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Janine Ashbless Tells the Story Behind Red Grow the Roses

It’s my pleasure to welcome the amazing Janine Ashbless to my site today to share with us the story behind her sizzling, intense new vampire novel, Red Grow the Roses. Welcome, Janine. Do tell!

Hi KD – how great is it to be here on your blog!

You asked me for the story-behind-the-story of Red Grow the Roses, my new vampire-erotica novel. So here goes…

I wrote Red Grow the Roses because I was asked to. I was working for Black Lace at the time, and I was just happily starting on a new book of short stories, when the editor mentioned to me that he wanted only one paranormal title for 2010, that it “has to be vamps,” and did I want to write it?

My first thought, to be honest, was, “Me? You’ve got the wrong person!” I had written one vampire short for BL, but I’m actually on record telling the world I didn’t like vampires (This was in the days before True Blood, you have to remember. I’m now a huge fan of True Blood. I am not a huge fan of Twilight):

“Vampires do nothing for me. I mean – I am happy with them as predators, or as vehicles for introducing dominance and/or a little necrophilia to an erotic story; it’s when the author wants to use them as characters that my eyes glaze over. Why? It’s epitomised by a montage scene in Interview with a Vampire where the years pass over New Orleans. In these centuries human beings with their pitiful short lives have created beautiful art and architecture, established complex societies and communities, turned swampland into a thriving city. What have the vampires, with their eternal youth and their physical superiority and their accumulated experience, achieved? Well, they’ve killed some people and drunk absinthe. And one of them plays the piano a bit. Boring, boring bastards.” (From the Lust Bites blog)

But I said “Yes”. And then I sat down and thought about how I could do it. How to get a handle on vampire characters. How to write this from the heart and the head and the groin.

• I didn’t want to do a Laurell K Hamilton rehash.

• I didn’t want to write “human-girl-falls-for-immortal-vampire-Dom-and-gets-turned”. That’s been done too often before. (And, it turns out, after.)

• In Bram Stoker’s Dracula, there’s a real sense of spiritual horror about the vampire. He’s genuinely uncanny and disturbing. He’s dead. He’s cut off not just from human society, but from the grace of God. He has charisma, but the prospect of being turned by him is terrible. How could I recapture that sense of disquiet, for a readership that no longer automatically believes in God, and thinks that being immortal and super-powered sounds pretty cool, really?

• What I really wanted to write was short stories. I think erotica (though not romance) works best, for me, in short story form. That way you can have variety of characters and situations and kinks. And the poor reader doesn’t have to read the book at one sitting, and end up with wrist-cramp, just to get to the next bit of plot.

So, I thought, I’d write a book of short stories. Each would stand alone. Each would have a different protagonist and a different writing style. Each would feature a vampire, and together they’d add up to a single overarching storyline. They’d almost all be written from the point of view of the human beings whose lives are touched (and sometimes wrecked) by something both horrific and seductive. And I’d make it really bad to become a vampire, because yes they’re powerful and immortal – but as they get older, not only do they become more magical, but they lose their minds and their resemblance to humanity. The oldest vampire in RGtR is nearly incorporeal; she drifts about in mirror glass and other reflective surfaces, and is more like a predatory ghost than anything else.

How to tie the different stories together? Well, I’d do what I’d wanted for many years and structure it around the enigmatic folk song Green Grow the Rushes. That song creeps me out even before I start imagining what it references. You know the one:

I’ll sing you Ten-O,
Green grow the rushes-O!
What is your Ten-O?
Ten for the Ten Commandments:
Nine for the Nine Bright Shiners:
Eight for the April Rainers:
Seven for the Seven Stars in the Sky:
Six for the Six Proud Walkers:
Five for the Symbols at your Door:
Four for the Gospel Makers:
Three, Three the Rivals:
Two, Two the Lily-White Boys, clothed all in green-O.
One is One and all alone
And ever more shall be so.

Each line would get a relevant story. That’d make it a real challenge to write! And I’d call it “Red Grow the Roses.”

The whole concept came to me in a feverish rush. After that it was just a case of filling in the blanks (like: how many vampires, what would make each one stand out from the rest, what sexual themes did I want to cover?).

So that’s what it is. Eleven different short stories, with points of view ranging across male and female, innocent to knowing to bitter; written in first second or third person; each narrative shedding light upon the others. One is a fairy tale. One is a romance. One is hardcore female humiliation. One is brutal male-sub. One is all Victorian Gothic corporal punishment. One is themed entirely around the names of rose cultivars.

Black Lace stopped publishing just before I finished writing this book. It would have been too long and too offbeat for them anyway, I suspect! (I turned down another publisher later because I was told to cut out the backstory between sex scenes). But now Red Grow the Roses has found a home with new publisher Mischief – and hopefully on many a Kindle.

It’s my scary, bloody, dangerous pride-and-joy.

xxx
Janine Ashbless

Blurb:

Maybe you’ll be lucky. Maybe he’s not human. He’ll take you in his arms and you’ll feel his strength – a strength that makes it impossible to fight him. But you’ve already lost the will to resist, that moment he looked into your eyes and showed you all his hunger and his promise. You knew then. You knew that this is what you are for – what we are all for – with our warm beating hearts and our aching sexual needs.

We are for them.

There are six vampires in the city. Ageless, terrifyingly beautiful and always hungry – not just for blood but for the other pleasures the human body offers. Sadistic chanteuse Estelle; feckless Ben; Roisin, the mirror-ghost; Wakefield, haunted by his own damnation; Naylor, the most feral of them all.

And Reynauld is the Good Shepherd, the one who holds them all in check. But his grip on his own humanity is fading, and when Wakefield accidentally kills a woman and Naylor gets the blame, a power-struggle erupts between the city’s immortal undead.

Red Grow the Roses tells of bloodlust and sexual desire; for vampires the two are indistinguishable. These transgressive, startling stories draw the reader down the darkest and most seductive paths of pleasure – to where the monsters are waiting.

Excerpt:

‘Oh, Doug. Is that how you ended up in the Church?’

‘I thought that if anyone knew about these things, if anyone had the answers, it had to be them.’

Unable to comfort him, she leaned in and kissed his lips softly. She was surprised and gratified when he took her hand and guided it to his groin, back to his erect cock.

‘Cerri,’ he mumbled, kissing her deeper. His hard-on jumped under her fingers, giving no sign of flagging, no sign that he’d already emptied all chambers. Uneasiness stirred in the back of her mind even as she ached to pull him into her. He’d stayed stiff as a pole all the way through his story.

The nasty suspicion, once formed, grew to monstrous proportions. Pushing him back, Cerri bent for a closer look. And there it was: yes. On the underside of his cock, near the base: two dints in the flesh, one a little higher than the other. Puncture-marks. ‘Fuck,’ she said hoarsely: ‘You’ve been bitten.’

‘What? No, I -’

‘You’ve been bitten already.’ She stared into Doug’s uncomprehending eyes, her voice rising. ‘He’s already had a piece of you!’

‘But I haven’t – I don’t – When?’

‘This afternoon,’ said a silky voice behind them. ‘Funnily enough, I don’t usually feel hungry during the day, but you were just so fucking sweet and irresistible. And the look on your face…’ Cerri scrambled round and saw the speaker, the vampire Naylor: beautiful, glittering and jagged as razor-wire. He was nested in the angle of the landing ceiling, arms spread like a blasphemous crucifix, clinging to the plaster by a network of dark tendrils that emerged from his flesh like cobweb, melding him with the shadows. ‘Rather like that look now,’ he finished with a ghastly smirk.

She knew she hadn’t seen him until that moment. She knew they’d been through every room of the house and if he’d been there he couldn’t have remained hidden. Not if he were human, anyway. ‘You were in the house all the time,’ she said, feeling sick. ‘We didn’t seal you out. You were already here.’

‘Uhuh. I’ve been here since last night. Not as clever as you think, are you girly?’ He slithered down from his impossible perch and landing on the carpet lightly, the shadow-tendrils hissing as they dissolved. Doug scrambled to his feet, yanking up his trousers and holding them with one hand. The other one sketched a cross in the air.

‘In Jesus’ name -’

‘Didn’t work last time, won’t work this. You’ve too many doubts, little God-botherer. Plus,’ he added acidly, ‘I think the fact you’ve just hosed your scuzz all over your witch girlfriend’s tits might count against you. Pretty impressive, by the way – the spunk-show, I mean. And,’ he admitted with a long hard glance at Cerri, ‘the tits. I’d like to bite them off.’

‘Don’t you touch her!’ Doug barked. Cerri came up behind him and put her hand on the small of his back.

‘You should go, Naylor. You’ll only be making trouble for yourself.’

He tilted his head, an odd smile dancing in his eyes. ‘I should be angry with you, witch-bitch. You get in my way. You’ve gone and spoiled my dinner.’ His eyes, green as poison, narrowed as they flicked back to Doug. ‘But you know what? I’m not angry. You two just went and told me a lovely story. The most interesting story I’ve heard in years. And that’s why I’m going to play Mr Nice.’

Buy links:

http://www.amazon.com/Red-Grow-the-Roses-ebook/dp/B006PW46O8/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1328179252&sr=1-1

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Red-Grow-the-Roses-ebook/dp/B006PW46O8/ref=sr_1_10?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1328098712&sr=1-10

Personal links:

www.janineashbless.blogspot.com

www.janineashbless.com

 

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Molly’s Daily Kiss: A Celebration of All the Good Bits

KD: It’s my pleasure to welcome top sex blogger, Molly Moore, to A Hopeful Romantic today. Welcome Molly! Your fabulous blog, Molly’s Daily Kiss, was awarded the sexiest blog of 2011, and after spending some time wandering around your site, I can certainly see why. How did it all begin? Why did it all begin?

MM: I have always enjoyed writing but never really felt like I had found a genre that I felt comfortable writing in until I discovered erotica. I had always read erotic novels but it wasn’t until I started to discover its existence online that I realised I didn’t have to write a novel to get read and so I started writing short stories and publishing them on a couple of different sites. They were fairly well received but the whole process of publishing them on other sites felt fairly disjointed to me. I wanted to own my work a bit more, have a say in where and how it was published and identify it, without any doubts, as being my own. On top of this I also felt that I just didn’t write enough. I was a great one for starting pieces and never finishing them and so the idea of a blog that would demand regular input from me seemed an obvious one.

When I started it, just over 2 years ago I had absolutely no idea that it would grow to what it has become today in both the number of visitors and in its content but my style of a mixture of images and words that complement each other and a strong auto-biographical content to my work seems to be a style that works for me and that appeals to a lot of people. I currently have, on average, 1100 hits on my blog per day, a pretty impressive figure I am told considering the age of my site.

KD: Why do you think your blog attracts so many visitors?

MM: As I just said I think it is the combination of my words and pictures that work together to create an honest and raw story. For a long time I thought that the main readers to my blog were men coming to perve but looking at my analytics I have learnt that that is not the case and that most of my readers are in fact woman.

KD: I was particularly fascinated by the part of your blog known as The Pussy Pride Project. Could you tell us how it came to be and why you think it’s such a popular part of your blog?

MM: The Pussy Pride Project came about after I discovered The Great Wall of Vagina by Jamie McCarthy. I spent a long time reading about what had inspired his work and found I really identified with his sadness at discovering that so many woman viewed their fannies in such a negative light and found the thought that an increasing number of woman, especially young woman, were resorting to surgery to change the external appearance of their genitalia deeply disturbing. I realised that within the sex blogging community many woman were maybe more open about these issues and thoughts than in society as a whole and so if I provided them with an outlet to share their intimate experiences about their fannies with not only their readers but my readers and everyone else’s readers who linked into the project it would build a blogging version of The Great Wall of Vagina.

When I started the project I had absolutely no idea if anyone would join in or not but before I knew it links started to appear on the page and then the thank you’s from women whom I had never met but who read my blog started to appear in my inbox; often heart wrenching tales of women’s experiences with their pussies and how reading my work or seeing my pictures and looking through the Pussy Pride Project had made them realise that they were as ‘normal’ or as beautifully individual as the next girl made me realise that the Pussy Pride Project was a massive success. It is of course an ongoing project and over the last few months I have been so busy that it has not received the attention it should but I hope that will change soon. I have a few promises of some guest posts that look to be pretty special and also some plans of my own to hopefully extent the project beyond what it is now and maybe one day even try to publish it as a book in its own right.

KD: Why do you think women have such a struggle accepting their bodies, but most especially their fannies?

MM: This is something I have pondered a great deal, why woman and not men too? I have come to the conclusion that it is not exclusive to woman by a long chalk just that woman seem to be more open about admitting it, whereas men tend to cover it up with bravado and humour. Also society as a whole seems to be much more accepting of the naked female body than the naked male body and so woman are exposed to images of the ‘perfect’ female body much more that men are. Everywhere you turn you can see her; in newspapers, magazines, billboards, TV, films that woman who we are all meant to resemble. She is a myth, beauty is not that woman, beauty is about the people we are and the connection we make with one another. Yes there is physical beauty but it is when we focus on this alone that we create whole generations of woman who are overly self-conscious about their bodies.

As for fannies, well to be honest the opposite is the case because unlike the female body as a whole which we are served a daily diet of the only fannies most woman get to see are those that they encounter when looking at porn which often portrays fannies as neat, tidy, shaved, tight, almost childlike in appearance. What woman need, hence the Pussy Pride Project on my blog, is to see lots more fannies of all different, shapes, sizes, colours, patterns, hair styles, ages etc to help them to learn that there really is no such thing as the perfect fanny apart from the one between YOUR thighs. That is perfect, perfect for you.

KD: One thing writers are always having to do is write a short biography for ourselves. What would be the most important things you would want the world to know about Molly?

MM: I really hate writing those things. How can you explain a person in a ‘short biography’ and even begin to do them justice. There are so many parts to me; female, wife, lover, mother, submissive, slut, photographer, writer, friend, owned…. the list is endless. I really am at a loss to choose just one but I guess if really pushed I think I would have to go with… Woman.

KD: How has having a blog where so many women, and men, feel safe to share some of the most intimate parts of their lives affected you?

MM: To be honest it has been humbling and eye opening and most of all I have made some amazing friends and contacts that I treasure dearly. Having complete strangers trusting you with their inner most thoughts, feeling and experiences has made me realise just how cruel humans can be to one another but also that we have an amazing power to heal, forgive and grow from the experiences in our lives.

KD: Do you have any plans for Molly’s Daily Kiss for 2012?

MM: Oh my, so very many of them. I have just launched 2 sub domains on my site; Sinful Sunday, a weekly erotic photography meme and The 365 Project, which is a place for me to explore my non erotic photography.

At the moment I am also building a 3rd sub-domain that will house a project called Anonymous. I have increasingly been asked by other friends, writers and sex bloggers to post anonymous pieces that they wish to share with the world but don’t want to post on their own blogs and so have decided to create a space dedicated just to this.

On top of all this I want to make sure that I keep on writing regularly myself, finish the 30 Days of Kink Project and maybe write my own version based on the topic of submission.

KD: What about Molly’s goals for 2012?

MM: My biggest goal for 2012 is to write a novel or a novella, depending on length, with the aim to self publish. I have had so many calls from people to do that it is starting to seem rude not too give them what they are asking for. So if anyone out there has the power to make more hours in the day, so I can fit all this in, then please do get in touch immediately.

KD: Thank you, Molly! It’s been a complete pleasure to have you on my site!

 

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Reading Slam and Launch Party — Twice the Celebration, Twice the Fun

How much fun can be crammed into one weekend? Well, I’m going to do my best to find out the last weekend in February, the 24th and 25th. And since fun is always best when it’s shared, I’m hoping you’ll help me find out as I do my best to double the celebration for the launch of Body Temperature and Rising, the first book of my paranormal Lakeland Heatwave Trilogy.

The Evolution of a Reading Slam

I’m very lucky to have lots of great writing friends in the UK, some who live in London, but many who live outside of London, all over the UK. Some of these fabulous friends are making me very happy by planning to come down to London for my launch party. That being the case, I wanted a way to let them know how much I appreciated their efforts. So, I thought up the idea of having a reading slam the night before the launch so that everyone could read if they wanted to and have a chance to promote and share their own work.

I was surprised and touched by the positive response to the idea, an idea which I actually found a little bit scary, as I’d never organized an event like a reading slam before. But everyone seemed so excited.

Then, a dear friend and sister writer suggested we make it into a charity event. My pulse rate went up, I bit off the rest of my nails, and when I finally stopped hyperventilating, I emailed the amazing Sarah Berry and put the idea to her. Sarah quickly calmed my panic attack and assured me that not only COULD we do a reading slam as a fundraiser for charity, but we SHOULD!

Viola! That’s how a simple reading slam evolved into the More Bang Reading Slam Fundraiser! Am I still scared? Yes! Am I still nervous? Yes! Am I excited and glad we’re doing it and all a flutter with anticipation? Yes, yes, yes!

More Bang Reading Slam Fund Raiser
24 February 2012
Sh! Portobello

To help celebrate the launch of her new novel, Body Temperature and Rising, K D Grace, with her fabulous co-sponsors, the Fannies Rule Groups headed up by amazing Sarah Berry present the More Bang Reading Slam (That’s short for more bang for your buck).

This evening of hot reading is very special because all proceeds will go to the Sexual Advice Association. There’ll be a charge of £5 for guests and participants, all for a good cause!

There’ll also be raffles and giveaways. There’ll be fizz and cupcakes. But mostly there’ll be lots of fun and lots of sexy readings from lots of sexy readers strutting their stuff and making the audience squirm deliciously in their seats.

Wanna read? Come prepared with five minutes worth of filth and fun. Warning, any attempt to read longer will result in a good spanking.

Wanna just listen and sip fizz? Come prepared for a good time. Warning, those not prepared for a good time may also be spanked at the digression of the management.

Fun for a good cause is the yummiest kind of fun. Come celebrate with us!

Friday 24th February at 6:30 at Sh! Portobello.

Cost £5

Launch Party

25 February 2012
Sh! Hoxton

You’re invited to celebrate with K D Grace at the launch party for her new novel, BODY TEMPERATURE AND RISING, the first book of the Lakeland Heatwave Trilogy!

Blurb:
Can the power of lust overcome deadly intentions?
For American transplant, Marie Warren, a magical encounter on the Lakeland fells ends in sex with a charming ghost and the discovery that she has the ability to unleash demons and ghosts. Her powers bring her to a coven of witches who practice rare sex magic that allows ghosts access to pleasures of the flesh.

Ancient grudges unfold, and Deacon, the demon Marie inadvertently unleashed, will stop at nothing to destroy everything the coven’s high priestess, Tara Stone, holds dear, including Marie, the charming ghost, Anderson, and sexy farmer, Tim Meriwether. Only the power unleashed by Marie and Tim’s lust can stop Deacon’s bloody rampage before the coven is torn apart and innocent people die. But is lust enough?

Come celebrate with witches and ghosts and all the very naughtiest people from far and wide. While the author promises no one will be turned into a newt, it is recommended that all guests come prepared for love spells and squirming in the seats, both of which, Sh! is well equipped to handle.

There’ll be fizz and cupcakes all served up in the fabulously sexy surrounds of Sh! Hoxton! Don’t miss the magic!

Where: Sh! Hoxton
When: Saturday 25th February 6:30 pm
No charge

 

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Sommer Marsden: Long Lost and Then Some

I’d like to welcome one of my favourite authors, Sommer Marsden, back again. This time Sommer is answering questions about Long Lost,  her yummy paranormal sequal to Big Bad. Welcome, Sommer!

KD: After finishing Long Lost, without giving anything away, it seems pretty clear we’ll be seeing more of Ruby and Ellis and Tyler and their friends. Without giving anything away, can you give us a teaser?

SM: Nope! In order to give you a teaser, I would have had to have written some of the book. As of yet, there is no book. The door has been open for there to be a book. But no book is in the works. Eek!

KD: *Folds arms across chest and pouts* Guess we’ll just have to wait then.

I was intrigued by the idea of ‘The Town,’ the place where the werewolves lived. How did you come up with the idea of a town as werewolf central?

SM: I would love to say something clever, but I have no clue. To me wolves/weres are pack animals. So pack animals tend to stay in their own pack and out of the lives of others. Town just made sense on some level to me, without me really thinking about it. And the name was just sort of my own little joke.

KD: When you wrote Big Bad did you already have a series in mind, or did that come later?

SM: I had no intention of there being a second book until about ¾ of the way through. Then I realized if the story played out the way it seemed to be going, there had to be a second book. No question.

KD: What inspired the series?

SM: I have to admit, I have no idea! I just got the idea one day while walking the dog. It came out of nowhere and once the characters started talking to me—Ellis, Ruby and Tyler all at once—I had no choice but to go home and start.

KD: What did you find the most fun about writing Big Bad and Long Lost? What was hardest?

SM: The humor was the most fun. The characters, even ‘side characters’ like Peabody, had a true back and forth with one another that was fun to sit and transcribe. When they bickered or gave each other a hard time, I’d often get the giggles. The hardest part for me, especially for book two, was to make sure I had a good balance of drama and humor and all that jazz. But my characters usually tend to themselves pretty well, I only have to monitor so much.

KD: Other forays into the paranormal on the horizon?

SM: Always! I have a book that’s been done for a while but I tucked it away for various reasons. But now I think I’m ready to dust it off, clean it up, put it out and work on the sequel. I also have plans for another paranormal in the near future that hopefully will be really fun but also kind of touching.

KD: Who was your favourite character to write?

SM: Ellis! EllisEllisEllis. He is one of my favourite characters ever. He’s based on a very real person who’s on TV pretty regularly. When this guy came on TV the other night, the man happened to have his hand on my foot and he said, “I just felt your pulse go up…through your toe.”

Ellis has a wicked but subtle sense of humor. I think that’s why I adore him so much. And he handles Ruby’s lunacy pretty well. And God, does he love her.

KD: Who did you find most difficult?

SM: The bad guys. The bad guys are always hard for me because I’d always rather write the fun and the humor and the sex. But I knew I did okay from my beta reader. He got goosebumps in the first book when I introduced my bad guy and he didn’t sniff out the villain in this one until the appropriate time. So I was pleased with myself.

KD: What was the highlight of 2011 for Sommer Marsden.

SM: Most unfair question ever! LOL. There were so many, to be honest, and for that I am grateful. I would have to say Big Bad and Long Lost coming out. I have such a love for those two books, I was very excited (and terrified) for them to come out. But so very glad when they did. So of a year full of good stuff, I guess I’d have to choose the release of those two novels as the cherry on top.

KD: What are you most looking forward to in 2012?

SM: My novel Restless Spirit comes out with Xcite in April, and I am so vibratey over that release! Also, an unnamed (secret!) novel that comes out soonish from Excessica is very anticipation-worthy too. Plus there are some super-secret upcoming projects that I am equally psyched and scared of 🙂

KD: *Rubs hands together conspiratorially* Ooooh, I love secrets! And one last Long Lost question: In your head, have you pictured what the movie version of LL would look like? If so, who would play whom and do you have a specific setting in mind?

SM: That is always a hard question for me because I don’t think that way about my books. Willsin Rowe was my beta reader for these books. I think that would be a super good question for him. I might have to ask him since he would leave me comments in the sidebar like ‘when the movie version of this comes out…’ 🙂 For me Ellis Bach is the celebrity chef Scott Conant. Ruby is faceless because, as sad as this might sound, all my heroines are sort of written from some small part of the core of me, so I don’t give them faces. Tyler is also faceless in my head as is Peabody. Wow. I am very unexciting. I tend to write more with a feel of a characters personality in my head than their actual appearance.

I would love to hear what people who have read the books think. Who they’d cast as Ellis, Ruby, Tyler and Peabody.

As for setting, most of my settings are local. I pick a piece of my city that I’ve lived in and write with that in my head as a setting. It tends to make it more realistic. Plus, I don’t mess up as much!

KD: What’s on the horizon for Sommer Marsden?

SM: Lots of freaking out, two books coming soon, more books being written, shorts in various anthologies, some novellas in an exciting project and hopefully some kind of Zen epiphany where I calm down and get organized. And then a pig will fly by my window. On a unicorn’s back. Carrying a leprechaun.

Blurb:

What’s a girl to do once she’s gotten her wolf? Spend Christmas in the belly of the beasts…or at least their Town. Ruby’s loving her new life until a single phone call makes her knees go weak, bringing the near past back into her cozy present. Seems an old evil has returned in a brand new nasty package to take another swipe at Ruby. Ellis isn’t about to let that happen, and neither are her friends, but Ruby discovers she will be the only one who can really do what needs to be done. And it turns out there are things at stake she never imagined. Things she’s willing to die for.

Buy Links:

Sold through Excessica: http://www.excessica.com/books/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=22&products_id=492 and numerous other online vendors.
Print Version:  https://www.createspace.com/3687776

 

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Florian Meacci’s Illustrations Sizzle in Immoral Views

There’s been a lot on the blog lately about the new Swetmeats Press anthology, Immoral Views, partly because I have a story in it, but partly because it’s just fabulous. And it’s unique in that, like all Sweetmeats Press publications, it is gorgeously and sexily illustrated. I’m lucky enough to have the fabulous illustrator who did the illustrations for Immoral Views, with me today. Please welcome, the amazing Florian Meacci.

KD: I’ve been looking at your website, Florian and in the ‘about’ section, it simply says, ‘Florian Meacci is a French freelance illustrator based in London.’ I suppose that’s the difference between a ‘word smith’ and an artist/illustrator. If your art speaks of who you are, then I can only say that you are a man of many facets. What do you want your art to say about you? Or do you consider yourself just a conduit for what you’re commissioned to create?

FM: I think my art speaks for itself. It’s me, it’s what I like, what’s in my head. And even if it’s a commission you can find something of me in it. To be honest this part on my blog is something I forgot to complete. Most of the time people are just interested in the art. They don’t read. But maybe I’m wrong, so I will do something more exiting about it.

KD: How did you end up scheming and planning with KoJo Black to do the illustrations for his wonderfully smutty anthology? Had you done anything like Immoral Views before?

FM: I found an ad on the university of art website a couple of months ago where Kojo Black was looking for an illustrator for erotic illustrations. I saw the ad, and I said, ‘oh my God, I need to do this job.’ I’ve never done anything like this before but I love to do unusual stuff. And I said I HAVE to do that. I sent him my portfolio, but he’d already picked someone to do the job. But he asked me if I wanted to do three illustrations for his website, and I said yes. He was so happy with it, he asked me to work on Immoral Views. I was so happy.

KD: I have to admit, I’m quite prejudiced, and I love the illustrations you did for my story, Allotted Views, but were there any particular illustrations you enjoyed more than others?

FM: Allotted Views was the first story I worked on. It’s always hard to start a project. You feel more comfortable with it after a few illustrations. It was a challenge to do the image where you see the girl at the window, but I think it’s one of my favourite images I’ve done for the book. I love Painted pussy; especially the second image with the two girls. I found the position really sexy.

KD: Were there any unexpected surprises along the way in illustrating Immoral Views?

FM: The first thing I had to do was to translate the brief into French to make sure I understood everything. That was the least fun part. The drawing part was great. Some pictures I thought would be difficult to realise (angle of camera shot, etc.) but in the end it was easier to do, and I was really happy with what I had done. Some stories required me to go on really strange websites to find reference but I love challengesBut the thing which surprised me the most was to discover all the authors were women.

KD: What is the most exciting project you’ve ever illustrated?

FM: It’s the project I’ve just finish. I can’t really speak about it but it’s a visual for a t-shirt company. It’s the most complex illustration I’ve done, drawn with biro. It took me one month to do, working on it non-stop. I Can’t wait to see that out!

KD: Is there a project you’d love to do, sort of your ideal project, if you will, if you could choose?

FM: I would love to work for a fashion magazine. It’s the aim of 2012!

KD: What is Florian Meacci up to now? And what does 2012 hold in store?

FM: I’m currently working on a poster for an event in four cities in France for the third year. Like I said above, I’d really love to do an illustration for a fashion magazine. Fashion is something I love to draw and it would be amazing to see my work published in a magazine like WAD or Dazed and Confused.

Florian Meacci
Graphic Designer & Illustrator
florian.meacci@live.fr
http://florianmeacci.blogspot.com/

 

 

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© 2018 K D Grace
The Romance Reviews

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