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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Have you met Fran Lee?

Meet Fran Lee...

Fran is one of our original twenty Gold Authors here at Romance Books 4 Us. She writes almost exclusively for Ellora's Cave, with a self published short novel once in a while.

Since January is our "in house" interview month, we have asked her a few questions, and she has been kind enough to give us a glimpse into her life as an author. 

BIO: Fran Lee loves to write romance that resonates with her readers…romance that makes a reader want to go back and read again and again. She creates sizzling characters that capture the imagination and make you laugh, cry, and squirm in your seat.

Welcome, Fran. I understand that you have a recent novella and are featured in a multi-author anthology. Tell us a little about the anthology, which was released by Ellora's Cave on January 1, 2014.

Thanks! Yes, Ellora's Cave has released my short novella, Come, My Love, in a print anthology titled Modern Tastes. There are seven hot and delicious stories by seven of Ellora's Caves brightest and best authors. 

I know that you had a book release in October. Tell us a little about it.

Skinwalker's Woman is a paranormal erotic romance that was released in e-book format October 18, 2013. It's one of a group of Native American Erotic Romances that I have had a lot of fun with, but this one has a NA heroine as well as a hot NA hero.

How about a blurb or a tidbit of action from that book?

Certainly! My pleasure.


Running away from heartache is easier than facing it. But when Chellie runs from a bad relationship with a cheating ex and lands smack-dab in the arms of a hot and sexy stranger who thinks she was born to be his mate, could things get any weirder?

They sure can…especially when she discovers she’s a closet nymphomaniac and he’s a shape-shifting explosion of animal magnetism she simply can’t resist.

Excerpt from Skinwalker's Woman
Copyright 2013 by Fran Lee

This woman had seen his scarred face. Hadn’t paled or run. Hadn’t given more than lip service to leaving. Had touched him in a way no other had before her.

Is now driving me to distraction with her soft, slim hands and her heady, arousing scent.

He kept his hands firmly at his sides despite the desperate need raging in him to touch her, to follow the curves of her lush body with his palms and fingertips, to take those full, parted lips and do to her tempting mouth what he wanted to do to her deliciously aroused pussy.

The knowledge that she was aroused excited him, that she was receptive amazed him. That she was now pulling her shirt and sports bra off over her head as her breasts spilled into his hands was almost enough to drive him past reason.

Holy shit!

The lips that had been caressing his throat now slid gently up the line of his scar to his mouth and, without another thought, he was lost to her.

What the hell am I doing?
Chellie pressed her aching breasts against the thin cotton of his shirtfront, grinding her pelvis against his raging groin like some horny ho. She seemed to be flying on nymphomaniac autopilot. The earthy taste of his skin made her want more. Her lips slid from his throat, up over the white scar that forked wickedly across his throat and jaw like lightning, and homed in on his mouth. But before she reached her objective, she was jerked from her feet, her thighs were pulled around his lean hips and he was devouring her mouth like a starving beast, his hot tongue plunging inside for a taste.

Oh my!
He tasted of pine, of sunlight, of hot man.

Her clit was centered over his hard cock and he was flexing slowly against her wet center as he gave her exactly what she was craving—hot, wicked and wild. Reality was a thing of the past as she twisted her tongue around his, setting off a deep, rough growl that vibrated up from his chest to fill her mouth as he slid both hands under her ass to pull her harder against him.

When she managed to turn her mouth away and drag in several deep breaths, she pressed her lips to his ear and whispered raggedly, “Please…I need…I want…”

What the hell do I want? He must think I’m a total skank!

Whew. No wonder that book was hitting Amazon's high selling list! on to more general questions...
One of your novels is being made into a TV series/movie. Who’s in your dream cast?   

Depends on which book they want to work with. I always have someone in mind while writing, but each plot and scene requires a special type…not a specific actor or actress. Since all of my heroines are based just a bit on myself, I don’t think I could possibly figure out who would best play moi. LOL!

What’s your writing schedule like? Do you strive for a certain amount of words each day?   

Schedule? Did you just say schedule? Hey…I feel lucky if my muse decides to stop watching soaps and join me at the keyboard. I write when I get the urge, and I am totally lazy nowadays.

How much of yourself is hidden in the characters in the book?   

A great deal. I tend to write like I think. I write my heroines like me when it comes to situations and reactions. It makes it far more convincing.

How do you choose names for your characters? 

 I sometimes begin writing with one name, and often switch to another when my characters don’t behave in a manner consistent with their names. I try to use names that convey a feeling or a deeper meaning. I use non traditional names for my heroes, and if my heroine has a very normal name, I often make her hate it and use an unusual nickname. I want my readers to remember my characters.

Covers. Ever get one you wish you could change? 

I have been very lucky in that my favorite cover artist seems to know exactly what I want and what my book needs. Once or twice, I have gotten a cover that just didn’t seem to fit well, and we talked. I am very lucky that my publisher wants their books to sell well…and hey…a cover is a BIG selling point.

Give one advice tip to an aspiring author.   

Never give up. Never surrender. And never be blind to faults in your writing. If you have a favorite author, READ his or her books and pick what you love most. Not plots or characters, but techniques and voices. As you write, read through your manuscript to see if it would be something you would personally buy…would you pay $10 to read it? Does it capture your imagination? Do you use words that sound great but that you don’t really know how to use them or what they mean? 

It is one huge puzzle, and ALL the pieces must fit. I have judged books for various writing competitions, and I see words used incorrectly…it is like someone’s fingernails on a chalkboard…it brings me to a stop with a wince. Use words you know and understand. You don’t have to impress people with your erudition…just with your story. 

Find a good, competent, honest writing partner who tells the truth, and run it by him/her every chapter or two, until you feel it flow. But NEVER let someone’s opinion stop you from continuing to improve your skills. Give it your best, and edit, edit, edit. Good luck.

If you could give a younger version of yourself advice, what would it be?   

Have faith in yourself and don’t let fear be the anchor in your arse. Oh...and let's not forget that great old adage, "Don't sweat the small stuff..."

Have you ever used an incident from your real life into one of your books?   

Yep. Several times. That’s why the names are changed to protect the not-so-innocent. Snort!

Out of your entire backlist, which book has the best opening line? What's the line?   

It’s a tossup between Jillian’s Job and Nothing but Sex.

“I can’t believe you just said that!” Lee Blackhorse yelled after her ex as he climbed into his big 4x4 and slammed the door, glancing back at her from the rolled down window”

“Does the bastard ever tell you he appreciates your work?” Tim’s voice was like a small irritating gnat buzzing around Jillian Turner’s head, bothering her as she frowned down at the schedule she was working on on her laptop.

How many stories are swirling around in your head? Do you keep a mental list, a computer file, or a spiral notebook filled with the ideas?   

I have over 250 wips in files on my computer desktop, each one just a page or a few paragraphs…some even halfway complete. If I get stalled, I never hesitate to start on one of my others.

Now let's get to some fun stuff:

What is your favorite holiday and why?   

Wow. That’s a tough one. There is something about every holiday that I love, but my favorite would have to be Christmas, mainly because it brings me back to the wonders of childhood and the beauty of anticipation.

What are two things people might be surprised to know about you? 

I’m a late bloomer? Well…not physically, but emotionally. I bloomed very early physically, but I didn’t learn how to attack and enjoy life until my 20 year marriage ended. I had been so utterly repressed during that part of my life that I sort of exploded once I realized I was in control of my life. I decided that I wanted to take martial arts when I turned 45. I got my black belt at 50. I submitted my first book to Ellora’s Cave much later. I was ready to take risks and enjoy my existence.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?  

I actually wanted to be an artist, but I outgrew that as soon as I realized that real artists drew and painted things that were not necessarily equine in nature. I began to write stories, but was too embarrassed to let anyone read them, just hiding them in a box under my bed. I truly wish I had written more.

Favorite food.   

Butter. Hands down, flat out favorite. (Me and Paula Deen.)

Favorite drink. 

I create a drink from Clear American Black Cherry zero calorie soda water (available at Walmart) and black cherry juice concentrate, with half a lime squeezed over the ice. It is refreshing and delicious, and a quart has roughly 35 calories in it.

Hot summer days or chilly winter nights?   

Warm summer nights and chilly winter days…I am one of those who do not appreciate extremes in temperature. In other words, a wuss…

What is the top thing on your bucket list?   

It might surprise you that I didn’t know what a bucket list was until recently. But since you asked, I would say that good health into my 90’s would top that list.

If you could have a super power, what would it be?   

Healing.I would love to be able to touch someone and make them well and happy. I think that's why I love to write HEA's.

You can find Fran Lee on the web at:

Anything else you’d like to add?

Yes. I want to wish all my readers, Facebook pals, fans, and author friends all the warmth, love, pleasure, and laughter that life has to offer in the coming year. I wish you all these things:

Someone to love

Great books to enjoy


Enough to eat, and a roof over you

Good health


And wherever you can find it, happiness.

Thanks for visiting the Romance Books 4 Us blog. Today we're giving away a RB4U t-shirt to one lucky commenter, so please don’t forget to leave your email address in case you are the winner.

Also, I want to pick one of the comments left here to receive a copy of Her Own Set of Rules. To win, you must leave a real first name and an e-mail address in your comment. I will notify the winner on January 20th.

Thank you for sharing, Fran.

Thank you for asking...hugs!


Sandy said...

Fran, it's really nice to learn more about you. I wish you much luck with this story.

Paris said...

Hi Fran!

Just popped in to say hi and wish you continued success. You're an auto buy for me, sweetie!

Marianne Stephens said...

Love your writing schedule...sounds like mine. A lot of us are late bloomers in writing careers...we started out doing something else or had family obligations.
You need something FUN for your bucket list...being healthy has to go along with a fun thing to do in your 90s!

anny cook said...

Hey! This was a Great interview! Nice super power!

Tina Donahue said...

Wow, you have a black belt? Kick ass, Fran - kick ass! :)

Polly McCrillis said...

Love the book cover for "Skinwalker"! And the advice you give to inspiring writers is excellent - I especially like the question you pose about paying $10 for your own book. It's a smart question to ask. Thanks for sharing so much, Lee. Happy writing!

Fran Lee said...

Wow! Thanks for so many great comments! I expected the usual 3 or 4. LOL!

You know, answering interview questions brings up a lot about a person that nobody knows or realizes. The super power was a biggie. But it is a genuine desire here. I see so much sadness, illness, and weariness of spirit nowadays. Wouldn't it be fabulous to be able to help someone simply by touching them? Actually, it truly works, even if you don't have super powers. Just remember that we "touch" other people every day in some way or another...and those people remember our touch, whether it was a rude one or a kind one. A kind touch takes a person through the day with the thought that someone was kind. :)

Cris Anson said...

Hey, late bloomer, it was good to read more about you. I love all your Native American stories. Let me wish you all the good things you're wishing for others :-)

Mary Preston said...

I agree - great opening lines. With so many WIP you must spend 24/7 just writing.


Gemma Juliana said...

Hi Fran, great interview! So nice to know more about you. Wishing you success in your writing career.

Gemma Juliana said...

Hi Fran, great interview! So nice to know more about you. Wishing you success in your writing career.

jean hart stewart said...

Great interview...That many ideas for new books? Wow, I'm impressed.

Melissa Keir said...

Fran, It's wonderful to "meet" you. Like you I didn't blossom until my 20 year marriage ended. Then I went on to do my first 5 K this year. I think that we escaped! ;)

I wish you all the best with your books. I love the smell of a man who smells like outdoors and pines.

Cara Marsi said...

Fran, nice to get to know you. I love your covers and I love Native American romances. I'm so impressed you have a black belt. You go, girl!

Fran Lee said...

It's great hearing from everyone! Thanks so much! Now, since only one person left an e-mail address so I can contact them about the T-shirt and the e-book, does that mean that you don't want to be in the giveaway?

If you want to be included in the giveaways, e-mail before tomorrow at so I can include your name in the drawing.

Thanks again!

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