8/12/2011

Story Orgy Presents: Silvia Violet

Welcome Story Orgy Readers! I have SIlvia Violet in the kitchen today, a marvelous cook, and writer of m/m romance.She's going to tell us a bit about herself, and a bit about her work.



What is your favorite quality about yourself? Loyalty. Once I’m your friend, I’ll stick by you no matter what.
What are you most proud of accomplishing so far in your life? Becoming a mom to two beautiful daughters. They are my greatest challenge but also the part of my life I am most proud of. Watching them grow is an amazing privilege.
 When and why did you begin writing? I’ve loved writing since I could first hold a pencil but I started writing with the goal of being published in 2001. I’d just finished a master’s program in history and I realized that I’d much rather write romance than scholarly papers. Instead of continuing with my original goal of being a professor, I taught high school and worked toward a career as a writer of romance and erotica.
What inspires you to write and why? I’m often inspired by music or by what I’m reading, but my primary motivation to write is the complexity of people. I love bringing interesting characters to life.
What do you consider the most challenging about writing a novel, or about writing in general? Getting through the first draft. I dread the feeling of seeing the story so clearly in my head like a movie but being unable to translate what I see into words on my screen. I have to coax myself through it by setting lots of little goals like 250 more words and I can check Facebook or 500 words and I can have a cupcake.
What is your greatest strength as a writer? I’m very open to suggestions and constructive criticism from beta readers and editors. I willing to revise again and again to make the story as good as it can be.
Have you ever had writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it? Don’t we all? LOL! I usually open up my story and start writing notes, just stream of consciousness ideas. Sometimes I will hit on an idea that will jump start the story again. If this doesn’t work, I switch to another project or take the rest of the day off and try again the next day.
Tell us your latest news?
My first m/m story, Sex on the Hoof, releases July 8. I also have an m/f BDSM sci fi, Seduction of the Captain coming from Loose Id in July.
Can you share a little of your current work with us? (a blurb, or excerpt)
Protect and Serve: Sex on the Hoof by Silvia Violet
http://changelingpress.com/product.php?&upt=book&ubid=1629
Blurb:
Deer shifter Jason Fleetfoot has turned his life around. After years of taking chances, he's got a job as a crime lab technician, and he's determined to forgo the risky behavior of his past.
Then he meets Drew Danvers, the only undead detective in the city. Jason hates vampires, or does he? Drew defies all the stereotypes of his kind and something about him has taken hold of Jason and won't let go.
Will Jason take a chance on a man others would label a risk to his health if not his very life?
Excerpt:
I’m Jason Fleetfoot. I’ve made a lot of stupid mistakes in my life. The stupidest of all was taking a job with some assholes intent on manufacturing illegal chemical weapons.
My sister, Natalie, lost her job when her company folded, and I lost mine because my fucking boss was a bastard. I’ve got authority issues. And control issues. Alright, I’m seriously fucked up, but I wasn’t going to let my sister starve because I couldn’t keep it together.
So I made a deal with the devil and damn near got myself and Natalie killed. She saved me, she and her cop boyfriend, Wolf. The name’s not a joke. He’s a werewolf. Did I mention we’re shifters, Natalie and I. Deer shifters. If you think my human form is impressive, you should see me as a ten point buck. So yeah, a werewolf and a deer shifter. Somehow they’re making it work.
As much as I hate being beholden to Wolf, I wouldn’t be where I am now if it wasn’t for him. Once the cops cleared me, Wolf helped me get a job in the crime lab where I can use my knowledge of chemistry and computers for the good guys.
As the newest hire, I work nights, babysitting the equipment and working on what comes in during the wee hours. For the most part, I like it. It’s quiet and I get a chance to play around with new techniques and do a bit of programming. There’s only one problem, Detective Drew Danvers.
He works nights too. Not because he’s new, because he’s a God-damned vampire. They say he was Changed against his will. But what the hell was he doing picking up a vampire at a bar? I certainly have no intention of fucking a vampire. No matter how damn fuckable Drew is. Yeah, I like men, what of it? And Drew is a fine specimen of a man, like some Viking warrior. He’s at least 6’3” with sculpted arms and pecs that make him look like he could lift a truck one-handed. Considering he’s a vamp, he probably can.
Getting involved with Drew would be stupid on too many levels to count. And I’m finished with making stupid decisions. So why does my body want so desperately to be impaled on him – his cock, his fangs, anything he’d like to stick in me. Natalie’s right, my dick really doesn’t communicate with my brain. I don’t just want to fuck him, I want to be taken by him, and I never want that. Like I said, I have control issues. But with Drew . . . No, there’s never going to be anything with Drew.
I hear the buzz that signals someone entering the lab. I glance around from behind the mass spec machine. Shit! Speak of the devil or in this case his undead minion.
My pride will not let me hide even though I want to. I’m not afraid of him, even if I should be. I’m just afraid my unruly cock will give away my interest.
His gaze slides up and down my body. He’s looked at me like this before. But I have never been sure whether it’s sexual interest or him salivating over me like I’m a piece of the lush chocolate cake my grandma used to make on Sundays. “You alone in here, Fleetfoot?”
Shit, maybe he does mean to make a meal out of me. No point in lying though. He probably already knows the answer. Aren’t vampires supposed to be damn near omnipotent? “Newton called in sick, and everyone else is out in the field.
“Good.” Danvers smiles, still eyeing me like I’m prey. If I was in deer form I’d bolt, white tail flagging danger. But I’m a man and his ice blue gaze has me glued to the spot. God above, he’s gorgeous when he smiles. My cock is starting to get uncomfortable in my jeans.
My heart pounds as I try to interpret his response. Does he mean “good I’m going to give you to the best fuck of your life” or “good I’m going to drain your blood and leave you for dead”.

How did you come up with the title? with a deer shifter hero, I just couldn’t resist calling it Sex on the Hoof
Can you tell us about your main character? Jason is a mostly reformed bad boy who was recently rescued from a kidnapping by his sister and her werewolf cop lover (see the prequel, Savage Wolf, for their story). He now works in a crime lab where he meets vampire detective Drew Danvers. Like most people, he’s prejudiced against vamps, but he finds Drew irresistible so he lets down his barriers and gives their relationship a chance.
How did you develop your plot and characters? This book is part of Changeling’s multi-author Protect and Serve series. All the books have a main character who is a policeman, fireman or other first responder. Jason’s sister is the heroine of my first Protect and Serve story and I had fun pairing a deer shifter with a werewolf in that story so I thought a deer and a vampire would be another fun combo. I imagined possibilities for a vampire cop in a world where vampires are almost invariably killers, Drew started talking to me and told me his story of being seduced by a vampire and then forced to Change. I knew that he and Jason would never be able to be happy while Drew’s attacker was still at large so their story came to be about his capture.
Who designed the cover? The cover was designed by Bryan Keller and I couldn’t be happier with it!
What was the hardest part about writing this book? balancing humor with the intensity of Jason and Drew’s relationship and working through the power dynamics of a relationship between two alphas
Where can we purchase the book? It will be available at Changeling Press on July 8. http://changelingpress.com/product.php?&upt=book&ubid=1629
Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp? One of the themes of this book is that no matter what stereotypes exist about someone’s race or cultural background, each person is an individual. Not matter what you think you know about someone, you should take time to get to know them before passing judgment on them.
            Who is your favorite author and why? Jane Austen. Her characters are so real I feel like I know them personally. While her books are set in the Regency era, the problems that her characters face are universal so they speak as clearly to readers today as they did in the 1800s.
            What are your current writing projects now? I’ve working on a m/m novella set in an underwater research station. It’s titled Reef’s Guardian and it will be out this fall. Once it’s turned into my editor I’ll go back to work on a sci fi story I’m working on. The heroes are intergalactic spies who were torn apart when a mission went awry. Each one blames the other for betraying him. Lots of angst and pain but lots of heat too.
How do you deal with rejection letters? I let myself be sad for a day. I whine to my husband and a few friends and then I put them aside and move on.
            Do you have any advice for writers? Make time to write every day. Literally put it on your calendar. Set a realistic goal and stick with it. Even if that means 15 minutes of writing a day. Writing consistently is the best way to get a story finished.

What do you do to unwind and relax? I bake. Creating cakes, cookies, and other treats is relaxing for me and it’s a way to be creative without the pressure to produce that I have with my writing.
 What dreams have been realized as a result of your writing? I’m able to share my stories with others and I’m have a job that I love and can do on my own schedule while staying home with my kids.
 If you could leave your readers with one bit of wisdom, what would you want it to be? Never give up on your dreams. "Permanence, perseverance and persistence in spite of all obstacles, discouragements, and impossibilities: It is this, that in all things distinguishes the strong soul from the weak." -Thomas Carlyle

 Silvia’s Links
Website and Blog: http://silviaviolet.com




Did You Happen to See?

Now Available! 


 Truth or Dare book 3

Giving Up  

This is the story of Brandon Blake, the eldest Blake brother.

It's available from 
                ARe
                Amazon    
                BookStrand 
                1 Place for Romance


Blurb:

Can Dr. Arden Grey teach Brandon Blake that giving up control is worth while, with the right woman?


Brandon Blake has a problem.  His family is fed up with his controlling ways. They don’t need him managing their affairs any more.  Brandon doesn’t want to lose his connection with his brothers, but he doesn’t know any other way to live.   He’s been in charge for a long time. Now his brothers are leaving home and making families of their own, and Brandon’s interference has caused some serious rifts. Brandon’s stressful job as CEO of the family production studio and his concerns for his brothers have contributed to the ulcer his doctor recently diagnosed. Therapy is supposed to help Brandon learn how to let go and give up the need to control every thing.  Brandon finds the counselor he’s been sent to intriguing, if a bit intimidating, though she has absolutely nothing in common with the women he’s dated in the past.

Dr. Arden Gray knows about control.  A survivor of marriage to a dominant, abusive partner, she’s spent the last twenty years turning her life around.  She’s learned to take control and has made a career of teaching others to do the same.  Brandon Blake is a surprise.  When his doctor sends Brandon to her, Arden isn’t sure how she can help the man.  But after a few sessions, she sees something intriguing hidden inside Brandon Blake, something that tells her he just might be the man she’s been looking for.  If only she can convince him that giving up control to the right woman will solve all his problems!

Excerpt:
He stood automatically, reaching out to shake her hand in greeting and murmuring polite good mornings.  A slight heat rose in his cheeks and he hoped to hell the blush wasn’t visible.  And why the fuck a simple handshake for the doctor should cause him to blush he didn’t know, but something about her made him feel self-conscious and uncertain in ways he hadn’t felt since he was a wild sixteen year old serving as his beautiful mother’s escort to Hollywood’s wild parties.

            He stiffened his spine and forced himself to meet those sharp blue eyes, unwittingly squeezing her hand just a little too tightly.  He watched as the blue eyes flared wide then narrowed, and Dr. Grey gently removed her hand from his.  The flush on his cheeks grew and he felt his stomach churn alarmingly.  He and Trick were about to have more in common than he’d ever thought possible if he couldn’t calm down soon. 

            Dr. Grey led him into her office and he took the same seat he normally did on the plush leather chair in front of the desk.  Somewhat surprised, he noticed that instead of taking the chair adjacent to him as she usually did Dr. Grey seated herself behind the neat steel and glass desk.  Crossing her hands on the desktop, she met his questioning gaze calmly, and Brandon let out the breath he hadn’t realized he held.  His roiling emotions calmed as he took in her stillness, and even his churning stomach was soothed.  This was different, but not wrong. 

            Or so he thought until she spoke. 

            “I’m afraid, Brandon, that I can’t keep you on as patient any longer.”

            Panic flared.  “What? Why not?”  His stomach heaved and he forced himself to breathe deeply through his nose, swallowing rapidly to prevent the consequences of the sudden lurch.  Nothing of his feelings showed on his face.  He had twenty-three years of practice at making sure of that. He couldn’t have heard correctly. 

            “Because I can’t help you in a professional capacity.  I’ve given you the tools to manage your problem, you’re an intelligent man and you can resolve your issues from here on your own.”  Her voice remained the same as it always had, soothing and cool, her gaze untroubled and calm. 

            Damn. How had he come to depend on that calmness in such a few meetings?  How would he deal without the soothing effect her voice had on his nerves and stomach?  Quickly pulling in resources to hide the shocking sense of abandonment he suddenly felt, Brandon grasped the tiny thread of anger and blew it up. 

            He surged upright and waved his phone in her face.  “Fuck.  I could have been at the office heading off a dozen major crises!  See this?  It’s called a cell phone. I have it with me all the time.  Next time you need to change our plans, use it!”

8/10/2011

In The Kitchen: Casseroles Are Fun

Casseroles can be a lot of fun to serve as a side dish or a quick meal.  This one is one of our favorites.  Now, its not a recipe that my mom made.  I think I had it first in a restaurant in Colorado somewhere.  It's not fancy, but it could be!  You can spiffy it up for a special occasion by using Gruyere, or really, any cheese you like! 

  

Broccoli, Rice, Cheese, and Chicken Casserole
     
INGREDIENTS:
3 cups cooked rice 
1 (16 ounce) package frozen chopped
broccoli
1 small white onion, chopped
2 cups diced chicken
1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar or other cheese

4T butter
4T flour
1 1/2  cups milk

DIRECTIONS:
1.         Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2.         In a deep skillet melt butter over medium heat. Stir flour into melted butter until dissolved.  Add milk , stirring until sauce thickens.  Add cheese to sauce.  
3.         In a 9x13 inch baking dish, mix the prepared rice, chicken, cheese sauce, broccoli, and onion, .
4.         Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until bubbly. Stir halfway through cooking to help cheese melt evenly.


Be Yourself

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. ~e.e. cummings, 1955