Could you please start by telling us a little about yourself?
People have often told me, "You're so different than I thought you were when we first met!" I know-that could be a good thing or a bad thing! What I think they mean, though, is that their first impression of me is that I'm a sort of button-down intellectual. And that is part of my personality. But I also love just kicking back and relaxing with friends. I'm way too sarcastic. I listen to rock REALLY LOUD-it's amazing I'm not deaf. Plus I write racy romance novels. So I guess you really never know for sure when you meet someone about their hidden depths. I like that about human beings-that there's so much more to them than meets the eye.
If you could be one of your characters - Who would you be? And why?
This is so hard to answer! Probably Skylar Halifax from the Subtle Lovers series that I did for Ellora's Cave, specifically Subtle Magic and Subtle Destiny. Why? Because she has awesome psychic powers and even more importantly, she gets to be the mate of not only one gorgeous Ammadon (Duse) but two (Jax, as well.) Hard to top that.
What's your favorite genre to read?
I love anything with the flavor of paranormal, be it fiction or non-fiction. I like a good contemporary romance with believable emotions and characters. My secret love is historical romance. I know they aren't as popular as they once were, but there's something about them that I find very sexy. I think it's the contrast between a society that was so rigid on the surface in its sexual expression with what "really" took place in the bedroom. I think that extra spice is one thing that is lost with sexual liberation. Not that I'm complaining about sexual freedom, of course. *g*
Who or what influences you when you write?
Certainly issues with family or with my other career. I'm more influenced by the stress level of everything else. If things are especially tense then my creativity is drained. It's not just a matter of "busyness" because I have cooked out several novels when I've been very active in all areas of my life.
What do you do on a typical writing day?
Wake up, make my coffee, and dig into it. I take occasional breaks for sustenance or to clear my head. By the time I'm ready to write, though, there is usually a dam of creativity that has built up from doing research, taking notes and processing. So I'm ready to go by the writing stage.
When you have writer's block how do you break free?
I don't have a foolproof answer to that, unfortunately. Typically I'll just write. I try and tell myself to not worry if it is good or bad, right or wrong. Just put the words on the paper and then you have something to work with, even if that means going in a different direction. In other words, just MOVE. Better to keep moving than to get stuck. Even if you go backwards, new paths will be revealed to you. Sorry, didn't mean to sound so mystical.
Can you please give us a sneak peek at any of your upcoming books?
SUBTLE RELEASE, book three in my Subtle Lovers series comes out on August 15, 2007 at Ellora's Cave. This is Bale's story-the King of the Watchers. We've gotten to know Bale some from the earlier books (Subtle Magic, Subtle Touch) and in those, he's sort of the epitome of strength and magical power despite an overlay of sadness and grief to his character. He's the ultimate "big brother." In SUBTLE RELEASE, however, we get to see his vulnerable side when his life mate Helen, who was cruelly murdered in her last incarnation, finally returns to him. Things would be great for Bale and Helen if Helen's murderer hadn't scarred her spirit to such a degree that she is confused and believes Bale to be her enemy. I like SUBTLE RELEASE for many reasons, but one of them is the expansion of the Watcher world in general, including a glimpse at how non-mated Watchers celebrate their intensely carnal nature at the highly erotic, public Issian Festival.
The next book I have coming out is called EXORCISING SEAN'S GHOST. It's in the editing process and I hope to get a release date for it soon at Ellora's Cave. I love this one. I don't have it up yet on my website, but I'll share a quick blurb with NOR first.
Belle is forced to mourn in secret after her lover, Attorney General Sean Ryan, is murdered in a terrorist plot. When she has an irrational, intense sexual response to the mysterious stranger Jack Caldwell, Belle wonders if it's due to delayed grief for Sean. Sean was the only man she'd ever responded to so completely, after all. When she finds herself submitting wholly to Jack's dominant, demanding manner in bed Belle begins to live on the sharp edge of doubt and certainty.even to the point of questioning her own sanity.
Because Belle can't let go of the crazy, impossible idea that Sean Ryan and Jack Caldwell are one and the same man.
If Belle persists in her obsession about Sean, Jack will have no choice but to cut all ties with her. He wants Belle for his own, and Jack Caldwell isn't the kind of man who will share his woman with a ghost.
Please tell us what you have planned next?
I'd love to write a novel for Harlequin's Blaze series. I already have an idea.I just need to dive in and write it.
In 5 years, where do you see yourself? -In general and in you're writing career.
Well I hope that both my "day job" career and my writing career will have advanced and matured. I think they will, as I'm not afraid of hard work. I only first became published at Ellora's Cave this year, and already I've got four stories out and five more that have been contracted. I hope to have an agent by then and have more avenues for publishing my work, including established New York publishers. I'd love to write a romantic suspense in addition to a really scary ghost story!
Who is your perfect hero? And why?
Like many women, I'm drawn to an alpha male. A flawed character always adds depth and a hint of unpredictability.but not TOO flawed, if you know what I mean. I have to believe that this man isn't so deeply wounded that his scars interfere with making a human connection. I'm realistic in that way-perhaps because of my "day job." Some flaws are exciting and mysterious, but they have to be such that I believe the man could successfully overcome his trauma/conflict. A sense of humor is beyond sexy, as is an intelligence so acute that you can see it clearly in his eyes!
Oh-and he has to be fascinated by his lover's sexual response. He loves sex, yes, but that includes being extremely gratified by seeing/feeling/ KNOWING that his partner loves it as well.
What do you do for inspiration?
Read. I've been a reader since age four and I'll die one. I worship books. I don't have an altar or anything, but when I was growing up, the library was definitely consecrated ground!
Is there a genre of book you would like to write but haven't yet?
It's a dream of mind to do a young adult fantasy/paranormal and/or a young adult romance. I still love reading young adult books, like Harry Potter or the Pullman's Golden Compass series.
What kind of research do you do for your books? Do you enjoy the research process?
I really do. I think I'm a bit weird that way. I love reading and taking notes. It's like the "cooking" phase for me, creatively speaking. Everything new idea I encounter in research spices the final brew!
Do deadlines help or hinder your muse?
Umm.hinder, I think. They certainly push me, but they also sort of scare away that elusive muse.
When did you first decide to submit your work? Please, tell us what or who encouraged you to take this big step.
I first submitted at the end of 2005. It was a big step, but I think my feeling was, what have I got to lose? I have a great family and a fulfilling career. Trying to get published couldn't touch that. It's funny, but I sort of envy that feeling at this point. Now every time I submit I feel more vulnerable and worried about the submission than the time before! I wonder if the editor will like it, if the readers will enjoy it, if it will get good reviews.
It's amazing what you can dare when you've got nothing staked on the outcome!
What would you like to tell your readers?
Oh, well I would like to thank them for taking an initial interest, to begin with! Also, I'd be very interested in their feedback. I think about people reading what I've written so much. I'm curious about them, what they think of the story, how they think it could be improved or what they really loved.
What is the best and worst advice you have ever received?
Best-just write and worry about the content later. Worst-getting published and being a writer is a pipedream.
Do you outline your books or just start writing?
I don't outline in the classic sense. But I do start a section of notes. At some point in the research, note-taking process, I just bust out and start writing. The writing follows what I set down, but what I set down isn't too constraining as to stop the creative process while I'm writing. I like how as the characters become more realistic they start to formulate the plot, and vice versa. As the story develops, character complexities are revealed. If I outline too rigidly in the initial stages, I find that process becomes stymied.
Do you belong to a critique group? If so, how does this help or hinder you?
Not to a group, but I do have several writers that I exchange work with, usually not whole books or anything but several chapters at a time. It has been extremely helpful. I've already learned so much from their valuable, supportive feedback.
What was your first published work and when was it published?
FATED, which was published at Aphrodite Unlaced and is now available at Fictionwise. It was published in February of 2006.
What would be the best way for readers contact you? Do you have a website? Email address? MySpace site? Blog? Message Board? Group?
I have a contact portion on the guestbook of my website (www.bethkery.com) but people may feel free to write me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also if they enjoy chatting they could join the yahoo group I have with talented author Lacey Savage at DoubleExposure@yahoogroups.com.
How can readers find out more about you and your books?
My website is their best bet, as it has blurbs and excerpts that are not usually the same as the excerpts on the publisher website. Also, I have an `About Beth' portion on my website if someone should feel they don't know me well enough after this interview!
Thanks so much for having me, ladies!
Thank you for this opportunity!
Interviewed by Tammie King