Like many writers, my books are part of me. Even though they are hot as Hades, I want them to be about more than sex. I love to spin tales full of suspense, sometimes with touches of the paranormal, but always with an underlying message of hope. When the reader puts the book down, I want them to feel like the world is a brighter place.
For the last six years, I have co-authored almost a dozen books with a wonderful man named Ryan O’Leary. He wrote novels before we teamed up, tales that could best be described as erotica for men. When I first approached him about writing with me, my idea was that he could bring some things to the table that I couldn’t. Namely, a man’s point of view. Banter. Help me give a little sexy grit to my sometimes too sweet love scenes. And he did all of that and more.
One thing he did, that he probably didn’t intend, was to give me a sense of confidence. I remember after we’d plotted a few books and he’d become familiar with my massive world of characters, scenarios, and intertwining tales – he said that romance novels surprised him. They weren’t what he’d been expecting. When he would think of a romance book, he’d think chick-lit, or a fairly one-dimensional tale which centered solely on boy meets girl/boy loses girl/boy hooks up with girl for good.
And yes, that basic premise is engrained in the books.
But Ryan said what he hadn’t been expecting was that the genre could be almost anything – encompass countless situations – have depth and suspense and twists and turns – teach lessons, keep you on the edge of the seat – satisfy your hunger for adventure and mystery. After we’d written books that contained everything from serial killers to drug cartels to AI robots with more heart than most people – he knew to expect the unexpected.
I especially love to bring current events and real-life situations into the book – for example, I’ve written about the major hurricanes that devastated New Orleans and Houston. I’ve written about immigration and its personal consequences. The challenges facing Native Americans. I’ve even tackled problems like epilepsy, schizophrenia, and cancer. It’s very satisfying to get letters from fans who say – I went through this and you’ve given me hope or courage to forge ahead. The wildest thing I’ve learned as an author is that a book can contain a whole world, one of your creation, one where you can write the outcome just how you want it to be. So, my mantra has been that in my books you will find a world where right prevails, love conquers all, and holding out for a hero is not an impossible dream.
And speaking of heroes…
I have become known for writing about these badass, alpha, dominant men who aren’t perfect but have a heart of gold. They are kind, compassionate, have a sense of humor – and, of course, they’re sexy as hell. Demanding. Lust-worthy. These men are capable of taking the woman of their dreams to the heights of rapture. My heroines are strong women…but usually they don’t have much sexual experience. I’m not sure why I’ve gravitated to that combo. Sometimes it feels like a bit of a double standard.
SO…I DECIDED TO FLIP THAT IDEA ON ITS HEAD!
I have a novel coming out later this month called MY HERO. The book is second in my COWBOY CRAZE series, a spinoff of HELL YEAH, which features the Blackhawk brothers of Kingsland, Texas. Benjen, the hero of my newest book has all the qualities I named above – he’s handsome, sexy, tender-hearted, strong – all of the characteristics you’d expect in a hero but…
Benjen Blackhawk is a virgin.
Can you guess what inspired me to write about a virgin hero?
I’ll give you three guesses, but the answer is Jaime on OUTLANDER. Now, the virgin hero is the only similarity between my book and that outstanding creation, but I dwelt on that situation and decided I wanted to try my hand at a hunk who saved himself for true love. I won’t spoil the story, but Benjen Blackhawk loved someone enough to wait for them. His desire and his libido were just as powerful as any other hero’s, but he chose to hold all of that pent-up passion in check until he found the woman of his dreams.
I’ll tell you one other bit of inspiration I garnered from another source – –
Do any of you remember the love scene in MEET JOE BLACK between Brad Pitt and Claire Forlani? Joe Black, if you recall, was DEATH in the flesh, and he’d never made love with a woman before. I’ll never forget Brad Pitt’s face in that moment when he first felt the ecstasy of joining with the woman he loved. You could see and feel the rapture he was experiencing. My heart and body responded to him, fantasizing the unbelievable pleasure he was receiving. I wanted to recapture that moment in this book. By the time my couple make love, they are head over heels for one another, of course. There are twists and turns, pitfalls, and mountains for them to climb – but he becomes addicted to her in all ways.
Like most of my books, I try to take you on a wild ride. Since Benjen is Native American, I was able to bring in exciting bits like shamanism, ghost lights on the mountain, and how a man who straddles two worlds deals with prejudice and preconceptions. The heroine also has obstacles – she was married to a soldier who went MIA, only to discover from his journal that he was planning on leaving her. She loses confidence in herself, only to have that confidence rebuilt a thousand times over by the handsome cowboy who walks into her life. There are other twists and turns – everything from flash floods to the tragedy at the border of children being separated from their families. So, in summation, MY HERO will be a full blown adventure with enough love to make your heart ache. Here is the cover to my hero – so watch for it’s release this month.
I would appreciate if you would join my newsletter and follow me on Amazon.
Here are the links:
Newsletter sign up:
All who comment will be entered into a contest to receive one of my ebooks of their choice, even MY HERO when it comes out if you have all the others. We will choose winners on the 15th of August.