Theresa M - won signed copy!!!
Welcome to my interview parlor that has soft lighting, a crackling fire in the hearth and several candles, a few scented, though not over-powering. There are overstuffed chairs for my guests to sink into while we discuss books and writing. I have a bar set up in the corner - please help yourself, then come and join us for our author chats. Relax and think of some questions you might have for these two when we’re done. I hope you come back often to hang out here.
Today I’m honored to introduce Brenda and Steve, the writing team of Best Lover in Town and their newest book, Temptation Triggers, to be released June! You are all in for quite a treat today.
Brenda, Steve, as authors, some of us have things we do to get into the writing frame of mind like music or drinks. Do you have anything special you do to get into the writing mood?
Brenda: Steve and I sit side by side and work on our laptops. We listen to music as background noise. We are always in the frame of mind to write, whether it’s working on a story or just jotting down notes for future books.
Steve: Sometimes Brenda will light candles to set the mood.
Tonya: I like to write so my reader says “Hmmm….we could try that!” Do you like pushing the envelope to the brink when writing?
Brenda: We write erotic romance! Our stories are always racy and very graphic. And boy do we have fun researching.
Steve: Even in erotic writings there are limits to what we can publish. We push the envelope by implying around these situations allowing the reader to use their imagination.
Tonya: I’m using my imagination with you two doing your research! I won’t go into details either! Did you bring one of your characters with you today?
Brenda: We invited Janet. She said she would try to make it. I just checked the weather in Peoria, IL… 35 degrees tonight and snow tomorrow. I imagine she and Nathan are cuddling on the couch, keeping warm and watching a good movie.
Steve: We asked Janet to join us today however she is busy with her BLT.
Tonya: Let’s talk about how you file story ideas with both of you adding to the list. Do you have a card file where you keep story ideas? Where do they come from?
Brenda: We actually take a notepad everywhere we go and have a few beside our laptops. We get our ideas in different ways: something someone says, a place we drive to or by and our own ideas that just pop in our heads. We create folders for each story and store the notes in Word. When we start writing, we write above the notes and then delete the notes when we are satisfied with the outcome.
Steve: Brenda and I have taken our laptops to restaurants to work on writings. We can observe people as an inspiration as we write. We also take a copy of “Best Lover in Town” to place on the table. Many people will stop and ask us about the book. Having a book they can hold and look at spreads the word. If they can’t buy a book right then, we give them a business card so they can remember to order it at a later time.
Tonya: Tell us about a day in your life as writers.
Steve: Our days of writing vary. A better question would be: “What would the ideal day of writing be”? Brenda and I look forward to the day when we can sleep late into the morning, get a cup of coffee and recap the night before. We would type up the notes and work on our current masterpiece. We always have several pieces of projects milling in the background. Turn on the mood music, light the candles and start typing; all this work without the restriction of getting dressed. Once we start the actual writing, we tend to work for hours without stopping. We enjoy staying up late into the early morning hours. This seems to be the time we get the most words written. But alas, this is only a dream until we become full time, self sufficient writers.
Brenda: No it’s a goal and one we will achieve!
Tonya: Are you a daytime writer, night time writer, and do you have to be alone to write?
Brenda: We tried writing separate when we were working on two of the short stories for “Temptation Triggers” to meet our deadline. We both agreed we create better together. We write in the evenings and on the weekends for now.
Steve: As Brenda stated before, we get ideas all the time and write them down. Then we have to decide if the idea is going to be a short story, a novel, or just a scene in something we are working on. Most of the actual writing takes place at night or weekends when we can devote quality time to organize our thoughts.
Tonya: Do you intentionally give your characters flaws so the reader might relate to them better?
Brenda: Yes, we give our characters flaws, no one is perfect and the readers would not relate to a perfect character. Everyone has doubts about certain aspects of themselves - even strong, independent people.
Steve: We don’t go out of our way to create flaws. We just write the characters as we think they would react. Oh wait. Does that means Brenda and I are flawed? LOL
Tonya: Do you write about things that may teach your reader new ‘ideas’ they might use at home?
Brenda: Our stories are great to read with your significant other. Some of the scenes can open communication on pleasurable exploring.
Steve: From the beginning I told friends our book could be used as a learning tool. I was told not to promote the book as a “How To” book. There are several things we added to the book that the reader could learn from. We introduce glass toys and how to sterilize them for the safety of our readers. As always, since we are a male/female team the reader gets the perceptive of both sides of relationships and THAT they can use in any home.
Tonya: It sounds as though you two have the ideal working relationship and that makes me smile. I’m happy for you both. Where can our readers find you and your books?
Brenda: Our sites:
“Best Lover in Town” can be purchased on these sites:
AbeBooks – several international book online stores available
“Temptation Triggers” will be released June 2011. However, here is the link to our author page on CRP.
Excerpt from Best Lover in Town:
It is turning out to be a beautiful summer day in Peoria, Illinois, as Janet arrives early for work. She loves her new job and co-workers at the Archer Marketing Company. Archer Marketing is a large advertising agency with several offices across the country including New York City and Seattle. Her team is small enough to know each other personally. Janet, her boss Nathan Lovett, who is the top advertising agent, and a few other team members have an afternoon teleconference with the New York office. She wants to be totally prepared to impress her peers.
Arriving at her desk, she notices she is the first one to show up. She sets up her laptop, reflecting on the past three months at her new position before she gets busy. The office environment is laid back. There is a lot of friendly flirting between the team and Nathan is the most handsome boss she has ever had. She looks out her seventh floor window at the magnificent sun rise. Her view is a mural of the surrounding city. All glass exterior walls allowing the sunlight to fill her office.
Janet gets busy reviewing the ad campaign. As the rest of the team start to arrive for the busy day ahead, the normal greetings and simple chats resound in the office area. Everyone is having a great morning. Fridays are casual days so the employees are allowed to wear jeans. The entire group is excited as it is a payday weekend; informing the other teammates of their plans. Madison, Janet’s new friend, is especially excited about a party she is planning to attend. She attends many parties, boasting about them to anyone who will listen.
Nathan arrives a few minutes late and everybody greets him. He had stopped by the bakery to pick up donuts. The team gathers around him. He looks at Janet as she takes a donut from the box. Their eyes meet as they have done so many times before, causing Janet’s heart to melt. This isn’t the first time he has made her knees weak nor would it be the last. She remembers the times they crossed paths in the hallways. Sometimes she would move closer to him so they would touch each other in passing. It was just casual flirting. Nonetheless, he seemed to like it.
“Are you ready for the big meeting this afternoon?” Nathan asks, breaking the silence between them.
“Yes, I was just reviewing the ad this morning,” Janet says cheerfully.
“Good. I'm sure we will do fine. You've done a great job preparing the ad. I know they will love it as much as I do.”
The office personnel work like a well-oiled machine so the morning passes quickly. Team members come and go as they give Janet new information for the meeting. All of a sudden there is a huge bang in the building. Everyone quits what they are doing, curious to determine the source of the noise. All is quiet for several minutes as they listen. Nathan makes some phone calls. He discovers the problem and explains to the team.
“Maintenance says one of the building’s air conditioners has failed. They should have it fixed soon. I will keep you posted so let’s get back to work,” Nathan informs them before returning to his office.
The temperature in the building starts to rise as the sun shines through the windows in addition to no cool air. Team members become uncomfortable as sweat trickles down their bodies. Shirts and blouses become partially unbuttoned to stay cooler.
Because of the building’s policies, no electric fans are allowed. The normal flirting gets hotter as the temperature goes up. The agitated staff uses flirting as a release from the tension caused by the heat. An hour later, Nathan gives the team an update.
“I just got an email from maintenance. They said it might take several hours to get the parts for the air conditioner. It might not be fixed until tomorrow. If you aren't attending the afternoon meeting with New York, you are free to work remotely from home for the rest of the day. The rest of us will be leaving after the meeting. See all of you back here on Monday. Have a great weekend.”
Madison is the first to pack up her laptop. On her way out she stops by Janet’s desk.
“I will call you sometime on Sunday to tell you about the party. I know you will be working as you always do,” she says.
“Okay. You have a great time,” Janet says smiling as Madison leaves.
As excused workers head out the door, the remaining staff adjourns to the conference room. It is hot, causing several shirts to be soaked with sweat. Janet can see Nathan’s chest hair through his shirt which affects her concentration on the conference call. She is hoping he doesn’t notice her staring at him.
New York generally likes the ad campaign however wants a few changes. With every modification Janet squirms. She feels she has let the team down. Nathan glances at Janet, noticing her unbuttoned blouse, exposing the top of her bra. He is hoping to see more as she fidgets in her chair. The conference is over in under an hour, though it felt much longer.
“That went well,” Nathan says as he shuts down his laptop.
“What do you mean? All the work we put in, now all these changes.” Janet argues.
“Let me tell you a secret. The first ad campaign I submitted to New York, they tore it apart. I felt like they ripped me a new one. These were minor changes compared to what I had to fix. They like your concept. Moreover, they like you. You have a great future here. I’m glad I hired you; so is my team. Go home, relax; we can pick it up on Monday.”
Janet gathers her things to leave.
* * *
Arriving at her house, she can’t get the meeting out of her mind. She works for a few hours updating the campaign per the New York request. She stops working to fix herself a BLT. As she turns on the television the phone rings. It is Nathan. He has a brainstorm and wants to come over to finalize the ad for the next meeting with New York. Janet tells him that would be fine, and then reprimands herself for giving in so easily while hanging up the phone. She wishes she had said no to his request this time too. Nathan had asked her out twice; either for dinner or a late night coffee. She had not taken him seriously, thus she declined both times. Janet is not intimated by high powered men; however, the thought of Nathan is overpowering. She doesn’t understand why. Even though she has fantasized about him in bed, she never dreamed he would ask to come to her house. She looked forward to a relaxing evening. “Why do I have to have the best looking boss in town?” she wonders.
“Well, my supper and the boob tube will have to wait,” she mutters as she puts her BLT in the refrigerator. She remembers what her mother had always said: "Don’t fish off the company's dock.” “Well, going over work won't hurt Momma,” she thinks, waiting in anticipation for his knock at the door.
Janet hears a car stop in the driveway. She takes one last look in the mirror hanging in the hall. “No makeup, yet my face glows.” She nervously opens the front door. Nathan’s hand is in mid air to knock. His breath is taken away when Janet opens the door. “My god,” he thinks. “She is beautiful.” He knows it is going to be hard to keep his mind on business.
He was glad to have won her over from his competing company after hearing how good she was at her past job. Since hiring her, he felt she must have been ready for a change. So far she hadn't openly expressed why she was eager to leave her other job. Nathan has a suspicion that Janet’s ex-boss was very controlling and verbally abusive. “I’m delighted she accepted the position because now I have the best advertising assistant in town,” he thinks.
Janet invites Nathan in. While giving him a tour of her house, his first thought is “organization” just like her desk at work. The earthy decor suits her.
"Well, let’s get started," Nathan says, clearing his throat to cover his nervousness.
“Why am I feeling like a kid in high school?” he thinks.
Janet cleans off the dining room table so they can lay out the ad. They stand a few inches apart viewing the large prints, aware of the nearness of each others body. Nathan again clears his throat. Janet leans over the table. Nathan has a nice view of her backside. “Nice long legs.”
She is conscious of his eyes moving over her body. This makes her nervous as a little grin forms on her lips. "This one," she decides as she picks up the print to hand it to him.
Their fingers briefly touch. The touch is like fire searing up each of their arms. Janet is the first to avert her eyes while clearing her throat. Nathan raises an eyebrow. “She is just as nervous as I am.”
“Would you like something to drink?”
"Just a beer if it’s not too inconvenient." Nathan watches Janet walk away into the kitchen. He considers what it would be like to run his hands down her body while kissing her. “Okay, keep your mind on work.”
Janet returns with two bottles of beer.
“Ah, someone knows their beer.” He takes the chilled dark brew from her hand. Again their fingers touch, this time they linger a few extra seconds.
"I think what our client is looking for is a worldly attitude," Janet says to break the silence.
She turns toward the table in thought. Nathan can see her long neck as her head is arched back. He imagines the roundness of her breasts underneath her t-shirt. Nathan steps closer not realizing that if Janet turns around she would be against his chest. Janet can feel his breath on her hair.
"Janet, I want you to know, I…" He stops.
Nathan cannot help himself any longer.
He whispers in her hair. "I want you."
Janet is surprised to hear these words from Nathan. Her mind starts playing games with her. “He’s my boss. He’s 10 years younger than me. Why does he want me when he could have anyone he chooses? But oh man, he would feel so good right now!” She could feel her own wetness building up inside. Her body is ready yet her mind won’t yield to her desire for pleasure.
All Janet’s life she has wanted to find the perfect mate to explore the magic of sex. She is well read. However, she has never acted on her desires thinking there is not a man willing to teach her. Does Nathan possess the passion she is craving? Will a younger man have the knowledge she needs to drain? Will Nathan be willing to act out all Janet’s fantasies? Janet’s mind is finally getting in sync with her body as her sweet wetness is now moistening her jeans.
As Janet regains her thoughts, she deliberately leans her body into Nathan’s. She wants him to hold her close as he kisses her hair. The thought of Nathan touching her excites her. She wonders how he will react to her being so bold. Her pulse is racing. She feels his breath on her hair. She has already passed the stopping point whole heartedly giving into her body’s desires.
Tonya: Is there anything else you want to tell our readers?
Brenda: Steve and I look forward to satisfying our readers with many more hot & steamy stories.
Steve: Brenda and I really enjoy talking to fans and marketing “Best Lover in Town”. We have gotten a few ideas for future projects from these discussions. Feel free to contact us on Facebook to let us know your thoughts on “Best Lover in Town” or to just say “hello”.
Tonya: Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Brenda: If you have always wanted to write a novel; just do it. Write something everyday. Always take a notepad and pen with you; you never know when an idea will hit you. When you submit your manuscript to publishers, be sure to follow their submission guidelines to the T.
Steve: Write about what you know. If you want to write about something you don’t know, be sure to do the research. Be aware it will take three times the effort to complete.
Brenda: Thank you Tonya for having us on your blog this weekend and letting us be your first. ;)
Steve: Thanks Tonya, I hope we can do this again when “Temptation Triggers” is released.
Tonya: Brenda, Steve, it's been fun talking with you and getting to know both of you better. I look forward to the next interview. I'd be honored to have both of you back in June when Temptation Triggers hits the book shelves!
Readers - I hope you had a few questions ready as you read through this because now is the time to leave a comment or question for Brenda and Steve. They're picking one lucky commenter late Sunday night or Monday morning to win a signed copy of Best Lover in Town! Ask away!