach, share, learn, succeed.” It’s open to authors (published and not yet), literary agents, editors, publishers, author promo services, and artists. With well over 700 members and a staff of four volunteers to help me, we manage to accomplish a monthly newsletter and bulletin as well as annual excerpt books for various heat levels and genres. Helping others is my passion. I’m also holding a character chat on my yahoo group, Romance Lives Forever, and will be blogging and twittering away.

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

I’m all over. Here are my most used links.

kayelle@kayelleallen.com     Email

http://kayelleallen.com      Homepage

http://kayelleallen.com/Books.html      Booklist

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/romancelivesforever      Romance Lives Forever

http://myspace.com/romancelivesforever      Romance Lives Forever – MySpace

http://romancelivesforever.blogspot.com/      Romance Lives Forever – Blog

http://twitter.com/kayelleallen     Twitter

http://trsblue.blogspot.com/      The Romance Studio – Blog

http://coffeetimeromance.com/board/      Kayelle’s Coffee Corner

http://manloveromance.com      Manloveromance

AuThursday – Fran Lee

Dictated By Fate by Fran Lee

Dictated By Fate by Fran Lee

 

 

 

I’d like to welcome our Guest Fran Lee who is also published with my newest publisher Resplendence Publishing.  One of the great things about getting another pub is it expands the guest I lure to the Clog Blog. Well lets get to it shall we?

Welcome Fran!  Would you tell us a little about your most recent book?

 A:   Wow!  I have a couple of recent books, but I assume you are asking about the one that will be released July 31, Hallie’s Cats?  It is a shape shifter about a divorced gal who moves to a small Nebraska town to escape bad memories and a nasty ex.  What she doesn’t realize is that when she randomly picked her destination for her escape, she picked the very town where her destiny awaits.  And her destiny is in the form of a hot pair of brothers who are not exactly what they appear to be.

 

 Q: What was the most difficult aspect of this book?

 A:  The most difficult aspect?  I would say it was stopping long enough for bathroom breaks and yogurt.  Once I got started, I didn’t stop writing until it was finished.

 

Q: How much research did you conduct for this book and what was the most interesting thing you did while conducting your research?

A:  How much research? About ten minutes worth, I think.  I got onto the Internet to research cat sexual behaviors. I wanted to know why cat sex seems to be so painful. LOL!  But when I Googled “cat sexuality” I got some pretty gnarly sex sites popping up. Not exactly interesting, but educational!

 

Q: How do you make time to write?

A:  I have few distractions.  I spend about 9-12 hours each day at my computer since writing is currently my “job”, and I take an hour here and an hour there to brush up stories that I wrote many years ago and stockpiled.  I wrote a great number of romance novels long ago when I was in need of hot distraction from life.  I write mainly in the wee hours. With Cats, I simply sat down at 1:00 a.m. and started typing.  Didn’t budge until it was finished.  I set it aside and got back to it a week later to read and decide whether to toss it or submit it.  Decided to submit it.

 

Q:  When you are writing, who is in control? You or your characters?

A:   Neither!  I sit down to write, and things just start flowing out.  I have said many times, ‘I don’t write books…I channel them’!  It’s like something takes over completely and the words just keep flowing.  Very weird. 

 

Q: What advice do you have for other writers?

 A:  My advice to other writers would be, “Don’t listen to any advice Fran gives you.  She is a total nut case and you would do well to avoid her if you wish to maintain a modicum of sanity.”  Kidding!  I would advise other writers to realize their greater potential…and get involved!  I know we are all terribly busy, but unless we extend our circles and become more socially acclimated to a degree with other authors, readers, and publishers, we tend to be so insular that we miss many great opportunities to be better known and to have so many great friends!

 

Q: Would you tell us your story of getting “the call?”

 A:  I was in sixth grade.  I had just read 1,000+ pages of Tolstoy’s War and Peace that I had found in a “to be burned” trash heap and pulled out.  I was so impressed, I sat right down to write my own epic!  I got eight pages out, and decided I didn’t know enough about Russian history to finish it.  ROFL!  But I kept writing little stories about Halloween and Christmas…things that capture a kid’s imagination.  But at fourteen I discovered I had a flair for romance.  I guess you could say that was the actual “call”.

 

 Q: What was the most exciting thing that happened to you after you signed your contract?

 A:  Besides getting so excited I fell off my chair? Hmmm.  I would have to say, signing the second contract.  Then the third…and the fourth.  My life isn’t very conducive to excitement, you know.  I only write about hot romance.  Oh…and I ogled a bunch of hot cover models.  Does that count?

 

Q: If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing?

 A:  Reading romance.

 

Q: What books can we expect to see in the near future?

 A:  I have a full length romance titled Dictated by Fate coming in August from Resplendence Publishing.  I also have an anthology piece coming in November from RP, titled “Carnal Reunions ~ First and Ten”.  In February 2010 RP will release A Brief Moment of Pleasure.  I have a couple of short novels in edits with Ellora’s Cave, but have no release dates.  And, I am once again picking old writings out of my stack and reviewing and editing (now that I know how to submit properly!) so that I can submit them, as well.

 

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

 A:   My primary website is at:  http://www.franleeromance.com

I am also on Twitter, MySpace, Facebook, and YouTube.  (I create cover trailers)

I have two blogs:  http://franleesromanceblog.blogspot.com

And  http://franleesbookreviews.blogspot.com

Join me on Saturday when we read an excerpt from Hallie’s Cats by Fran Lee.

Until then Be Naughty!

Tina

AuThursday – Shara Lanel

Q: How long have you been writing?

I’ve been writing my whole life, but I really decided to focus in on romance and a career in writing about 9 years ago. I joined my local RWA (Romance Writers of America) chapter and learned so much about the craft of writing and the professional side of things.

Q: What advice would you give to writers just starting out?

Start by learning your basics. Read Strunk and White’s Elements of Style and find a critique group or partner (preferably who knows more than you do). Attend any local writing workshops or meetings you can, and when you feel you’ve improved, enter some contests. Contests that offer critiques of your 1st chapter will give you an idea of how much more you need to learn. Don’t even worry about agents and editors until you’ve got a good handle on the craft.

Q: How did you deal with rejection letters, if you received any?

Well, that depended on what mood I was in and how many rejections I’d received in a row, like the time 20 agents rejected me in one month. Sigh. The reason I got so many rejections at once was because I was submitting like crazy. This meant I also received a few requests, so it was worth it. In some cases a rejection has made me determined to submit something better to the same publisher—I see it as a challenge. Sometimes you need to get a little angry to keep going, but don’t ignore the advice in the rejection when someone takes the time to give you specifics—that’s rare and useful.

Q: Any recent appearances that you would like to share with us about/any upcoming ones?

On Valentine’s Day five authors from my RWA chapter signed at our local Barnes & Noble. The store had a lot of foot traffic that day, so it was a very successful signing. I like signing with at least one other author so I have someone to chat with during the slow times. To keep up to date with my signings, etc , I have a Yahoo loop, announcements/newsletter only—not a chat loop. Join here:

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/sharasezone/join

 

Q: Do you have a favorite hero in all your books? For any particular reason?

I fall in love with each of my heros. I love Rick from Enlightened Love because he was my first and very fascinating (a virgin ex-monk). Then there’s Heath in Primitive Passion. He’s sexy, demanding, and a bit…well…primitive, but he’s fighting his own darkness—and that’s what I love the most about him. It makes him vulnerable.

Q: Who are some of your favorite authors?

This is constantly changing. For a while I bought every Evanovich book the second I could get my hands on them. I love older Nora Roberts—I haven’t read her as much lately—and can get deeply engrossed in an Elizabeth George novel (she also has an excellent writing book that I love). Most recently I just read book number one in Wendy Roberts Ghost Dusters series. Loved it!

Q: What´s coming up on your schedule, book-wise, in the next year?

I’ve finished a cute novella about a ghost hunter and a groovy 60s ghost, but it doesn’t have a home yet. Meanwhile I’m working on a sequel to my Loose Id release, Blame It on the Moon. No finish date yet.

Q: HOW “HOT” DO YOU LIKE TO MAKE YOUR SEX / LOVE SCENES AND WHY?

I like the scenes to fit the characters and the story. The characters and their emotions are what make each sex scene hot, whether it’s traditional or…ahem…alternative.

Q: WE ALL KNOW “SEX” SELLS…………HAVE YOU EVER BEEN ASKED TO “SEX-UP-YOUR-BOOKS”?

When I sold my first book to Liquid Silver Books, I was given an excellent editor who not only helped me heat up my book to LSB standards, but improved my overall writing. I am so indebted to her. Since then I gained a much better grip on the market, so I can cater the heat to the publisher.

Q:  Where can Reader’s find you on the World Wide Web?

My web site is www.SharaLanel.com. You can also find me on Facebook and my MySpace page is http://www.myspace.com/sharasezone.

AuThursday – Gem Sivad

Gem is joining us today from Liquid Silver Books.  What can I say?  I have a ton of friends over there.  🙂

Let’s learn more about my friend Gem, shall we?

Q: What influenced you to get e-published?

Frankly, e-book publishing was my first choice because I’m impatient by nature and I thought the response time would be faster and if I had to be rejected, I wanted someone to “put me out of my misery” quickly. 

 

Q: How long did it take for your first book to get published?

I started my first book in late April and finished it in four months.  Then I sat on it for another month trying to decide which publisher to try first.  I submitted October 25, 2008 and was accepted by Liquid Silver Books on November 13, 2008. Nobody was more surprised than me.

 

Q:  What do you think is the biggest misconception in erotic romance fiction?

I think some book buyers believe that all e-books are soft porn. 

 

Q:  Are you nervous over readers’ reaction to your first book coming out? 

Of course I’m nervous.

 

Q: How much does reader reaction mean to you as an author?

Everything…I write for an audience, the bigger the fan-base the better. But even one reader makes my heart go pitter-pat and puts a smile on my face.

 

Q: What do you hope readers get from your books?

A sense of timeless love—people who find each other in spite of the odds and stay together because of a combination of chemistry, lust, and stubborn love. 

 

Q:  What is your writing process? Do you outline, fly by the seat of your pants or a combination of both?

I do best when I have a solid frame developed for my story.  An idea that has plagued me until I know where it begins and how it will end…then I begin fleshing it out, building on the frame.  This is the part that is easy.  Strangely enough, for me, developing the frame is the hardest part, but once that’s finished, the rest falls into place.

 

Q:  Do you use mood music, candles, no noise, when you write?

Sometimes when I’m concentrating on a scene, I play sound-effects…crickets, wind, rain, etc.  It really helps.   

 

Q:    What do you feel is the most important aspect for all new authors to remember when writing or creating their own stories?  

Beginnings are easy, but a story—whatever the length—isn’t complete until you’ve written the end. Don’t bog down in detail, keep moving.  This is why I make myself start with a frame.  Otherwise, I can rewrite my first scene twenty times and never move-on.

 

Q:  Any advice for aspiring authors?

Perfection isn’t possible, take what you have and build on it. Produce more work every day. 

 

Q:   What is on tap for the rest of 2009? Do you have other WIP’s you want to get published? Can we get a taste of what is to come from you in the future?

WIP:  Dying to Live.   At the beginning, my main character is in a hospital, diagnosed as brain-dead while visitors talk across her bed.  She hears everything, and responds to the chatter with her internal dialogue.  She begins to dream—or at least it seems like a dream. But then she wakes, and finds herself healed, living in a world of shape-shifting males.

 

Q:   What can readers expect from your books with respect to sexual content and sensuality?

It depends on the story.  Since I believe that sensuality and enduring love go hand-in-hand, I write to my bias. 

 

Q:  How much research did you conduct for this book and what was the most interesting thing you did while conducting your research?  

Intimate Strangers is set in 1878 Texas.  I had a lot of learning to do about cattle ranching, rustlers, and a trail drive from Texas to Wichita. I visited the West Texas high country to make sure my physical setting for the Double-Q ranch was correct. (I think I should set the next one in Ireland and authenticate that as well) <g>.

 

Q: How do you make time to write?

Writing is a compulsion, so the problem isn’t making time for writing…it’s making time for anything else.

 

Q:  Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

www.gemsivad.com  or visit my blog@  http://gemsivadauthor.blogspot.com/  

 

Join me on Saturday Naughty Boys and girls when Gem shares an excerpt with us. 

See you then,

Tina