Fan Interview #1 – @cerebraltart interviews Me

For the last few weeks, I’ve been asking my readers to send in questions that they’ve been wanting to ask me. They could be about me as an author, a blogger, or even me as a reader. Almost anything goes.

So far, the response hasn’t been that big, but I’m hoping that now that September is here and that I’m posting my responses to these questions, more people will send some good ones in. I really think this can be both fun and informative and ultimately, a great addition to the blog.

If you’d like to send in some questions, I’d be happy to answer them. Here’s the original post looking for them if you’d like to check that out and find out how to send in the questions.

Thanks in advance, and thank you to those who’ve already asked some great things.

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Today’s interviewer is author India Reid. You can find more about her on her website, TwitterFacebook, and Goodreads

When did you first start to feel like a “real” writer?

I’m not sure really. I think there have been a few times in my writing life where I’ve had different levels of “I’m a writer” in my mind. After writing my first poem in 11th grade was when I first felt like I’m some sort of a poet. However, it wasn’t until after I graduated my first college that I even considered myself a writer enough to pursue getting better at it. That’s when I started working on my creative writing degree. The program itself didn’t make me feel like I was a writer until late in the game. I blame that on the education system, not the CW professors or department at all. There was just a lack of time for those IMPORTANT courses when each student was required to complete so many other classes outside of their major. A big “I’m a writer” moment was sometime in my last semester of college, I think. When I was working on what would later expand to be From Where I Stand and getting feedback from my professor on my work. It felt like I was “really doing it”. My stuff was good and had potential to be better. It also helped that in that course we had to organize a public reading of a bit of what we were working on. Getting a reaction from a nice sized audience was probably what I needed all along for me to feel like I was doing something great.

How often do you write?

I wish I could say I write every day. I used to back in high school and early in college. I’d write at least a poem (whether it was good or bad) every day or multiple times a day. Lately (the last year or so) I seem to be in a BIG funk. I keep wanting to sit down and write something, but nothing happens. I need to fix that big time. I need a good kick in the ass probably and to not just accept that inspiration hasn’t hit yet. The dry spell has lasted too long.

What’s your word count per day like?

I don’t write like that and to be honest, I don’t think I’ll ever write with a word count goal of any sort. It seems to be the only way some writers work, but for me, I’ll either write a lot or a little, but all that matters is that I wrote and it’s semi-usable material.

Part of this might be because I write poetry a majority of the time, too. You can’t really put a word count on that form of writing. I have some poems that are only 30 words, but they can get a better reaction from my audience than another poem that’s 200 words. I tend to write shorter poems anyway. If I were to have a “goal” for a day, I think I’d be safer setting a goal like “edit X poems per work day”. It wouldn’t even be about writing them, but reworking them. That’s where the real work comes in for me after I’ve gotten it down on paper.

#Review: Dangerous Angels, by @francescablock

Dangerous AngelsTitle: Dangerous Angels (Weetzie Bat books 1-5)
Author: Francesca Lia Block
Rating: 4/5 stars

“Love is a dangerous angel…

Francesca Lia Block’s luminous saga of interwoven lives will send the senses into wild overdrive. These post-modern fairy tales chronicle the thin line between fear and desire, pain and pleasure, cutting loose and holding on in a world where everyone is vulnerable to the most beautiful and dangerous angel of all: love.” (description from Goodreads)

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I first discovered Francesca Lia Block years ago through her book Weetzie Bat. I had randomly found a copy at my bookstore and figured it’d be a fast, fun read. I ended up being right. I also grabbed Girl Goddess #9 soon after, but that was my only experience with Block’s work for many years. Luckily, at some time last year I was reintroduced to this author and discovered that there were more books in the Weetzie Bat series. Most of those are collected in Dangerous Angels.

Overall I enjoyed these five books (of seven total in the series). I enjoyed a few more than others, but there weren’t any that I didn’t like here. I think the fact that they were all collected into one book made the experience with these characters even better. It kept reminding me that these characters are part of something bigger.

Block created a very diverse, eccentric cast of characters for this series. Their names alone can make the reader smile. I also found the way the setting, the cities and houses, becomes a character in itself. These books wouldn’t be what they are if the settings weren’t incorporated so well.

I’d have a hard time reviewing the individual books in this collection without jumping into spoiler territory, so I won’t go into that. The only thing I’ll mention is that my reread of Weetzie Bat was surprising. I think I got more out of it for the second read and wasn’t bored at all (which is a fear I have for rereading anything). The magic was still there. Another thing to note was Missing Angel Juan, the fourth book. I wasn’t sure how to feel about it at first because it’s the only book that’s written in the 1st person point of view. It threw me off for a bit, but I ended up realizing that it was the only way that book would work. 3rd person POV wasn’t suited for Missing Angel Juan, or Witch Baby’s character for that journey.

There are two more books in the Weetzie Bat series, Necklace of Kisses and the prequel Pink Smog. They’re both on my TBR and will be read soon. I have a feeling that once I’m done with those, I’ll be missing Weetzie and her friends. These are stories and characters that’ll stay with me for a long time.

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You can grab yourself a copy of this collection from:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

 

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About the Author:

Francesca Lia Block was born in Los Angeles to a poet and a painter, their creativity an obvious influence on her writing. Another influence was her childhood love of Greek mythology and fairy tales.
She has lived in the city all her life, and still resides there with her daughter, Jasmine Angelina (about whom she wrote her book Guarding the Moon), her son Samuel Alexander, and her two dogs: a springer spaniel named Vincent Van Go Go Boots and a beagle mix named Thumper.

She left only to attend the University of California, Berkeley. She has often professed her love of Los Angeles, calling it a “Jasmine-scented, jacaranda-purple, neon sparked city,” which she has nicknamed in her books “Shangri-LA.”

Find out more:

#Review: See You on the Other Side, by @cerebraltart

See You on the Other SideTitle: See You on the Other Side
Author: India Reid
Rating: 4/5 stars

“Bobby is a bad husband. He’s under no delusions about that much. After sharing his life with his wife, Karen, for more than two decades and raising three beautiful children together, he has known for a long time that his feelings for her are no longer the ones he had when he married her. Worse, his flirtations with Tammy, the attractive neighbor, have been growing more and more serious with every drunken holiday party and forbidden text…

So when an impact date is announced for the comet that will end all life as he knows it, Bobby is faced with a choice. Does he leave his wife for a few months of happiness with his new squeeze, or does he stay faithful to the vows he made so many years ago? Bobby knows that he’s a coward, but as he tries to muster up the courage to leave, he finds that walking out is even more difficult than he had ever imagined…

Warning: This 6000-word emotional short involves a skanky neighbor, a terrible husband and a wife who loves him anyway. The author is not responsible for violent urges or tears shed while reading.(description from Goodreads)

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This was the third story I’ve read from India Reid. I enjoyed the other two stories I read from this author, and this falls right in line with those.

I’m enjoying the fact that Reid can take one global situation (a comet set on a collision course with Earth in six months) and come up with a variety of stories about people from all walks of life dealing with the knowledge of their impending doom. The creativity to write these different scenarios is what keeps me coming back for more. What also has me grabbing more stories is the character development.

For an erotic short story, Reid takes the time to develop the characters, emotions, and the world surrounding it all. This is a constant in Reid’s work. With this story, Bobby was an interesting character to read because he wasn’t that likeable. He’s kind of an ass, though he does have a conscience and some redeeming qualities. I wasn’t too sure if I was enjoying reading from his point of view at first and felt sympathy toward his wife, Karen more than anything else. Upon finishing the story and seeing where it went, I know that it wouldn’t have been as deep of a story if Karen’s POV were used.

Since, as I mentioned, this is an erotic story, there comes a time for something sensual and sexy to occur. While I praise Reid for the development of the story, I felt that for once, the erotic “climax” was a little underdone. I could have used a little more balance with the rest of the story elements due to the genre. But still, it was tasteful and it’s better to have less sex than too much. I’ve read stories that are almost all sex, but have no way to connect with the characters or situations.

To summarize, this was another story I greatly enjoyed from India Reid. I’m hoping Reid is working on a longer work, though. I have a feeling that with more space to write, even greater things will come from this author’s pen.

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If you’d like to purchase a copy of this story, you can find it on:

Amazon

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About the Author:

India Reid is an American expat writer of alternative, cerebral erotica.  She has a sense of humor, just not a very good one.

Her writing is provocative, witty, and often charming, with thematic focuses on the psychological and philosophical.  Interests in science fiction, fantasy, horror and history have shaped her stories into tales of dangerous men and sharp-tongued women that transcend the pornography genre.

She loves men, women, film noir, tongue-in-cheek banter, literary theory, giant robots battling inter-dimensional alien invaders, failed revolutions and feminist liberation.  Most of her words come out heavily lubricated with whiskey and wine.

Her first full-length novels, With a Whimper and Hell on High Heels will release in September.

Find out more:

#NewRelease: The Island of Excess Love, @francescablock

The Island of Excess Love

Love in the Time of Global Warming #2

by Francesca Lia Block

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For those following my Goodreads account, you’ll know that back in April I read Love in the Time of Global Warming. Well, if you want to get technical, I listened to the audiobook. I didn’t end up reviewing it partly due to it having been an audio read and partly because I really loved the book but it was one of those that I felt I couldn’t do justice to with my words. It obviously ended up being a 5 star rating on Goodreads, but if you need more than stars…just see what I types a few seconds ago.

Today’s just as great of a day in the book world as yesterday was (Tiffany King’s new release day), as well as as great of a day as when I finished book one in Block’s series. It’s the day we can all run to the store (or web browser you’re already in) and grab a copy of The Island of Excess Love where we can continue on our journey with Pen through an Odyssey retelling in a recently post-apocalyptic world.

I can only see great things ahead within the pages of this new book, based on what I read with book one. I hope some of you dive in as well.

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The Island of Excess Love

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Pen has lost her parents. She’s lost her eye. But she has fought Kronen; she has won back her fragile friends and her beloved brother. Now Pen, Hex, Ash, Ez, and Venice are living in the pink house by the sea, getting by on hard work, companionship, and dreams. Until the day a foreboding ship appears in the harbor across from their home. As soon as the ship arrives, they all start having strange visions of destruction and violence. Trance-like, they head for the ship and their new battles begin.

This companion to Love in the Time of Global Warming follows Pen as she searches for love among the ruins, this time using Virgil’s epic Aeneidas her guide. A powerful and stunning book filled with Francesca Lia Block’s beautiful language and inspiring characters.

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You can grab yourself a copy of this book from:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

If you still need a copy of Love in the Time of Global Warming you can find that on:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks

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PSST…Francesca Lia Block has another new release coming up on September 16th. It’s a very different book than this one, but it’s also on my TBR because Block hasn’t disappointed me yet. You can find out about that one, and find the pre-order links, here:

Goodreads

Amazon | B&NiBooks

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About the Author:

Francesca Lia Block was born in Los Angeles to a poet and a painter, their creativity an obvious influence on her writing. Another influence was her childhood love of Greek mythology and fairy tales.
She has lived in the city all her life, and still resides there with her daughter, Jasmine Angelina (about whom she wrote her book Guarding the Moon), her son Samuel Alexander, and her two dogs: a springer spaniel named Vincent Van Go Go Boots and a beagle mix named Thumper.

She left only to attend the University of California, Berkeley. She has often professed her love of Los Angeles, calling it a “Jasmine-scented, jacaranda-purple, neon sparked city,” which she has nicknamed in her books “Shangri-LA.”

Find out more:

#NewRelease: The Write Stuff, by @AuthorTiffany

Today’s one of those special days over here on A Life Among the Pages. What’s so special about today? Well, as you saw from the title of this post, Tiffany King is releasing a new book today!

That’s write (see what I did there?) a new release! The Write Stuff is King’s new book and from what I’ve heard it’s just as great as her other ones, if not better. My TBR, as you all know, is a bit of a mess right now, but I’ll be adding this one in there somewhere.

Below you’ll find a bit more about the book, as well as how to get your own copy. I hope you’ll all check it out and maybe even some of her other titles (Wishing For Someday Soon is a MUST READ if you ask me!)

Happy release day, Tiffany. And happy reading everyone!

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The Write Stuff UPDATED FINAL COVERb3459-goodreads-badge-add-plus-2d25bb0f32eeac8660c13a521cf00c8e

Twenty-two-year-old historical romance writer Nicole Blake, or N.S. Blake to her readers, hasn’t taken an official poll, mind you, but she is convinced she may be the only romance author on the planet who is still a card-carrying member of the virgin club.

Not that she hasn’t tried to end her membership. Life just keeps finding pesky ways to interfere. With no prospects on the horizon, Nicole begins to feel like the closest she will ever get to experiencing a man is within her own stories.

Opportunity presents itself in the form of hot-as-sin-on-a-lollipop-stick bartender/premed student Alec Petropoulos, who agrees to be the cover model for her upcoming book. Sparks fly instantly between them, and Nicole begins to entertain the possibility that she’s finally found the right guy to hand over her tattered V-card. Alec has all the makings for a perfect one-night-stand candidate except, much to Nicole’s surprise, he seems to be the only man in existence not interested in bagging a virgin.

Stuck between a rock and a stubborn male, what’s a virgin to do? Seduce him, of course. How hard could it be? If it works for the characters in her stories, why wouldn’t it work for her?

After all, what happens under the cover…stays under the cover.

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You can grab a copy of The Write Stuff from:

Amazon | B&N | Smashwords | iBooks

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About the Author:

Tiffany King new profile pictureUSA Today Best Selling author, Tiffany King is the author of the Young Adult titles: The Saving Angels SeriesWishing for Someday SoonForever ChangedUnlikely AlliesMiss Me Not, and Jordyn: A Daemon Hunter Novel book one. She also has a New Adult title called No Attachments.

Writer by day and book fanatic the rest of the time, she is now pursuing her life-long dream of weaving tales for others to enjoy. She has a loving husband and two wonderful kids. (Five, if you count her three spoiled cats). Her addictions include: Her iphone and ipad, chocolate, Diet Coke, chocolate, Harry Potter, chocolate, and her favorite TV shows. Want to know what they are? Just ask.

Find out more:

Question and Answer Time! (Please Share Around)

I haven’t been interviewed in quite a long time, but maybe some of my readers would like me to be. Recently, I thought about this and came up with an idea: How about my readers interview me!

I’m going to be away from the computer until early next week, so I think this would be a great time to start collecting some interview questions to answer upon my return.

I’ll make this simple as to not bore anyone. If you’ve ever wanted to ask me something, this is your time. I’ll link my contact form below, and all you need to do is write in your question. Then I’ll gather them all up and answer them in a series of posts. I think it’ll be a great way for you all to get to know me better and for me to get to know my readers a bit.

All I ask: Help me organize these questions. In the subject box please type it whether the question is aimed at me as an author, blogger, reader, etc. This way I can group the questions and answers as more of an “author interview” or “blogger interview” for example.

Almost anything goes, just keep in mind that these questions will be made public. But I won’t put your name with them if you don’t want to. If you’d like me to list your name just let me know. Also, I can link to your website or social media link of your choice if you include one. I’m all for helping people connect.

So here’s the contact form. Please share this post around for me while I’m gone. I hope I’ll get flooded with questions. This can become a very fun series of posts.

ASK YOUR QUESTION(S) HERE

#Review: Three Erotic Short Stories

Sodo in SohoTitle: Sodo in Soho
Author: Alexia Saint-Ange
Rating: 2/5 stars

“By day, she’s a pretty, demure brunette specializing in British literature. By night, she’s a sex-crazed party girl!” (description from Goodreads)fancy lineresize

This is a short story of about 17 “Kindle pages”. Within those pages, the author’s able to include three different sexual encounters and a solid plot. But both the encounters and the plot seem more outlines than story. I felt that the story of Lucie and her exploits with the Reynolds family was more summarized than anything else. It helped make it a short, fast read, but it also hurt it because there’s not much erotic about a “tell-not-show” written story.

Going into the story, I thought early on that it was going to grow on me, but it ended up falling flat. I can see it working for some readers, though, it didn’t work out for me.

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You can grab a copy of this story from:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo

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Author’s Goodreads Profile

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The Wildest RideTitle: The Wildest Ride
Author: Vonnick de Rosmadec
Rating: 3/5 stars

“Nineteen-year-old Florence loses her innocence at the Castle of Pleasures, where the marquise, her maid, and a riding instructor help the red-haired novice discover her passionate nature.” (description from Goodreads)

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This was an ok short story. It feels to be part of something bigger (series of connected stories) possibly, due to it setting up Ghislaine’s château  and hinting at what goes on there. It also helped establish two characters who were left behind during the second half of the story. I’m hoping that they come back in future stories, but at from only having this story it was a little cumbersome to get so much of Ghislaine and Mimi only to get to the meat of the story with Florence and Bertrand. As two separate stories this would have worked better for me. Or at least a single story with both these scenes expanded, evened out.

All in all, this caught my interest with its characters and possibility for more stories at this château/castle. The writing could have been a bit less surface level though. I have another story from de Rosmadec ready to read. I’ll have to see how that one ends up.

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You can grab a copy of this story from:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo

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Author’s Goodreads Profile

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Twins & VirginsTitle: Twins & Virgins
Author: Vonnick de Rosmadec
Rating: 3/5 stars

“Audrey and Victoria are eighteen-year-old sisters who have decided to lose their virginity at the Castle of Pleasures—where their dreams come true.” (description from Goodreads)

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This is the second story from Rosmadec that I’ve read. It’s also connected to that story, The Wildest Ride, being that they both take place at the Chateau des Plaisirs. They also share a few characters.

In this story, the reader gets to enjoy a very detailed encounter between two sets of twins. It’s also a deflowering scene for the female twins. I felt that it was building up nicely, and compared to many other erotic stories of the sub-genre out there, this one didn’t portray the loss one’s virginity as something to jump into and all is fine. Despite this, my main issue with the story was that with all the build up, the actual goal (deflowering) happened and was over almost right away. The intercourse ended right there and soon the story, as well. The rest felt realistic until that point and, for me, it ruined the story.

I did enjoy this story over the other I read from this author, but like that one, I felt Twins & Virgins had some issues.
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You can grab a copy of this story from:

Amazon | B&N | Kobo

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Author’s Goodreads Profile