Monday, July 28, 2014

Author of the Week - Lila Shaw

Welcome back to Buy a Book, Tell a Friend!

This week Lila Shaw visits the blog. I met almost met in person in Las Vegas when she'd come into town for a work conference. Unfortunately, she wasn't staying long enough for me to come and see her. But we've visited a lot online and we share a love of hairy me (Teddy Bear Thursdays are our favorites). Lila has a couple of pen names, but she writes contemporary and paranormal romances laced with humor. Today I asked her one question about where she gets her inspiration.

BBTF: Many of your books have a deep thread of humor through them. Where do you find the inspiration for those scenes?

Lila: Where do I find inspiration for humor? I feel like I should answer this question with a joke. So, let's start there.

First of all, I don't go looking for Humor, because if I look for it, I never find it. I don't know where it lives or what its favorite color is. I don't know if it loves, has a family or any friends.

Truth is, it finds me, and not always at the best times or places. It waits for me after school on the playground in torn jeans and a tshirt bearing an inappropriate saying. It wears too much eyeliner and garish red lipstick and doesn't care if its bra strap hangs out the sleeve. It has no discipline, no goals or ambitions. It's the sexy siren from the wrong side of the tracks a man will happily get horizontal with but will never marry.

Because marrying Humor means welcoming her family into the mix, inviting the pain, humiliation, impotence and suppressed aggression that birthed her. Humor is a cowardly prostitute. Rather than saying, "Hey! Look at me! I'm [angry] [sad] [depressed] [frustrated] [embarrassed] and I need your attention, your love," she offers you a joke for a laugh, a chuckle, a smile.

Now, I'll answer more seriously or less seriously, depending on your perspective. Where do I find inspiration for humor?


I grew up silly. I have a silly mother, sister, cousins and husband. I like to hang around silly people. I love the ridiculous and thrive on innuendo. When I was young my cousins and I would covertly pull down the underpants on male underwear mannequins and then run and hide. We drew faces on watermelons in supermarkets.  We threw chicken skins on passing cars at night. I hid SOS messages in the mouths of the dissection-destined frogs in biology. I sweet-talked my male college friends into being my makeup models. (Why they let me remains a mystery.) My mother and I defaced more Sears catalogs than we used for placing orders. I do voiceovers for my dog, trying my darndest to make my husband laugh at "her" wit. I text my son funny selfies when he's been out too long with his friends. He shares them, which gives me hope that one day he'll be just as silly as his mom.

Truth is, I may be growing older--putting my kids through college while biting my nails that I don't lose my job before I can retire--but I refuse to grow up. The world can be a pretty shitty place, but as long as there is something to laugh about, it's not only bearable, but enjoyable.

I don't know about you, but I prefer laughter over tears, though if I have to cry, let the tears be ones of uncontrollable mirth. I'd rather write stories that make readers laugh than cry. I doubt I'll ever write anything like The Fault in Our Stars. Why the hell would I? I'd surely screw it up by having the nurse fart during a chemo session, anything to break up the tension, but in doing so, I'd surely ruin the book.

But real life is a book begging to be "ruined" with laughter, don't you think?

I do.

I do, too, Lila. :) You can find out more about Lila Shaw's books on her website. Be sure to buy a book and tell a friend. Happy reading!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Author of the Week: J.T. Schultz

Welcome back to Buy a Book, Tell a Friend!

This week JT Schultz visits the blog. I met JT in person at the Golden Nugget Casino in 2013 and we talked about Hollywood, movie rights, and romance conferences. Since then, I've visited with her online and she recently moved to Las Vegas to be closer to other authors and the growing book scene. JT writes cowboy and contemporary romances. Today I asked her one question about how being in the movie business has influenced her writing.

BBTF: You have a connection to the movie studios. How has that influenced your writing and promotion?

JT: I don't have connections to the studios as per-say, currently, I am wrapping up a deal, where a movie slate of movies is getting financed. As far as the influence on my writing and promotion, interestingly enough the movies involved in the slate are based on a couple of my books that will be out in the coming months.

I can definitely say, writing is a business, and for success it needs to be treated like a job (even though I love it) it requires effort and dedication. Another influence on my writing is I can't see me doing a book on Hollywood anytime soon. I know a lot of people in the industry...the last thing I would need is for them to think the book was about them or someone they know.

I'd say that's a wise choice, JT. :) You can find out more about JT Schultz's books on her website. Be sure to buy a book and tell a friend. Happy reading! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Author of the Week: Marla Monroe

Welcome back to Buy a Book, Tell a Friend!

This week Marla Monroe visits the blog. I met Marla in person at Hot Mojave Knights 2013 and had a marvelous time talking to her. Since then, I've visited with her online as we're both authors with Siren Publishing, and I met with her last month for a writing retreat. I think we did more talking than writing, but she's so personable and down-to-earth, she's easy to talk to. Marla writes paranormal and contemporary romance often with menage and BDSM themes. Today I asked her one question about how she balances writing and family.

BBTF: You write a lot of books with BDSM qualities to them. What attracted you to the lifestyle enough to put it into writing?

Marla: I wanted to get across the emphasis on safety and the basic facts and reasoning behind the lifestyle. There are varying degrees of BDSM from teasing bedroom play to a serious, contracted 24/7 relationship defined and agreed on by two or more people. The one thing that most people get wrong about all of it is that the Dom or top doesn’t control the sub, bottom, or slave. It’s a power exchange or it is abuse. The sub, bottom, or slave has to allow the Dom or top the power over them. They put their pleasure, pain, control, and trust in their partner.

Another thing that I wanted to get across is that it’s not all about the Dom exerting control either. It’s about his ability to sense and understand what his partner needs and providing it. He/She will push the boundaries without ever crossing them. They strive to provide the best experience possible and have to be experts on body language and control.

That is something very few people realize, too. If they can’t discipline themselves to be able to go only so far and adhere to the agreed boundaries, then they are not trained or safe to work with. They have to be able to know when the sub/bottom is in trouble. They have to watch for all signs that something might not be quite right. They are vigilant in making sure the person they are responsible for is safe and not so caught up in everything as to not be able to make a safe decision or able to use their safe word or safe gesture.

I wanted to be sure my readers knew the difference between a Dom and an asshole, the difference between safe play and abuse and what to watch out for. It’s dangerous to play around with this and I’m afraid that there are a lot of people out there without a clue are making dangerous decisions. In my own way, I want to help them think and at the same time, provide the knowledge that it’s not all bad. In fact, it can be damn good with the right partner!

You can find out more about Marla Monroe's books on her website. Be sure to buy a book and tell a friend. Happy reading! 

Monday, July 7, 2014

Author of the Week: Doris O'Connor

Welcome back to Buy a Book, Tell a Friend!

This week Doris O'Connor visits the blog. I met Doris online at Evernight and Siren Publishing, and she has visited my #ThursThreads #flashfiction challenge several times. Doris writes everything from contemporary romance to science fiction fantasy romance and usually with a fair amount of sexy action. Today I asked her one question about how she balances writing and family.

BBTF: You write several books a year. How do you find time for writing and still keep up with your large family?

Doris: Ah, you know that old saying… want something done; give it to a busy person to do? Yeah, that kinda applies to me. It also helps that I’ve become an expert at multitasking over the years, and that I have a very understanding and supportive husband. After nine babies I can also survive on very little sleep.

The bulk of my writing gets done when the kids are asleep, late at night, during the toddler’s nap, and at the weekend. Hubby fields the kids, so that I can get some uninterrupted writing time. I set myself a minimum word count goal of 2K a day when I’m writing a story. Invariably I’ll exceed that, because I only write when my characters are screaming at me, and then my fingers fly, and I cannot stop writing.

Those are the days I’m tapping away while cooking the dinner for my brood, and write sex scenes while sorting out sibling squabbles, lol.

On the whole I prefer peace and quiet when writing, though. Hence the late nights and lack of sleep, because, let’s face it. Only time they’re quiet is when they’re asleep, and then they snore, sleep walk, talk in their sleep, or the teens come in to have a 2.00 am feast.

You get the idea ;-)

Somehow it works. I try not to overthink it, and just listen to my characters. All I do know is that I get decidedly grumpy, when I haven’t managed to write for a few days… Hmm, maybe that’s why hubby tells me go off and write, huh. Well, that and the research he likes to help with. *sniggers*

Thanks for having me on your blog today!

You can find out more about Doris O'Connor's books on her website. Be sure to buy a book and tell a friend. Happy reading!