What Inspires Lily Harlem

It’s my pleasure to welcome the luscious Lily Harlem to A Hopeful Romantic today to share with us some of her inspiration for her hot novel, Shared, and to talk about how she finds inspiration in general. Welcome, Lily! It’s great to have you.

Hi KD, and thanks so much for inviting me over today to chat about what inspires me to write my books. It has been an interesting topic to mull over before getting around to sitting down and writing this post. It’s really made me think about the everyday things that produce the seed of a story and then go on to feed and water it.

I find it easy to recall my inspiration for some books. For example, Shared, my debut novel at Ellora’s Cave, came about from flicking through the local newspaper. For some reason, and it wasn’t because I needed a place to live, I glanced through the letting section. I came across an advert – Room to Let – Wanted girl to share. Well, me being me, with my dirty mind, I thought, what if that is literal, what if, two hunky guys actually do want a girl to share? And that was all it took. The story grew from there, beginning with creating a situation where a girl, Ariane, would find herself homeless in Cardiff and on their doorstep, and then working out the reasons why these two hot, successful men needed to share a woman, why they couldn’t have one of their own? So for that novel, that was all it took – a line in a newspaper. I wonder what the person/people who placed that advert would think if they knew it had inspired such a racy ménage story, with a sequel!

I have a series called Hot Ice, all about the bad boys of ice hockey. Inspiration for these books is simple – I lust after hockey players! They are so damn big, so fast, sexy and talented. Phew! The sport is getting bigger and bigger in the UK and I follow the Cardiff Devils, they are every bit as hot as their US counterparts, they just don’t get as much attention; that suits me, I don’t have to share as much. However, having a hunky hero does not make a novel. I had to add in a heroine and of course a plot. For my first book in this series, Hired, that came in the form of one scene spinning around my head like a day dream. It was a gorgeous couple on a paradise island, the perfect beach and every luxury you can imagine, but there was a secret, a secret between them that hung like a black cloud over their relationship.

Eventually I decided the secret was that she was being paid to be there, not to have sex with him, but being paid to keep him company, yet, because they were now having sex, what would that make her? Once I had that idea all I had to do again, like Shared, was think up the situation that would have landed her and him, in this situation. Hired was great fun to write, and a character from that story, you’ve guessed it, another hot hockey player, goes on to be the hero in Cross-Checked the second book, and again, a player who has been a secondary character in both the first two novels goes on to be the star of Slap Shot, the third book. I am currently working on the fourth in this series, and have gone back to my roots and heading down the ménage route again.

I have also, recently, been writing with the hugely talented Natalie Dae. We already have one contracted novel due for release next year, That Filth Book, and decided to write another. The way we start a book together is a bit like the game you probably played as a kid, when you fold up a piece of paper, someone draws the head, it gets folded over, someone else adds the body, the legs and so on. Then, when we have a good grip on our characters and a rough idea of the plot, we take it in turns with each chapter, but the middle and the end is not set in stone, we let the story take us away, like a white-water ride down a fast flowing river, and see where we ends up. For our latest book, it was my turn to do the first chapter. I pondered for several days, knowing Natalie was waiting, and then when I was researching a blog post I came across this picture.

Slightly creepy perhaps? Not much to see but a lot for an over active imagination to ponder on, and my-oh-my – what a sexy shin. I can’t tell you much more about this book at the moment, except he is our hero, but I wanted to share the fact that from a single picture, 60,000 words of erotic romance can grow.

Another area of inspiration for me is music. Lyrics and tunes often are a background to the emotions of a character, even if I never write the lyric down, the sentiment, or the meaning behind it, can be a core part of my hero or heroines needs/focus. It helps me to keep coming back to what it is they really want, how they feel and what keeps them strong when everything goes wrong.

Recently Total-E-Bound asked me to write for their new Bollywood series. It worked out very well for me, because when the email came through I actually was in Asia. However, since I was having some quality time with the delectable Mr. Harlem (who by the way is a constant source of inspiration!) I didn’t start writing until I returned home. I had an idea in my head, a girl who secretly wrote a BDSM column for a guy’s magazine, I say secretly because she lives in Mumbai and this second job would not have been at all acceptable to her family. The story grew from there, but it wouldn’t have become nearly as vibrant if it wasn’t for the wonders of the internet and all the information I gleaned about Hindu weddings. Also it was further enhanced by my crit reader who loved certain parts of the story which I then expanded and worked on. The Unwholesome Adventures of Harita is just out at Total-E-Bound.

So I guess in summary, and I won’t subject you to the inspiration behind all my books, ideas for me, that very first spark, light-bulb moment, come from a variety of places. I can’t force an idea arrive, and it would be easy to panic and scream ‘writers’ block’ when one book is finished and the next is waiting to happen, but I know that either from a newspaper, a picture, a song, a day dream, or just a day to day life experience will be all it takes. Something simple usually, but with a whole lot of potential, that’s all it takes and then I am off, typing away, ignoring the housework, racing through life until I can get back to my characters and get their stories down.

Thanks so much for letting me natter on today, KD, and I hope your readers found my thoughts interesting. And if anyone wants to share where their inspiration comes from, I would love to hear it.

Blurb:

Struggling artist Ariane Arlington flees the Welsh valleys after exposing her corrupt boss. But when the sun rises she finds herself jobless and homeless in Cardiff city with barely a penny to her name.

She responds to an advert in the local paper—Room to let, wanted, girl to share. What she doesn’t realize is that the two insanely gorgeous guys who live in the penthouse apartment really do want a girl to share, in every sense of the word. Fortunately for Ariane, rent is the last thing on their minds.

She discovers the men are bound together by a turbulent past. Liam, a computer whiz, keeps a painful secret hidden beneath his buff exterior, whilst Quinn, a pioneering neurosurgeon, wonders if he’ll ever meet a woman who can live with his controlling ways. They admit the one thing missing from their lives is a woman just like Ariane, who can handle them both in and out of the bedroom and who, together, they can keep satisfied, loved and most of all, safe.

An Excerpt From SHARED

Suddenly I was there. I exploded and shouted out his name. My body jerked and my spine arched. Quinn wrapped his free hand around my shoulders, held me tight as he continued to drive into me, eking out every last tremor of my glorious release. I felt another surge of wetness as my internal muscles pumped around his wickedly expert hand, and then I was panting, desperate for air and looking up at his face silhouetted by the bright ceiling light.

He was staring at me, not smiling, just wide-eyed. “Stunning,” he said. “You’re so responsive, so delectably reactive I can hardly believe it.”

“It’s been quite a while,” I confessed, dragging in lungfuls of oxygen and becoming aware once more of my surroundings. The marble really was hard and very cold on my naked behind.

Suddenly another deep, male voice ricocheted around the kitchen and invaded our private moment. “Glad you two are getting on so well.”

I looked around Quinn’s shoulder at the kitchen doorway. Liam stood, arms folded, feet apart, as he surveyed us draped over the marble island he’d designed.

“Hey,” Quinn said, turning but making no move to take his fingers from inside me.

My heart leapt and I pushed frantically against him. Prickles of mortification swept through the very core of my being as I squirmed and finally rid myself of his invasion. slid ungracefully from the island and tugged up my jeans. I heard a whimper of embarrassment escape my lips, squeezed shut my eyes and prepared to take flight.

“Hey,” Quinn said, reaching for me. “Ariane.”

“No.” I shrugged him off and sidestepped.

But it was no good. He was too strong and too quick. He scooped me against his chest and bent his head to my ear. “Ariane,” he said again, curling his arms around me in a vise-like grip. “It’s okay, really.”

“I have to go.” I twisted my neck away from where Liam stood. My heart was threatening to burst right out of my chest. He would think I was a tart, a whore, a slut. I’d been giving off serious signals of interest to him only hours ago and now he’d come out of his office to discover me sprawled wantonly over his breakfast counter being hand-fucked by his flatmate. “I can’t stay, not now, please, let me go. I have to go.”

I pushed against Quinn with all my strength and shoved backward, but something caught me. Not something, someone. Liam. Suddenly I was trapped between two rock-hard chests and surrounded by four determined arms.

“Don’t go,” Liam said into my ear. “I’m not mad at you.” He spoke with such softness that instantly my eyes filled with emotion. “I want you to stay.”

“We want you to stay,” Quinn added.

I felt a drip of shame spill over my lower lid.

“Why are you sad?” Quinn asked, tipping my chin. “I thought I just made you fly.”

“You did, but…” I dropped my head into the palms of my hands. “But I’m so embarrassed, you’ve been so kind, so helpful and you don’t even know me, somewhere to stay, clothes, food.” A juddering sob broke free. “And I’ve repaid you by behaving like a whore.”

Liam sucked in a breath behind me. “Don’t you ever say that about yourself again, Ariane.” He spun me to face him instead of Quinn. “I won’t stand for it and neither will Quinn.”

“Absolutely not,” Quinn confirmed. “What you just did made us both very happy and we won’t have you corrupting it.”

My mind was reeling. What on earth were they on about? I had just made them ”both” very happy with my terrible display of sluttiness? “I behave like a loose-moraled tart and that makes you happy?” I asked, stunned, taking my hands from my shame-stained cheeks.

“If you say that again, or anything like that,” Quinn said in a decidedly dangerous growl by my ear, “I will put you over my knee and spank that sexy little ass of yours, Ariane.”

My mouth dropped open in shock as my body trembled at the kinky suggestion.

Liam took full advantage of my open mouth and suddenly he was kissing me, gently and slowly but with a harnessed passion that had me opening for more in spite of my confusing predicament. He cranked up the heat, our teeth touched briefly and then he delved his tongue into my mouth and began devouring me like a starving man. He tasted different to Quinn’s dark, chocolate heat. He was lighter, fresher, like he’d not long since brushed his teeth. But he was equally delicious, equally sexy, equally hot.

Quinn brushed my hair to one side and began to rain kisses onto the supersensitive part of my neck, just below my ear. I groaned in appreciation and curled my fingers into Liam’s t-shirt to hang on. Two pairs of hands began to roam my body, dipping into my waist, smoothing over my butt and thighs, reaching for my breasts.

Quinn’s erection prodded at the small of my back at the same time Liam’s hit my stomach.

I snapped my mouth away. What was I doing? What the hell was going on? My sudden movement caught them both off guard and I was able to slip free.

“No,” I said, retreating at speed. “I don’t know what’s going on here but no…how can you both…?

“Shh, it’s okay,” Liam said, taking a step toward me.

I backed away, throwing up my hands defensively. “No…” I said breathlessly. “I have to go.”

“But where?” Quinn said, shaking his head. “You can’t go back.”

“I don’t know,” I said, aware my voice sounded shaky.

A sudden manic beeping filled the kitchen. Loud and insistent it echoed like the shrill ring of a phone in an empty hall. “Shit,” Quinn muttered. “Worst timing ever.” He reached down to his pocket.

Liam raised his eyebrows at him. “Isn’t it always?”

“What, what’s that?” I asked as I pushed a damp strand of hair from my face.

“My pager,” Quinn said, narrowing his eyes at the small flashing screen. “I have to go.” He walked toward me. I backtracked and hit the kitchen wall. “Liam will deal with you,” he said through tight lips. “Anything he says goes for me too.” He looked across at Liam who’d folded his arms and tipped his head.

“I feel the same way he does,” Quinn said.

“But…”

“Don’t stop this,” Quinn interrupted. “Don’t stop this before it’s even begun, Ariane, please… I beg you.”

And then he was gone. His expensive leather shoes tapped over the wooden floor of the living room and then the front door slammed with a thud.

I wrung my hands together and rested my back against the wall. What had just happened? I’d kissed Liam with the same enthusiasm I had Quinn only moments before. How could I have generated so much passion inside my soul for one man and within seconds convert it to another? I’d always been faithful, I’d never cheated on Geraint, never even been tempted. Yet here I was getting mashed between two very aroused men and, I had to admit, enjoying it immensely. Thank goodness I’d come to my senses and stopped before anything else had happened.

“Ariane,” Liam said quietly, “you’re thinking about this way too much.”

I touched my fingertips to my lips, still tingling from where he’d just kissed me into oblivion. “What do you mean ‘this’?” I managed.

“Us, me and Quinn.” He paused. “And you.”

“I don’t understand.”

“What’s not to understand?” He stepped closer. “I like you, Quinn’s clearly into you, and from what I just saw and felt—you, Ariane, are into both of us.”

There, he’d said it, the disastrous truth. I was into both of them. How could I not be? Both were devastatingly gorgeous and both had an air of irresistible sex appeal. It was a different nature of sexiness—whilst Liam’s felt gentle, seductive, beautiful and to a certain extent nurturing, there was something about Quinn that felt fast and furious, perhaps even dangerous. There was an element of bad boy unpredictability about him. How could a girl choose?

There was only one option—I would have to leave and not have either of them.

“I have to go,” I said again. “Really, I’m sorry, I can’t stay.”

“No.” Liam frowned, creating a neat horizontal line between his brows. “Leave in the morning if you want, but not in the dark, and…” He had a distinctly sharper edge to his tone. “Leave because you don’t want us, not because you do.”

Buy Link:

http://www.jasminejade.com/p-8441-shared.aspx

http://www.amazon.com/Shared-ebook/dp/B003ULP7YA/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1321359303&sr=1-1

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Shared-ebook/dp/B003ULP7YA/ref=sr_1_2?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1321359463&sr=1-2

 Lily’s Website:

http://www.lilyharlem.com/

 

 

Susan Quilliam Talks About Sexualization

I’m so excited to have Susan Quilliam as my guest today on A Hopeful Romantic. Susan wears a lot of hats. She is a writer, a broadcaster, a consultant and a  mentor on the psychology of relationships and sexuality, among other things. But what she’s most noted for is rewriting what is probably the most famous sex manual of our time, The Joy of Sex, Alex Comfort’s 1972 masterpiece. In 2008 Susan revised The Joy of Sex and brought it roaring into the 21st century.

I had the pleasure of meeting Susan at the Fannying Around Women’s Group founded by Sarah Berry, where she had been asked to speak. After some online correspondence, Susan kindly agreed to allow me to interview her concerning the nebulous, but frightening topic of sexualization. Welcome, Susan!

K D: I think a lot of problems and confusion are caused by people not understanding what sexualization is and confusing it with sexuality. Somehow promiscuity always gets thrown into the equation as well. Susan, could you start by giving us some working definitions, please? What exactly is sexualization and how did it come about?

Susan: Ah….. so many definitions of this term! I guess the most relevant here is ‘sexual perspective’… the way more and more aspects of society today are seen through the lens of sexuality.

We do live in an age that is arguably more sexualized than ever before. How has it come about? I ran a whole evening around this topic recently at The School of Life (link: www.theschooloflife.com) – we explored the ways in which modern society quite simply makes it much easier to have sex and so more tempting to link sex with everything.

As the last century began, huge social changes such as industrialisation meant that folk who used to live in close-knit, morally-tied villages suddenly found themselves in huge anonymous cities where they were free to do what they liked with whomever they liked. The rise of science and the decline of religion meant all the messages about ‘sex is sin’ suddenly seemed wrong, while with women’s emancipation and then the pill came the possibility of having sex without conception – just for pleasure.

Not that I’m saying that sex just for pleasure is a bad idea! Far from it! But all these changes have meant that sex has been delinked from family life, has been brought out of the bedroom and is far more visible in society. And as with all social changes, that brings some good and some bad in its wake.

K D: How closely linked do you think sexualization is with consumerism? Are two the opposite sides of the same coin?

Susan: Ever since the first prostitute accepted the first fee for delivering sexual favours, sex has been linked with consumerism. But even outside the directly sexual industries, it’s inevitable that as sex is so powerful, people will want more of it – and that those who aim to make money will be harnessing that power: linking sex with products, marketing goods by making them appear to trigger sexual desire, selling services through promising sexual success.

It’s sad that sex is sold in this way… sad that we don’t all have the true intimacy with another person that means we are neither looking to buy sex nor looking to buy things that deliver sex. If we were all loved, physically and emotionally, in a way that made us feel valued, powerful, safe and satisfied emotionally, the link between sexualization and consumerism would be broken.

K D: Is there a solution that doesn’t involve censorship? How much of the solution do you think falls to parents, or even those us who aren’t parents, and how much to the state?

Susan: I personally believe that though we see a great deal of problematic sexualization going on, there are also huge solutions being put in place, both on a personal and on a society-wide level. Maybe I’m being too optimistic – but in my own lifetime we have moved from a high level of ignorance and fear about sex to a much healthier and happier approach. Trust me, having a fulfilling sex life in the middle of the last century was rarely easy and straightforward.

Nowadays parents, though often unresourced, are acting to protect their children. School sex education, though often minimal, is now seen as necessary. Adults too are maturing in their attitudes to sex; there is a growing awareness in society of the value and power of sexuality – and that it needs to be treasured and taken seriously. Plus organisations such as the Family Planning Association and Relate are working to promote positive sexuality.

K D: The main concern about sexualization seems to be its effect on children. Is it a problem for adults too?

Susan: Yes – though as I say above, I’m optimistic that as a society we are maturing in our attitudes to sex. But the latest figures on sexually transmitted infections show that there’s a steep rise in disease in the over-40s, who think that they are immune and take risks; this is a clear reflection of the way adults too are hitting problems in this respect.

K D: I hope I’m not being sexist in asking this question, but I just have to. Is sexualization a feminist issue? I ask that because most of the images with which we’re confronted on a daily basis, whether on billboards, the internet, movies or women’s magazines are of women and geared toward women – and little girls.

Susan: I agree that sexualization is a feminist issue. Females are bombarded with images that suggest they will be valued more if they present themselves as sexually knowledgeable and active. As an agony aunt I often get letters from early teenage girls saying that they want a boyfriend to love them, and hence are going to do sexual things that they don’t necessarily want to do.

But this isn’t a one-sided issue. I get letters from teenage boys saying the same, saying they feel under pressure to perform in order to impress their girlfriends. So sexualization may be a feminist issue, but it is also a ‘masculinist’ issue too.

K D: How do you think a sex positive society would change the landscape where sexualization is concerned? And how do you see that happening?

Susan: Let’s first define what we mean by a sex positive society: a society where sex is seen as a Good Thing, but because it’s a Good Thing, should be valued and treasured. I do believe that if we made a shift to that belief, things would change hugely; much of our unhealthy obsession with sexuality comes from a rebellion against inhibition and guilt. If we were genuinely taught that sex is wonderful, we’d be far more likely to approach it wisely, respectfully and healthily.

There’s proof of this, too. A number of studies have shown that when young people are taught about sex, and told that it’s enjoyable, they are far more likely to wait to have first sex and to have that first sex within the context of a caring relationship. So the first approach here must be to resource parents, schools and the media to present a perspective on sex that doesn’t label it as bad and wrong.

This may take decades if not centuries – but to me it is certainly the way forward. For thousands of years, guilt and punishment haven’t worked to discourage sexual expression; we need to try something different.

K D: I’ve always felt that erotic authors, or erotic artists of any kind for that matter, are in an ideal position to promote a sex positive attitude and by doing so help to combat sexualization. Do you have any suggestions as to how we might best do that with literature, fantasy and art?

Susan: I agree with you that artists in general have a huge role to play in offsetting sexualization because they reach through to people’s souls in a way that informational health campaigns, albeit useful, simply can’t.

We learn from art by feeling with, by reacting to, by taking on board deeper messages than simply factual ones. So I would encourage all artists to make the messages they give out about sex emotionally literate, with the right values, not in any prissy way, but in ways that teach us what the best sex can be- a heady mix of physical and emotionally connection.

K D: And how about everyone else? What can we all do to combat sexualization?

Susan: Speak out when we see abuse of the wonder of sex, support others who speak out, encourage society as a whole to make a stand.

K D: Since the internet gets a healthy dose of the blame for sexualization, how much of that blame do you think it deserves? Can it also be a part of the solution? If so, how?

Susan: I’m a huge fan of the Internet, albeit it has a bad press. Every medium of communication has a dark side and Internet porn is at the core of the dark side of sexualization. But it also allows us to access accurate and helpful information about sexuality, to spread positive and useful ideas with the click of a mouse, and exchange views – as this very post proves! Well done KD for providing such a positive arena.

K D: Thanks, Susan! And thanks so much for sharing your time and helpful insights with us. All the best to you!

Susan Quilliam is a writer, broadcaster, consultant and mentor on the psychology of relationships and sexuality. She works closely with the Journal of Family Planning, the Family Planning Association and Relate. Her 21 books are published in 33 countries and 24 languages; in 2008 ,she rewrote the seminal manual The Joy of Sex.

Susan’s website: http://www.susanquilliam.com/Home.htm

 

All the News

I’ve not given an actual news update in ages, and it occurred to me that the next few weeks are chock-a-block with fun and excitement, and lots of things you might like to know about, so here’s the latest.

For the month of November I’m over at The Romance Reviews answering questions and just chatting. There’s a fabulous interview up as well dealing with all things Pets. If you stop by you can find out what inspired me to write The Pet Shop and how I deal with unruly Pets, and lots of other secret goodies about Tino and Vincent and Stella. Also, if you stop by and leave a comment, you’ll automatically have the chance to win a free eBook of The Pet Shop in the format of your choice.

While you’re over at The Romance Reviews, be sure to check out my guest post, ‘Beauty IN the Beast.’

Erotica, 2011 is going on all next weekend, 18-20 November, and I’ll be there, blogging, reading, panelling and celebrating the launch of The Pet Shop with Xcite Books. Xcite will have a stand at Erotica and will be featuring all kinds of fabulous events. I’ll be reading sizzling scenes from The Pet Shop, on Saturday in Xcite’s Reading Slam.  And Saturday at 6:30, Xcite are having a little launch party to celebrate The Pet Shop.  I hope I can keep Tino’s clothes on long enough for the party.

Sunday afternoon I’ll be participating in an Xcite Authors Panel, along with Toni Sands, Liz Coldwell, and Maxim Jakubowski. The panel will be chaired by Jane Wenham-Jones. Check out all of the fabulous Xcite events here, then come and join the fun. If you can’t make it, however, be sure to check my blog for the latest updates.

I’ve finished my read-through of the proofs of Lakeland Heatwave: Body Temperature and Rising and though I don’t have a date yet, I think I can safely say expect this first novel in my paranormal erotic romance to be out in eBook formats very soon, with the print launch in early February. Needless to say, I’m getting very excited about the goings on of the Elemental Coven in the Borrowdale Valley of the Lake District.

New Releases

Seducing the Myth, edited by the amazing Lucy Felthouse, contains my story, ‘Stones.’ This anthology of sexy myths is getting rave reviews, and is a must for anyone who loves mythology and has nasty thoughts about what really happened.

Women In Lust, edited by the ever-fabulous Rachel Kramer Bussel, contains my story, ‘Strapped.’ The anthology has also debuted to rave reviews. As always, when Rachel puts together an anthology, it rocks!

Immoral Views, edited by KoJo Black and illustrated by Florian Meacci is hot off the press from Sweetmeats Press, and contains five sizzling stories of voyeurism, including my story, Allotted Views, more serious garden porn. Definitely one not to miss.

Not only is Immoral Views available in one fabulously juicy anthology, but you can also get each of the individual stories as a stand-alone on Smashword if you’d like just a nibble before you bite. But I’m betting you’ll want to have the whole yummy voyeuristic feast.

Oh, and writing. There’s LOTS of writing going on around here. Some of it you already know about, some of it I’m keeping under my hat for now, but you’ll find out in good time, in good time! Now if you’ll excuse me, I just left one of my characters in a very compromising position on a massage table.

 

 

Brick Dust and Bedsprings, More Sizzle From Lucy Felthouse

Lucy Felthouse does it again, with the hot new Ravenous Romance release, Brick Dust and Bedsprings! Congratulations, Lucy!

Blurb:

There are chores to be done, but it’s much more fun to stand at the window and watch the rippling muscles and sweaty torsos of the men paving her driveway- her window sill never got cleaned so thoroughly before!

But when sexy brothers Marcus and Jamie catch their customer looking, the action rapidly moves from the front of the house to the bedroom…

Excerpt:

I heard the rumble of an engine, and craned my neck to look out of the window. Yes, they were here. My lips curved into a smile, and I scuttled out to meet them.

“Morning!” I chirped brightly. The two men turned from their van at the sound of my voice.

“Christ,” exclaimed the larger and older of the two, “I wasn’t expecting you to be up at this hour!” It was nine in the morning.

“You cheeky so and so. I’m not that lazy. Besides I had to get up to move the car. You’d have struggled to dig the drive up with my car on it, wouldn’t you?”

He winked cockily at me. “Mine’s a coffee, please. Two sugars, plenty of milk.”

“Yes, Marcus. God, what did your last slave die of? Jamie?” His brother looked up from the papers he was shuffling.

“Um, I’m alright for now actually.”

“Are you sure? I was only messing about!”

“Yeah, I’m fine, I’ll have one later.”

I sauntered back into the house and started making drinks. I’d already flicked the kettle on in anticipation of their arrival, and as I poured the milk into Marcus’ mug I chuckled to myself. I’d delib¬erately used a pink one, just to piss him off. It wasn’t exactly the most manly of mugs, as I’m sure you can imagine. Mind you, it would take more than that to rob Marcus of his masculinity. Mmm.

He wasn’t my usual type. I usually go for the more classic good-looking guy. You know, clean-shaven, nicely dressed, and all that. Marcus definitely didn’t fall into that category. He wasn’t ugly, by any means, but he’d never be on the cover of a magazine either. And you certainly wouldn’t take him home to meet your parents. But he still oozed sexiness out of every pore. Whether it was the fact that he was rough around the edges, I don’t know. Maybe I was looking for a bit of rough.

I handed him his coffee with a cheeky smile. After a question¬ing glance at the mug, he took a sip. He winced as the hot liquid scalded his tongue. He swallowed slowly. I watched his Adam’s apple contract and relax and felt my face start to heat up.

Against my better judgment I studied him: his broad chest, huge biceps, strong-looking thighs clad in denim. Christ. I felt my pussy twitch involuntarily and closed my eyes. When I opened them again, he was looking at me. Oops. A moment of charged silence, then he smiled, all the while staring at my chest. I glanced down, and wanted to die of embarrassment. My nipples were rock hard and straining against the thin cotton top I was wearing.

“Must be cold,” I blurted, not wanting him to know the effect he was having on me. Marcus looked at me, then glanced up at the burning sun. He raised his eyebrows.

“Right,” I mumbled, desperate to get away. “I’ve got chores to do indoors; gimme a shout if you want anything.”

“Anything?” he enquired.

Buy links:

http://ravenousromance.com/ravenous-rendezvous/brick-dust-bedsprings.php

http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00631J2BI/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=lucyfelthouse-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=19450&creativeASIN=B00631J2BI

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00631J2BI/ref=as_li_ss_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=lucyfelt-20&linkCode=as2&camp=217145&creative=399373&creativeASIN=B00631J2BI

http://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-brickdustbedsprings-627149-144.htm

Lucy is a graduate of the University of Derby, where she studied Creative Writing. During her first year, she was dared to write an erotic story – so she did. It went down a storm and she’s never looked back. Lucy has had stories published by Cleis Press, Noble Romance, Ravenous Romance, Summerhouse Publishing, Sweetmeats Press and Xcite Books. She is also the editor of Uniform Behaviour and Seducing the Myth. Find out more at http://www.lucyfelthouse.co.uk. You can also find her on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

Sommer Marsden Tells Us What Happens on Page 237, Or Not

I’m elated to have the totally yummy Sommer Marsden as my guest today. Sommer’s on a blog tour to promote her sizzling new paranormal novel, Big Bad.  And to celebrate the release of Big Bad, Sommer is giving away a copy of this fab new novel to a lucky commenter.

Welcome, Sommer! I can’t wait to find out what happens on page 237!

And on page 237 they will…

Yeah, see that’s not me. The plotter, the planner, the index card holder. See that title up there? You will never hear me say that. Which is why it can be terrifying writing something like paranormal. I swore I’d never do it for reasons just like that.

If I’m on page 237…I might know what happens on page 238. I might not. I tend to fly by the seat of my pants and blindly follow characters wherever they  go. Down dark alleys, into houses that are currently being stalked by bad guys, down a long dark highway to another state in the rain. I fall in love with them, sometimes when it’s a good idea, and sometimes when it’s not. Sometimes with more than one person. I just…follow.

See, they are very much in charge. Not me. Imagine if you will, the quiet court reporter in the corner, slowly but surely taking down everything that happens as it happens—in shorthand (in my world shorthand=typos…heh). That is me! I am the court reporter.

Which is why you will NOT find world building in my paranormal. You might find a reality with…accessories? Something that is pretty much real life but a smidge left of center. I write men (or women) who just happen to be able to turn into wolves. The way I happen to be able to remember pretty much every single lyric to every song I’ve ever sat to listen to. I write shifters who have shifting ingrained in their history the way Native American or Scottish is ingrained in mine. People who inadvertently become psychic. Like dropping an ice cream cone on the sidewalk. And hey, as far as past lives, I’ve done my share of research and talked to my share of people—but that was out of sheer interest. It just happened to crop up in my book through no fault of my own.

Basically, I do what they tell me. I sit in the corner in my little skirt and nerd glasses with my hair in a bun (okay, leggings, big socks, funky tees and possibly a messy bed head hair twist) and do as told.

And I never know what is going to happen on page 237 for sure until page 237. When I feel that nervous ‘oh no! what happens next!?” I usually go take a long hot shower or a long wiener walk with the dachshund and the characters tell me. Ellis and Ruby and Tyler were known to whisper to me while I was washing my hair or doing dishes or walking my wiener. And they usually only gave up little snippets of info. Mostly, I had to sit down, shut up and take notes.

I don’t build worlds. It’s not my deal. I leave that to the pros who can spin entire worlds out of nothing but gossamer and lace. Me, I write about people who are somewhat accidentally special and then I listen to what they have to say. They always know what’s going to happen on page 237…they just take their sweet time tellin

Blurb

Lust according to Ruby:

You read those books where they explain it all away. They make it fine with rationalization. But what if I just want to? What if that’s my whole reason? My life is not a romance novel. I don’t need justification. I’m a grown woman who knows what she wants.

I want Ellis. And I want Tyler.

And I won’t apologize…

What’s worse than wanting both your best friend who’s a vampire and the just-back-in-town alpha werewolf you find yourself fixated on? Finding out that the werewolf in question wants you, too. But he isn’t too keen on the sharing part. Oh, and by the way, you’re his dead mate.

Okay, okay, dead is harsh—reincarnated.

What’s worse than that? Realizing that you believe the whole crazy tale of reincarnation. Because it seems to be true.

And yet you still want them both—together. Vampire and werewolf and you in the middle. Stuck between two predators who want you and only you. To complicate it all, you find out that you can have it. With your new/old mate’s blessing. But just one time before he claims you as his.

Are you brave enough to take it? That one shot?

Well…Are you?

Excerpt from BIG BAD:

I didn’t want to talk about him being mine or me being his. Or the feeling I got in the pit of my stomach when he said stuff like that. The feeling was akin to peace and security.

“Can I get you a dri—“

I never got the sentence out because he pinned me to the wall outside my small bedroom and kissed me. The kiss was the kind that left no room for talking. His tongue tangled with mine until I felt the wet intensity of his kiss all the way in my pussy. My ears thrummed with my pulse, his shirt was soft under my fingers, his chest hard.

“Back up or it’s right here in the hallway.” Ellis growled.

I walked back as he guided me and finally the bed hit the back of my knees and I folded myself down onto the mattress. Ellis covered me, pinning my hands at my sides with his much bigger ones. His belly pressed to mine, his cock hard against the split of my pussy. I wiggled just to feel the pressure of him through my jeans.

“Christ, don’t do that. I’ll come in my pants like a young wolf,” he laughed. His teeth flashed in the low light of my bedroom—nothing but a golden nightlight lit the periphery.

“I’ve never seen you change. Can I?” Now that it was in my head, I wanted it. I wanted to see him in wolf form, run my fingers through his fur. Possibly other things. But I didn’t think that and I certainly wouldn’t say it. I simply acknowledged that I wanted to experience Ellis in all his natural forms.

“One day.” He rose and shimmied out of his clothes. Slowly. I watched the flex and roll of each hard muscle. The flat of his belly exposed one button at a time. He peeled off his boxer briefs and chuckled at my attentive gaze. “You make me feel like I should have dollar bills sticking out of my waistband.”

I blinked and then caught his joke. “Oh, how rude. I do have some singles. Would you like a tip, sexy boy? Shake your money maker.”

He didn’t flinch, but he didn’t smile either. “Take off the clothes, toots. We’re going to do it right this time.”

“We did it wrong last time?”

“Let me help you,” he said and his voice was so low the fine hairs in my ears felt ticklish trying to make out his words.

His fingers tugged at my black top and then my bra. Naked from the waist up, I tried to focus on breathing. He was perfect and sexy and looked so fucking serious my body buzzed with nerves. “I can—“

“Hush, Ruby.” His lips found my breast and his tongue did lazy tours of each one before his teeth found first one nipple, then the other. I felt the tug and thump of my arousal in my cunt. I touched him, just to feel how warm he was. How hard he was. And prove to myself that Ellis Bach was real.

He dropped small light kisses from my breastbone to my belly button and his fingers worked the button of my jeans with ease. “Up,” he said and I thrust my hips up so he could snag my jeans and panties and pull them down. I kicked off my boots so the jeans could come off and Ellis peeled off my over-the-knee socks.

“I’m like a trained dog,” I joked, my voice shaky with emotion.

“You are no such thing. But I like dogs,” he said. “A close relative of yours truly.” His laugh rumbled through him and vibrated into me as he kissed the sides of my thighs and the backs of my knees. I gave a small squeak and the laugh grew deeper. “Ticklish?”

“Yes. Will you change?” I blurted. I hadn’t even known I was going to say until it was out. But I barreled on, fueled by false bravery. “Will you? Please. Change for me, I want to see you.”

“Soon,” he said, licking my hipbone gently. “Not this time.”

Remember to leave a comment and you’ll have a chance to win a copy of sizzling eBook copy of Big Bad, then find out what’s on pate 237 for yourself!

Warnings: This title contains graphic sex and language, spanking, m/f/m sex, multiple partners.

 

Buy link for BIG BAD by Sommer Marsden from Excessica (also on Kindle, at ARe, Bookstrand, Smashwords and more):

http://www.excessica.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=22&products_id=463&zenid=d01ee27908400fa90dea4bdce8c1fb87

 
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The Romance Reviews

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