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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Risque now on audio!

Risqué: A Regency Ménage Tale is now available on Audible!

The young widow Mrs. Alexandria Prescott enjoys her untainted reputation. In private, however, her sexual appetites know no bounds. She finds a fitting partner in the notorious Kane Huntington, but when the jealous young Earl of Rowan discovers their game, will he expose them, or join them?

"I couldn't stop reading this wonderful tale of sex and wicked desire. Ms. Reed's descriptions of gowns, attitudes, and social events showed a tremendous amount of research that ensured historical accuracy. I will definitely be looking for more from this talented author." --Coffee Beans & Love Scenes (4.5 Cups)

Monday, March 2, 2015

#BookBlast Texting All Hearts Boxed Set

Linda LaRoque is a Texas girl, but the first time she got on a horse, it tossed her in the road dislocating her right shoulder. Forty years passed before she got on another, but it was older, slower, and she was wiser. Plus, her students looked on and it was important to save face.
A retired teacher who loves West Texas, its flora and fauna, and its people, Linda’s stories paint pictures of life, love, and learning set against the raw landscape of ranches and rural communities in Texas and the Midwest. She is a member of RWA, her local chapter of HOTRWA, NTRWA and Texas Mountain Trail Writers.
Linda writes contemporary western romances, time travel romances and futuristic romances.
Visit Linda at these locations.
Website
Email
Blog
Facebook
Goodreads
Pinterest
Links for other authors: 
Darah Lace
Texting All Hearts—Boxed Set:
Amazon
Blurbs:
What do rodeos, otherworldly encounters, exotic dancers, bondage, hot sex, refound love, and time travel have in common? Besides romantic, edge of your seat fun and intrigue, they all evolve from a single text. Seven multi-genre novellas that promise to heat your nights and warm your hearts.
Her Cowboy Dom by Bliss
Tate Hardy’s best friend leaves him all his cattle if he spends thirty days on a ranch with a woman he wants but can't have. Jess is a nice girl, and Tate doesn't do nice. Jessica Campbell needs her brother’s cattle as collateral for a loan. To get rid of the sexy bull rider, she suggests he teach her about D/s. When he agrees, Jess gets more than she bargained for from her cowboy Dom.
Midnight Road by Lorelei Buckley
Drew Mathews cherishes her deceased husband’s lingering spirit. When his best friend, Dominic, reveals her late spouse’s dark secrets, Drew's crushed. She turns to Dominic and neighbors for support and stumbles into a passionate love affair and a slew of bizarre commonalities restricted to the residents of Midnight Road. As mysteries unfold, inalterable conditions threaten her romantic relationship, her life, and possibly, the world.
A Lethal Affair by Debra Jupe
With a rumored serial killer targeting exotic dancers, Daisy Piper is more than a little worried when her co-worker goes missing. Her concern escalates when a guy she’s never met shows up claiming her friend stole his laptop. A mild-mannered computer whiz on the surface, Miles Garton is a total contrast from the streetwise Daisy. But he’s on a mission of his own, making the jaded stripper suspicious. Fighting each other, a mutual attraction, and the truth, they team up to find the missing woman.
Sexting Texas by Darah Lace
Texas Tallulah Taylor never thought she’d be turned on by a dirty text from a stranger, one that leads to a delicious sexting session with her best friend. Will Sanderson never thought the love of his life would see him as anything but a friend. Maybe sexting Texas will show her this cowboy aims to give her the ride of her life…for the rest of her life.
The Dom Delivers by Nese Lane
He’s a Dominant, and she’s as vanilla as they come…
Designer Jenna Jaynes enjoys the safe bubble of her creative world, until her delivery guy bursts through and steals her heart. CFO Aden Kelley’s regimented world is thrown into chaos when a spitfire dressmaker captures his soul. Will the Dom convince vanilla to swirl?
Wounded Hearts by Linda LaRoque
Sarah Lawson's fiancé Logan Miller died in Afghanistan. She receives a text from Brandon Perdue, one of his war buddies, who wants to meet and deliver a message from Logan. Physically and emotionally scarred, Brandon values Sarah's friendship. Sarah wants their relationship to deepen, but he fears she's projecting her feelings for Logan on to him.
Pale With Color by Susan JP Owens
Cheyenne Clark doubts Captain Joseph Westerly’s beliefs about reincarnation, but a twenty-first century gal stuck in1862, during the Battle of Gettysburg, creates a new perception about philosophies and physics. After Joseph’s death, Cheyenne returns to her time period and anticipates his rebirth. Will Joseph find her?
Excerpt:
Wounded Hearts
Brandon lay in bed reliving the gentle touch of Sarah's lips against his. The kiss was such a
surprise, and over before he realized her intentions. Could someone like her really care for him? His heart pounded in his rib cage, and hurt and longing clogged his throat. Tears pricked his eyes, and he closed them.
He slept in the nude, so it wasn't hard for him to take inventory of the scars on his body with his hands. He didn't need to see them. He knew them by heart, but allowed his palm to roam over them for the millionth time. His torso was puckered and lumpy from the burns. They traveled down his torso to just below his navel. Fortunately the flames hadn't reached his genitals, and he was able to function sexually. Not that he'd had an opportunity for a test run, but seeing Sarah, being close to her, breathing in her special scent had made his trousers uncomfortable on more than one occasion.
The burns covered his shoulders, arms, and parts of his back. And then there was his face.
It had not been spared. His helmet had protected most of his head and somehow his eyes
hadn't been damaged. Considering how bad the damage could have been, he was a lucky
son-of-a-gun. But he wasn't what Sarah needed. She deserved a man without scars, physical or emotional. She was projecting her feelings for Logan onto him. That wouldn't do, for either of them. What if they married and she decided later she couldn't live with his scars? He shuddered. No, he'd never take that chance.

The authors will be giving away a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble gift card during the tour!
 

Friday, February 27, 2015

Interview with Cara Covington for Love Under Two Outcasts, Lusty Texas Collection

Morgan Ashbury, also writing as Cara Covington, has been a writer since she was first able to pick up a pen. In the beginning it was a hobby, a way to create a world of her own, and who could resist the allure of that? Then as she grew and matured, life got in the way, as life often does. She got married and had three children, and worked in the field of accounting, for that was the practical thing to do and the children did need to be fed. And all the time she was being practical, she would squirrel herself away on quiet Sunday afternoons, and write.

Most children are raised knowing the Ten Commandments and the Golden Rule. Morgan’s children also learned the Paper Rule: thou shalt not throw out any paper that has thy mother’s words upon it.

Believing in tradition, Morgan ensured that her children’s children learned this rule, too.

Life threw Morgan a curve when, in 2002, she underwent emergency triple bypass surgery. Second chances are to be cherished, and with the encouragement and support of her husband, Morgan decided to use hers to do what she’d always dreamed of doing—writing full time.

Morgan has always loved writing romance. It is the one genre that can incorporate every other genre within its pulsating heart. Romance showcases all that humankind can aspire to be. And, she admits, she’s a sucker for a happy ending.

Morgan’s favorite hobbies are reading, cooking, and traveling—though she would rather you didn’t mention that last one to her husband. She has too much fun teasing him about having become a “Traveling Fool” of late.

Morgan lives in Southwestern Ontario, Canada, with a mysterious cat, an eight pound Morkie dog who thinks he’s a German shepherd, and her husband of forty-two years, David.

Morgan’s books at Siren-Bookstrand


What is your story's heat level? How do you approach the sex scenes?
The heat level for this story, as with all my Lusty, Texas series, is “sextreme”. That is the highest rating my publisher, Siren, has. Sex scenes have to blend into the story. They have to be an honest expression of the characters and their feelings for and reaction to each other. So every book’s scenes must unique, though of course you’re writing about similar activities. It’s a challenge, but done right, it’s magic.

How do you maintain activity as a writer when sitting at a desk all day?
I wear a step counter. Because I have some health challenges, I need to keep moving throughout the day. So I tend to write for shorter bursts – a half hour to an hour – and then I get up and do some housework. I call it “multitasking”.

What is it that you loved about the main characters in your story?

My three main characters in Love Under Two Outcasts have one thing in common: there is something they did in their pasts that they regret. For my heroine, Charlotta, it’s not that she did anything wrong, it’s that her father and mother more or less disowned her for doing something of which they didn’t approve. My heroes, Jesse and Barry, while thinking they’d been normal big brothers picking on their youngest sister the way brothers do, came to understand that in fact they had bullied her. The story of Love Under Two Outcasts is how all three characters come to view their past, and how they achieve redemption.

What do you feel is your strongest type of writing? Humor? Angst? Confrontation scenes? Action? Sex? Sensuality? Sweet Romance? And why?

I think my strongest elements would be relationship, followed by sex and humor. My stories are all, at their core, stories of characters and the relationships they build – and not just the romantic ones, either. There are plenty of people in the series who make connections.

Are you social media savvy? If so what do you suggest for others? If not, why not?
I am as far as I am able to be. I have FaceBook for Morgan and for Cara; I have a street team; I have twitter for both pen names, and I do my best to interact with my readers all in all. I urge all authors to learn as much as they can about social media. Today’s reader of e-books is different from my generation. As a young mother, I loved (and still do) Nora Roberts. But the only relationship I expected to have with her, was to buy her books. A book signing would have been a stupendous, momentous occasion (and actually it was). But my readers expect to build a personal relationship with me. So here I am, on a blog tour, and, if you contact me on FaceBook, I will respond.....or I will if FaceBook bothers to let me know you have. Leave a message through the forms on my website, and I will for sure get back to you.
J

What are some things from your life or things you have observed that you've infused into your stories?
I don’t plagiarize my life in my stories, because I write fiction. But some of the issues my characters deal with are real life issues for many readers. I see character traits that speak to me, and I may take several traits from a few different people and put them into one character – usually the villain. But mostly, I rely on my imagination.

If you had an unlimited budget, where would you like to visit for story-related research?

Well, since I have been to Texas several times, I suppose I would like to tour Australia. I’ve never been and I would like to experience the flavors of that wildly diverse land.

Any fun facts about the research for your book?

I always do research for every book. It doesn’t matter if it’s a restaurant’s menu, how to brush and curry a horse, whatever. I try very hard to get my facts straight. I have even used Google Earth to “drive” from one city to another, to get an idea of the terrain. This current release, I did a lot of research on equine therapy, and also revisited the research I had done for a previous book (Wanton Wager) about the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro program.

Finally, tell us a little about your newest release!

Love Under Two Outcasts is at its heart a story of redemption.

The previous Christmas, heroes Jesse and Barry Benedict were confronted by their youngest sister Veronica, and had it brought home, for the first time, that while they thought they’d just teased her the way brothers do, for Veronica their actions had been bullying. Filled with regret and self-loathing, Jesse and Barry decide they don’t want to be those guys any more.

Charlotta Carmichael is mostly not ashamed of the fact that she danced in a gentlemen’s club to pay for her degree in psychology. But her father had torn into her, calling her a whore, and his brutal judgment, though untrue, nonetheless ate at her soul.

The heroes meet the heroine when, having located from Montana to Texas, they apply to continue their certification as instructors, working with a horse equine therapy program the heroine runs. It doesn’t take them long to know there’s something special between them. And their love story is as much a journey of discovery of each other and what it means to love, as it is learning to forgive themselves. 


Buy Links:
Amazon
Barnes and Noble

Excerpt:
Once she reached her open office door, she stood back inviting the men to enter first. She’d originally planned for them to have their meeting in the more comfortable seating area comprised of a love seat and two chairs around a small table located against one wall. She reconsidered now.

Charlotta freely admitted to herself that the only thing that made her stick to her original plan was her own stubborn pride. It wasn’t Jesse and Barry Benedict’s fault that she seemed to be having an extremely physical reaction to them.

You are such a liar. That’s not the only reason. You want to sit as close to them as possible.

Charlotta hated that her inner voice was such a nag—and that it was almost always right. As the gentlemen made themselves comfortable on the love seat, she mentally sighed. She did want to sit as close to them as decently possible. She had never had this kind of a reaction before. It had been several months since she’d felt any kind of sensual stirrings, period. What was wrong with being open, at least a little, to the possibilities? These men were going to be volunteers in a program she helped oversee, not clients. In short, there was no moral reason she couldn’t…what?

You want to jump their bones.

She told her inner voice to shut the hell up. Who asked you anyway?
Cara will be awarding a $25 Bookstrand GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.
 

#BookBlast: Year of Living Blonde by @AndreaSimonne

Andrea Simonne grew up as an army brat and discovered she had a talent for creating personas at each new school. The most memorable was a surfer chick named "Ace" who never touched a surf board in her life, but had an impressive collection of puka shell necklaces. Eventually she turned her imagination towards writing. Andrea still enjoys creating personas, though these days they occupy her books. She currently makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and two sons.

You can find Andrea at:
Facebook

Blurb:
A funny and sizzling romp about discovering your inner pin-up girl...

Plain-Jane bakery owner Natalie Anderson has always followed the recipe for a safe life. When her husband dumps her for a seductive older woman, it’s time to throw out that recipe and start from scratch. She cooks up a plan to transform herself from mousy brown to sexy blonde. Meanwhile, she’s trying to expand her Seattle bakery, La Dolce Vita, but runs into an obstacle in the form of her irritatingly handsome landlord.

Astronomer Anthony Novello’s good looks and charm usually guarantees him a free pass with women, though that’s not the case with his new tenant, Natalie. Plain, plump, and persnickety—he’s never met a woman more annoying. But when Anthony returns from a telescope observing run, he makes a discovery of the non-celestial kind. Natalie has changed. He’s amazed to find himself attracted to her. Sparks fly as he tries to convince her there’s more to him than meets the eye.

However, when Natalie’s ex-husband decides to win her back, she’s forced to choose. Is her year of living blonde over? Or is this the start of a new and much sweeter life….

Buy link: Amazon

Excerpt:
Natalie glances at the clock. It’s almost ten. Kind of late for visitors. Pausing the television, she goes over and peeks cautiously through the front window.

A bolt of lightning streaks through her.

Anthony is standing on her front porch. He’s wearing his motorcycle jacket and holding his black helmet at his side. The big bad wolf at her door.

What’s he doing here?

She glances at herself in the hall mirror. No makeup and her hair a mess. Great.

He rings the bell again and she marches over, ready to take the offensive. Ready to tell him to go away. But when Natalie yanks open the door and sees the expression on his face, she hesitates.

“What’s wrong?” she asks finally.

He takes his time with his reply. “I needed to see you tonight.”

“Did something happen?”

“It’s a long story.” He smiles, but there isn’t much humor in it.

She’s never seen Anthony like this before. He never looks anything less than perfect, but there’s strain on his face and around his eyes, and she suspects this is the real man

He takes a step toward her, lowering his voice. “Let me in, Natalie.”

Standing broad-shouldered and solemn in her doorway, he’s an imposing figure, but she isn’t afraid. Despite the fiasco with the bakery, she realizes she still trusts him.

Without a word, she steps out of the way to let him come inside. 

The door closes and she walks back into the living room. There’s a sound and she sees that Anthony has dropped his motorcycle helmet on a chair. 

“This is a bad idea,” Natalie tells him. “I don’t know why you came here. I shouldn’t even be talking to you.”

“I think you know exactly why I’m here.” His voice is low as it vibrates through the room.

There’s an erotic thrill at his words. “How can I be with you after what happened?”

“Because this isn’t about any of that.” For a moment, his eyes darken with regret, but then turn heated. “Whatever happens next is between you and me.” 

Natalie shakes her head, but Anthony moves closer until he’s in right in front of her. She feels his hand on her cheek as the other cradles her head, gently holding her still. “Don’t,” he says, his tone imploring. “Don’t say no. Tell me to stay.” 
 
Enter to win a $20 Amazon/BN GC during the tour!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wednesday Regency: Regency Ménage Tales on Audios

I'm excited to announce that my publisher for my Regency Ménage Tales is putting Seduction of a Proper Lady, Risqué, and Covet on audio! I don't have a release date, but will update this blog when I do.

Seduction of a Proper Lady: Lady Laurel Westfield had been brought up to be the most proper of ladies. But when Major Braedon Sinclair sets his sights on the young debutante, propriety is the last thing he wants from her! What’s a proper lady to do when she has two gentlemen who want her attentions — at the same time? (m/m/f) Excerpt 4 Cups from Coffee Time Romance Reviews

Risqué Blurb: The young widow Mrs. Alexandria Prescott enjoys her untainted reputation. In private, however, her sexual appetites know no bounds. She finds a fitting partner in the notorious Kane Huntington, but when the jealous young Earl of Rowan discovers their game, will he expose them? Or join them? Excerpt 4.5 Cups from Coffee Beans and Love Scenes
 
Covet: Blurb: For the last three years, Charlotte has survived her stifling home life by living through correspondence with two childhood friends now off at war. Once they return, will she be able to summon the courage to tell them of her feelings? Torn between William and Grayson, Charlotte must first learn to trust herself before she can trust her heart and body to them. (m/m/f) Excerpt 5 Stars from Just Erotic Romance Reviews

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Interview The Zen Lounge by @AuthorACMelody

A.C. Melody lives in Washington State, is the proud mom of two amazing sons – okay, so they're typical boys and always keep her on her toes!  Stemming from a family of artists and musicians, she thrives in all things creative and would call a day without her MP3 player and coffee a day of reckoning.  When she's not writing, reading, drawing or cheering on the sidelines at football games, A.C. Also enjoys gardening, which has honed her ability to dodge raindrops into an enviable skill.
Blog
Twitter
Facebook
Blurb:
Welcome to the Zen Lounge, twenty-one floors of customizable carnal pleasures to fulfill your wildest fantasies. Even in the year 2192, it shouldn't exist but Voryk Kade simply couldn't ignore the urge to take a closer look. What he finds is a woman bent on ruining everything he'd ever believed to be true. She holds the key to all of Voryk's darkest, neediest desires and despite her silence, provides the proof behind his belief that there is something far seedier going on under the high-end gloss of professional eroticism.


Enlisting the help of his closest friends, Voryk's only goal is to keep Nexlana safe, naked and his. Unfortunately, she was already someone's favorite pet and when Master comes calling, it’s with a vengeance and the intent of never letting her slip away again. Haunted pasts continue to resurface, only Nexlana's might be far deadlier than any of them could have guessed—connections between her, arson, an assassination and a cold case no one ever wanted to delve into again. To stop the worst case scenario from taking place, they must finally figure out just who in the hell the Master really is.

1.What is your story's heat level? How do you approach the sex scenes?
Steaming hot, but then, I'm probably a little biased.  There's possibly less sex scenes in my book then in others, but they are definitely memorable! Sex scenes, just as any other scene, depends on the characters.  I don't have any set ritual or preparation for them.  Typically, they develop just as organically as the rest of the book, but sometimes I have to really tap into my creativity in order to amp up the heat level, and keep the scenes from feeling too cliché. 

2.How do you maintain activity as a writer when sitting at a desk all day?
I got in the habit of walking every day, but since winter came around I've been slacking on that. I always have housework or grocery shopping that needs to be done, so I do step away from the desk throughout the day.

3.What is it that you loved about the main characters in your story?
I love Voryk's unapologetic personality and Nexlana's unyielding, inner-strength.  Mostly, though, I love that they wouldn't let me complicate things between them.  Neither one of them over-analyze or fight against their feelings too much.  They are fiercely together and they will tear the world down to keep it that way (even when Voryk has his idiot moments).

4.What do you feel is your strongest type of writing? Humor? Angst? Confrontation scenes? Action? Sex? Sensuality? Sweet Romance? And why?
Oh, boy. I'd like to think I'm equally great at all of the above, but the truth is probably that the humor, action and sensuality comes much easier than the rest.  My characters tend to be naturally sarcastic (can't imagine why), and I love action too much to ever leave it out, which means the angst is always there, as well.  Writing the confrontational scenes, though, can be just as difficult as constructing truly outstanding sex scenes.

5.Are you social media savvy? If so what do you suggest for others? If not, why not?
I was never social media savvy before, but I've always been computer literate and that makes it easier.  My suggestion to others would be to make sure you have a presence wherever there's a platform readily available, but don't burn yourself out on the small stuff like Pinterest and Tumblr.  Focus your attention on places where you can actually interact with your readers, like Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter and your blog.  Be yourself, but in a more professional manner than you would be with your close circle of family and friends.  Before you hit “send” or “publish” on anything, remember that once it's online, there's no getting rid of it.

My biggest problem with social media is that it takes up a lot of time and when I'm going really well with my writing, I tend to ignore it. So, I'm still struggling to find a much better balance between the two and all of the rest of life, on top of it.  In this day and age, though, social media is not only vitally important for building and maintaining your fan base, it is the best marketing strategy you have at your disposal and 90% of it's free, so why wouldn't you use it?

6.What are some things from your life or things you have observed that you've infused into your stories?

Definitely my relationships with my family and friends.  We are a crazy, eclectic bunch and I'd have to say that most of my humorous material comes from them or my interactions with them.  I have shamelessly written my friends into some of my characters and they're okay with that.  My passions like music, art, ancient cultures and mythologies also play a huge part in my books.  The things that I admire about others and wish I could claim as my own.  It's really all about the characters.  No matter what inspires my particular works, I guarantee it shows through them, be it the main protagonists or sub-characters, because without the depth and complexity of the players and their interactions, the stories are just...blah.

7. If you had an unlimited budget, where would you like to visit for story-related research?

I would be a jet-setter, ha!  There are so many different places, cultures and mythologies that are tied up in my various works that it would take me ten years to visit them all just to research first hand.  Currently those places include Iceland, the United Kingdom, Morocco, Vegas and Greece.  Oh, and Minnesota.  I know, where do the dots connect?  I guess you'll have to keep reading my books to find out!

8.Any fun facts about the research for your book?
 
The Zen Lounge is possibly my least researched book ever.  I really didn't want to focus too much on the technical jargon when the story seemed far more important to me.  I could have expanded on many things, but I had to decide what was most important with a word count limit.  I did have to research names of things to make sure they weren't already being used – which, my alien metal Geiloflex had to be changed from its original name, Hydroflex, because of trademark issues. 

9.Finally, tell us a little about your newest release!
My new release is an Erotic Romance set in 2192.  Not so far into the future that it's 100% SciFi, but enough to allow the provocative pleasure temple, The Zen Lounge, to even exist.  Voryk Kade is a sex jaded multi-billionaire with a dark past and unusual friends.  When he meets Nexlana at the Lounge, his world is turned on its ear, and not in a good way.  With the help of his friends, Hilo and Gryph, Voryk will tear Matron City apart in order to have Nex all to himself and keep both of their haunted pasts from rising up to give his worst enemies the ammunition necessary to crush them all.

The Zen Lounge really has a bit of something for everyone, full of sensuality, high-tech, crime, suspense, witty banter and of course, those deliciously naughty sex scenes!

 
Excerpt:
Closing her eyes for a moment, she shuddered, and then grabbed Voryk's hand and placed it on her throat, running it down toward her chest.           

“Yes, it's warm,” he said aloud what she could not.

When her eyes opened on his, Voryk noted that his blood was also very warm.  Under the palm of his hand, her heart beat a little faster.  In her ethereal eyes, a familiar beckoning called out to him, igniting his own need.  Taking the wine from her, Voryk leaned forward and returned it to the table.  This time, he didn't sit back.  Her pulse throbbed beneath his fingertips, as he turned his head just so and buried his face in the silky texture of her hair, in the scent of it.  Slowly, he ran just the tip of his nose over the soft flesh of her throat, his fingers curling around the nape of her neck before he grazed the same line of flesh with his lips.

Her pulse skittered and raced, stirring his blood even more, kicking his desire into a sizzling temperature.  He loitered at her jaw, using lips, tongue and teeth.  Though she was silent, her breath was warm and choppy in his ear.  Leaving a trail of kisses across the hollow of her cheek, Voryk found her mouth.  That mouth, he thought again.  God, that mouth.


Buy Links:
Barnes and Noble
Red Sage Publishing
Amazon
eredsage buy link

 Enter to win a $10 Amazon/BN GC and a digital copy of The Zen Lounge during the tour!

Monday, February 23, 2015

#Interview with Katie de Long for Queen of Clubs: Cora @delongkatie

Katie de Long lives in the Pacific northwest, realizing her dream of being a crazy cat-lady. As a kid, Katie flagged the fade-to-blacks in every adult book she encountered, and when she began writing, she vowed to use cutaways sparingly. After all, that's when the good stuff happens. And on a kindle, no one asks why there's so many bookmarks in her library.

Stay in touch with Katie:
Website
Twitter
Facebook
Goodreads
Mailing list

What is your story's heat level? How do you approach the sex scenes?
Most of my stories are pretty steamy. I don't really buy into the “fade to black” thing. That said, some are steamier than others, and all of them are more in the vein of erotic romance than hardcore erotica. I've even done some stuff that didn't have actual sex scenes- just a lot of hot teasing. It shocked me at the time.
 
Our sex lives are a part of who we are, and not standalone from anything else. So in that sense, I try to write sex that needs to be in the story for some part of those characters' journeys. The most difficult sex scenes to write are the ones where that core is either repetitive with earlier ones, or where they just don't have the emotional core. Even a character deciding to go home with a stranger in a bar needs the same care in building it up that the unrequited love finally requited has. Know why we laugh at the “you tripped and fell on his ****” excuse? Because sex doesn't just happen.

How do you maintain activity as a writer when sitting at a desk all day?
To be honest, I'm not a great person for this question. I write full time, and have some health issues that restrict my activities. I'm an avid poledancing lover, and former classical dancer, so most of my activity is stretches, or dancing related. I can't stand gyms, can't stand feeling like a hamster running in a wheel. Suffice to say, I'm not a good example of a healthy work/exercise balance.

What is it that you loved about the main characters in your story?
Cora and Kirk are free spirits. They both decided to go into a line of work with huge effects on their life. Not very many women are thrilled about their boyfriend working at a topless bar, and being around so many other scantily clad women. And conversely, even fewer men are okay with their girl strutting her stuff onstage, and in private dances. Both of them are brave, in their own ways. Plus, I'm a sucker for a guy who can talk music.

What do you feel is your strongest type of writing? Humor? Angst? Confrontation scenes? Action? Sex? Sensuality? Sweet Romance? And why?
I'm not an intuitive writer- still kind of figuring this out as I go. I've definitely decided I prefer 1st person PoV. So long as I'm writing that style, I can write almost any genre. I love noir-ish overtones, underworld elements, and I have a lot of empathy for sex workers, survivors, those coping with mental illness or poverty. And I definitely have a character type that I identify with more strongly. I jokingly call them “lost boys”, even though many of them are girls. They're broken, oftentimes barely likeable, and generally have a lot of work to do on themselves to earn a happily-ever-after.
I'm also a sucker for awkwardly sexual moments. One of my first published stories, as part of Michelle Browne's “Cult Classics For The Modern Cult”, was a noir sendoff of Cthulhu as a mobster, and featured a sex scene between the private investigator, and Cthulhu's femme fatale wife. Not tentacle sex in the hentai way, but definitely a strange thing to write. And the inspiration for that one was almost entirely  the sentence “She had tentacles in all the right places.” I still snicker at it, just repeating it.
As far as my favorite part of the story to write? Beginnings. I love crafting the first few paragraphs, trying to find something that can communicate the story's themes and intentions from the very beginning.
Here's a few of my favorites.
Every time I wore stripper heels, I thought of my pointe shoes, and the weightless feeling that came poised at the tip of an arabesque, bound to the Earth by the edge of a toenail and some paste-stiffened fabric. Every time I put on heels, I felt disappointment and betrayal.
I couldn't even talk to my family anymore. My mom hadn't treated me the same since my injury cost me my spot. For my part, I couldn't help but resent her. When the depression took hold, I wished that I had grown up normally. My entire life had been ballet, with a little jazz and modern thrown in 'to show my versatility.' Nothing else—not sex, not love, not teaching, not book-learning—had ever given me the same pride of achievement I felt onstage. I’d had steps in my head and the narrative in my heart, and my only true friend was the soreness in my limbs, or the danseur steadying me into a penchee.
I was twenty-four, but for all intents, my life was over.
I must have seen fifty new dancers in the Queen of Clubs all grow and preen under the kind of glowing attention that few women are offered. I must have seen fifty new dancers become confident, powerful women.
But I wasn't one of them.”
Queen of Clubs: Malia, now available.
 
It's unsettling, seeing through the eyes of a corpse. I've never been to Ann Arbor, Michigan before, but the body I'm in must have lived here his whole life. It's burned into his DNA, along with a few scattered remnants of his grandmother's childhood abuse.
I take a deep breath, try to clear the new corpse smell from my lungs. My mouth still tastes like vomit; my meatsuit died of an overdose. The waitress has been great about keeping my glass full, but the water can't wash away the aftertaste, and she keeps shooting me anxious glances. I can't blame her- I don't doubt I look like I've gone to hell and back.
Mind you, that's not terribly far off. I just call there 'home' now.”
That's the opening for Reaper, Inkubus book 3, coming soon. I'm publishing this series as K. de Long, since it's pretty significantly different than my contemporary romances and romantic thrillers. Dark, steamy urban fantasy, but not really romance.
I know they call me 'steamroller Barbie' behind my back. Lia, and some of the other oldtimers, think I'm too focused and pushy, that I take any personal connection out of my work. But they forget that not everyone wants that connection, and if they did, they wouldn't find it in a strip club anyways, no matter how personal the attention offered. Some men genuinely do want the closest a person can get to a living sex doll, rather than the 'hippie sex goddess' image that lets the girls sleep at night. Or even the 'trained sexual athlete' ego boost the pole dancers use. Fucking waste of time, that. Why risk injury the way they do, praying they don't fall through a hole as they jump into in their safety net- assuming they wove one ahead of time- between those expensive luxuries they carry into the clubs like a sign of success, and their give-em-everything-for-free hustles? At least professional athletes get well paid for the lack of job security, and the short term career.
It's a career, and not a great one at that. But I promised myself young that I'd come out ahead, and so far, a series of rotating CDs and investments have borne me out. Each long work week now is another month closer to a well-paid retirement. And it's hard not to smirk, imagining the girls whispering about my car salesman tactics thirty years from now, likely with not a damn thing to show for their lives, and no way to pay for their futures.
No matter how long they dance, this industry is shifting, and it's only a matter of time before they know it, too. So many more girls, willing to dance, but not willing to hustle for it, giving customers their time for free, competing with an abundance of porn, webcam, other sexual entertainments that can offer so much more than a real life club with drink minimums, and real life girls with boundaries and hangups. The money's already begun drying up from the economy being in the toilet for a decade, and I have to get every last bit I can out of it, before it burns itself out. Fairly soon even the backwater clubs won't bring in enough money to pay for their talent. As it is, they've already started slashing the base pay they used to offer traveling dancers, to get them out to the bumfuck oil fields.
I'm malleable. All my life, I've been drop dead gorgeous, but never had any actual connection to my body. So now, it's an investment. The boost my e-cups gave me has already paid them off tenfold, and is more than worth the shitty comments from lingerie salespeople. Really, people aren't any more shitty now than they were before. Being pretty is always a double edged sword, and I choose to wield it, not just be cut by it.”
Queen of Clubs: Marina, coming soon- this April, according to plan. Not a final edit of the text, but still an opening I love.

Are you social media savvy? If so what do you suggest for others? If not, why not
I hang out on Facebook. I tweet sometimes, review on my site and/or GoodReads sometimes- though only things that caught my attention anyways. I don't take requests. I try to be active, to reach out to people, but I wouldn't call myself savvy. I'm a bit introverted. In general, I dislike Twitter's reporting mechanisms for harassment, FB's convoluted treatment of privacy settings, villainization of businesses, as well as individuals who can't use their birth names. I hope Ello and Tsu can get a foothold, or that Twitter's buy options can present alternate purchasing methods to Amazon. But I don't really pin hopes on that, or suggest it to people. And, knowing the nature of the internet, I don't doubt we will see a new FB emerge. I just dislike social media's current fragmentation. I don't want to neglect people, but I can only be so many places at once.
My best advice is to try to pick at least one channel you do well. If you love blogging, focus on interacting there and creating new content. If you get Facebook intuitively, and can't write a compelling tweet to save your life, don't let your Twitter time cut into your FB time.

What are some things from your life or things you have observed that you've infused into your stories?
A lot, actually. It's very fragmented since I split my time between so many characters. But I've been lucky- or cursed- enough to have a lot of interesting experiences, and be befriended by a lot of interesting people. I've lived several places, had some fairly harrowing experiences, and learned a lot of random skills. I'm an almost unhealthily empathetic person, so I've internalized quite a lot from the world around me. Queen of Clubs draws heavily from my time in Portland's strip club scene, and even the scene in a few other areas, as needed. It's fictionalized in some ways- for instance, the QoC is a topless bar rather than full nude- to accommodate for some other aspects of the setting. Since the series is largely set in LA, I had to make that tweak to adjust for the local laws in LA, and their local scene. But it already differs from that scene significantly, too.
There's one blanket dedication for the entire Queen of Clubs series: For all the whores, sluts, and bad girls I've known who turned those names into compliments. I think that sums up what I wanted to bring to my work: realistic but romantic and erotic stories about the kinds of women who I've seen largely left out of the genre.

If you had an unlimited budget, where would you like to visit for story-related research?
LA, obviously, since that's where the Queen of Clubs is located, and is the epicenter of some of the other settings or industries I write about. Also, it's warm. I like warm. I think I'm mostly lizard. I mean, I love travel, and would visit wherever a story might take me, but LA kind of sounds like heaven right now, faced with Portland rain and an extra long winter that started early.

Any fun facts about the research for your book?
To be honest, the best you could say is I researched Queen of Clubs backwards. I learned everything that would eventually be helpful in crafting the club and stories long before I even considered myself a writer, let alone conceived the series. By the time I got to the point of writing Queen of Clubs, I had years of experiences to draw on. The extent of my research is generally doublechecking the spelling on an album name or movie reference.
Okay, I take that back. I research the music quite heavily. Most of it never makes it into the scene, copyright law related to lyrics being what it is, and title/artist names largely just weigh things down. But I do put together dancer playlists, figure out what each of my main characters would have going in the background. These usually get posted to my website when the story goes live, in case readers want to follow along.

Cora, for instance, likes somewhat slower music- a blend between R&B, downtempo electronic music, acoustic or bluesy rock, and trip hop. Malia, the star of the next episode, likes classic rock ballads, music with orchestral hooks in the arrangement, and wants her music as slow as the club will allow. You're not gonna catch either of them onstage to Nickelback. Not ever.

Finally, tell us a little about your newest release!
Well, I'm easily distracted, and produce a lot. I don't hold myself to a firm release schedule, aside from a skeleton. February 16th, the fourth Queen of Clubs novella will be out- Queen of Clubs: Krissy & Athena. It's a bit different, as it follows a lesbian romance, rather than a straight one. After that, in March, Queen of Clubs: Crystal will go up.
But it's also highly possible that I'll have some new shorts available in between all that. Maybe even a new standalone novel, depending on when I can walk away from the revisions. I've been working on a handful of pieces following our male leads before they enter the main story. They're fun to write, and I hope they add something to the Queen of Clubs shared world for readers, too.

When Queen of Clubs, Season One winds down around May, I'll also be launching two series following a few side characters introduced in that season. No release date for those, as yet, and their updates will go out in between more regular Queen of Clubs releases. I've got up through Queen of Clubs Season 3 well on the way toward finished, so those releases will be my most regimented. I aim to release things frequently enough that it's an ongoing conversation, not gathering for a holiday.

Blurb:
The exotic dancers and employees of the Queen of Clubs walk a fine line, with only wits, beauty, and market savvy to keep them from toppling into the shark pit. Ride shotgun through lapdances, romance, and sexual awakenings. Don't worry, these girls won't ask what your hands are doing under the tip rail. 
Cora, an adventurous student, finds herself auditioning for a stripping gig...and it comes with more than the asking price, including a very attractive DJ.
Queen of Clubs contains adult content, and is intended for mature readers. Each Queen of Clubs title is a standalone novella length work.

Buy Cora:
Amazon
Queen of Clubs is currently published monthly. Visit delongkatie.com for preorder and purchase links, or sign up for the mailing list, to be notified when new titles are available.

Excerpt: 
I prayed the song wouldn't end. Would the next one jar me out of this rhythm? Would I wake up and discover it was a dream, that I was still the awkward college student I had to be the rest of the time? I slid the straps of my bra off my shoulders and undid the catch, but hesitated to let it fall away from me.
I looked toward Kirk and met his eyes. Fuck. He'd been staring, a combination of lust, pride, and approval in the small smile on his face. It reassured me, and against my better judgment, I grinned back.
Katie de Long will offer a signed paperback of Queen of Clubs: Cora and a pair of swag earrings to one randomly selected commenter and will offer a signed paperback of Queen of Clubs: Cora and a pair of swag earrings to a randomly drawn host (US only) during the tour.