Yes, she IS one hot Texas chick and I know that because I live in Texas, too, and it's hotter'n'hell around here this summer. LOL. But I know something else, too. Desiree is one of the hottest authors of erotic romance around today and I'm so proud to say she's one of my BFF's. We both write for Ellora's Cave and are FROGS. It's sort of a sorority except we don't get to hit any frat parties.
Anyway, I asked Desiree to come by to celebrate this week's release of Line of Sight at Ellora's Cave and since we're such good friends, she had to say YESSSS! I don't have to tell you she writes erotic contemporaries, majorly smokin' cowboy tales, or kickass romantic suspense. She's known for those genres after all. Line of Sight is a bit different for her though. It's her first shifter story and you guys KNOW how much I love shifters. But before I get on with the questions for this talented author and one of the funniest women I know, I have a wee surprise for Desiree and I KNOW you won't mind if I just share this with ya'll.
One of the big benefits of friendship is knowing that Christian Bale is one of Desiree's all-time favorite hunks. So here you go, honey. Happy Release! Try not to drool on your keyboard, darlin'.
Now that we've had a yummy pic, lets talk about a yummy story....Line of Sight
Questions for Desiree:
Tell us a little about yourself. Where you live, things you like to do (besides write, of course) and what is your idea of a perfect day?
I live in the Hill Country on six gorgeous acres surrounded by the hottest cowboys you can imagine. I love visiting the ranches around here to gather information-the people are great. We visit the wineries around us a lot because we collect Texas wines. Try them. They’re fabulous. I even put one of them in a couple of my books. My secret passion is Steven Seagal movies. I wish I could put him in one of my books.
You write the hottest of the hot in romance fiction. We know you write a lot of romantic suspense, craft a great cowboy story, write a great contemporary tale, and now you’re delving into paranormal. What is you favorite genre? What type of story really rings your bells? Both as a reader and a writer.
Actually I love all genres except horror. Lately my favorite is paranormal and I’ve found a way to combine all the others with it. Most of all it has to be a romance, with a HEA or at the very least, a HFN. I love cowboys and use them cross genre-contemporary, suspense, paranormal, erotic romance. They are so alphas. Next comes the military men, present or former. I am married to the most alpha of alphas but with an understanding heart. Doesn’t get much better than that. I’m beginning to get more and more into the paranormal-shapeshifters, psychic gifts, dreams. Mostly my heroes will still be military or cowboys – imagine doing all those things I write about with the man in the Stetson or the aviator shades! - and my full lengths will always have the element of suspense. Kind of a convoluted answer, I guess, but it’s where my head is at right now.
Lots of us have issues with family over what we write. How did you tell your family and what was their reaction?
Actually, my husband was the one who first encouraged me to try my hand at erotic fiction. I chose a pen name because I didn’t want my kids to have top hide every time the name came up. Amazingly enough, they are my biggest cheering section. They might not read my stuff but the promote it. My daughter is a real estate sales manager in Florida for two very proper British brothers, but they love flashing what they call “the Desiree Holt porn pens”. And when I was struggling to come up with a fresh idea for the OW/YM I’m writing now, my son actually gave me the idea. They just think the whole thing is a big hoot.
Line of Sight, your brand new Ellora’s Cave release, is your first shifter story. Why did you decide to do a shifter at this point and did you enjoy writing it? Will you do more?
I love wolves. Always have. Karen Whiddon, a very talented author, first introduced me to shifters in her Wolf Pack series and I’ve read every one of Kate Douglas’s Wolf Tales. I was a goner after that. I’ve studied wolves and they are such mysterious creatures. The concept of shifting fascinates so I felt compelled to try my hand at it. I absolutely loved writing it. I had the whole thing plotted out in my head before I wrote the first word. And yes, I hope this one sells well because I’d like to do a series.
Tell us a little about the book. Is there possibly a sequel here?
This is the story of Alexa Morgan, a shapeshifter expelled from her pack because she wouldn‘t marry the man the alpha chose for her. She’s moved hundreds of miles away and leads a pretty solitary life. Against her better instincts, she falls for Jesse Farrell, the hunky cop next door. When he’s injured on the job, she decides she has to protect him by following him at night in her wolf form. Always keeping him in her “line of sight.” But what will happen, she worries, if Jesse finds out her true nature? And yes, I hope to make a series out of it.
Do you start out with a basic idea and then just let it fly? Or are you more constructed with your writing? Do you plot and plan and make endless notes?
I am most definitely not a plotter. I always start with a basic idea and a clear image of my hero and heroine. Sometimes I just have a nugget, or sometimes, like with this one, the whole story unravels in my head and I just sit down and write it. I know from the beginning exactly where I’m going with it. About the only structures thing I do is a character outline sheet. I started it when my hero changed eye color three times in one story, and when all my heroines had auburn hair. Also I had a character from one story visit uninvited in another. I had a reader email me and ask me if I’d actually done all the things I write about. Don’t I wish! I told her if I dud all that, when would I write?
What is the best advice you could give a beginning writer.
Don’t ever give up and find a good critique group. I’d be nothing without the one in our chapter. They taught me how to write a saleable manuscript.
Who are you reading now?
Like my writing, I always have more than one thing going at a time. I just finished Lisa Kleypas’ Blue eyed Devil which is my recommendation for the year. Natural Born Charmer by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. Wolf Tales V by Kate Douglas. Heart of the Bear by cindy Spencer Pape(a don’t miss story) and Escape, by Robert K. Tananbaum. This last one is completely off the path from anything I write. It’s a legal/police thriller with a hint of romance, but I’ve read the whole series and love it.
Do you have some exciting projects waiting for everyone? What are you working on now?
I think all my projects are exciting, but of course I would, wouldn’t I? I’m finishing an OW/YM, then another shifter, then a full length (half done) with a Western sheriff as the hero, and a novella with a hunky cowboy who loves sex, is a great Dom, and the woman who loves him but is put off by his lifestyle. They have a wonderful time as he teaches her how fulfilling the D/s relationship can be.
Line of Sight
available now at Ellora's Cave Publishing
The sound of the doorbell startled her. On tiptoe she peered through the peephole. She was stunned to see Jesse on her porch, dripping wet and shifting from one foot to the other.
She yanked the door open. “What’s wrong? It’s pouring rain. Why aren’t you inside?”
“Can I come in, please?”
“Oh, sure. Come on.” Yes, bring your fantastic body into my house.
“Sorry to bother you. I left my key on the counter this morning.” He raked his wet hair back from his forehead. “Stupid, stupid, stupid.”
Jesse always carried his car keys separately.
“In case I’m ever attacked,” he explained, “I don’t want anyone having a key to my house. I can keep an extra one of yours too, if you want.”
Another link to him she should have avoided.
“I’ll get it,” she told him now, “but come into the kitchen. You look like a drowned rat and you must be freezing. At least get that wet shirt off and let me make you some coffee.”
“I’ll drip all over your place,” he protested.
“Tile floors are easy to mop.” She took his hand. “Come on. I’d feel terrible if you got pneumonia and I could have prevented it.”
In the kitchen, she flipped the switch on the coffeemaker while he took off his shirt. Then she handed him a large towel from the stack in the laundry room.
“You look exhausted. Bad night?” Her heart pinched at the weary sight of him.
Jesse scrubbed a hand over his face. “Every night’s bad with the gangs. We’ve got a couple of new ones out there ramping up their so-called initiation requirements. That makes it pretty tense on the streets.”
He was a member of the sheriff’s gang task force, a thankless and dangerous job. On the night streets, he was a shadowy figure in jeans and t-shirt looking to stop trouble before it started. Even in a county as small as Palmetto, gangs were a big problem, many of them migrating south from Tampa.
She’d taken to waiting up for him, reassuring herself that once again he was home safely. If only she could find a way to protect him. Well, there was one if she transformed. But she had no idea how he’d feel about a giant redwolf following him around the county.
She ran a critical eye over him, noting his soaked jeans and pulled out another towel. “You’d better take off the rest of those clothes and let me put everything in the dryer. Coffee should be ready in a minute.”
“I’m all right, Alexa. Honest. I just need to get some sleep.”
How about in my bed?