#AuThursday – Dee S. Knight

DeePlease welcome Dee S. Knight to the Clog Blog!  Dee, tell us a little about yourself and your background.

As Dee S. Knight I have been writing for about 16 years, taking breaks every now and then. I’m so glad to have found writing! I’ve worked at many different jobs, but writing is the only one I’ve thought I could do for a long time and be happy. It’s pretty different from book to book—because I get to make things up and do what I want. What fun!! Before and during my writing years I taught high school and also trained adults, worked as an acquisitions librarian, drove a truck cross-country, worked as a clerk and a receptionist, did gift wrapping one memorable Christmas, and headed a technical writing department and edited training manuals. You’d think I couldn’t hold down a job, lol! But in my defense, married to the man of my dreams who worked as a computer consultant, we moved an awful lot. Living various places and doing a lot of different things has given me a rich background to draw from when writing, so I can’t complain.

Dee writes erotic romance and expanded briefly in ménage romance. But as Anne Krist, I’ve written sweet(er) romance, and as Jenna Stewart, historical and ménage romance. It’s all been a kick!

Are you an Introvert or Extrovert?  How does this affect your work? 

I can deal with small groups—maybe up to eight or so. But any larger and I hide in a corner. Being introverted has never been a problem, though. I’m happy with who I am, and as long as I have a good book available to read, I’m happy being on my own. Well, that’s not quite true—I need the people I love nearby, too. I don’t think spending a lot of time alone has bothered my work too much. As long as I hear about hubby’s experiences and can draw from my own, it all seems to work.

What are your current projects?

I’m trying to finish up Book 2 in the Good Man series, a trio of books about identical triplets. Book 1, Only a Good Man Will Do, Daniel Goodman, walks a fine line between being respectable and staid and being with the woman he lusts after, a former exotic dancer. In the current book, One Woman Only, brother Jonah is a mechanic extraordinaire who wants a second chance with his high school love. The third book, featuring genius brother Mark is still in the planning stages.

 

Have you written any other novels in collaboration with other writers?

Actually, Vanessa Hart and I started a book collaboration but other deadlines and life swept us up before we could finish it. I later expanded my part of the book into Daniel’s story in Only a Good Man Will Do. I call Resolutions a book written by four friends about four friends. Vanessa Hart, Jasmine Haynes, Leigh Wyndfield and I wrote separate novellas but each story began and ended at a common point, making it a collaborative process. I love that book. And I’ve been in anthologies. Ain’t Your Mama’s Bedtime Stories is a grouping of several short stories all built around fairy tales. Right now I’m in a supernatural anthology coming out this fall from Black Velvet Seductions called Mystic Desire. Several BVS authors contributed, with each short story carrying a supernatural theme.

Do you believe in writer’s block?

I do. I had what I consider writer’s block with my paranormal romance Passionate Destiny. I started writing the book in February and by October I couldn’t figure out what to do with it. Finally, I said to myself that if I didn’t have the book finished by Thanksgiving, I’d give up and put it away. Maybe it’s a stubborn streak, but that was the incentive I needed to get it done. I sent it in to Liquid Silver Publishing a week before Thanksgiving! I’m glad I did, too because it went on to be a Romantic Times Top Pick!

How did you deal with Rejection Letters if you received any? 

*sigh* Sadly, I have received rejection letters. I wouldn’t mind them if they gave some idea of why there was a rejection. “The work isn’t right for us” is the typical reason, and okay, I eventually have come to deal with that one. I can see where not every brilliant piece of writing, that sparkles with witty dialogue, livable, breathable locations, conflict that cuts like a razor blade, and characters that feel like your next-door neighbor might not be right for every agent or editor… Yes, I can see that, and understand it.

Oh heck. No, I don’t, lol. I don’t deal with rejections any better than any other writer. I scream at the moon for a night or two, figuratively cry on hubby’s shoulder, and complain to my mom about how unfair life is after throwing pillows at the wall. And then I move on. What else is there to do?

I will say, however, that there are ways agents/editors can soften the blow a bit. I was rejected by one agent (who shall remain nameless though her name is burned into my memory) whose rejection letter was folded so many times the letter was an inch or so high and the standard text (“Thank you for submitting your work. It’s not for us at this time. Best of luck in the future.”) looked to be mimeographed!! Yes. It was not printed or copied. It’s like she prepared thousands of rejections in 1965 and stored them up to use over the years. And I know because I was rejected by her more than once. That’s like kicking an author when she’s down. At least add the author’s name, send the letter to a printer, and stamp your name. And fold it right. Be professional, even if you have to reject an author’s work.

How are you publishing your latest book and why? (*e.g. Indie, traditional or both)

I’ve only used online publishers for my books. And I’ve been with some of the best publishers, really. Liquid Silver Publishing, Siren-Bookstrand, Samhain (when they were in business), and now Black Velvet Seductions. I’ve heard horror stories about publishing houses but have been lucky enough to avoid the problems. I will say, it’s sad that so many publishers are going out of business. I’ve thought about self-publishing, but if you called me chicken you wouldn’t be wrong! 😉

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write, write, write! Learn some self-editing so when you submit your work the publisher won’t find a reason to turn you away. Accept editing with grace (this is sometimes a do-as-I-say-and-not-as-I-do situation). Find a good critique partner. Don’t believe all the praise your relatives and best friends heap upon your book—they’re usually too nice to be helpful when it comes to improving your work. And (did I mention?) WRITE!!

Where can readers find you on the World Wide Web?

Website: https://nomadauthors.com

Blog: http://nomadauthors.com/blog

Twitter: http://twitter.com/DeeSKnight

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DeeSKnight2018

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/265222.Dee_S_Knight

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B079BGZNDN

Newsletter (sample): https://preview.mailerlite.com/o2g1i0?fbclid=IwAR0COlyuPY-Hu30KTBdT092j_GZeuN5z4pc1LtsvHTyr6IbiSpsGqeIgT90

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Do you have an excerpt you’d like to share with us?

I do, thanks! And thanks for hosting me, Tina.

This is from Only a Good Man Will Do, when Daniel, a teacher at Westover Academy, first admits that he’s drawn to Eve Star like a kid to chocolate. He knows she’s bad for his future but can’t help wanting her in his present.

Knight_OnlyGoodMan_236x360Daniel took his seat in the Academy dining room with a few of the boys from his dormitory. Each table sat six, with a permanent place for a dorm master or table monitor. Each month, the boys rotated tables, assuring they spent casual dining time with their dorm master and others and learned proper table manners. Usually, Daniel enjoyed meals with his young charges. They were more willing than the older students to talk about what happened during the day, and he often picked up on budding problems by listening to their conversations. For this reason, even though late afternoon-early evening was the part of the day he had free, he usually liked to attend dinner.

However, he’d changed his calls to Eve from four-thirty to after dinner, and now Daniel counted the minutes until the evening meal ended. He urged the boys not to tarry after dessert and then cursed the fact he had to walk sedately rather than sprint back to the dorm. Once there, he made sure to lock the doors and get comfortable before punching her number on the telephone face. A minor dorm crisis requiring both him and his assistant had prevented their saying much more than hello yesterday, and today, though he’d just eaten, he felt like a starving man.

“Nothing a little sugar won’t cure,” he muttered, using Southern slang for kisses.

At the same moment, a deep, male voice answered. “Well, honey, you ain’t getting’ it from me.” The man laughed. “Hey, doc. Eve told me to tell you she had to go out, and if she missed you, she’d call back as soon as possible.”

“Hi, Jed.” Of course, Eve shouldn’t be hanging around waiting for his calls, but he couldn’t help the disappointment that hit like a sledgehammer. “Say, why’d you call me doc?”

Jed laughed. “Ask Eve.”

“I’ll do that. Thanks.” Well. Daniel set the phone back on the side table. All dressed up and nowhere to go. He looked at the remaining term papers he had to grade, but reading the opinions of high school boys on any subject, much less Romeo and Juliet, a love story that ended tragically, didn’t appeal. What he wanted was to hear the voice of the woman who’d ridden him hard and put him away wet on Tuesday evening.

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Saturday Sexcerpt – One Lucky Deal by Kelli Evans

oneluckydeal“…This is from One Lucky Deal – Tad and Candace have been flirting and dancing all night at her sister’s wedding, they’ve just walked home from the reception …” ~Kelli Evans

Dread filled her when they got to their front door. She hadn’t wanted the night to end. Taking a moment to close her eyes and take one last deep breath of the outdoor air, she then headed inside for the night.

She let the dogs out into the backyard as she passed Tad taking off his jacket. His warm, earthy scent rushed through her and molten hot waves of awareness sluiced over her skin. She then passed him again—shoulders brushing—as he headed to his bedroom.

“Going to bed?” Candace hated whatever it was in her voice that wasn’t usually there.

“Yeah, I thought about it. Aren’t you?”

“Yeah, so tired.” She pointed to her room and went inside it. She leaned back against her door. She couldn’t possibly have picked a worse crush—even if it had been Mr. Evercut.

Then she remembered the dogs. She opened her bedroom door and headed to the back door. Tad came out of his bedroom too. His jacket was off and his white dress shirt was unbuttoned a little at the top, revealing just enough of his sun-kissed skin that her mouth watered. She wanted to nuzzle her face into that little dusting of chest hair and run her tongue over his hot smooth skin.

“The dogs,” Candace explained, pointing in the direction of the backyard.

“A drink,” Tad said before they both went their separate ways.

Candace let the dogs in.

Tad opened the tap and drank a tall glass of water.

He headed out of the kitchen just as Candace moved into it. “I should feed them.” She pulled the dog food from the pantry and dumped some of it into their bowls.

Tad checked the locks on all the doors before he headed back to his room for the night. After the dogs had gotten their fill, Candace moved back out of the kitchen and into her bedroom with all the dogs in tow.

“Good night.” She walked past Tad to her room. Her body buzzed from just being near him.

“Good night.” He headed to his room as well.

She shut the door behind her and closed her eyes again, leaning her head back against the wood. She did not want to sleep. She slipped out of her bedroom, and as she came out of hers Tad was coming out of his, and she lost her nerve again. Especially with the determined way he was walking toward her.

“I should check the locks.” She moved around him to the front door.

“I already did,” he said at the same time she tried the doorknob.

“The back door.” She pointed to the other door. She tried to slip back around him, but he trapped her.

“Candace—” His voice snagged her by the heart. It was deep and smooth. It made her want to curl up into his lap.

He looked down at her with those stormy gray-green eyes and he tugged her closer to him with a hand on her hip. “Tad?” Her breath caught in her throat.

“Where are you really going?” He bit his lip, and she wanted to replace his teeth with her own.

“Crazy, I think,” she whispered breathlessly.

He tipped his head and they breathed the exact same air. “God.” He cursed as his nose just brushed over her cheek and her forehead and then her other cheek. She closed her eyes against the light brushes of his skin against hers. “I think I’m right there with you.”

“Prove it,” Candace whispered desperately, and before the words were even completely out of her mouth his lips were against her lips. So softly at first it nearly tickled, and then it wasn’t quite so soft.

He tugged her hard up against his chest. One of his hands slid into the mess of her hair and held her head still and her mouth prisoner to his, as if he thought she was going to run off on him. She wasn’t going anywhere.

She clutched him. Her breasts were achingly crushed to his chest and her lips parted under the pressure of his. Sweet Jesus—when his tongue touched hers she could have cried with satisfaction. It was like she’d been waiting for this for such a long time.

She couldn’t believe this was happening. She was in his arms. His. Tad’s. It was Tad’s mouth. It was Tad’s kiss.

She held on tighter. His lips were unrelenting. She was glad. He pulled away just to look at her face. She didn’t want him to stop. His lips were swollen and red. Her heart thudded hard when his stormy gaze slid down to her lips before lifting and searching her eyes, looking for something specific in them. He must have found it because his lips were back on hers just as quickly as he’d pulled them away.

He propelled her back against the wall that separated the kitchen from the entryway. His mouth trailed down her jaw to her neck, and she bit her lip to hold back the embarrassing squeak of pleasure that was threatening to come free.

“I’ve wanted this,” Tad admitted. It was those words that were exactly what stole Candace’s breath away.

She wanted to tell him how badly she wanted this too, but his hand came up from her hip to her breast and his thumb unerringly found her hard nipple, and she couldn’t think, let alone speak.

“God, Candy.” His mouth dipped lower to her shoulder where he had moved her straps aside to slink over her arms. “Stop me here.”

“No!” Candace’s breathing was ragged and so was her speech. She clutched his head and held him to her as he rained hot, openmouthed kisses and nips across her collarbone. “Don’t stop.”

“Thank God,” he whispered when her dress fell away from her breasts and would have dropped to the floor completely if Tad’s knee wasn’t strategically placed between her thighs.

He grabbed her black strapless bra in both of his hands, and Candace finally let that moan out she’d been fighting back. He tugged the cups down until her breasts spilled free. Tad swore and let out a half laugh, half grunt before he tipped his head and laved her with his tongue.

“Tad…” Candace panted. She lost her legs, giving her whole weight over to the wall at her back and Tad’s knee between her thighs. “Don’t stop,” she begged.

“I swear to God, Candy…” Tad groaned around her nipple as he kissed across her chest to her other one. “I’m not going to stop until you’re shaking.”

She was already damn close.

Join me next Thursday when we meet a new author. ~Tina