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Interview from LoveRomances.com

This interview originally appeared on LoveRomances.com

How long have you been writing?
Forever. I think my first completed "novel" was about a horse. I was in second grade or so. I illustrated it, too.

Have you always written sensual/erotic romance?
Nope. I officially started writing erotic romances as of , hmmm, I think it was May of this year. Up until then I really didn’t know the genre existed. Before then I worked on more conventional romances, four of which are going to be e-published this year. On the other hand I’ve always liked doing the big sex scenes.

What inspired you to write in the first place?
I don’t remember. I was in second grade after all! I’ll bet it was a particularly good story I read – or many good stories. That’s one of the things that inspires me now.

Does the same thing inspire all your stories?
Given that I write erotic romance I could be flippant and say – sure. Sex does. But that’s not true. Sometimes I think of a situation that intrigues me or a character that begs to have a story written about him or her. Now where those ideas come from I can’t say. I do recall one where I had gone to a romance convention where I heard the phrase “I listen to the voice in my head” once too often. I came up with the idea of a character who starts hearing a voice from a telepath. The story that I’m currently working on – a world where men and women live in separate nations and heterosexuals are deviants – well, I don’t really want to delve into my subconscious to find out why I came up with that!

What influenced you to get published?
Money? Validation? Both.

How long did it take you to get your first book published?
Forty two years. Oh wait. How long from the time I wrote The Seduction of Sean Nolan until it got published? Well, if we count from the time I finished it . . . two weeks maybe? The publisher really wanted me to write something and was happy with what I came up with. That was very gratifying.

Often a writer's first book is the toughest to write. Was this true for you?
Naw. I loved that book about the horse.

If so, what helped you get through it? If it wasn't the first, which one was the most difficult to write?
Hmmm. I’ve had some that start off easy and then hit a big snag in the middle. I’ve had others I agonize over from the start and then something clicks and off I go. Wicked might be my most difficult so far – or at least it’s one of my most recent stories and therefore the one I remember the best. I’d never written a witch story before. I had to get in a different mindset than usual, research Magick, try to make an opium addict and a witch sympathetic characters . . . well, let’s just say it wasn’t easy.

The easiest?
Hmmm. None of them are easy, but The Deviants seems to be clicking along pretty well and amusing me while I write it.

Do you usually outline your stories before you write them, or do you "go with the flow"?
I go with the flow. That’s probably why I’m incapable of writing long stories. My brain can’t hold a long plot. Unfortunately outlines bore me. However, I usually feel as though I know the characters pretty well before I start writing. I understand what they would do or not do depending on the situation. And I have critique partners to yell at me if I go too far astray.

Your characters come to life in your books. Do you feel each of your characters live with you as you write?
Some of them, yes. Often they demand that I go back and keep writing their life.

Do their lives sometimes take over a part of your life?
Ohhh, once again, so tempting. I wish some of those characters’ sex lives were mine. Then again, it might be too exhausting. I suppose some of what they’ve done I’ve experienced.

Can you name an example?
Um. No, thanks. Snicker. You aren’t allowed to ask my husband, either.

Most authors are also avid readers. Is this the case with you?

If so, who are some of your favorites?
Let’s see. Nora Roberts, of course, Linda Howard, Elizabeth Lowell . . . no, I will be exhausted before I list them all. I don’t even think I can. I just read a new-to-me author that I liked very much – Emma Holly. I’ve also made a vow to read Robin Schone since I was compared (not very favorably, alas) to her.

Have any influenced your writing?
Oh, probably. I try not to let them, though. No, wait! Shelby Morgen influences me a lot. She’s my critique partner. Fortunately, or unfortunately, the two of us really don’t write the same kind of things at all.

Sensual romances are becoming more popular. Has anything influenced you from movies or television?
Once again, oh probably. But I try not to let them. Come to think of it, I haven’t seen a lot of movies or television since my kids were born. Something has to be thrown out when you work full-time, parent two kids and write. I’m fairly clueless about recent movies and television programs.

Do you find it difficult at times to write love/sex scenes?
Sometimes. I’ve decided my ability is based on my hormone levels.

Why do you chose to publish your novels electronically?
Because electronic publishers are interested in me. Besides, some of my novels only work electronically. Intimate Choices has an interactive ending. The reader can pick which one they want. You just can’t do that in print.

Do you expect to continue to publish only electronically or do you have plans for print publication?
I’d like to be in print someday. Why not? Ellorascave, the e-publisher I primarily work with, has plans to go into print by next year. But e-books are cool, too. They come out a lot faster than print publishers.

Did you ever expect your books to become so popular?
Oh, of course. LOL. No. I write books because I really like writing books. Having people read and like them is an added plus.

Why do you think your books are in such demand?
Ask my publisher. I haven’t a clue.

Congratulations on your newest release The Deviants, released in September. Are you working on anything right now?
Well, Wicked, my witch who meets up with her true love and someone that resembles the devil, is out in October. I have a story which is part of an anthology due in October with Jaid Black and Marilyn Lee – Things That Go Bump in the Night. I have another witch story in there but this time the witch is a guy. The stories are all set in Salem, Massachusetts.

Any final advice to aspiring authors?
Keep writing. Learn from past mistakes. If you want to be published also try to pay attention to your potential market – you may not write that but you should be aware of what’s out there.

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