Thursday, January 31, 2013

The delectable Giorgio from Doris O'Connor's Too Devious To Tame

I'd like to welcome Giorgio Giovanni today, from Doris O'Connor's contemporary, romantic suspense, Too Devious To Tame (Giovanni Clan, 3)

Thank you for meeting with me, today. What is your full name?
Giorgio Beppe Giovanni at your service.

Why were you given that name?
My mamma, lord rest her soul, chose Giorgio. Beppe after my lousy excuse of a father.

When were you born?
July 17th 1981

What is your preferred style of clothing to wear?
Designer jeans and tee shirt. Armani suits in business meetings, of course. I like to dress for comfort, but in style.

Do you have a personal scent (perfume or cologne)? 
Gucchi Guilty

Do you have any siblings?
No siblings, just too many cousins to mention.

Who has been your greatest influence? 
That would be Don Luigi. His wife Giada was a friend of my mother's and when she died so suddenly in a car accident, Giada and Don Luigi took me under their wing and stopped me from going off the rails completely. I was all set to follow in my father's footsteps. The Don gave me a job in the 'family', he gave me purpose and he reminds me every day that honour is the most important code we can live by. Regardless of what the world thinks of you, you need to be able to look at yourself in the mirror every morning. And you never, ever renege on a promise.

Where did you grow up? How do you feel about it now?
At the Giovanni vineyard in Tuscany. It has been in our family for four generations. A Giovanni grew the first grapes on that hill, and one day my sons will take over, God willing. Life was good here, until mamma died. After that, not so much. Beppe Giovanni did his best to run the business into the ground to afford his whores. Once he was killed, life was hard. I poured all my energies into rebuilding the vineyard with the help of the Don. I'm proud to say, that Giovanni wine is once again sought after.

Where do you currently live?
On my vineyard, though we divide our time between Tuscany and London, as business and family dictates.

What sort of a home is it?
We have a town house in London, close to Hampstead Heath and a rather rambling and charming abode here on the vineyard. The house has been added to over the years, as each new Giovanni took over. You'd have to ask Jemima, what she thinks of it. With her artist's eye she's truly brought it to life and made it into a home.

With whom do you live? How do you feel about that person / people?
My family, plus my trusted house keeper, and a selection of handpicked security team. The local villagers come and go with the season, as harvesting requires them to. We're a tight unit and I trust each of them with my life.

Do you have any pets?
Dannazioni, too many to mention. Jem seems incapable of refusing any stray that she happens to find, and I swear she finds them all.

What is your current job title / social station / rank?
Business man and Vineyard Owner.

How do you think your colleagues would describe you?
Determined to succeed, ruthless in business, and honourable.

What is currently your biggest responsibility?
My family and the families who work for me.

Who is your best friend?
One of the Don's security. Alfonso and I grew close over protecting Jemima. We understand each other, and I know he would protect my family with his life.

Who is your biggest rival or enemy? 
Luc Beauchamp. He's a French vineyard owner and the bane of my existence, both professionally and personally. And no, I am not explaining why. Suffice to say if he dies tomorrow I would dance on his grave.

Haha, fair enough.
What is your greatest talent?
I have a head for business, and grow excellent vino. As for my other talents, you would have to ask my wife… *smirks*

*Grins back* Okay, I think I might have to schedule an interview with her as well.What would you say you're the most hopeless at?
Being patient.

What, if anything, do you do to keep fit and healthy?
I run through the vineyard every day. I also swim and we have a gym room, like most people.

How would you spend an unexpected day off?
Just relaxing with my family.

What sort of vehicle do you rely on?
A Lamborghini of course. I also a have Range Rover and a BMW.

How deeply does your job define you as a person?
The vineyard is my heritage and my destiny. I strive to make it the best I can for future generations of the Giovanni.

What is your most cherished possession?
My wife. *grins* Seriously, my family are the most important thing to me.

What makes you blush?
Do I look as though I blush?

(Well, doesn't that just make a girl blush.)
How do you feel, generally, about the opposite sex?
I love women, always have done. Their scent, the softness of their skin, their fragility, coupled with that inner toughness. I have enjoyed lots of women over the years. Nowadays, I just enjoy my wife—frequently.

How do you feel about children? Do you have or want to have your own?
Children are our future. Without them, what would we have? As to whether I have any – spoilers – my lips are sealed.

How did the two of you meet?
Jem and I met in Verona. She had a disagreement with one of my countrymen, which resulted in her losing all her art work. You could say we bonded under a shop canopy in a rain storm. *smirks*

I take it the rain wasn't the only thing pounding? *blushes instantly* Um ... moving on. What were you doing before you met Jemima? 
I worked hard, and played even harder. And my life was an empty shell, where I made too many dumb choices which could have destroyed all I hold dear. I am a better person for having met her, though it didn't seem like it at the time.

When Giorgio Giovanni tracks the troublesome Jemima down in a hospital bed in Italy, he has one thing on his mind—revenge. However, the fragile woman he encounters is not the devious female he remembers. When it becomes clear that she is in danger, he risks everything to keep her safe.

Left for dead, Jemima wakes up in hospital, terrified, and with no idea of her identity. The angry man, who comes to claim her, is the only link to a shared past she can't remember. A past that threatens to destroy them, and all she has ever held dear.

With danger all around them, and their sexual chemistry off the scale, can they find their way back to each other, or is the past too devious to tame?

Tears clouded her vision at the concern in his voice, and he swore and moved to untie her.
"No, I'm fine, really. Leave it. Show me how it should be, please. Help me to forget."
He stared at her for the longest time, one large hand, hot and heavy on her belly, his gaze so intense it took her breath away.  When he finally smiled, it lit up his harsh features. She didn't catch the murmured Italian words he mumbled under his breath, but the kiss that followed had her curl her toes into the bed with the effort to not release herself from her bonds and bury her hands in his hair to make him hurry up and fuck her.
He was breathing as heavily as she by the time he released her, and she bit back a moan when he simply ripped the rest of her dress off her. Her bra and knickers followed the fate of her dress, until she lay in front of him naked, wet, and wanting. He ran his knuckles slowly up and down her tummy in ever widening circles, and then reached across to the ice bucket with a slow grin.
"Shut your eyes for me, cara."   His voice had dropped an octave, and her stomach dropped right with it, seeing him hold a couple of ice cubes in his fingers. She shook her head and bucked off the bed, when he flicked his hand over her breasts. Ice cold drops of water fell on her skin and trickled between the valley of her breasts. He licked the drops away, his warm tongue taking away the coldness left by the water.
"Shut your eyes, trust me. This will be so much better for you when you can't see what I'm doing." He kissed a path down her quivering tummy, and she blinked back tears at the tender way he caressed her abdomen. He paused to drop a long kiss just above her pubic bone, and his hot breath teased her wet folds. Her clit tingled, and she shut her eyes, as he renewed his request for her to do so. She couldn't see what he was doing, but the bed dipped as he adjusted his weight again. His hot mouth closed over one of her nipples at the same time as the other was subjected to an ice cube being circled around it.
She gasped at the intense sensation, and Giorgio swapped sides. The difference between his warm mouth and tongue and the ice cube sent her body into spasms of need. She writhed under him, and he laughed. Again and again he repeated the process all along her body. A path of ice, followed by the warmth of his tongue as he licked the icy trails away, leaving fiery awareness in its wake. By the time he finally reached her pussy, she was hovering on the brink of orgasm. She whimpered her need when he pushed an ice cube high into her channel and then proceeded to lick around her clit, careful to never touch her when she needed him most. The melting ice cube mixed in with her own juices and trickled slowly out her hole. Her pussy clenched, and she didn't recognize the needy voice pleading with him to please do something.
He blew against her slit and shouldered her legs wider.
"Così bello, e tutto mio."   He followed the words with a kiss, and she screamed when he pulled her clit into his mouth and swirled his tongue around it, at the same time as he pushed another ice cube into her empty channel. Her walls closed around the slippery object, and spasmed wildly as the first quivers of her orgasm hit. Giorgio groaned into her core and stepped up his sweet torture on her clit. When he pushed two fingers into her core, and massaged her sweet spot, the intensity of her orgasm hit her with the full force of freight train.
"That's it, tesoro, fly for me." He caught her scream of release in his mouth, and she could taste herself in the passionate kiss he gave her, dimly aware of him withdrawing his fingers and replacing them with his cock. Thick, hard, and so very long he filled her completely as he pushed into her swollen core, until he was seated to the hilt. She wrapped her legs around him and dug her feet into his calves to give him better access and to take him as deep as she could. He started thrusting, every move driving him deeper into her, and tumbling her right over the edge again, as her inner muscles contracted around his thick member. Faster and faster he pumped, his harsh breathing in her ear the most erotic sound ever, his hands and lips seemingly everywhere, arousing every little bit of skin he touched until her whole body was a mass of sensation. Again her body climbed toward that peak of sheer joy, and this time Giorgio was with her every step of the ecstatic journey they took together. Her eyes flew open, and she drowned in the rolling depths of emotion she saw reflected in his, as they came together in their explosive release.
When her body finally stopped shaking, she could taste the salt of tears in her mouth. Giorgio kissed them off her face, and he released her from her bonds, and pulled her into his embrace. She had to smile at his grumbled, "If this is pretending, then I hate to see what will happen when we do this for real."

Too Devious To Tame released January 28th

Author Bio:
Glutton for punishment would be a good description for Doris... at least that's what she hears on an almost daily basis when people find out that she has a brood of nine children, ranging from adult to toddler and lives happily in a far too small house, cluttered with children, pets, dust bunnies, and one very understanding and supportive husband. Domestic goddess she is not.

There is always something better to do after all, like working on the latest manuscript and trying not to scare the locals even more than usual by talking out loud to the voices in her head. Her characters tend to be pretty insistent to get their stories told, and you will find Doris burning the midnight oil on a regular basis. Only time to get any peace and quiet and besides, sleep is for wimps.

She likes to spin sensual, sassy, and sexy tales involving alpha heroes to die for, and heroines who give as good as they get. From contemporary to paranormal, BDSM to F/F, and Ménage, haunting love stories are guaranteed.

Find Doris on the web here:

Thanks so much for joining me today Giorgio, you made me blush more times than I'd like to admit. And a special thanks for making the introduction, Doris. 
I can't wait to read this book - that excerpt is hot!!
... Now, where is my husband?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Piper Kay's Twisted Cherry

Today I'm meeting with Piper Kay, author of Twisted Cherry, which is an M/M Erotica published with Evernight Publishing. Piper has also arranged for me to interview Gabe from Twisted Cherry, so read on to find out more about Piper and Gabe.

So Piper, tell me a little bit about yourself. 
I’m just a country girl from the Houston area and the mother of three children. I currently have my story published with Evernight Publishing and I’m working on two others as well.
What do you do when you are not writing?
When not writing, I’m usually spending time with my family, but I’ll catch a movie or a concert every once in a while.

What are you working on now? 
Eight Second Cowboy is my current WIP.

Can you tell us about your upcoming book? 
The WIP revolves around two characters, Lance and Matt who are both pro bull riders. They are the best riders on the rodeo circuit and huge rivals. They’ve both been burned by love and find it hard to trust anyone, but when an accident brings them together, their outlook on what’s important overrides everything.  
Will you have a new book coming out soon? 
Yes, Eight Second Cowboy

Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers? 
Write every day and never let anyone tell you that you can’t or won’t be able to become an author.

Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans? 
I would love to thank my readers and fans. If I could, I would give them a big hug.
Where do you find the most inspiration to write? 

Through music most of the time because it’s so powerful and emotional.
Have you ever gone out in public with your shirt on backwards, or your slippers on, and when realizing it, just said screw it? 

Yes, my pajamas and slippers and I realized it when I pulled into the grocery store parking lot, and said eff it.

Haha. Alright, do you prefer fuzzy or tube socks? 

Tube socks.

Be honest, how often do you wash your hair? 

Every other day.

Do you get road rage? What pisses you off the most about other drivers? 

I do get road rage at times. I cannot stand when someone goes slow in the fast lane or when someone tries to turn from a non-turn lane. I’m all over my horn, and my vocabulary turns into an array of curse words.
Which of your characters would you like to meet in person and why? 

I’d like to meet Gabe, because he’s a hottie, but he could give me a new tattoo.
Great! Thanks for answering some questions. Now let's turn to Gabe from Twisted Cherry.Hi Gabe, I know your real name is Gabriel, which name are you known by? 

I go by Gabe, and yes I do prefer it
When were you born? 

January of 1989
Do you have any scars, tattoos, piercings? What do they mean to you? 

I do have tattoos and each one means something different. The most important one is the one on my chest with my mother’s name in it.
What is your preferred style of clothing to wear? 

Jeans and a wife beater
Where did you grow up? How do you feel about it now? 

I grew up in Houston and moved out in the country to get away from the business of city life.

What is your current job title / social station / rank? 

I’m the owner of the Twisted Cherry tattoo parlor.
How do you think your colleagues would describe you? 

Patient and dedicated.
What sort of vehicle / transportation do you rely on? 

A black and red Vulcan 900 motorcycle.
How did the two (or however many) of you meet? 

Evan came in looking to get some art work done, and I was instantly taken. The more we talked and were around each other, the more we connected. Everything took off from there.

Thanks for meeting with me, Gabe. I can't wait to read about you and Evan. And thanks again, Piper!
Click here to find out more about Twisted Cherry.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Not a trilogy anymore, folks!

I really should have posted this last night, but to be honest I've been exhausted since even before my root canal a couple of days ago. I have been internally happy-dancing around my house since it happened (my face still hurts too much to really do it), and I woke up bright and early this morning, ready to share the news... Primordial Guardians won't have just three books in the series for long.

I just signed the contract last night for the fourth novel in the Primordial Guardians series, Rapture. I've been contacted by a few fans ever since Born of Silence released, and it seems that everyone is curious about what happens to different Guardians. So, I have a question: Which character(s) do you hope Rapture is about?

I still can't believe my fourth book is contracted. It has been such a crazy year, and I couldn't be happier that I've been able to spend as much time with my boys as I've been able to.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Immortal Guardians Series Name Change

It's been an interesting week for me. Not only has my little baby been sick for a week, stressing me out beyond belief, but my husband and I have been sick as well, having different symptoms of that flu that's affecting the population. Oh, and I have tooth pain to boot - I'm pretty sure I'll be having a root canal shortly.

As stressful as those things have been, there was yet another thing that hit: I was informed that I could no longer use Immortal Guardians as my series name if I wanted to avoid problems. This came as quite a shock,  and was very heartbreaking especially considering that my boys have been the Immortal Guardians since I started writing about them in 2009. It doesn't feel right that someone can take it away from me, but it still happened anyway.

So, to my fans who know and love my Immortal Guardians, the series still lives on, it's just called "Primordial Guardians" instead. Dark Seduction, Passion Ignited, and Born of Silence are still available, they're just under the Primordial Guardians™ series name now.

Check back in a few days, I should (hopefully) have some fun news to share. :o)

Monday, January 21, 2013

Tory Michaels and Prophecy of Blood

Today I'd like to welcome Tory Michaels, who has joined me to talk about her Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy novel, Prophecy of Blood (The Dream-Walker War: Book 3). She's even agreed to choose one lucky commenter to win a copy of Prophecy of Blood (comments must be added by January 28th, 2013 for a chance to enter).

Thanks so much for joining me, Tory!
So, when did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
I’ve been writing as long as I can remember. If you mean the very first I ever finished (as in a first novel, as opposed to a kid’s book), 15. I remember I called it Obsession because I just couldn’t let that puppy go. I cringe to think at how bad the thing was (I thought it was great then of course) and I even remember sending a query letter on it. Thankfully I realized it was the junk it was and pitched it around my 19th birthday or so.
How did you choose the genre you write in?
It wasn’t a conscious decision that I know of. I just was always drawn to the vampire/paranormal genre in the movies and books I read. I played a lot of role-playing games, including Vampire: the Masquerade which is where I originated all of the main characters for the Dream-Walker War. (Chris, Anthony and Dara were all Ventrue, Jordan was a Toreador). When I started writing again a few years ago, Dara finally insisted I write her story down once and for all. That led to Chris and ultimately Prophecy of Blood.
What was your life like before becoming an author?
Assuming you mean published, not much different, other than perhaps I’m spending a bit more time and money on promotion than I did before. Heh. I still squeeze in my writing time in the early morning and at lunch time. I stress more over being productive (which I’m not, based on how slow I manage to put together usable WIPs) because I know I need to pump books out, but I can’t seem to go very fast.
Which comes first: The character's story or the idea for the novel?
Usually the character themself, and then I figure out what’s going to happen to that character. It’s a bit different now with the Dream-Walker War. I have a definite overall story arc and I know how this series is supposed to end…I’m just not really clear on its destination and who best to show the movement toward that destination.
Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I really hate the word outline. I try to write them, but it rarely does more than give me a starting point and then I branch off from there quite quickly (sometimes within two chapters). Usually though, when I’m trying to get a new project off the ground, I’ll just write and follow wherever the story takes me. I always like to have an idea of my final destination within a particular story, but sometimes I don’t get that until I’ve been plucking away at the book, and then I have to go back and fix a lot.
What are you working on now?
I’m working on Book 4 of the Dream-Walker War. At the moment, I’m tentatively setting it a year after the events in Blood Rage, Blood-Mage Rising and Prophecy of Blood. That’s quite a switch because the first three books take place concurrently (well, Rising & Prophecy take place over the same period as Rage), and this one (I think) will be significantly after, to give the world a chance to adjust to what happens at the end of Prophecy. I’m also starting to gather notes/plot ideas for a couple of alternate things in different settings (one contemporary romance and one a sci-fi romance).

How did you come up with the title? 
All my books thus far have had “blood” in the title, and given the central part of the book is about trying to avert a prophecy, Prophecy of Blood seemed appropriate.
Alright, now it's time for some random questions. Have you ever gone out in public with your shirt on backwards, or your slippers on, and when realizing it, just said screw it?
I can go you one better – I’ve gone out, knowing I had baby spit-up on me and didn’t find it worth the effort of changing (I have twin 22 m/o girls, so there was a lot of very little sleep nights).
Be honest, how often do you wash your hair?
2-3 times a week. I don’t need to wash it more than that, and it’d get too dry.
If your book were made into a movie, who do you picture playing each characters part? 
That I can answer because I have definite people I picture in the parts when I write them.Dara: Amy Adams (if she shrank a couple of inches and added about 20-25 pounds)Anthony: Johann Urb (pilot named Sasha in the movie 2012, warrior in the most recent Resident Evil movie)Jordan: A cross between Eric Johnson (Rookie Blue and a bunch of other stuff) and Michael Fassbender (X-Men, Inglurious Basterds, etc)Chris: Katie McGrath (Merlin).
Blurb for Prophecy of Blood:

One hundred ninety-eight seasons after the mushroom-shaped clouds first blossom to poison the humans of the Rising Sun, near the beginning of the Season of Inundation, Atlantis will return.

With those words ringing in their ears, vampires Christine Javert and Jordan MacNaught find themselves in a race against time to stop the return of Atlantis. As they hunt for the deadly Ares, they discover the true depths of his plot to incite a world-wide species war, turning the humans against all the non-humans, not just the vampires as they’d originally thought.


“Dude, next time just tap me on the shoulder.”
She needed to lodge the protest, though her body sang at the familiar touch. She and her body needed to have a good, long talk about this situation. He shouldn’t be able to make her go mushy just by putting an arm around her. Not when they’d sated their lust so recently.
As expected, Jordan wore a suit that evening, and it suited him perfectly. No tie for a change though, and his crisp shirt was unbuttoned at the collar. So for him, he was going for a casual look.
The arm around her back drifted south until his hand rested on her ass and gave it a gentle squeeze. “My way’s more fun. Admit it, wasn’t it fun, seeing him slink off?”
He grinned. How a grown man frozen in his early twenties could continually look like a mischievous little boy when he grinned was beyond her. But it worked for him. Chris shook her head and groaned. Protest. Remember? You’re doing the whole friend thing, and friends don’t grab friends’ asses. Not even friends you bounce at every opportunity. With an effort, she leveled out her breathing. “I didn’t expect to see you here so early. I was heading out soon.”
Even with the attempt to moderate her voice, her words came out breathy. She cringed internally. If Jordan noticed, he didn’t comment. “You need a keeper. I’ve appointed myself to the task.”
Arrogant jackanapes. Rather than draw a scene by having a conversation in the middle of the dance floor without dancing, she sighed and looped his arms around his neck. At least she didn’t have to bother with the intricacies of a waltz. The last time she’d danced with him had been in London, the night before he buried her.
The hand on her butt squeezed again. “What was that thought? You just scowled.”
She shook her head. “Nothing.”
He frowned, but let the matter drop. “You look smashing, Chrissy. Why were you wasting it on the dog?”
It was a dance, nothing more. Not that it’s any of your business.”
Dozens of people surrounded them, but she saw only Jordan. Felt him as his other hand trailed lazily down her back. His lips brushed her ear as he leaned close. “After earlier, I might just make it my business.”
Her mouth went dry, and she blinked at him. “Huh, wha’?”
 “I make a lousy friend, as you well know.” He cupped the back of her head and kissed her. Her knees threatened to buckle. “And since I intend to be inside you again at the earliest possible moment, the ‘friend’ label doesn’t fit.”
Oh. Wowser. She licked her lips, saw an answering flare of arousal flash in the green eyes staring into hers. “You’re not serious. Like, you want to date?” He blew my mind, but it was that good for him, too?
Such a dull word, but sufficient.” He drew her closer. Fire followed the path of his lips around the bottom of the dark-blue choker she wore to cover up the nasty scar from the attack that left her almost dead. He took a long sniff, no doubt smelling the Princess perfume she daubed on. “You smell good enough to eat, Chrissy. I could spend hours doing just that.”
The already warm nightclub turned scorching. Maybe it was just her temperature.
In that obnoxious pink bed of yours.”
She squeezed her eyes shut, tried not to picture them in her room. It definitely was her temperature soaring, not the club’s.
Jordan’s voice dropped to a husky whisper. “Arms and legs restrained, holding you open for me. No escape, no retreat.”
Her non-existent imagination conjured the image up in startling detail, bolstered by the memory of the handcuffs around her wrists earlier. She whimpered, couldn’t help the moisture that trickled from her to soak her panties. Oh damn, no. That should not turn me on. Not him. Not like this, not again.
She moved with the music, turning to press her back into him. His strong, sure hands pulled her hips against his in a dance they’d done so many times together, one that had nothing to do with music.
And the thought, being with me like that, excites you. Letting control go earlier like you did, gave you a rush you’ve never gotten before in sex.” Jordan pushed the hair at her neck to the side. Sharp fangs sank against her throat, not quite breaking the skin, his other hand drifting up to cup her breast. The fabric of her dress did nothing to shield her against the heat of his palm. “Did you sneak out afterward because of how it made you feel?”
Teasing touches trades down her sides until he reached the hem of her skirt. His hand slid beneath to caress the skin of her thigh just above her garter.
Take back control, Chris. You steam-roller. Men don’t do this shit to you. Nor did she want them to. Right? Except him, damn it all to hell. And he was talking about feelings? What the fuck? Struggling to keep her head against the sensuality he dragged out of her, she clamped her hands over his wrists to still his movements. With only a hint of her normal forcefulness, she said, “Knock it off, MacNaught.”
Or what, hmm? Let go, Chrissy. You’d enjoy yourself more if you relaxed. Remember?”
He twisted his wrist, broke her admittedly weak grip on him, and the exploration of her leg continued. She colored, prayed no one was staring at them. The display, while making her hornier than a bitch in heat, was mild for the ‘Cor. It didn’t matter, because she flat out didn’t do public affection. None of her boyfriends crossed the line with her, knowing she’d flatten them if they pushed too far.
She couldn’t flatten Jordan though. To make it worse, she didn’t want to.
Goosebumps rose in the wake of his caresses over her thighs. His fingers inched upward, just brushing her mound, only blocked by the flimsy barrier of her soaked panties.
He laughed softly in her ear. “You say no, but your body, your oh-so-pretty pussy says yes, doesn’t it?”
Chris twitched. If she didn’t move away, didn’t break this off, the bastard would think he could maul her whenever he wanted. And what’s wrong with that? So what if he does the caveman thing? You read the trashy romance novels, and are surprised when someone acting like those alpha assholes turns you on?
A harsh blast of noise from behind her head where it plastered against Jordan’s suit coat worked as effectively as a bucket of water.

Author Bio
Originally from the Sacramento Valley, Tory packed up and moved all the way to Southwest Florida in 2004 with her husband (a Florida native) under the premise that ‘hurricanes almost never hit that part of the state.’ That year, 4 blasted the area. 4 more came the following year, and her husband blames her for bringing the hurricanes. She now resides in Jacksonville and is relieved that, thus far, no more hurricanes have followed her around. She began writing in kindergarten when a turnip wished to be human and, other than a hiatus shortly after getting married, has never stopped. Her love of vampires began somewhere in junior high, and combining the two loves didn’t take long. She loves music, considers herself a ‘book slut’ whose reading habits would break her family financially if given free reign, and is (usually) delighted to be a mommy of twin Shrimpettes and a Shrimp.

Buy Links

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Raven McAllan - A Shimmer of Silk (Interview and Contest!)

Today I'd like to welcome Raven McAllan. She's here to talk about her new Erotic Regency, A Shimmer of Silk, book two in The House on Silk Street (Evernight Publishing). There is even a contest to win some of Raven's books!

About the Author
Raven lives in Scotland, along with her husband and their two cats—their children having flown the nest—surrounded by beautiful scenery, which inspires a lot of the settings in her books.
She is used to sharing her life with the occasional deer, red squirrel, and lost tourist, to say nothing of the scourge of Scotland—the midge.
A lover of reading, she appreciates the history inside a book, and the chance to peek into the lives of those from years ago. Raven admits that she enjoys the research for her books almost as much as the writing; so much so, that sometimes she realizes she's strayed way past the information she needs to know, and not a paragraph has been added to her WIP.
Luckily her long suffering DH, is used to the dust bunnies that go forth and multiply under the bed, makes a mean curry, and pours a perfect glass of wine.

So Raven, what do you do when you're not writing?
Think about writing? Ha, I do all the boring mundane things that have to be done, like washing and ironing. Apart from that I like to read, and I go for long walks with a friend and her dogs. We live on the edge of a forest, so there's plenty of places to walk. 
 When did you first start writing and when did you finish your first book?
I can't remember ever not writing. I finished my first 'book' in primary school. About a budgie if I remember correctly.My first 'proper' book was when my DH got me a computer and told me I had no excuse. As that was when you put discs in and out for what seemed like a thousand times before you could do anything, it took me ages to finish. And it was terrible, but I did 55k. Then nothing for years until about eighteen months ago. That one was accepted.
 How did you choose the genre you write in?
It chose me. We were chatting in my crit group (UCW hi ladies), trying to decide what to write, and I suddenly said I thought I'd write regency, and it would be about two girls and a man. I have no idea where that came from. They dared me and I did.
Where do you get your ideas?
They hit me…a word, an overheard conversation (I'm the one behind you with ears flapping) my murky mind…
Haha, love it. So what sparked the idea for your novel?
A Shimmer of Silk is the second book in the series The House On Silk Street. The first was Silver Silk Ties.I love the Regency era, where so much wasn't spoken about openly but it all happened. This is my interpretation of some of those happenings. The research is so much fun. It was a scene in a book I'd read that got my brain cells thinking how would this have worked in 1818? Then my heroine started shouting and I started to write. Being a pantster, I had no idea what was going to happen.
What is your favorite part of the book? 
That is so hard to pick. I think the struggle by Deborah to come to terms with her needs.
What was the hardest part to write? 
The knife and wax play bits. Even though they are mild, I'm scared I don't get them right. I have to keep reminding myself I have researched it, I have asked questions, and it is 1818.
Is there anything you wish was different in the book? 
I think after every book I've written I re-read it and think I should have said this, or done that… I'll leave it up to my readers (if there is any) to tell me…
What was your life like before becoming an author? 
I've been very lucky and lived a great and full life so far.(I hope I've got a good few more years in me) For many years I worked in the public sector, and latterly as a marketing manger for a tourist site. I've been a tour guide around a stately home, which really increased my interest in all things historical, and a classroom assistant in a primary school. Now, I write. 
What is your writing routine? 
It all depends where I am. If I'm at home, I'm often up well before DH. In the winter, I sit as near to the Aga as I can without burning my bum, and write before 'the day begins'. Once I have the house to myself It's a quick housewifely half our, a cup or three of coffee and write. Then off for a walk, chat about the world and his wife to my mate, and back home to write. Then usually I get a mad oh-my-god-is-that-the-time panic, and rush to do all the other things I should have done. Um in 'write' include messing on Facebook, Skype, in-box stalking where necessary, phone calls etc etc.If I'm on holiday, I usually write for an hour in the morning, on a balcony or something… Amazing how much gets done like that.
Which comes first: The character's story or the idea for the novel? 
Argh….I have no idea. It sort of hits me, usually in the middle of the night, so I have to get up and start.
If you could have dinner with one person, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
Golda Meir. I read her autobiography and it threw up so many questions about her life and the world she lived in. Whether you love her or hate her she was a remarkable woman.
What advice do you have for someone who would like to become a published author?
Don't give up. Write as you can, not as you think you should. Enjoy it.
Do you ever experience writer's block?
Not really. If something isn't working, usually the character is playing silly devils, and I'll go to another WIP, until I'm shouted at. If the words won't flow, generally it's because what I've written isn't right.
Do you work with an outline, or just write?
I just write. I don't plot, I just have a rough idea where I hope to end up.
Can you tell me about your challenges in getting your first book published?
Believing it was an okay piece of writing. I was lucky, my crit group all supported me, we all researched publishers and decided where to send it. My best mate Doris who is a superb writer, 'redited' it and off it went. When Breathless Press accepted it, my editor guided me through all the things I was clueless about. (I'm not at all techno –savvy, I had no idea how to track changes, auto correct, do attachments) Luckily our crit group does I have a techno geek without whom I'd be stymied. (Thanks Cherie)

If you had to go back and do it all over, is there any aspect of your novel or getting it published that you would change?
Ask more questions, stick up for myself more when I knew I was correct. Being a newbie you are scared stiff to rock the boat.
Have you written a book you love that you have not been able to get published? 
Not yet…
What are you working on now?

A contemporary erotic romance, set in Glasgow and the home counties.

Can you tell us about your upcoming book?
A Shimmer of Silk, is as I said an erotic Regency romance, with a hint of mystery thrown in, set in 1818 London. All the books in the series can be read as stand alones, although the 'big question' won't be answered until the end of the last book.
Is anything in your book based on real life experiences or purely all imagination?
That would be telling wink

Haha. :)  What was your favorite chapter (or part) to write and why?
The flame-throwing scene. When I was a child we used to live in a house that backed on to where the fair came every year. One of the sideshows was the man who flame threw and also stretched out on a bed of nails. He was the dad of some of the kids I used to play with. I remember watching him practice. I was fascinated. And I still remember him showing us where the nails had pierced the skin and telling us not to try it ourselves. (No chance of that, I'm a wuss about pain.)
How did you come up with the title?
I went to Vietnam on holiday a couple of years ago, and I was fascinated by the street names in Hanoi. Silk Street was where all the silk merchants used to be. Then I was in London and saw an old building in a tiny street with a shop with silver silk ribbons in the window. I had a light bulb moment, and my brain whirred into action. For book two, I remembered how the silk had changed color and depth wherever you stood.
When does A Shimmer of Silk come out? And do you have any other upcoming releases? 
A Shimmer of Silk is out today, Jan 17th!
A Rose Between The Thornes, another Regency, and a sequel to To Please a Lady is well into edits, so that will be out in next couple of months. (Breathless Press)I've a few stories in different anthologies, and a short story in pre edit stage for Evernight Publishing. It's a contemporary BDSM called 'Will You Dance Miss Laurence?'.
Congrats on today's release! I can't wait to check it out.

Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with? 
I seem to be taking some of my secondary characters and telling their stories. I'm really enjoying that, because I know how often I read a book, and a minor player grabs my interest.
What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author? 
That English was obviously my second language (it isn't) The book was Regency, and Regency English isn't always the same as 21st century. I accepted it wasn't what the reader liked.
What has been the best compliment?
When someone says the enjoyed what I've written, and any facts in it are correct.
Do you have any advice to give to aspiring writers? 
Write in the way that suits you, don't try to fit in. Never give up. Get a good crit group (mine are the best, but no we don't take new members). Most of all, believe in yourself. If you don't why should anyone else? (And that is the hardest thing of all to do.)
Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?
I still go all a quiver when I realize people read—and like—what I've written a very big thank you for making my dream come true.
Where do you find the most inspiration to write? 
Oh a long haul flight. I can get a lot written there, and it just flows…nothing to do with the champagne, honest!(I was writing a very hot part of A Rose Between The Thornes. Got up to go to the loo, when I got back some guy was reading from my laptop, his hand hovering over the scroll down bit. I said "excuse me" and he moved to let me passed. snigger So I explained it was my seat. He just smiled and went off. When I went to get a drink later, the cabin crew member asked me of I was the lady in seat ***. I said yes… "Well the two gentlemen in seats *** and *** want to know what happens after she gets on the bed and faces the wall.")
Hahaha, I love it. :) Now lets find out some random stuff.
Have you ever gone out in public with your shirt on backwards, or your slippers on, and when realizing it, just said screw it?
I did go to work once with odd shoes on. And on one occasion I got a phone call from my daughter (at Uni) who I was due to meet in town. She'd got to the bus stop in her slippers. (A friend had driven her there.) So she'd pinched her boyfriend's trainers and sent him away in her three sizes too small 'baffies'. (Scottish slippers) I had to take her an old pair of her own trainers to wear.
Are you a person who makes their bed in the morning, or do you not see much point?
Yes I do make it. I may not be a domestic goddess, but I do like the bed to be all plumped up pillows and smoothed duvet.
Be honest, how often do you wash your hair?
Every other day, or it irritates me intensely.
Do you get road rage?
I may swear at tourists! But if it's traffic jam or road works I don't see the point.
What pisses you off the most about other drivers? 
What we call 'sun day drivers'. (Not only on a Sunday.) At the first hint of a fine day, they come out from the city and have no idea how to drive country roads. So they hog the middle and cringe when they see a tractor. (and drive at 20 miles an hour along a nice wide straight road.)
Do you go out of your way to kill bugs?
Only if a wasp is harassing me because I swell up like a melon if I'm stung. Otherwise if they ignore me, I'll ignore them.
Are there any that make you screech and hide? 
Not yet, though I'm not over fond of snakes and big spiders.
Which of your characters would you like to meet in person and why?
Raig In A Price to Pay, because he likes an older woman. And his history is fascinating.Deborah in A Shimmer Of Silk to ask her how she copes.

And now, a question for Raven's readers:
If one of Raven's books were made into a movie, who do you picture playing each character's part?

The winner will get two of Raven's eBooks of their choice.One other person will get one eBook of their choice from Raven's back list.
Contest runs from 1/17/2013 through 1/24/2013.

You can find all about Raven and her books on:
her blog is (and she's always happy to see new followers there)
and she's on twitter as @RavenMcAllan

Thanks so much for meeting with me today, Raven, and congratulations on your new release!!