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Currently Browsing: Author Interview
Apr
17

Author Interview & Giveaway: Heidi Belleau

Author Interview & Giveaway: Heidi Belleau Hello hello! I’m Heidi Belleau, and welcome to the Riptide Books Straight Shooter blog tour! Straight Shooter is the third (and final?) novel in my Rear Entrance Video series, and is the story of roommate Austin, a homophobic hockey player with a kinky secret . . . and the Dominant porn star who helps him get his act together. For the next two weeks, I’ll be hopping blog to blog giving you an inside look at the novel . . . and also giving away a prize! Read on for details! Thanks to That’s What I’m Talking About and to all of you for tuning in! I read in your blog that you have quite a few new projects in progress (or in the planning stages). Is there a particular one that you’re especially excited about? I’m excited about all of them, but especially Dead Ringer, the moody new adult romance with a classic movie aesthetic all about a modern young man who shares an uncanny resemblance with his famous silver-screen star grandfather who died young . . . and the men who hire him as a rentboy hoping to live out their fantasies about his grandfather. It’s gonna be dark and twisty and emotional and I can’t wait to get started on it. In writing your more explicit/darker stories, what do you hope your readers will take away from the experience?  Whatever it is they’re looking to get out of it, to be honest! If they’re looking to be scared or thrilled or turned on or angry or brought to tears. I just want to bring them to that emotional edge. Among your characters are there any that you hold an especial fondness for? Oh yes! I’ll always have a soft spot for Sean from The Druid Stone and Cruce de Caminos, since he was basically my first character in this whole business, and he’s so sweet and authentic and good you can’t help but love him. I also love Bobby from the Rear Entrance Video series. He grows so much over the course of the three books that I fell in love. I’d say he’s the real star of the series. Is there one particular story (or series), of all the ones you’ve written, that you enjoyed more (or found more rewarding, cathartic, or entertaining) than the others?  I had a fabulous time writing King of Dublin with Lisa Henry. It’s an exercise in pure id, AND...
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Mar
28

Author Interview & Giveaway: Devon Monk

Author Interview & Giveaway: Devon Monk Today we have the wonderful Ms. Devon Monk here at That’s What I’m Talking About. She’s here to share a little bit about upcoming release, Stone Cold, and the Broken Magic series. Plus, we have a GIVEAWAY! Keep reading! Your current series, the Broken Magic series, is a spin off from your wonderful and wildly successful Allie Beckstrom series. What inspired you to write this spinoff? How did you decide when to end one and begin the next? How did you decide which characters to bring forward into the new series? I’d had a couple readers ask me if I was going to do a spin off with Shame Flynn as the lead character. While I thought that was a fun idea, I knew just how dark the path that Shame, being the most powerful Death magic user in town, was going to walk and I wasn’t sure how to approach his story. Then one reader asked one question that set off an “ah-ha!” moment in my mind. The plot for book one, HELL BENT, rolled out in my brain and the book began. The rest of the characters, both new and returning, fell into place as the story demanded. Your books, and especially the current series, discuss the concept of magical soul complements – two people capable of breaking the rules of magic to bend it to their own will. With Shamus’s death magic and Terric’s life magic, the pair make a seemingly complicated soul complement duo, creating tension between Shamus and Terric. How did the concept of soul complements come about? How did the complication of two men being soul complements (when it seems they are all tending to be male/female pairs) come to mind?  Will Shamus and Terric ever find some peace and possible happiness and is there hope that they can find something to help more permanently counteract their powerful magic that seems to be slowly killing them? The idea of two people being able to break or change the rules of magic came very early on in the Allie Beckstrom series.  I don’t think Soul Complements always have to be male and female, but Soul Complements are always compatible and due to how close they are, usually fall in love. I honestly didn’t know Terric was going to be a part of the Allie Beckstrom books until when we see Shame, in a slight panic, beg his mother not to bring Terric in to...
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Mar
25

Author Interview & Giveaway: Abigail Roux

Author Interview & Giveaway: Abigail Roux Welcome to the Ball & Chain virtual tour! If you’re following along, you’ll be able to win yourself some goodies that might just save your life! I’ve got five Survival Kits in a Sardine Can, perfect for traveling and hiking or taking with you to remote island weddings where people might be dying. And I’ve got five sets of trading cards with original artwork and character work-ups for the less adventurous readers! Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing to win one of five Survival Kits in a Sardine Can or one of five sets of trading cards with original artwork. Entries close at midnight, Eastern Time, on April 1, and winners will be announced on April 3rd. Contest is valid worldwide. What is the biggest misconception you’ve encountered concerning women writing gay fiction?  The biggest misconception I’ve encountered has been that women can’t write gay fiction, or fiction at all. ‘How can a woman write about gay men if she’s never experienced that life?’ Well, the same way we write about killing people or piloting spaceships, I guess. The worst comment I ever received was, ‘this author writes pretty well . . . for a woman.’ The only way to combat that kind of attitude is to continue writing. Do you think the increasing number of LGBTQ titles is contributing to a greater understanding and acceptance of varying forms sexuality, in general? I do think it’s a major contributing factor. When we read, it’s natural to put ourselves into the head of the character, to experience what they are, to think how they’re thinking. We don’t do that with movies or television. Reading is a way for someone to be introduced to a character not as gay or lesbian or trans, but as a person. As a human. And that’s what we need for acceptance more than anything. Quite a few of your characters’ most wonderfully romantic moments occur when they’re off balance, or out of their comfort zone. Do you think this reflects a sort of universal truth? Or, is it just fun to see how they’ll handle the anxiety? Maybe some of both? I have to say it’s a little of both. Romantic love is about vulnerability anyway, about letting your guard down and letting someone in who has the power to break your heart. If you have a character who’s guarded against that, the best time to have them let someone in is when they’re too busy...
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Jan
3

Author Interview & Giveaway: Faith Hunter

Author Interview & Giveaway: Faith Hunter Today I have the pleasure of hosting a blog tour stop for Black Arts by Faith Hunter. This, the seventh title in the wonderful Jane Yellowrock series, releases next Tuesday January 7, 2014. In celebration, author Faith Hunter stopped by to answer a few questions about her series. In addition, ROC Publishing is offering a copy of Black Arts to one lucky commenter (details below). Please help me welcome Faith to That’s What I’m Talking About. How and where did you “meet” Jane Yellowrock?  I was sitting with [urban fantasy author] Kim Harrison and we were exploring the idea of new books and series and I bounced this new voice off of her. Then I read the first Temple Grandin book and I was hooked on the animal brain as opposed to the human brain. And I began to remember the old Tarzan movies. You know, “Me Tarzan. You Jane.” And between the two events, Jane was born, with her Beast inside her. Jane’s a Christian and unashamed of that, yet not preachy or confrontational about her faith. Has that been a problem for readers? My answer to this question has changed recently. Angry people, wounded people, insecure people are always going to find something in a character (or in her writer) to lambast, condemn, and hate. Some of them will become verbal bullies, who use the internet to hurt others. So yes, I’ve been blasted about religion by people who hate Christianity, even though Jane is non-confrontational, nonjudgmental, non-preachy. She is searching for her past & her Cherokee spirituality, and trying to find ways to become whole, much like many people in the Eastern Cherokee band have done. Jane is welcoming to others who believe differently. I find it sad that people of different religions can’t feel the same way. I think Jane’s religion (both Christian and her Cherokee spirituality) is one reason the publisher didn’t think the series would sell well. I was told that, “No one thought these books would sell.” (rolls eyes) But actually sales are still climbing, and I get fan mail thanking me for making Jane searching, fallible, spiritually open to new experiences. You have graphic violence, but avoid graphic sex and cursing, an unusual choice that makes the books widely accessible. Why? I’ll take these one at a time. Yes, I have violence in my books: Lots of reasons. My dad taught me to shoot a .32 at age 12 during an outbreak...
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Dec
9

A Taste of Frost Blog Tour

A Taste of Frost Blog Tour Today I am happy to have back one of my favorite peeps, author Sidney Bristol, here at That’s What I’m Taking About. What’s even better is that she’s brought along fellow paranormal author, Lea Griffith. The pair are two of the four authors who have recently released loosely tied stories about the daughters of Jack Frost. Great premise – right?! Please help me welcome Sidney and Lea! Thanks so much to the ever lovely Twimom for hosting us! I’m holding out hope I get to see her at Author’s After Dark in 2014. But that’s months away! Today we’re celebrating the release of The Winter Realms, a loosely related series of books set in a magical bubble where magic and fairytales are real. I brought Lea Griffith along with me, and I thought I’d ask her a few questions. I mean, how can I pass up an opportunity to interview another author? I don’t get to be on this side of the fence often!! Sidney: So Lea, you chose to go the sci-fi route with your story—why? Lea: I love sci-fi—love it. And I wanted to do something crazy different with Talini and Kian’s story. She all ice and snow and he’s all heat and sandy beaches. What better way to throw him right in the middle of a cluster than to find THE woman for him on an ice planet? Sidney: How did you decide how to mash-up the sci-fi and paranormal aspects? Lea: It was fairly easy—we had a lot of leeway writing these stories, didn’t we? Pretty much whatever we imagined we could make it happen which was very exciting. No limits on our writing? Yes, please. The sci-fi fell in easily with the paranormal aspects in this story. A daughter of a Fae legend who’s banished to an ice planet? Easy peasy on the mash-up. Sidney: Talk to me about your daughter of Frost. A few of us decided to incorporate this element, but we all did it differently. How did you come up with Talini? Lea: Talini spoke to me from the very beginning—she’s actually a very personal character for me. She’s lost in more ways than one. She was thrown a curveball and then minutes later she’s banished for the sins of her biological father. Her pain reached through the pages to me. She was the most relatable character I’ve written in a long, long time. Sidney: You used a lot of Inuit mythos...
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Oct
22

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Wallflower by Heidi Belleau

Blog Tour & Giveaway: Wallflower by Heidi Belleau Today I’m pleased to introduce to you m/m romance author Heidi Belleau. Her latest title, Wallflower is out and available for purchase. Please welcome Heidi to That’s What I’m Talking About. Hello hello! I’m Heidi Belleau, and all week I’m touring the interwebs promoting my new novel Wallflower, which is book two of my New Adult m/m series Rear Entrance Video, all about a group of roommates working at a seedy porn store. Every day this week I’ll be stopping by different blogs with new tidbits, behind-the-scenes info, and of course a contest! Read on! Five Questions from Sam Schooler Today on the tour, my friend and co-writer Sam Schooler, who was my genderqueer beta-reader on this book, sits me down for an interview! 1. Rob’s main challenge throughout Wallflower is his gender identity. In a binary world, he struggles to find a way to ride the line between genders. What made you decide to write a book about a non-binary trans* character? Well, partially it was because I hadn’t done it before and wanted to try. Partially because having a genderqueer character in this setting allowed me to write stuff I wouldn’t have been able to do with a cis guy. Namely, when I initially came up with REV, it was out of this desire to take my experiences working in a porn store and make a funny book out of them. And then I realized . . . shit, a lot of the funniest stuff that happened to me would never have happened if I wasn’t a woman. But more than just writing a story about a woman working in a porn store, I thought having Rob being genderqueer and going between both gender presentations (and passing) would really drive home the difference between how a man and a woman would experience the same job. So that’s a part of Rob’s journey: discovering that though presenting as a girl is deeply rewarding and fulfilling for him, it also comes with some weird, unexpected side effects. 2. While all the other REV employees are male, Rob presents as female when he’s working there. I know you worked in a porn store, so were any of the customer interactions he had with customers based on interactions of your own? Oh, yes. Yes, yes, yes. I changed names, of course, but definitely I wrote from experience.  We really did have a customer named Charlie VIP who frequented our store, who really did ask us...
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Aug
13

Author Video Interview: Maya Banks

Today we have a special treat for you here at That’s What I’m Talking About… Star-struck VampBard was given the opportunity to spend five minutes interviewing New York Times bestselling author, Maya Banks. I’m turning things over to Vampbard to share more… I did my best, people.  Really, I did.  I honestly think these things should be done when we can virtually share a glass of wine. 🙂 Ms. Banks graciously stepped over my tied tongue and gave That’s What I’m Talking About some fabulous information on the trilogy-type series that are so popular, her inspiration for Gabe, Jace and Ash in her amazing Breathless trilogy, as well as some tantalizing info to keep readers on the edge of their seat for her next new release. Please help me welcome Ms. Banks to That’s What I’m Talking About.   Thank you to Ms. Banks for taking time to visit with VampBard and That’s What I’m Talking About. Please be sure to stop by later today when VampBard shares her review of Ms. Bank’s current release, Burn. About the Author: Maya Banks lives in Texas with her husband, three children and an assortment of pets. When not writing, she loves to hunt and fish with her family. They all love the outdoors and go on family hunting trips every year. They also love to travel. Maya notes that perhaps the most rewarding aspect of a writing career is getting to meet so many wonderful readers. She says that “there’s nothing better than dishing books with someone who loves the romance genre as much as I do. Romance readers are passionate and vocal. We love our books, love our happily ever afters, and we love to spend time talking to others about our favorites.” That is why she loves her job so much, and she is so grateful to readers. You can find Maya at: WEBSITE TWITTER...
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May
31

Author Interview & Giveaway: Nalini Singh

Author Interview & Giveaway: Nalini Singh Today I have the honor of bringing to you one of my all-time favorite authors, Nalini Singh. *inserts fangirl squee* New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh is passionate about writing. Though she’s traveled as far afield as the deserts of China, the Highlands of Scotland and the temples of Japan, it is the journey of the imagination that fascinates her most.  She’s beyond delighted to be able to follow her dream as writer.  Nalini lives and works in beautiful New Zealand.  Visit the author online at WEBSITE * FACEBOOK * TWITTER Please help me welcome Nalini toThat’s What I’m Talking About. Twimom: Nalini, welcome to That’s What I’m Talking About from all the review ladies. We are all very big fans!   Nalini: Thanks for having me!   Twimom: Congratulations on the upcoming release of Heart of Obsidian, the twelfth book in your amazing Psy/Changeling series. When you first started with Slave to Sensation, did you imagine you’d end up here? Have the pathways or storylines altered much along the journey from the beginning to this climatic book?   Nalini: I knew where I wanted to go from the very start, which has helped me stay on track. While I’ve always had the end goal in mind, I’ve let the characters lead me there, so there have been plenty of surprises along the way.   Twimom: There has been a lot of speculation over who is at the center of Heart of Obsidian. Why go to such lengths to keep the characters a secret? Have you enjoyed reading through the tweets and blog comments regarding the gorgeous cover and mysterious blurb? (I know I have!)   Nalini: As of now, a two chapter preview has been posted online, so the male lead of the book is known.   As for the speculation about the book, what I find fascinating is that recently, a few people have guessed almost to the letter certain elements of the book. One particular comment—which a friend who’d read the book forwarded me, after seeing it online—hit it out of the ballpark. I was delighted by that comment, because it means I’ve done my job right, laid the foundation for certain conclusions to be drawn.   There are, however, some things no one has guessed (at least not that I know of), but that once you read the book, will fit into the overall jigsaw of the series. I hope these elements don’t leak...
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Apr
4

Author Interview & Giveaway: Stephanie Tyler

Author Interview & Giveaway: Stephanie Tyler Today I have the honor of bringing to you one of my favorite authors, Stephanie Tyler. New York Times Bestselling author Stephanie Tyler writes what she loves to read – romantic suspense novels starring military heroes and paranormal romance novels, all complete with happy endings. She also co-writes as Sydney Croft. She lives in New York with her husband, her kids and her crazy Weimaraner, Gus.  Please help me welcome Stephanie toThat’s What I’m Talking About.  Twimom: Stephanie, welcome back to the blog. You’ve been missed! Stephanie: Thanks Jen!!!  I’ve been busy writing (which is a good thing)!  Twimom: Yes! That is a good thing! So let’s talk about hunky, intense military men… We last heard from the boys of the Shadow Force back in October 2011. What have they of been up to? Stephanie: Well, Reid’s story, Lonely is the Night, just released in March 2013! [Jen’s review HERE.] It’s a long novella that finally gives readers closure on Reid and Grier’s romance.  You’ll also catch up with the rest of the guys and find out how the Shadow Force series ties in with the Section 8 series, thanks to one particular character (more on him in the next answer!). Twimom: Your current release, Surrender, is the first story in a new series. What is Section 8 about and how does it tie into the Shadow Force?  Stephanie: Section 8 is about the fallout / families of a group of former military personnel who were brought together to create a secret Black Ops group.  Surrender is Dare’s story – his father was one of the original Section 8 members and Dare finds himself hunted because of his father’s involvement.  So Dare, his half sister Avery and several others who have an indirect involvement in Section 8 must find a way to work together to save themselves and one another.  Gunner is a character you’ll meet in Surrender and he’s the tie-in character for the Shadow Force series.  Gunner and Reid are friends and have worked together in the past.  Actually, Gunner once saved Reid’s life.   Twimom: Can you tell us your future plans for the Section 8 series? Stephanie: I’ve just finished book 2, Unbreakable, and that’s Gunner’s book   And I still have to write about brothers Jem and Key, so lots of intrigue and lots of romance. Twimom: Larissa Ione said “No one writes a bad-boy hero like Tyler.” I have to agree. What is...
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Jan
4

Author Interview: Terri Rochenski

Author Interview: Terri Rochenski Today we have author Terri Rochenski here on the blog. Terri started writing stories in the 8th grade, when a little gnome whispered in her brain. Gundi’s Great Adventure never hit the best seller list, but it started a long love affair with storytelling. Today she enjoys an escape to Middle Earth during the rare ‘me’ moments her two young daughters allow. When not playing with  toys, picking them back up, or kissing boo-boos, she can be found sprawled on the couch with a book or pencil in hand, and toothpicks propping her eyelids open. Terri is here today talking with us about Sacrificial Oath, part of the Make Believe Anthology, one of two titles she’s had published in the last quarter of 2012. Please help Vampbard welcome Terri toThat’s What I’m Talking About.  Vampbard: Sacrificial Oath is merely a way to whet the readers’ appetite for the world of Vecina, right?  We’ll see more of Alsuela and Pedre **pleasesayyes**? Terri: I’m sorry to say that Sacrificial Oath was finished when I hit the ‘send’ button for submission. I didn’t even think about expanding / adding to Alesuela’s story. But now that you mention it … Share how Alesuela finally finds true love? How her father almost loses the throne to a neighboring country? Perhaps the Goddess should call them both back to Craesor Mountain. Hmmmmm. Thanks a lot. Like I don’t have enough on my plate. Hehe. Vampbard: Um.  This could have been a castle in the MUD we played eons ago… and I sense at least one epic quest!  So.  I’m a voracious reader.  Obviously.  🙂  While being an author is time-consuming, do you feel the need to feed your reader? Terri:  I LOVE to read – fantasy, romance, YA—just about any (fiction) genre as long as the story & writing is good, transporting me to another time & place. I started out a fan of Laura Ingles Wilder and Chronicles of Narnia. I went through a major fantasy phase, then romance, then I picked one or the other depending on the mood. My newest is YA, but I wouldn’t consider myself a HUGE fan. I get tired of the whole high school bs I was happy to leave behind & the ‘love’ the characters feel they’ll perish without. Vampbard: How has writing affected your reading?  Terri:  Writing and honing my craft has made a huge impact on how I read. It’s hard to turn off my inner editor...
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