I want to welcome a special guest, Inez Kelley. Inez has a new book out, Turn it Up, and has been tearing up the charts since the release date last week. Before we start, Inez, maybe you could give us a bit of information about yourself?
There isn’t much to tell. I’m boring. I was born in the Appalachian Mountains and have been transplanted recently to the Midwest. It’s flat here. *twitch*I prefer snow to sun and caramel to chocolate. Salty snacks are my downfall so I rarely buy them. As a former 911 dispatcher, I have a bad sense of gallows humor.
What made you write this story?
I started about 2 years ago and got 2/3 the way through. I wanted a bad girl, someone who wasn’t ashamed of her very healthy and very active sexuality. I also wanted a lighthearted twist to sex. So many times the bed-sheet bingo is heavy and emotional but sometimes, sex is just plain out fun.
Your characters are always so memorable (I’m thinking of John Murphy from Sweet as Sin and Bastian in Turn It UP in particular. GREAT books if you haven’t read them already) because of all the levels of characterization you give to them. Do you know when you start off a story every aspect of your characters or do you figure out the layers as you write/edit?
Mostly I know from word one. They may pop a few surprises on me but I know who they are, the core of their personality, and that shapes the rest of the story. I tend to let them speak through me. For example, I had to trust John in SWEET AS SIN when he wouldn’t tell me his secret. Also when Bastian announced his sterility, I just went with it. If I trust my characters from the get-go, the story is always better for it.
You don’t just write contemporary romance, but also write fantasy romance. Do you find it hard to switch back and forth genres?
Sometimes. I’m a bit more lyrical with my fantasy and not as explicit. But once I get into the flow, the words just pour out. I really don’t care what kind of story I’m writing, I just try to tell a good tale.
For Turn it Up, you created twitter accounts for the main characters (@HoneyPotCharlie and @DrHotBastian). What was that like? Did you find it difficult managing the various accounts and getting public interaction? What would you do different if you were to do it again next time?
I loved it! It was like playing. Those two characters are all about the playfulness, the fun, the teasing. I did get and do get some public participation (Doc and Honey are still active) but I’d love to have more!
What is the best part of being a writer? What’s the worse?
I get to share my stories with people who actually READ them. When someone I don’t know says they read my work, I get a shiver and think “Oh God, I’m really an author!”
The worst? No water cooler or co-workers. That is one reason I love twitter so much.
If you could be anyone for a day, who would you pick (can be a character of yours)? Or if you could live in any fictional world, where would you choose?
I wouldn’t want to be anyone but me. If I could pick a fictional world, hands down I’d want to live in Eldwyn – my fantasy world from MYLA BY MOONLIGHT and SALOME AT SUNRISE. The medieval magical flare just speaks to me.
How do you deal with a stubborn muse?
Beat it. With a key board. You can fix crappy, can’t fix blank.
What is the best advice would you ever got?
Listen to the story, not the market. If it speaks, write it and it will sell.
One last question, what’s on your plate for your next book? Anything you can share with your readers?
Nothing concrete, but I am working on revisions to my third fantasy and have a few other things up my sleeve, some hot, some funny and some dark and emotional. All good stuff.
Thanks to Inez for joining us here at Author Rescue!
Excerpt (From the book and Carina website):
“Did you just have an orgasm?”
Charlie’s pink tongue darted over her lips, whisking away the trace of white. A satisfied moan caressed the night. “Better…a s’morgasm.” She bit into the s’more and delight softened her face.
Something akin to jealousy drilled into Bastian’s gut. Things hardened further south for him. Snaps and pops from the small fire filled the silence. Beyond the tree line, another campsite blared hillbilly rock. The throb of music was too low to make out, but it vibrated the night with bass.
Another catlike purr emanated deep in her throat.
“All right, that’s enough. Much more of that and I’ll have to slap a triple-X rating on the marshmallow bag.”
Charlie held out her treat with sugary flirtation. “Want a bite?”
He gave her no warning. He leaned close and snagged the entire offering with snapping teeth.
“Hey! You thief. That was mine.” She huffed with her indignation. The gooey sweetness made it hard to smirk but he did his best, wiggling his eyebrows at her. “Typical man, get a quick s’morgasm and leave a woman wanting.”
“There’s an entire bag of marshmallows left. Have all the s’morgasms you want,” he teased around the mouthful.
Her bottom lip shot out with a pout as she grabbed the pack of graham crackers from his fingers. “I’m not sharing with you anymore.”
“Then make me one of my own.”
She cocked her head. “Do I look like your mother?”
“If my mother had looked like you, I’d have gladly been a mama’s boy.”
The things her laugh did to him were illegal in twelve states. What should have been illegal was the way her faded cutoffs hugged her ass. She looked like Betty Boop in mutilated Levis. There was no way a whisper of air could fit between her skin and the denim, but his fingers would love to try. He fisted them tight to maintain control. Down, boy.
Swallowing more than chocolate and graham cracker, he pulled his eyes from her behind. “Was there peanut butter in that?”
She speared two marshmallows onto the stick he’d sharpened for her. “Yep. Reese’s Cups instead of Hershey Bars—the difference between a s’more and a s’morgasm.”
“Leave it to you to find a way to make camping sexual.” Bastian shook his head with a grin.
Charlie made everything sexual. Some women turned heads. Charlie Pierce turned entire bodies. More than one man had done a complete one-eighty as she walked down the street. She was a siren and a vixen without apology. Her sapphire eyes stared straight at a man, daring him: if you want to look, then look your fill.
No one knew him better and he couldn’t imagine his life without her. He loved her to distraction.
He wanted her with an obsession.
He treasured her like Fort Knox.
He was in hard-on hell.
She was his best friend, his platonic, nonsexual, do-or-die-for buddy.
Somewhere along the line, he’d fallen in love with her. It didn’t matter that she had a boyfriend. It didn’t matter that she’d never looked at him that way. Nothing mattered except she’d stolen his heart and made him feel alive. There wasn’t a damn thing he could do about it except love her in silence.
Long, graceful fingers smoothed a stray dark hair from her face and she caught his gaze. The smile she beamed at him outshone the campfire behind her and warmed his heart with more heat. “Just to be a brat I should drop yours in the dirt.”
“Try it,” he growled. “And you’ll be sleeping in the dirt while I hog the tent.”
“Better than your knees nailing me in the ass again.”