by Kristin Daniels
Hi everyone! I’d like to welcome fellow author and a friend of mine, Alisha Rai. Alisha is here to tell us about her new release from Samhain, and to let us in on her life as an Erotic Romance author.
Hi Alisha! Can you tell us about your latest release?
I am so excited to announce that I just released a new novel from Samhain Publishing, Cabin Fever. My heroine, Genevieve, discovers a fatally wounded man on her porch one night in the midst of a snowstorm. Lucky for him, she’s not the average hermit. Here’s the blurb:
Love isn’t something she thinks she needs…until it lands right on her doorstep.
Genevieve Boden is a witch and doesn’t care who knows. The townspeople’s fear of herkeeps away those who have hurt her before—like the local men of authority. Besides, a life of exile deep in the woods of West Virginia is due punishment, she figures, for the part she played in her mother’s death. If she’s alone, no one need know that the trauma took away her powers.
Then she finds a bloody, fatally wounded man slumped on her porch. In an instant, her healing ability reawakens—and that’s not all. He stirs a hunger beyond her wildest dreams. But a relationship with the new chief of police? Not a chance.
Alex Rivera isn’t sure how he survived, but he’s certain his beautiful savior did more than just bandage his wounds. Captivated by this wary angel and stunned by the depth of emotion he feels for her, he vows to discover her secrets. After all, thanks to the raging snowstorm, they have nothing to do but share body heat.
Their sizzling attraction goes straight to their hearts. So could a killer’s bullet…once whoever shot Alex finds them.
Warning: Contains a convenient snowstorm that throws together two wounded characters who happen to be wildly attracted to each other, a drool-worthy hero, a shotgun-toting heroine, mattress sex, shower sex, couch sex, armchair sex, some light bondage, and a really good cup of hot cocoa.
You can read more, including an excerpt, here:
Wow, sounds hot, hot, hot! Tell us a little about your favorite character in the book.
As much as I love my delicious hero (that tummy on the cover is just scratching the surface of Alex’s assets), I can’t help but go with my heroine, Genevieve. She’s gutsy, loyal, honest, funny, a crack shot, and a healer to boot. Oh, and she uses what she’s got to protect the ones she loves. How could I not adore her?
I love a strong heroine! What element of story creation is your favorite?
Characters! I love making characters pop off a page. I’m a certified people-watcher.
Oh, me too (sometimes to my husband’s chagrin, LOL)! What element of this story was the hardest for you?
Oh, God. Everything. I’ve changed this story so much since I started working on it a few years ago. It began as a very short short, went on to novella size, and now it’s a novel.
I wish it would have been as easy as just adding a few scenes here and there. I had to completely dismantle and rewrite the plot, the characters, and the setting in order to fit the new length. In the version that went to print, the only thing that remains of the original story is the premise, which in my initial notes reads, and I quote: “Heroine finds Hero shot on her porch. He stays naked throughout story.” Clear to see where my priorities are, huh?
Hey, a girl has to pay attention to those priorities! So tell me, when did you know you wanted to be an author?
Forever. I don’t think I’ve ever wanted to be anything else. I felt the weight of familial expectations, though, and I tried my best to put it aside in pursuit of a more “legitimate” career.
Fortunately, I couldn’t keep those characters in my head. I still cringe at the idea of my mother reading my work (oh ew, ew, must stop thinking of that…), but it’s clearly not stopping me. I love writing romance!
You and me both! What’s your writing process or method?
I’m supposed to have a process? Oops. I’m a bit of a pantser. I tried to outline a story once, and it was a no-go.
When I sit down to write something new, I do a rough sketch of the characters, the premise, and the outcome. Everything else gets filled in along the way.
I think we’re pretty similar in that. I’m pretty much a pantser too! What was the most important thing you learned (the thing that made all the difference) just before you made your first sale?
Publishing = timing + luck
So relax. When I finally figured out that I needed to just chill and write and trust that the planets would align eventually, that’s when everything clicked. Don’t write what’s hot. Write what you want. Don’t get depressed if it doesn’t get snapped up the first or even the fifteenth time…it may just not be the time for it right now. Put it away and work on something else for a while.
I agree, just keep writing, right? What do you wish you’d known before becoming published?
I wish I’d known what to do when I finally did get that contract in my hands. I think I spent so much time writing and revising and querying that I didn’t even contemplate what the next step would be. I come from a business background where I read and give out contracts on a regular basis, but when I opened that e-mail it was like I had to learn a whole new language…and Samhain’s contract is actually pretty straightforward! Still, I took about four weeks to actually sign and send it back to them.
Not always a bad way to go. It's important to completely understand what you're signing. Do you have any advice for unpublished authors?
This kind of relates to the previous question. If you have a shiny contract in your hands, resist the urge to whip out your pen. It is your absolute right to take your time and read it in depth. I highly recommend consulting a literary attorney. Ask questions. Understand every single clause and what the repercussions would be if you agreed to them. Really think about if you can live with it, and what the deal breakers are/would be.
Before even submitting, make sure you do your research about potential publishers/agents. Don’t brush off any red flags. Ask around, lurk on blogs, whatever you have to do. It’s not worth the headache to sign with someone who’s not going to treat you properly.
Very true! What’s next for you?
I’m working on like five projects right now. That’s both good and bad, depending on how you look at it. The bad part is that I’m mad busy. The good part is (I hope) my readers will be getting more books!
I hope so too! I’d like to thank Alisha for being with us today. She'll be giving away an e-book copy of Cabin Fever to one lucky commenter, so let's all leave Alisha best wishes and thanks for stopping by! Please visit her at: www.alisharai.com or alisharai.wordpress.com