#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 – Training the Receptionist by Juniper Bell

This is an excerpt from Juniper Bell’s latest book, Training the Receptionist by Juniper available at Samhain.

Simon stood at the wall-to-ceiling picture window that looked out over the depressing downtown. His jacket was off, hands in his pockets. I stopped just inside the door. When I closed it behind me, I felt a strange sense of safety. As if anything could happen inside this beige space and it would be okay.

“You can take off your jacket now,” he said without turning around.

My heart seemed to jump into my throat. Every nerve ending in my body stood at attention. I opened my mouth to say something snappy, but nothing came out. Instead, I slid one arm out of my jacket, then the other. Not sure what to do with it, I dropped it to the floor.

“Good. Now you can put your hands on your nipples.”

I didn’t move. I wasn’t sure I’d heard right. Besides, my heart was beating too fast. There was a long pause while we both stood still, me looking at his back, him looking out the window. Finally, he turned and gave me a mild stare.

“You’re not touching your nipples.”

I cleared my throat. “No.”

“I would imagine they’re in need of some contact right now. How do they feel? Aroused? Irritated?” His expression was one of concerned interest.

He had a point. “Like I want to jump out of my skin,” I admitted.

“Ah, I thought so. That’s why I suggested touching them. I certainly wouldn’t want you to jump out of that beautiful skin. Would you like to try it now?”

In the back of my mind, I wondered why we were talking about my nipples rather than proper phone procedure, or some other job-related issue. But his green eyes flicked over my body, scattering sparks of heat wherever they went, and before I knew it my hands rose to my tits. I put my fingers around my nipples. The heat of them surprised me. My poor nipples were burning up under there. How had he known it was exactly what I needed, to touch myself like that?

“Tighter,” came Simon’s soft, almost hypnotic voice.

I pressed tighter and felt the texture of the lace dig into my flesh. My breath caught and my face flushed. A jolt of heat zinged on a straight line from my nipples to my insides. Moisture sprang between my legs. Startled by my body’s reaction, I snatched my hands away from my nipples.

“Did I ask you to stop?” Simon sounded disappointed. Reproving. My hands jumped back to my breasts. “No, stop,” he said.

I stopped, hands hovering a few inches away from my breasts.

“I want to see what you look like now. Unbutton your blouse.”

What the F? Was my brand-new boss really telling me to undo my blouse? And was I really on fire to do whatever he said? It kills me to admit it, but I couldn’t disobey him. Didn’t want to. He was leading me somewhere with that sexy voice. Somewhere I’d never been. Somewhere I wanted to go. I unbuttoned my blouse and drew it off my shoulders. I dropped it onto the floor, on top of my jacket. The stuffy office air felt cool against my skin.

“Beautiful,” said Simon, a note of approval in his voice. “Exactly how I’d pictured it on you. But your hair’s all wrong. It should be piled on your head. Do it.”

That last phrase came out stronger, more like an order. Without thinking, I filled my hands with my hair and pulled it to the top of my head. It felt thick and silky against my hands. I’d never been quite so aware of the feel of my hair before.

Simon walked across the office with deliberate slowness. When he got to my side, he walked around me. From behind, I felt his finger touch lightly on the back of my neck.

“Fascinating tattoo.” He seemed to realize it was still tender back there, because he didn’t linger on the tattoo. Instead he traced his finger along the side of my neck, down the rounded front of my shoulder, into the crevice between my breasts, creating a trail of fire wherever he touched. Then he delved under the lace of the teddy. Unbearable excitement filled me as he lifted my nipple away from the fabric.

“Mm,” he said noncommittally as he examined my nipple. He reached around my back and brought the other one out of its nest. His body, strong and smelling of some kind of jet-set aftershave, pressed against me. In the office window, I saw our reflection. His intent face bent over my shoulder, his hands at my front, tugging at my nipples. Me in a provocative teddy and tight hobble skirt. The sight added to my excitement and I leaned back against him. “You’ve had an interesting morning, haven’t you?” He murmured in my ear. “Look how these juicy little morsels swelled up. I bet that lace teased you hard, didn’t it? Rubbed up against you like a rough little kitten tongue. I thought about you all morning, thought about these breasts stirring under your blouse. Thought about how wet it must be making you. Thought about how your nipples would feel against my hands, all hard and excited and…”

A spasm shook my body. It shocked me. What was happening to me? It was as if he had suddenly acquired ownership of the body that had previously been mine. I was dancing to his tune, singing at his command.

He pulled my nipples again, hard, and again my body arched back against him. I felt his erection press against my ass. The thought that I’d given him that hard-on made me even more excited. I wanted him to ravage me with it. Grind it deep. I squirmed and panted, but he wouldn’t let me get closer to his cock.

You can buy “Training the Receptionist” here:

http://mybookstoreandmore.com/shop/product.da/training-the-receptionist

AuThursday – Juniper Bell

Please welcome fellow LSB author Juniper Bell. 

First of all, thanks for having me here on AuThursday at the Clog Blog!

Tell us Juniper what inspired you to write your first book?

 I was inspired to write my first book during a tough time in my life. It was a kind of escape from everything I was dealing with. I’ve always been a fan of romance novels, especially when in need of some comfort and hope. This particular time, it suddenly occurred to me that I should try to write one. I’d written short stories and screenplays, but never a full-length novel. Turned out… I absolutely loved it.

Q:  Do you have a specific writing style?

That’s a tough question to answer. I’m sure I do have a specific writing style, but I’m not sure how to define it. I like to write deep POV, I like to keep my stories moving, I like some humor mixed in with the emotional development. I don’t like to go overboard with the “prose” – to me, the story and characters are what’s important.

Q:  How much of your books are realistic?

I think (hope!) they’re emotionally realistic. I spend a lot of time on characterization and really knowing my characters. But since I write erotic romance, some of the situations are more in the realm of fantasy. A receptionist and her two bosses in a three-way? It’s probably not going to happen in real life. It’s not meant to be “realistic” in that sense, but as a fantasy, it’s real. And the setting is very realistic (bland office in a dead-end Long Island town – definitely realistic.)

Q:  What are your current projects?

My current release is the one I mentioned above, “Training the Receptionist” from Samhain. It’s an erotic novella about a receptionist who finds her naughty dream job at the firm of Cowell & Dirk, where she answers (very personally) to her two sexy bosses. 

Q:  Name one entity that you feel supported you outside of family members.

My critique group has been wonderful to me. When I first started writing I had no idea about the publishing business … particularly e-publishing. Their experience and support really helped me find my way to publication. Not to mention help me get my books in shape to send out! We cheer each other on, which is so important in this crazy business. I really don’t know where I’d be without my critique group.

Q:  Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?

For me the most challenging moment is when I read over my first draft and see all the problems, all the things I want to fix, the characters that don’t work, the sex scenes that could be hotter … and so on. I’m a big rewriter, I start with a rough draft and keep refining and improving until I’m happy. But rereading that first draft … yeeow, that’s painful!  

Q:  Who designs your covers?

I’ve been so lucky with my covers! Tuesday Dube, KaNaXa, and Scott Carpenter have done my covers. How blessed am I? I love all my covers.

Q:  Do you have any advice for other writers?

I love Nora Roberts’ advice: Butt in the chair. That’s really what it comes down to. Just keep on writing. If you win a contest and you’re on top of the world? Keep on writing. Get a bad review and want to jump off a cliff? Keep on writing. It’s the answer to everything. LOL. Other than that … pay lots of attention to motivation and conflict. Makes sure you understand why your characters do what they do. And conflict keeps things interesting. It gives the reader a reason to keep reading.

Q:  How do you make time to write?

 This is, hands down, the most important thing you have to do as a writer. You have to give yourself that time, because without it, nothing happens. Personally, I try to think of it as a job. Certain hours of the day belong to writing. I get very upset if something disrupts that. I need that time, psychologically. I get crabby if I can’t write. I build the rest of my day around it. Of course, things happen, I get pulled away, and then I just go with the flow. But then I’ll usually try to make up the time later. Over time, I’ve trained my family to take my writing time as seriously as I do.

 Q:  What do you feel is the biggest misconception about e-publishing?

 That it’s somehow “less” than print. There are wonderful authors, editors and artists working in e-publishing. I look forward to the day when e-publishing gets the same respect as print.

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

 My website is http://JuniperBell.com and my blog is http://authorjuniperbell.com. I’m also on Twitter as @AuthorJuniper and on Facebook.

 Q: Do you have a sexy excerpt you’d like to share with us?

 Absolutely! I’ll share an excerpt from “Training the Receptionist.” Thanks again for having me, I had fun answering your questions.

Join me Saturday for the Saturday Sexcerpt of “Training the Receptionist”

Until then be Naughty,

Tina