Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Meet Leia Shaw and Cari Silverwood

What motivates Leia and Cari the authors? Why do you write?
Cari: I could say because of all the little voices inside my head screeching at me, but that would only be partly true. There’s a feeling you get of imminent ‘Oh-my-god-effin-YES!’ from writing out the plot and getting the characters together into exactly the right situation, and once they are there it can be like going over the edge of a waterfall – exhilarating, terrifying and screaming good fun all at the same time. That is why I write.And then there’s also Leia. If I don’t write she beats me up.
Leia: Um, because of all the little voices inside my head screeching at me. Wow. Interviews are easy when you steal your co-authors answers!
When did you know you were a writer? Was it always your destiny or did you stumble upon your craft by accident?
Cari: I think I always wanted to be a writer. Knowing that I could do it though is another matter. Once I got over the hump of my first story…which was, I recall, about an errant lunchbox, it was all uphill from there. Now I write about the better quality of lunches, and about naughty things that happen on the kitchen table, sometimes while the lunch is still there. I have X rated picnics too.
What is your favorite genre  to write and why?
Cari: BDSM m/f definitely. I do like those Dominant men. If they’re not all alpha the story turns into a gray porridge of nothing interesting for me. I also have a love of fantasy and adventure stories with the odd murder, war and zombie invasion on the side.
Is there a particular genre you haven't tried but would like to? What is it and why?
 Cari: Western, old-time western. I love cowboys with six-shooters. Imagine being able to write a story where a hero can say, "Ride 'em hard!" and it doesn't sound silly? Yum.
How did you get into eBook publishing?
 Cari: In a round-about way through joining critters, an online crit group. I met Nerine Dorman, an editor and writer and friend. She lured me into trying to write erotic romance and I took to it like a duck to water…or like a six foot cowboy to a creek with a skinny-dipping heroine. Mmm must go write some more. It’s calling me.
How many hours a day do you devote to writing? Do you have a set routine or do you write when the mood strikes?
   Leia: I have two kids under the age of six so I only wish I could write whenever the mood strikes. I’m best in the morning, when my mind is fresh and not bogged down by potty training and finger painting. My big epiphanies often occur in the shower. I’ll run downstairs, towel on my head, clothes thrown on half-hazardly and say, “I just had a brilliant idea, I have to write it down!” My husband rolls his eyes but he’s pretty good about giving me time to jot down my ideas.
Is there a certain aspect of the story you begin with? Do you create the characters first or do you come up with the plot?
  Leia: I always do the characters first. They are the story. My favorite part is forming them – their personalities, their strengths and weakness, giving them back stories. Then I create the h/h as a couple. What are their dynamics, how do they complement one another? The plot is important too and that comes kind of at the same time, but for me, it’s always about the characters.
Tell us about the most intriguing character you've created.
   Leia: I’d have to say the infamous Red Dragon of Wales, Gethin. He can take human form and he has a cameo in each of my books. He’s the guardian of the door to the Underworld. Each time one of my characters needs passage, he shows up collecting favors to complete his ultimate mission – taking back his treasure that Nyx, goddess of night, stole. In my world, dragons are almost as old as the earth and have gone a little mad. Gethin is the definition of creepy, but he’s a lot of fun to write.
Has there been a person or influence in your life that has helped you reach your writing goals?
Leia: My best friend, Devan. She’s my biggest fan and supporter. She lives several states away so we only see each other a few times a year. It was during a visit that I got the idea for my first book. She spent the whole five days plotting with me, developing the characters, and reading my really crappy first draft. She’s the person I call when I get a hurtful review, when I want to rejoice over sales, or when I just need a brainstorming session.
Do you have any words of inspiration to aspiring authors? What advice would you offer a writer trying to publish?
  Leia: Join a critique group. Don’t make the mistake of thinking you can do this alone. Don’t get defensive about critiques. Learn from them.

Tell us about your current release.

31 Flavors
Blurb: There are some things in life you have to try before you know how they will affect you.
After 5 years of awful sex, I was ready. Bondage and spanking had always featured in my fantasies, and one day, I convinced my husband to try them. That day was a turning point.

Ice cream comes in many flavors and that’s us too -- not vanilla, maybe not Rocky Road either. We can be a combination or make up our own and no one has the right to judge us. But there will always be one question that tears at my soul: Will my husband, Nick, ever be happy with what I crave?

 Do you have any upcoming projects in the works?
  Cari. My next book out is Lust Plague on March 27th, which I'm calling a sex-laden steampunk extravaganza. If you don't know what steampunk is, think retro-scifi with corsets, goggles, airships, and daring heroes and heroines. Also for my stories, add in fetish clothes, BDSM, and spectacular sex toys with loads of blue zappy bits and cogwheels.
      Leia: The 4th book in my paranormal series, Shadows of Destiny, will be released this summer. A feisty witch travels to the Underworld to save her sister and makes a deal with a sexy demon (I know, never a good idea) to help her. I’m super excited for this book because it’s my most fantasy-driven one so far. My inner child is jumping up and down clapping her hands at all the magic and adventure and fighting and mythological creatures. It’ll be a lot of fun while also giving you what you expect in my books – humor, steamy sex scenes, and great romance.
Where can readers connect with you?

              Cari on twitter - @CariSilverwood
Leia’s website http://www.leiashaw.com
Leia’s twitter @LeiaShaw

Thanks so much for joining us and giving us a glimpse into your writing lives.

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