I once heard an editor say all debut novels are autobiographical so I just have to ask…are The Southern Gentleman characters based on real life?
I’ve been getting this question a lot, actually. Maybe it’s because my husband and I met at the same ages as the Hero and heroine in the story—38 and 23. Like Lola, I struggled to hold my own against a more dominant personality…But that’s the only similarity to these BDSM romance books I’m willing to comment on, lol!
The truth is, even when I borrow personality traits from people I know to create a character (like giving Nolan my husband’s smooth talking charm), once I’ve given the character their own backstory they become a separate and unique individual in my creative mind. Just as each of us is a product of not just our personalities, but also our environment and accumulated life experiences, so too are fictional characters.
Hey Sweden, I’m loving The Southern Gentleman books! I was thrilled the books came out the same day because I hate cliffhangers and having to wait for the HEA. But I’m curious…if the books were both ready at the same time, why did you publish in 2 parts?
I wrote the story as one complete book, but the 550-plus page final book was too expensive for print readers. Also, I believe choice is nice. You can try out the story in Book 1 and, if it’s rocking your world, continue to the dirty, sexy, pulse-pounding conclusion in Book 2.
What are you currently working on?
Book 3 in the Dominant Heroes Collection is complete! (In draft form.) This book contains the most scorching sex scene I’ve ever written that contains NO SEX. You’ll see what I mean when you read it, lol. The book’s subject matter is a bit controversial and I’m not quite ready to share. But I can reveal that it’s about beautiful and villainous femme fatale Evey Jackson (Nolan’s ex-wife) and the brash and controversial famous man who brings her to her knees. This will be another 2-book story, with Book 3 ending in a cliffhanger and Book 4 delivering the HEA, both books coming late Spring 2017.
Loved the books but felt you left a few story lines dangling. Will we be finding out what happened with Evey? What about the plot against Mrs. Randall? Will Cash & Camila get their chance at love?
You’ve all made me so happy by asking these questions! Yes, Books 3 & 4 are All About Evey (see above), coming late Spring 2017. The plot against Mrs. Randall explodes in Books 5 & 6. I do have the bare outline of Cash and Camila’s story planned, but I’m honestly not sure whether they’ll be next in line or later.
Your next release isn’t until Spring 2017, what?!
Yeah, it’s kind of my process. This is a bit wonky so stop reading when your eyes glaze over. You see, I write the entire story (2 books) and then set them aside while I write the next book in the series. For example, I wrote The Southern Gentleman Books 1 & 2, then immediately wrote Book 3 (starring Evey Jackson and a sexy, dangerous, controversial public figure). Once Book 3 was written, I went back and revised Books 1 & 2.
Why the backflips? Starting a new project before revising the old one gives me fresh eyes and emotional distance. Writing a novel is like starting a volatile love affair—an explosive mix of love, passion and hatred that’s so heady, so breathtaking you can’t really figure out whether it’s wonderful or horrible. You need a little distance from the affair to gain some perspective.
This is a long way of saying I’ll be drafting Book 4, then starting the next story (wait until you see who it’s about!), then coming back to revise Books 3 & 4 and…yeah, late Spring 2017. I’ll do my best to make the next books worth the wait.
Where can I stalk you online?
Every day right here on SexyLoveBooks.com. Please add your voice and opinions to the website via the blog comments. You can also find me on Goodreads. I’d love to see you over there!
That’s all for my online presence at the moment. I know, I know, I’m supposed to be on every social media platform on the planet…But that takes a lot of time and I have a young child—my life is all about finding balance as any parent will identify!
I do expect to launch a Pinterest site soon, because I ADORE Pinterest. And I suppose Facebook will follow because, well, it’s Facebook (a.k.a. The New Internet). I’m a little nervous about getting back on Facebook for the first time in three years. I’ll blog about what led me to deactivate Facebook when I gain the courage some day soon…
What would you be if you weren’t a contemporary romance novelist?
I’d still be a writer, because that’s who I am and who I’ve always been. Even when I stopped actually writing fiction for a decade because I thought my material was drivel, I still wrote professionally. My other dream is to be a feature film writer, but Hollywood isn’t a great place for writers. So I’ll pick television show runner as my alternate career, even though the TV series story format intimidates the hell out of me!
What inspires your stories?
Great question! There are so many ways to answer that, some of them poetic and some prosaic. I’ll share this: The Dominant Heroes Collection books are all tied to a crisis management firm, J.Agency, that sees its share of celebrity scandal and political intrigue. The inspiration comes from my past career in public relations, although real life wasn’t quite as glam or tidy as the books. And there were no bullets or bondage…at least no bullets…
Where do you get your story ideas?
I wish I could say I’m one of those authors walking around with a million story ideas spilling out my ears, but I’m not. Story premise generation is not my strength, so I have to work for it. That usually means scribbling a lot of lists and revising my story idea for months before sitting down to write.
Having said that, the inspiration for The Southern Gentleman books came from an unlikely place—a 1970s Iranian film.
How do you research your stories?
If you’re asking whether I spend my days watching dirty GIFs on Tumblr, the answer is…YES! (I love my job.) Of course, I also do tons of research online or at the library related to history, politics, locale, weapons, vintage automobiles, etc.
With The Southern Gentleman books, I set out to write a story about 24/7 D/s the way real couples often practice it—behind closed doors rather than at a sex club, often using whatever materials are handy (particularly when traveling!), and with a solid dose of Domestic Discipline in the dynamic.
As part of my research, I had the good fortune to interview four D/s couples (all M/f, three married) and gain their insights & opinions on this unique relationship dynamic.
I love the portrayal of D/s in your books. I’ve always been intrigued by the lifestyle and think I’d like to give it a try. Do you have any advice?
If you’re looking to start a D/s relationship with your current boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife, the answer is aboslutely! Visit the sites SubMrs.com (although focused on wives, this is for submissives of any gender and orientation) or HusDom.com (although focused on husbands, this is for Dominants of any gender and orientation), and sign up for a membership. It’s run by an M/f married couple who give great advice on this topic.
I’m afraid I don’t personally know any resources for single people looking to meet someone in the lifestyle, but I’m open to reader suggestions…
Have you always wanted to write romance?
True Love has been a huge theme in every story I’ve written, whether in the romance genre, historical fiction or fantasy. Come to think of it, the first novel I wrote when I was 12 years old was a steamy romance, lol…
I haven’t always written romance, but I do come by my romance credentials honestly. I grew up reading stolen copies of my best friend’s mother’s 1980s Harlequins under the sheets at night. The gloriously masculine, brutish and politically incorrect heroes of those books are as much an inspiration in my writing as today’s sinfully sexy new generation of alpha males.
Can you review my novel on SexyLoveBooks.com?
Probably not, sorry! You can follow my book reviews, such as they are, on Goodreads, but I don’t have plans to add reviews to SexyLoveBooks at this time. Writing novels and reviewing them are two different skill sets. I’m in awe of the brilliant, insightful, entertaining and moving reviews some readers put together.