Interview of Laura Kaye (and a Giveaway too!)
BadAssBook Reviews welcomes Laura Kaye today for an interview to discuss the release of her new book South of Surrender the third book in the Hearts of the Anemoi series. We have a contest below — so keep reading to win and play!
Regina: One of the things I really enjoy about your writing is that while there is a focus on the romance and the passion, the characters are very well developed. What are your influences in terms of writing and developing characters?
Laura: Thank you for that! Every story I write begins with the characters. I know them first and I figure what their story is from there. So I always feel like I really know them, and they certainly feel real to me. I also put something of myself in every character I write, which means I can relate to them. I gave South of Surrender’s Laney my love of horses, for example, and I gave Her Forbidden Hero’s Marco a brain injury, and having to deal with the consequences of that just as I had to in 2008.
Regina: I gotta say that my favorite work by you is your novella Hearts in Darkness. That novella is how I discovered you as a writer. There was something so amazing about how the characters learned about each other and how the readers, in turn, learned about the characters. I don’t want to spoil this story for readers who haven’t yet read it (hey readers – read this novella!) … but the slow unveiling of each character was so well done. What was the inspiration for the set-up of this story?
Laura: Aw, I’m so glad you enjoyed Hearts in Darkness! The inspiration was largely an elevator at work that always broke down and in which people regularly got trapped. And I knew right from the start that it was the hero who was claustrophobic. I really love forced proximity stories, too, so it was the perfect set-up.
Regina: Will we ever get more of Makenna and Caden?
Laura: It’s possible, but I don’t have definitive plans to write more of them right now.
Regina: What projects are you currently working on?
Laura: I’m currently writing East of Ecstasy, the fourth book in the Hearts of the Anemoi series. And then I’ll be writing Hard As You Can, the second book in my new Hard Ink series which debuts in November with Hard As It Gets.
Regina: Are you planning more Hearts of the Anemoi books?
Laura: There will be at least four Hearts of the Anemoi books. The last one, East of Ecstasy, will release April 2014.
You write in several genres, but romance and passion are a common element across all of your books. Do you have a preferred genre that you like to write in? When you sit down to write, are you targeting a certain genre?
I usually know if a book I’m going to write is either contemporary or paranormal, in part because I’m writing four series right now (two of each), so I’m not writing much outside of those series at the moment. I really enjoy them both equally, and the fact that I’m writing both makes the one I’m coming back to feel new and fresh and fun.
Regina: Okay — the love scenes, are these easy for you to write? I know some authors say they struggle with them but others have fun writing them, what about you?
Laura: They’re not hard to write, but they can take a lot of energy because I know how important they are, and, in general, I don’t tend to write short sex scenes. LOL I mostly enjoy writing them, though, because they’re always so emotional and impactful for the characters.
Regina: I am guessing that many fans of yours many be interested in writing habits, can you give us an idea of any writing rituals and habits that you have?
Laura: I don’t have any special rituals I must do to write, but I definitely have some habits. I write every week day from 9am – 5pm (at a minimum) and aim for 2-3,000 words a day. I also write at Panera most days with my best friend and fellow author Lea Nolan. Other than that, I’m easy! *winks*
Regina: What books do you enjoy to read?
Laura: My most favorite genres are paranormal (especially vampires), contemporary romance, and Highlanders. I especially enjoy J.R. Ward (my favorite author), anything by Maya Banks, and Sherrilyn Kenyon.
Regina: I know that writing is the type of career that requires a lot of time and focus but … when you have free time, what do you enjoy doing on a Friday night?
Laura: Honestly, I’m probably writing! LOL But when I’m not, I’m either reading or watching TV (The Walking Dead, anything paranormal or vampires, or reality shows like The Biggest Loser.
Thanks so much for chatting with me today!
Enjoy this excerpt of South of Surrender:
Laney froze, then was right there with him.
Their tongues met, dueled, twirled. He fisted his hand in her hair and guided her, deepening when he wanted, restraining her when he needed.
Her hands slid up his chest toward his neck.
Chrys gasped into the kiss, but fought the reflexive desire to pull away. Instead, he pushed her back one step, then another, until her back encountered the door. He grabbed her arms and pressed them to the surface over her head. The control flooded relief through him and fueled his arousal another notch.
“I want to touch you,” she whispered around a kiss.
His brain scrambled for a moment, and then he wedged his body in tighter, the ridge of his cock coming in snug against her belly. She unleashed a strangled moan as Chrys plundered her mouth, relished her sweet taste, bathed in her life-giving heat.
Good gods, her body was absolutely alive with her arousal. She clenched and unclenched her hands, her arm muscles flexing where he restrained her. Her abdomen writhed against his, creating a maddening friction against his erection. Her thighs shifted and squeezed.
It was only with the barest of restraint that he resisted willing her clothing away, turning her to face the wall, and tugging her hips out so he could bury himself deep.
Lost in the imagery, Chrys didn’t notice the change in her movements until she slowly dragged her injured leg up the outside of his. Her wrists pressed against his hold and a yearning moan worked up her throat. “Chrys,” she whimpered, her thigh moving higher and wrapping around.
His pulse lunged into a sprint. Damnit. He pulled back and stepped away, the phantom feeling of her flesh trapping his spiking fear through him. “I’m sorry,” he said, rubbing his lips, regret a rock in his stomach. He could still feel her, taste her. Making sure she was steady on her feet, he dropped his hands from holding hers.
GIVEAWAY: Did you have a favorite line from the excerpt? One commenter who leaves their email address will win a $5 amazon or B&N gift card! Open to international! Good luck!
Also enter the Rafflecopter for a chance at the overall tour prizes to be picked on June 22!
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Visit all the stops on the South of Surrender Blog Tour for more ways to win!
About South of Surrender:
She’s the only one who can see through his golden boy façade to the broken god within…
Chrysander Notos, Supreme God of the South Wind and Summer, is on a mission: save Eurus from his death sentence and prove his troubled brother can be redeemed. But Eurus fights back, triggering vicious storms that threaten the mortal realm and dangerously drain Chrys.
Laney Summerlyn refuses to give up her grandfather’s horse farm, despite her deteriorating vision. More than ever, she needs the organized routine of her life at Summerlyn Stables, until a ferocious storm brings an impossible—and beautiful—creature crashing down from the heavens.
Injured while fighting Eurus, Chrys finds himself at the mercy of a mortal woman whose compassion and acceptance he can’t resist. As they surrender to the passion flaring between them, immortal enemies close in, forcing Chrys to choose between his brother and the only woman who’s ever loved the real him.
About Laura Kaye:
Laura is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of a dozen books in contemporary and paranormal romance. Growing up, Laura’s large extended family believed in the supernatural, and family lore involving angels, ghosts, and evil-eye curses cemented in Laura a life-long fascination with storytelling and all things paranormal. She lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.
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