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Saturday, December 25, 2010

Interview of Author Willa Edwards

It's my pleasure to present an interview of romance author Willa Edwards.
Latest Book: Naughty List
Buy Link: http://www.cobblestone-press.com

BIO:
Willa has wanted to be a writer since she was four years old typing away at her grandmother’s typewriter. She wrote her first novel in fourth grade about the trials and tribulation of twin alien princesses. Since then Willa has dabbled with many different genres, including sci-fi, paranormal, mystery and suspense. When she read her first romance at fifteen she knew she’d found her place, and she’s never looked back. Willa is now a contemporary and historical erotic romance writer who lives in New York. When she’s not writing you can find her curled up in bed with her two fur babies, her nose pressed to her e-reader.


Christmas is the season of giving, gift giving that is. It is an art to find someone the perfect gift, but it’s also a lot of work. Being a good present picker takes really thinking about person you’re buying for, determining what they want, what they won’t buy themselves. It takes time, creativity, understanding, and some memory, to remember what they might want as well as where you hide it to be retrieved once Santa’s in flight.

The greatest gifts are the ones we don’t expect. The gifts that show us we’re loved, appreciated, and valued. But these are also the hardest gifts to find or give. It’s easy to give a Barnes and Noble gift card, but to find a present that shows how you care takes a lot more effort.

The best gift I’ve ever received didn’t come in a box or with a bow. It didn’t come on Christmas morning either. Instead it arrived in the form of an email on Labor Day. It was the acceptance for my first ever published work, Naughty List, from Cobblestone Press.

Everyone always talks about dancing when they receive their first acceptance, or screaming to the hills, but not me. I froze in disbelief. It took me almost an hour to reach out and tell someone, my best friend and phenomenal beta reader. It’s still hard for me to belief my work has been published. All my life I’ve wanted to be an author and now I am. It’s the greatest gift I could ever ask for.

For the heroine in my story, the only gift she’s interested in is Eric. Check out my novel to see if Callie gets all she wants for Christmas, or just a lump of coal.

Q: What part of the book is the easiest for you to write? Why?
A: The easiest part for me to write is the beginning. When the ideas are fresh and flowing. I love the sense of discovery that comes with writing a first draft. Discovering a character’s past, uncovering how your hero and heroine fall in love, and what will undoubtedly make that journey more difficult.

Q: What part of the book is the hardest for you? Why?
A: The first revision is always the hardest part for me. It when my evil critic has to come out. She has to crack the whip, and sometimes it can be painful. Sometimes she demands that I delete the words I love because they’re not clear enough, repetitive or just don’t work. There’s no more Ms. Nice-Guy when she gets her turn.

It’s a necessary part of the process but it’s definitely the longest part for me. Thankful with each new work the revision process gets easier. Maybe one day it won’t be so difficult. I can always dream.

Q: What genre would you like to try writing in but haven’t yet done so? Why?
A: When I first started writing, back in middle school and high school age, I wrote a lot of horror and paranormal. At the time it was Buffy and Harry Potter knockoffs but I’d definitely like to expand into telling that type of a story eventually. I have a few ideas floating around in my head but none have knocked me down and forced me to write them like my contemporary and historical stories have. I hope to be able to get some of those ideas down in the near future.

Q: What’s the first thing you did when you received word you’d sold a book?
A: I froze in disbelief. I couldn’t believe someone would actually want to publish my writing. I read the email over and over trying to find the loop hole or the gotcha clause I hadn’t noticed yet. After about an hour of that I told my best friend and amazing beta reader, at which time the celebration really started, and hasn’t really stopped.

Q: Do you eat comfort food when writing? If so, what food inspires your imagination?
A: I don’t normally eat while I’m writing. Having your hand in a bag of chips while you’re typing just doesn’t work. But I drink a lot while I write. As an added bonus, a lot of drinking means a lot of bathroom breaks to get up, move around and stretch.

I love to drink coffee while I work, with lots of cream and sugar, so it’s more like a dessert than a drink. But with how much time I spend writing I can’t do that all the time or I’d have more than just a little extra roundness, so usually I just drink water.

Q: What is your favorite romance book that you’ve read?
A: Have a few that I hold dear to my heart, due to their significance to me as much as the amazing story, characters and words.
Margo Maguire’s “The Bride of Windermere” was the first romance novel I ever read. I bought it by accident, because I liked the cover, unaware it was a romance novel. But as I read it I realized the type of story she wrote, the way she wrote, the characters she described were the same as what I wanted to write. It felt a little like coming home, finding my place. It sounds odd, but it really was that effecting for me.

It was her debut novel, and since then I have watched her career change and grow. I hope that I can be as successful as she has become.


Another is Joely Sue Burkhart’s “Dear Sir, I’m Yours.” I met Joely through a writers group and started exploring her backlist. When I saw Dear Sir I was immediately interested. I’d always been curious about Dominant/submissive relationships, and her book fascinated me. Her work was my introduction in the ebook world, as well as erotic romance and BDSM, which I have now started to explore in my own work. She has a very unique voice and shows what many might consider an unorthodox relationship as beautiful and romantic.

Over the years since I read that novel Joely and I have become friends, and she is an inspiration to me every day. If I could mature into a writer like her I would be truly blessed.

Q: You’re on a remote island with a handsome man, a computer, and a “mysterious” source of electricity to power your computer. What do you do?
A: I’ve always been a good multitasker, I’m sure I could find a way to use everything available to me.

That is when my man isn’t chopping down coconuts to make pina coladas, fishing, building me a fire or a cute little bungalow.


Tell us where to find you!
http://www.willaedwards.comhttp://www.willaedwards.com/naughty-list.html
http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000708705071
http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#%21/home.php?sk=group_168336059845071

BLURB:
Eric has been in love with Callie since the day they met, one month after someone else put a ring on her finger. Since her engagement ended Eric has been biding his time, waiting for her to be ready. Until he finds a naughty list of Christmas wishes hidden between her couch cushions with his name on the top.

He's willing to do anything to make Callie happy, including take on the role of dominate Santa Claus and spank her to blow-your-stockings-off orgasm. But is she ready for everything he wants? Does she want his love?

EXCERPT:

“This is really what you want to do with your birthday?” Callie asked, looking up at Giselle with a quizzical stare. Personally she’d rather be in a bar, drinking peppermint martinis, but it wasn’t Callie’s choice.

“Yes.” Giselle responded quickly, handing out holiday pens like she did to the children in her classroom. Grabbing a sugar plum ballpoint for herself, Giselle dropped down on the cream-and-rose-striped couch beside Callie.

Giselle’s elaborate ranch-style home, decorated in every shade of beige, was at least much quieter and less crowded than a bar. And due to the crystal bowls filled with potpourri upon every end table and bookcase in the house, with the smell of pine and cinnamon to celebrate the season wafting from each dish, it probably smelled better too.

“How exactly does this work?” asked Amy, their friend and the drama teacher at their school, her bright smile infectious as she helped propel the gathering forward.

“Write down what you want you want in a partner on the page.” Giselle motioned to the elaborate holiday paper stacked on the Chippendale coffee table around which Callie and their three best friends sat. “Once you have the determination to ask for what you truly want in a man, the universe finds a way to guide him to you.”

Callie sucked on the end of her silver bell pen, thinking of the different traits she wanted to write down. Caring, empathetic, loves children, crystal-blue eyes, soot-black hair. There was no point in writing any of it. The man who fit that description felt nothing for her. Why seek to guide him her way?

“Like what kind of characteristics?” Mallory asked with a devilish glint in her almond eyes. “Big cock. Talented tongue. Stamina.”

Amy giggled. Giselle scowled.

Callie admitted the idea had promise. Her body heated as she fantasized of a thick cock buried deep within her, a black head buried between her legs, a warm, wet tongue stroking her sensitive flesh. She’d always been bored with a man buried between her thighs before, but with her Mr. Right she’d be willing to try again.

“If that’s all you want in a man,” Giselle snapped, and Mallory nodded enthusiastically, a large artificial smile spreading across her face at Giselle’s biting tone, “then yes.”

“How does it guide him to you?” Krista asked, hazel eyes bright with curiosity. From anyone else the question would have sounded sarcastic or insolent, but Krista’s tone was straightforward, the mathematical part of her incapable of discounting any theory without testing.

“Through positive thinking,” Giselle responded, as if such information were common knowledge.

Callie huffed out a breath. She’d always considered herself optimistic, but where had that gotten her? A bitter broken engagement, robbed of confidence, and in love with someone else who didn’t want her.

Mallory turned toward Krista, cupping her hand around her mouth to mimic whispering a secret. The words projected loud and clear from her lips. “Otherwise known as magic.”

Giselle rolled her eyes, her hands fisted on her hips. “Not all of us can spend our days sleeping around with rock-and-roll trash.”

Mallory only smiled, her lips turned up in malicious glory. “Maybe you should give it a try. It might loosen you up a bit.”

Giselle’s jaw clenched, her face as bright red as Santa’s suit.

With such polar opposite personalities, Giselle and Mallory hardly ever agreed, but were still close as sisters. They came to each other’s aid whenever needed. Just as they had when Callie’s lying ex-fiancĂ© Josh’s secret was discovered.

“Where’d you get this idea?” Amy shouted across the circle, attempting to distract the group, always the peacemaker. Her normally small, soft voice paralleled her slender, short frame.

“Oprah, of course,” Giselle respond, to no one’s surprise. Giselle worshipped at the shrine of Oprah and Martha Stewart.

“Of course.” Mallory swallowed her red wine, using the glass to camouflage an exaggerated eye roll.

“It’s my thirtieth birthday, and you all agreed we could do anything I wanted tonight.” They hadn’t actually agreed, but Amy had, dragging everyone else along with her.

“I don’t get it. What’s the point in making a list for only one type of guy? There are tons out there.” Mallory shifted her long black hair streaked with green stripes, the ends dangling below the waistband of her dark jeans.

“It’s not for finding ‘a’ guy.” Giselle arched one golden brow. “It’s for finding ‘the guy.’ Your soul mate.”

Mallory brushed away the ancient notion of loving, long-term monogamy with a sweep of her hand. “What’s the point? Guys are like Christmas toys. What’s all the rage this year will be thrown in the garbage by Easter, and then you’ll be looking for something new.”

“Some of us are just looking for a toy worth playing with.” Callie chuckled.

Around her, her friends’ faces dropped, laughter and jokes ending on a deep sour note Callie hadn’t intended to play. She meant to sound like any other single thirty-year-old woman, but instead everyone still saw her as a betrayed, wounded soul, nursing a broken heart.

“Don’t worry, you’ll find someone.” Amy’s eyes glowed with concern, bordering on pity.

“Someone who deserves you,” Mallory added, placing her hand on Callie’s with a comforting squeeze.

Callie bit down on the inside of her cheek to prevent herself from groaning, the sympathy around her so thick it was choking.

Everyone forgot she’d called off the engagement. The discoveries of Josh’s life on the road, released to the paparazzi days after she’d returned the gaudy ring, overshadowed that truth.

Callie refocused on her paper, the pressure of her friends’ concern weighing on her neck, forcing her to stay harnessed to her pain, like a reindeer to Santa’s sleigh. She wrote “What I Want” across the top of the page, nibbling on the end of her pen as she tried to envision her perfect man. But every physical attribute she considered, every personality trait she desired, returned to one man. Eric.

She’d been in love with Eric for longer than she could admit. He’d been caring, sweet, and devoted since she’d called off her engagement, but that wasn’t what she wanted. Not anymore.

She wanted red, hot, raw. Her fantasies about Eric were dark, uninhibited, and rough. Exactly how Eric would never see her. To him she was a good friend—sweet, not sexy. She couldn’t be in another relationship like that, even if he set her heart flying and her stomach tumbling.

She gripped her pen tighter, staring down at her paper, visions of Eric and her tangled together dancing before her eyes. Their bodies twirled in every position she’d ever heard her friends mention, and some she’d even researched online. All the fantasies Josh hadn’t been interested in fulfilling, too busy satisfying his own. Her heart pumped heavily as she turned back to the title of her page, finishing the sentence with “Eric to Do to Me”. Her pen flew across the sheet, detailing every erotic fantasy she conjured up around her best friend.

She smiled as Giselle gave her a nod. If her friend had any idea what she was asking the universe for, it might cause her perfect bobbed hair to stand on end.

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