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Guest Blogger: Rachel Firasek
Sunday, May 29th, 2011

Recently I read an awesome little contemporary erotic romance by the wicked talent, Delilah Devlin. Saddled has been in my nook for a few weeks and I’ve been waiting for a free minute to dig in. Now, I bet you thought this post would be my on-my-knees-kissing-DD’s-toes post, but I think I’ll surprise you. I’d rather talk about pushing the boundaries.

Without giving too much away, there was a scene in this book that had me shoving my nook across my pillow and calling my hubs in for some clarification (as if he’s the expert on ménage) (lmao) on the capability of a scene. Of course the “I don’t know, want to try it?” didn’t shock me—that’s a man for you—but the part that really got me was the boundary that had been broken. This is the first time I’ve read this in any book. (I can’t tell you what it is; you’ll have to buy the book) Then I started thinking about other novels of DD’s that I’ve read. Darkness Captured was another one of those that shocked me. There is a scene in that book with some foliage that made me a truly devoted fan. (Letting in on some of my deviant nature, lol)

Okay, so here’s what I’ve learned from my studying the fab Delilah Devlin’s writing:

1. If you are going to break a boundary, it has to work. It has to work in the world and it has to work in the flow of the book. Yes, Saddled threw me for a loop, but I was right back to reading it to find out what those two hot cowboys would do next.

2. If you are going to tease your writers with a boundary you plan on crossing, you better cross it in a big way and then deliver on the goods. Don’t give it to us, then cut it off. I want details, flavor, smells, and emotions. I want it all.

3. Know that not every book has to cross a boundary, but if you do it once, you’re fans/readers will expect it again at some point. This is what builds your loyal reader base. This is what keeps me coming back as a reader.

So, I’m sure that there are a million other lessons I could have learned about boundaries, but these were the three that stuck out. I hope you are now ready to dig into your own writing with new purpose and hint of the forbidden. Have a great weekend and a very safe Memorial Day!

When empath Piper Anast meets sexy, tormented vampire Bennett Slade, she stumbles headlong into a telepathic connection with his missing daughter—and lust.

As they close in on the evil creature holding his daughter—and each other—Piper’s powers turn deadly. She must face down demons she never knew she had if any of them are to survive her fury.

For more information about this book and to read an excerpt go here.

Buy here

Rachel’s writing career began at the impressionable age of twelve with a poem dedicated to the soldiers of Desert Storm. A dark macabre affair that earned her a publication in an anthology and many raised eyebrows from family and friends, she hid her poetry and artistic style for years…

Tucked away in the heart of Central Texas, with the loving support of her husband and three children, she dusted the cobwebs from her craft. Returning to those twisted regions of her mind, she creates dark urban fantasies and soul-searching paranormal romance.

To learn where love twists the soul and lights the shadows, visit Rachel at http://www.rachelfirasek.com/

* * * * *

The winner of the Mermaid Journal is….Melissa P! Melissa, send an email to me at del…@delilahdevlin.com with your snail mail address. Congrats!

If you’re bummed about not winning the journal and would like to order one of your own, Christi at Christi’s Gifts & Consignments would love to send you one! Tel: 870-230-1877!

For the rest of you, be sure to check back tomorrow. I’ll start TWO new contests that will run while I’m away.

18 comments to “Guest Blogger: Rachel Firasek”

  1. Julia Rachel Barrett
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    1
      · May 29th, 2011 at 8:59 am · Link

    I recently read a book that crossed a whole lot of boundaries. But not in a good way. Yes, if you cross boundaries – if you take that risk, it must pay off. You have to deliver the goods in a way that the reader can not only believe, but relate to, at least to a certain extent. Otherwise the book becomes DNF.



  2. Rachel Firasek
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    2
      · May 29th, 2011 at 9:13 am · Link

    Exactly what I’m talking about Julia. Also, it depends on your market. You have to know who you’re writing for and then eat at the edges of those boundaries. I’ve been hardcore into BDSM erotica lately, (I know, I’m a freak) but there are even boundaries in those stories that can be crossed in a bad way–for me personally, but they may appeal to another market. Thanks for coming by!



  3. Lisa Kessler
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    3
      · May 29th, 2011 at 10:10 am · Link

    Great Blog Rachel!!!

    I think if it’s handled correctly, breaking boundaries in a book can add to the world building. It’s sort of like tightrope walking though because if it’s not handled just right it can toss you out of the story in a heartbeat! LOL

    Lisa



  4. Rachel Firasek
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    4
      · May 29th, 2011 at 10:19 am · Link

    Lisa, yeah, and you know Saddled wouldn’t have pulled me out if I it hadn’t been the first time I’d seen this particular subject breached. I love DD for taking me to new places. Thank you so much for coming by!!!



  5. Jus Accardo
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    5
      · May 29th, 2011 at 10:22 am · Link

    Great post, Rachel!

    I totally agree. It’s all how you handle it. I’ve seen books push boundaries that totally didn’t work with the character/world. Or things that were built up and fell flat. All that does is leave the reader irritated and frustrated.



  6. Rachel Firasek
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    6
      · May 29th, 2011 at 10:32 am · Link

    Jus, I’m right there with you. Falling flat is a sure fire way to lose me as a loyal reader. Thanks for coming by!



  7. Susan Owens
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    7
      · May 29th, 2011 at 10:55 am · Link

    For me, there has to be a reason for crossing boundaries even if I don’t agree, I’ll understand.

    Lol, I’m glad I’m not the only one who says, “can that really be done?” My hubby smiles then nods when I ask, “wanna try?”



  8. Rachel Firasek
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    8
      · May 29th, 2011 at 11:05 am · Link

    Susan, I love you! The build to a cross over is the key, and there always has to be a reason. lol. Even if it is just a deviant nature. ;-)



  9. Brooklyn Ann
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    9
      · May 29th, 2011 at 12:41 pm · Link

    Hey, Rachel

    The boundaries I most often find myself pushing are the psychological ones. From dealing with the aftermath of rape to a heroine’s drinking problem, I want to go deeper into emotional issues that are usually only touched on in a romance, especially a paranormal. I want the “real” to invade the “surreal.”



  10. Nina Croft
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    10
      · May 29th, 2011 at 12:55 pm · Link

    I just want to know how you go about researching this stuff. If you don’t know what’s on the other side of a boundary, how can you write about it? I’m such an innocent!
    But it is a difficult one. There’s so much erotic romance out there right now, that the temptation is always to push it that bit further, and I’ve read too many books lately that cross the so called ‘boundaries’ and it just doesn’t work. It’s there for the shock value, not because it’s something the characters would really do.
    Having said that – I’m intrigued and off to find a copy of Saddled!



  11. Rachel Firasek
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    11
      · May 29th, 2011 at 1:52 pm · Link

    Brooklyn Ann, I love your boundaries. Psychological conflict is the yummiest kind.

    Nina, I know what you’re saying. I think that is why I’m such a DD fan. She doesn’t do it in every story. But, sometimes you can tell by the flavor of the character that it’s going to be a wild ride. I hope you enjoy Saddled. I’m now panting over Her Soul To Keep. It’s a gorgeous cover. :)



  12. tammy ramey
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    12
      · May 29th, 2011 at 4:43 pm · Link

    i think that when you are reading some books you have to be prepared for the pushing or crossing of boundaries. you are less likely to find this in a regular romance than an erotic but but even more likely to find it in a bdsm erotic than a regular erotic. so i think if you are uncomfortable with having your boundaries nudged against you are probably not ready for the more “hardcore” erotica. i however have always thought that you should never limit yourself just because you might be a bit uncomfortable,push those boundaries and you just might find that it gives you a whole new perspective and a new depth in you writing. :)



  13. Caroline Clemmons
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    13
      · May 29th, 2011 at 6:45 pm · Link

    Rachel, PIPER’S FURY sounds intriguing. Best of luck for mega sales there. :-D



  14. Boone Brux
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    14
      · May 29th, 2011 at 8:52 pm · Link

    Great blog! And congrats on Piper’s Fury. I see great things in the future for you:)



  15. Rachel Firasek
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      · May 29th, 2011 at 9:03 pm · Link

    Tammy, you are correct about expanding your boundaries. A year ago, I never knew I’d be reading BDSM erotic romances, but now I devour them. lol. There’s something really special about subspace and the place the mind can be pushed to. I find myself cheering for the dom. “push her, push her.” lol

    Caroline, thanks so much! Piper will always have a place front and center in my heart.

    Boone, I sure hope so, girl.Thanks for coming by!!!



  16. Kendall Grey
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    16
      · May 30th, 2011 at 8:39 am · Link

    As long as it works in the context of the story and it’s not something the characters are deadset against (maybe they have strongly held religious views or past experiences that would prohibit them from acting in such a way, whatever), I don’t have a problem with it. Sometimes characters need to be talked into doing stuff they wouldn’t normally do, but I think that’s okay. If they didn’t want to do it deep down, they wouldn’t. :-)



  17. Rachel Firasek
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    17
      · May 30th, 2011 at 11:41 am · Link

    Kendall, thanks for stopping in. I get what you’re saying. It can’t be because I want them to do it, it has to be something they’d do on their own. Love that.



  18. Natalie Hillier
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    18
      · June 4th, 2011 at 12:19 pm · Link

    Hi Rachel,
    I always used to read the small romance then I found Anne Rice Exit to Eden and went wow, and then couldn’t find enough harder erotica and finding myself pushing for the Dom. I agree if the boundaries that are being pushed are done the right way, it makes the story all that much more yummy. I have since found myself addicted :) I will have to get a copy and read now I am curious Great post Rachel.
    Sassy Street Siren Naughty Nattie