Goddess Fish is hosting a book tour for HOT STUFF: SURFING LOVE (Harper Impulse), a multi-author contemporary erotic romance anthology. Yes, these lovely authors are offering a giveaway, and there’s more on that below, but first, I’d like to introduce the book as well as one of the anthology co-authors, Carla Caruso.
From Carla Caruso – A chance meeting with a pro-surfer on an island getaway …
From Maria Lewis – The world of women’s surfing throws two recent bedmates together …
From Alli Sinclair – A world-famous performer finds her heart and a way to fight her demons in Rio de Janeiro …
From Tess Woods – A Cornish beach retreat proves a full reawakening …
Interview with Carla Caruso
What authors do you like to read?
Chick-lit or romantic comedies are my comfort reads. So anything by Sophie Kinsella, Maggie Alderson, Jennifer Crusie, Liane Moriarty, and beyond. If the author can make me laugh and the novel has a good romance thread and quirky heroine (oh, and a sexy hero), I’m in.
Is there a genre you’d like to try writing and haven’t yet?
I’ve had a young-adult tale spinning around in my head for eons. One with a bit of a paranormal bent. Involving cats! I’m hoping to tackle it in the second half of this year. If I write it down, it’ll happen, right?
Tell us about your latest release.
Hot Stuff: Surfing Love is an anthology of short stories involving sexy surfers, penned by three gorgeous Aussie women – Maria Lewis, Alli Sinclair and Tess Woods – plus myself. The logline sums it up well: “Hot sun, warm bodies, tight skin, electricity in the air…four top romance authors give you their take on summer.” Doesn’t it just make you want to go to the beach and check out the bronzed bodies on display?
Can you tell us a little about your current WIP?
I have two-and-a-half-year-old twin boys and I’ve always thought the general craziness I’ve gone through raising twins would make for a great novel. So I’ve got an idea for a story where two aunts end up raising a sister’s twin babies together. There’s a bit of a love triangle and secrets from the past emerging…I just need time to get stuck into finally writing it!
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I’m somewhere in between. I kind of have ‘goalposts’ along the way to reach and then fill in the in-between bits as I write and the characters ‘guide’ me. But I need to know a lot about the characters’ personalities and conflicts in advance for a solid foundation.
How do you balance writing with other aspects of your life? What’s your favourite time management tip?
Write a little bit most days, if you can, to keep your ‘head’ in a story. I like to focus on one writing project at a time or my mind feels too messy. As I mentioned before, I have young twin boys, who thankfully still have a day nap – my time to write. The less time you have sometimes, the more you use it! I find I get bored after writing for three hours a day anyway. But maybe if I had the whole day free, with a lunchbreak in between, I could keep going. Just work out what works best for you. Don’t feel you have to chain yourself to your desk for ten hours just because a colleague does it. To me, getting out and about, in between writing, is what keeps my creative juices flowing.
What made you want to be an author? At what age did you start telling stories and then writing them down?
I always wanted to be a novelist, annoying my kindergarten teachers by dictating long, detailed stories to them. And in my school holidays, I’d hand-write one-hundred-page novels – for fun. It just took me a while to realise my childhood dream; journalism seemed a more practical course. I worked as a newspaper and magazine journalist, government PR and fashion stylist. Then, when I began working from home as a freelance journalist, I got more serious about fiction. It took me about three years, from go to whoa, to get published.
What do you like best about being a writer? What do you like the least?
Writing is addictive! I love escaping into a different world, making the characters say or do things in real life I never would, and having real life constantly inspire my work. Plus, if I have a bad experience, I can channel it out in my writing and feel better for it. Like the least? The editing part! I love getting the first draft down, the creative bit. Editing’s less fun for me. I’m also impatient, so I don’t fancy the length of time (and commitment) it takes to write a novel – I’m a journalist, used to speedy deadlines. Reading past works also makes me cringe…I’m the ultimate self-critical artist.
If you had one piece of advice for aspiring authors, what would it be?
Don’t dilute your voice! I went from thinking I should ‘write for the market’ to sell more books, changing my writing style, to going full circle again, realising I wasn’t coming across authentically. Write stuff that you’re proud of and want to read and then find a publisher for it. I feel like I’m only beginning to hit my stride now and everything I’ve done before has been my writer’s ‘apprenticeship’. But then, I always tend to take the long route, I’m a Capricorn.
Where can readers find out more about you and your books?
Here is an excerpt from Carla’s story, SIX-STAR WEEKEND, in the HOT STUFF: SURFING LOVE anthology:
That was the only thing on Sage Carlisle’s mind as she peered over her flat-top shades at the surfer emerging from the water at the resort’s private beach. She shifted on her Missoni beach towel, feeling clammy in places that had nothing to do with the late afternoon sun.
No strings attached, down-and-dirty hanky-panky. That was why she was paying a thousand dollars a night for her island stay. Okay, that and maximum pampering. Even her mum had encouraged her to go; Sage was that hard-up. It had been a while between, ahem, cock tales.
Ever since Aaron.
Not that she was meant to be thinking about him right now. This weekend was all about her needs and hers alone. So, instead, she let her mind wander to how the hunky surfer might be described by a beauty brand if he were a mascara. Makeup was how she made her living, after all.
Sage began with ‘amazingly waterproof’. The water seemed to bead off the guy’s chin-length tousle of sun-bleached hair, his deeply tanned face, and the skin-tight black wetsuit, like he was some kind of merman.
An extremely chiselled, handsome merman.
She threw in ‘sweat- and humidity-resistant’ for good measure. He looked like he could handle whatever weather extremes the Great Barrier Reef location threw at him. Unlike her. It had taken a gallon of hair serum to settle her black mane.
‘Intense gaze.’ His eyes looked dark from this angle. Puppy-dog brown possibly. A nice contrast to all the blond hair and bronzed skin. Sea-green would have been too obvious.
‘Infinite length.’ And she wasn’t referring to the wood-look surfboard tucked under his arm … no, siree. Yes, her mind was heading for the gutter now, but at least it was a six-star gutter, as went with her locale.
‘Long-long-lasting.’ Judging by his youthful looks — he had to be seven years younger than her at a minimum — she was sure he could go all night without wearing out. But then, when you were thirty-five, as she was, any guy in your line of vision without a woman hanging off their arm tended to be a juvenile. He never would have had the shocking discovery of a white hair in his eyebrow.
Hmm. Maybe he was a pro surfer, and a surf-brand sponsor had helped fund his luxury accommodation.
She dreamt up some more words. ‘Ability to extend (her) from roots through to tips and beyond. Stretchable. Magnetic. Lush. Daring.’
Yep, he could dip his wand into her formula any day of her overpriced vaccie. Sage looked down to rummage in her beach bag for her powder compact. This time she couldn’t blame the sun’s rays for her perspiration.
‘Do I know you?’ a gravelly voice cut through her thoughts.
BUY A COPY HERE:
The authors will be awarding an eCopy of Hot Stuff: Surfing Love to three randomly drawn winners via Rafflecopter during this book tour. Enter below:
If you’d like to follow the tour, blog dates can be found HERE at Goddess Fish (or click the banner at the top of this post).
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