Guest Interview: Saskia Walker

Please welcome our special guest, Saskia Walker!

Award winning British author Saskia Walker first dreamed of writing her own stories when she discovered a handful of romance novels stashed away in her school library. An avid reader, she lapped up the fun, the adventures, and the life-affirming emotion of these stories, but always felt dismay when the bedroom door closed the reader out. She vowed that if she ever had the chance to pursue her dream, all the passion would be right there on the page. Saskia finally began writing seriously in the late 1990s. By that time she'd traveled the world, got herself a BA in Art History, a Masters in Literature and the Visual Arts, and she'd worked in all manner of diverse careers—but the stories in her head simply had to be written.

Her first erotic short story was signed in '97 and since then she has had several single title novel and novella publications, and her work has appeared in over fifty anthologies including Best Women’s Erotica, The Mammoth Book of Best New Erotica, and the Black lace Wicked Words series. She writes across genres, but always with the passion right there on the page! Her novel, DOUBLE DARE, received the Passionate Plume award for the Best Contemporary Erotic Romance of 2006.

Saskia lives in the north of England—close to the beautiful, windswept landscape of the Yorkshire moors—with her real life hero, Mark. Mark supports her work through all its ups and downs, and somehow manages to keep her sane and grounded when fiction threatens to take over.

Welcome, Saskia! You know I'm jealous that you live so close to Scotland! :) Please tell us about Sweet-Talking the Opposition in Secrets Volume 29 Indulge Your Fantasies.

Thank you for inviting me to be here at Fierce Romance! SWEET-TALKING THE OPPOSITION is about two journalists who’ve had a fling in the past. They get thrown together again when they are both sent to cover the launch of a luxurious new Rhine river cruiser. Eliza and Marcus are made for each other and they just don’t realize it, so I had to trap them on a boat together. :-) Eliza can’t resist an on-board affair, but she’s worried she’ll fall for Marcus. She decides she can stop herself getting emotionally involved by taking charge, sexually. She establishes ground rules for their affair while on board the river cruiser. With a dominant like Marcus, however, the fun turns out to be in the tug of love over who is on top…

I love stories set on boats! Who is your favorite character in this story and why?

I adore Marcus! He was such fun to write. He’s suave and charming, and women fall at his feet. He’s a talented journalist and his special area/obsession is extreme sports. That side of him gives a brawny edge to an otherwise sophisticated, urban man. When Eliza tries to keep him at bay it intrigues him because women usually make it easy for him. At one point in the story (when they return to London) she won’t open her door to hear him out. So he abseils down the outside of the building in order to talk to her through the window. I love that about him. ;-)

Readers can find an excerpt form my story here:

Whew! Hot excerpt! What inspired this story?

It was just one of those crazy ideas that popped into my head. I’d wanted to try my hand at a reunion story, and this was it.

I love reunion stories, too! Which element of this story was hardest for you?

Keeping it to a novella length! I fell in love with the characters, it was hard to say goodbye. I hope readers will enjoy them as much as I did.

What is your writing process?

An interesting question, because my process is something I used to fret about. It’s difficult when you start out and you read how other writers approach their work, but I honestly believe you need to find what works best for you. After many years I’ve come to terms with the fact that 90% of the writing goes on in my head, and getting it on the page is only 10%—but it’s the hardest 10%! :-) I tend to write in short stints and while I’m doing other things the story rolls on in my head, ready for the next stint. My routine is best described as meandering, but I get there in the end.

Everyone has their own unique process and I love learning about them. Please tell us about another of your recent releases.

My big novel length publication of the year is RAMPANT, an erotic paranormal romance set in Scotland. This one was published by Harlequin Spice in April. It was an amazing book to write, because it allowed me to indulge myself by writing about one of my favorite coastlines—The East Neuk of Fife in Scotland—and draw on the incredible legacy of witchcraft and persecution in the area. My heroine, ZoĆ«, arrives at a cottage there for a vacation only to find herself in a hotbed of erotic magic. The hero is a gorgeous, sexy academic who is secretly a white witch and a guardian of the area. RAMPANT is set in the present day, but the back story unravels in glimpses the heroine has into the past, solving an old mystery of love, loss, and persecution.

If any of your readers would like to read an excerpt, they kind find one here:

Sounds fascinating! I must read this! Would you like to ask blog readers a question?

I’d love readers to tell me their favorite characteristics in a hero.

I’ve got a copy of RAMPANT to give away to one reader who comments!

Thanks for being our guest today, Saskia!


Anonymous said...

Hi Nicole! Hi Saskia!

Saskia, you write such hot stuff. I recently read The Right Men for the Job and I enjoyed it so much.

As for characteristics I like in a hero, I think a sense of humor is important. Someone who doesn't take himself TOO seriously. He can be the biggest baddest bad boy (I like bad boys), but if he can't laugh or joke around, be playful, there's something wrong.

Congrats to both of you lovely ladies on the release of your Secrets anthology!

Nicole North said...

Welcome Saskia! So glad you're here today!

Hi Casey! Thanks so much!

Saskia Walker said...

Hey Casey! I’m so glad you enjoyed The Right Men for the Job. That does seem to be a reader favorite amongst my shorter novellas. I had a lot of fun writing it, as you probably noticed. ;-)

I agree, a sense of humour is a very important quality. I’ve just been writing an intense historical hero, a man who is driven by the need for retribution, but there are times when his humour takes over, distracting him from his goal. When I’m writing it’s important to me that the characters are multi-faceted. It’s the circumstances that allow us to explore them, and the way they react. That’s part of what I love about writing, it teaches us so much about people and human nature.

Thanks so much for your comment!

Saskia Walker said...

Good day to you, Nicole! Thanks so much for the welcome.

Eden Elgabri said...

Hi Nicole and Saskia,

First I would like to say that I LOVED Rampant. (Had to take frequent dips in the pool to cool off!)

As for characteristics, I tend to like a hero who starts off a little narcissistic and powerful, but gets toppled by falling hard for the heroine.

Congrats to you both on the new Secrets.

Saskia Walker said...

Hi Eden! Thank you so much for the congratulations. I'm thrilled to have a new Secrets novella out and it's great sharing pages with Nicole. I also have a big grin after reading your comment about Rampant!

You're so right, there’s nothing better than a tough man brought to his knees because of a woman. :)

AllTheWiser said...

Congrats to both of you on Secrets.
I like my heroes with a bit of
rakish on the outside, devoted on the inside quirk.

Saskia Walker said...

Thank you!

"rakish on the outside, devoted on the inside"

I love that description! :)

Sherry said...

It depends on what kind of mood I'm in sometimes I want a fun loving, mischief hero. Others I want a dark and brooding hero but in either case he has to love the heroine and make sure she knows it.

Armenia said...

Hi Nicole. Hi Saskia.

I, too, am jealous that you live so close to Scotland. But I can imagine the winters are pretty cold. Right now I'm melting in Texas and I would love any cool breeze right about now.

Loved the excerpts and I've read so many great reviews about Rampant, and it is certainly on my radar to read.

Thanks for the chance to win it. Congratulations on the release of Secrets anthology!

armiefox at yahoo dot com

Anonymous said...

saskia walker's covers are dynamite! i would love to win a copy of rampant!

Clancy said...

It all looks so yummy! Luck you living up by Scotland. That's a dream to be able to live there part of each year or more :)

Heroes - I love it when they fall so hard they are completely bewildered and lost as to what to do with themselves and their emotions. Of course they figure it out, but I love that helpless stage they go through.

Saskia Walker said...

Hi Sherry, thanks so much for your comment. It’s all really useful info. :)

Hi Armenia, I know I’m lucky. We love Scotland, and Wales too. I’ve set stories in both places, a great excuse to spend more time there in my imagination. Thank you for your congratulations!

californiameaghan – that’s great news! Covers are something we have less control over, it’s always good to readers like the ones I’ve had.

Clancy, yes that period of bewilderment they go through is so adorable, isn't it. :)

Nicole North said...

Hi, the winner of Rampant by Saskia Walker is Casey Sheridan! Congratulations Casey!!

Anonymous said...

I Won! Thank you so much Nicole and Saskia

Saskia Walker said...

The book will be with you in a week or so, Casey! Thank you to everyone who called by and commented, and thanks once again to the Fiece Romance crew for having me here at the blog. Have a great week!