Author interview with Tasha Blackstone

My recent interview with Tasha Blackstone is now live and can be seen here.  Her questions were refreshing and fun to answer. 😀

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Writing outside my comfort zone

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So, I blogged last week about really putting my foot in it.  Well, I’ve decided to go ahead and write the Gay (M/M) story that I’d been contracted to complete rather than back out of it.

And why not?  The writing experience will be good for me and I might, just might, actually produce something worthwhile.

My (confirmed) gay friend has been very encouraging and has even agreed to beta-read it for me once it’s complete.  Ideally, I’d like to be there when he reads it, but I’m not sure I’d comfortable sitting in the same room as he (if I’ve done a good job) gets aroused by what he reads.  He’s a friend, not a lover.

Not to mention the fact that he’s completely unavailable to me anyway. 😀

Ironic, isn’t it, that my story might get him hard, but my body never could.  Weird.

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SSS from TBL1

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I smiled as I gazed at the items I’d laid out on the bed before I’d gone for my shower in the en-suite.

Stockings, black balcony bra with matching thong, and three-inch heels – plus a sheer black robe that would allow me to draw a thin veil across my near-nudity, but it definitely wouldn’t leave much to the imagination.

I wondered what Amber was planning and felt a small thrill of fear – my friend of ten years was wild and prone to reckless adventures that bordered on the downright dangerous.

And yet I’d always survived; we’d spend the next few weeks laughing about whatever we’d been up to and Amber had cajoled me into admitting that it had all been a huge thrill.

And so she’d do it all over again, almost terrifying me with her daring, dragging me into her erotic adventures until I was drowning in shared pleasures with any number of participants, half-afraid that it would never stop, yet desperate for it to never end.

I suspected that tonight was going to be another one of those nights and I shivered, as I always did, at the idea of being desired and touched by complete strangers.

(An extract from The Bucket List Part One, page one)

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Annie

This week, I made the roll of honour at SteameReads. Well, it was an honour for me! 😀

Australian Romance Readers Association

Steam eReads_220Steam eReads is an Australian-owned boutique online publishing house specialising in romantic fiction. We don’t aspire to be the biggest, but we intend to be one of the best markets for quality fiction on the Internet, giving readers and authors something new and exciting to sink their teeth into. The high standard of our titles reflects the time and attention to detail we have invested; from thorough editing, exceptional cover art and individual marketing throughout Australia and worldwide.

As we steam towards our official launch at the Australian Romance Readers Convention in March, we would like to present out first release of titles. We would also like to welcome authors to take part in our ‘Some Like it Hot’ romance fiction competition. The competition calls for 50,000+ word unpublished romance manuscripts, with prizes totalling $3,000 and including a publishing contract. If you would like further details about us, please visit…

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Really, really put my foot in it this week!

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I wanted to begin today’s blog post by telling you a little more about myself, but then I realised that after having changed my on-line name twice to avoid

A)    Perverts and Spammers and

B)     being noticed (again) by my work colleagues and bosses

that telling you personal stuff would be kind of self-defeating.  I’d love to share a little more about me with my friendly followers – it’s beginning to feel like a family here – but I’m risking being exposed (not THAT kind of exposure!) to those who would mock, ridicule and generally hand me my notice.

So instead I’ll tell you a little more about what I do when I’m not rambling away on my blog.

I’ve been very lucky to be found by Steam eReads, an Australian publisher who specialises in erotic stories.  However, most of my writing income is still generated by ghostwriting – those short stories that are created in a whirl of inspiration, then sent off into the electronic abyss never to be heard from again.  It’s a little sad – rather like fostering children who never write home once they’ve left.  That’s why Steam eReads has become a little like a literary anchor to me.  My name is on the cover of the book that I wrote and they’ve been nice enough to allow me a say in the cover and the final editing.

Ghostwriting is my bread and butter for now, though.  So I continue to trawl for work, fend off those who can’t read what I specialise in (No, I DON’T do web design – where did it say that on my resumee??) and hum and haw over offers of $15 for 10,000 word ‘short’ stories.  Do I really need the work that badly?

But this week I put my foot in it.  I was asked if I could produce a 6k short story with a gay element – featuring two or more participants.  Erotica, I thought.  I can do that.  I can do gay erotica.  After all, my BFF characters Amber and Lucy are always ‘at it.’

I accepted the challenge – and was shocked when the outline arrived.  I’d naturally assumed (as you may have) that I would be writing about two (or more) girlfriends.

Nope.

The contractor wanted guy-guy stuff.

Aw, shoot.

Pun not intended.

I credit myself with a pretty good set of imagination neurons, but this was off the beaten track, even for me.  Yes, I have a gay friend.  I might even have two (I must ask him if he is – just to be sure).  But this will take some ‘getting inside the head’ stuff.

The alternative is turning down dollars that I can really use.

*sighs*.

Time to start following more gay (guy) blogs?

Definitely time to start checking the job descriptions more closely.

Any advice, guys and girls?

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SSS from TBL 2

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This week’s Six Sentence Sunday is an extract from my recently-completed novella ‘The Bucket List Part Two – Caught.’

Amber and Lucy have been caught making out in the biggest bed in a large department store.  The Head of Security and his female colleague who catch them have left the BFFs with a simple choice – either wait for the police to come and arrest them for indecency, or co-operate fully with the guard’s instructions – which seem to include taking advantage of the partly-dressed girls.  Lucy, fearing for her career prospects and the damage that an arrest record would do to them, opts for the latter course.

The Head of Security gives his first order;

“I’ve been instructed to undress you, Miss,” the female guard said briskly.

For a brief moment, as she stood before me in her severe uniform, I imagined that I was being readied for a strip-search and that she was a prison warden. 

It could still happen, I realised,  a real strip search – in a real prison…if we don’t do exactly as we’re told. 

I remained still, determined not to co-operate any more than was absolutely necessary as she reached around to my back and unhooked my bra, which slithered off my shoulders and joined my skirt on the floor. 

My hands twitched, ready to cover my exposed breasts, but when the Head of Security glared at me, I let my arms hang limply at my sides. 

The woman dropped to her knees and my knickers ended up around my ankles, leaving me to let out the breath that I’d been holding as cool air wafted over my naked pussy.

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If a man woke up as a woman…

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Following on from my last post…

If a man was to wake up one Saturday morning as an adult female, with a timer nearby counting backwards 23:59:44; 23:59:43… (to assure him that it wasn’t permanent) what do you think he would do with his remaining hours?

Think quickly because his time is running out.

Here’s a couple to start you off – and this is purely speculation;

1) He’d immediately strip off his jammies and stare at himself in the bedroom mirror.  Probably for hours.

2) He’d phone the nearest veg shop and get them to send round a corn cob, a cucumber…anything!

3) Once he’d reduced the fruit and veg to a sticky pulp, he’d probably Google the address of the nearest lesbian nightclub.

4) Out would come the camera for a hundred ‘I shot myself’ full-length mirror pics.

and finally….

5) He’d finally succeed in locating that elusive clitoris!

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Annie

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PS with regard to point 3, I assume he wouldn’t want an ordinary M/F tryst.  I couldn’t imagine ‘her’ wanting to lie beneath a guy.  I may be wrong…

If a woman woke up as a man…

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If a woman was to wake up one Saturday morning as an adult male, with a timer nearby counting backwards 23:59:44; 23:59:43… (to assure her that it wasn’t permanent) what do you think she would do with her remaining hours?

Think quickly because her time is running out.

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Here’s a couple of thoughts to start you off;

1)  She’d get out of bed immediately and jump up and down to see if a flapping willy felt as ridiculous as it looked.

2) She’d rush to the bathroom and enjoy – just for once – not having to sit down to pee.

3) She’d jog around the house to try to understand how men can even walk with all that tackle getting in the way of their legs.

4) She’d NOT have to spend thirty minutes making herself look nice before going to the store.  Quick shave, brush of the hair and she’d be done!

and finally…

5) She’d get a drill and fix that darn shelf once and for all.

Please feel free to add any others! 😀

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Annie

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Engage reverse gear…

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As I neared the end of The Bucket List (Part Two), I found myself stumbling over the conclusion.  As a self-confessed Pantser, I plan very little in my tales other than the beginning, the end and a few essential events that must take place somewhere in the story.

This method has served me well so far, but over the past week, it’s given me a few headaches.

I’ve found myself, on two occasions, writing my characters into positions that have proved difficult to get out of.  And if you know my stories, you’ll know that when I say positions, I am talking literally.

So I’ve had to engage reverse gear and ask the characters to back up and assume their previous positions, then move into new ones.  There’s an awkward silence as they stare at me.  I can hear them thinking ‘You put us into this situation.  What are you playing at – changing your mind mid-flow?’

It’s just that, having written them into the story so far, I can’t quite bring myself to simply ‘delete’ what they’ve already done.

I feel like a mid-range director who is asking A-list actors to stop what they’re doing and go back two pages.

Am I too far into the character’s heads – am I giving them too much respect?  Should I just be tough and wipe out their errors and rewrite their lives?

Has anyone else had to ‘rewind’ their characters and reposition them because it wasn’t working – or is that just me? 😀

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Annie

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