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RT2014: The Author Interviews, part two

I spent one morning at RT, sitting in the lobby and accosting authors. I asked each the same three questions.

What is the most interesting piece of research you ever uncovered while writing a book?

How have people responded to you when you tell them you write romance?

If you had to have lunch with one of your characters, who would it be and why?

HeidiCHeidi Cullinan

I have a book coming out in September published by Samhain called Fever Pitch. It’s a New Adult contemporary, second in my Love Lessons series, but it works as a stand alone.

When I was researching OCD behavior for my story Dirty Laundry, I learned that people with OCD logically understand that the compulsions they have don’t make sense but because of the way they are wired, they can’t stop their behaviors.

Because I write gay romance, people are almost always are interested and intrigued and want to know more.

Randy Jansen from the Special Delivery series. (she laughs) He’s my favorite and he’s the most interesting character I’ve ever written. He’s my guy.

CaraMCara McKenna

My most recent book is Hard Time by Penguin.

Prison regulations (Hard Time is set in a prison). Prisoners aren’t allowed to touch hardly anything. For example, if a prisoner asks for a pen, they’ll give him just the ink tube.

Someone once said “Oh, is it like porn?” when I told them I wrote erotic romance.

The hero from Curio, Didier Pedra. I would just want to watch him eat and talk about his clients. I’d like to hear his sex stories in his heavy French accent. Plus, he’s really nice.

Shelley Ann CShelley Ann Clark:

I have a book coming out July 1st called Have Mercy published by Loveswept

For my first book–which I discarded after writing the first fifty pages–I learned that llamas rest in the kush position with their legs tucked underneath them. They become extremely agressive when denied the company of other llamas. When they are first born, they often like to be blow dried.

I have been pleasantly surprised thus far by the number of people who are excited and interested.

The character Guillermo in Have Mercy because he’s very funny.

imageIsobel Carr:

The book I’m working on now is Ripe for Revenge, it’s a secret baby book of all things (I know, me, secret baby, it’s shocking!).

Probably that Scottish divorce law is totally different than English divorce law. Whereas a divorce was nearly impossible to obtain in England (and took an act of Parliament!), in Scotland, they were not only easy to obtain, but a man’s adultery was grounds for one, and they even provided the equivalent of public defenders to help poor women obtain one (yes, women could file for divorce, and when it was granted, it was as if the husband had died and she got everything she would have been entitled to upon his death).

“How do you deal with all the rape.” It was my first RWA conference, and two nurses at the hotel asked me this after I said I wrote historical romance. I was flabbergasted and wasn’t entirely sure how to respond. When I tried to explain that there was no rape in my books, they replied, “Then how do they lose their virginity?”

Margo from Ripe for Seduction. You just know she has all the good gossip and she’d be incredibly entertaining over cocktails.

imageDamon Suede

My latest book is called Bad Idea and is about a reclusive comic book writer who falls for a rowdy monster make-up designer in the world of pop culture and obsessive fandom.

In my first book Hot Head, which was about 9/11, I spent several weeks doing station tours and ride arounds with the FDNY in New York City almost exactly ten years after the towers came down. What was fascinating was how different the FDNY was compared to their reputation prior to 9/11. Everything changed after 9/11; so many men died that the captains now are all young and open in a way I wouldn’t have expected.

I have ten fans with tattoos….. Three or four have my name, three books have covers, and four have ones inspired by my book covers. For some reason my fans keep marking themselves. I’m so honored that anyone would carry my stories on that way.

I have a paranormal called Horn Gate. The main paranormal character is a demon called Scratch. Scratch is an incubus who feeds on human emotion. The reason I would meet with him is because I would–seriously–love to be an incubus. I’d finally have visible horns.

Note: Later that morning, Damon Suede came up to me with an elderly gentleman in tow. The man in question was, Damon said, a straight grandfather and a serious fan. So serious a fan that he has two tattoos, one on each thigh, inspired by Damon’s work. I, of course, had to take pictures.

DS Tattoo Two


Dabney Grinnan






available books mentioned in this post are:



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05/19/2014 12:22 pm

They are all very interesting answers. But I think it’s Isobel Carr’s anecdote what surprises me most -that idea that there must be a rape in all historical romances. Non-romance readers’ prejudices will never stop surprising me.

Dabney Grinnan
Dabney Grinnan
Reply to  Bona
05/19/2014 1:56 pm

Isobel’s comments were echoed by many of the authors I spoke to. It’s a genre that is definitely misunderstood by those who don’t read it.

maggie b.
maggie b.
05/19/2014 9:01 am

Love the tatoos!

maggie b.
maggie b.
Reply to  maggie b.
05/19/2014 9:01 am

Posted too fast! That should be tattoos!

05/19/2014 8:44 am

Fun interviews Dabney!