Friday, July 13, 2012

Sizzling July Interview with Leigh Ellwood!

We are still going at it gang! The month of July continues to heat up! 
Let me introduce my next guest! Meet Leigh Ellwood!

Welcome to My Twisted & Kinky World!
Thanks for having me!

Let's start off by telling everyone a little bit about you!
Sure! My name is Leigh Ellwood and I write erotica and erotic romance. I write a variety of sub-genres including GLBT, contemporary, and some paranormal. I also write mystery under another name. I'm from the East Coast, married with a little one, and am always at the computer writing.

So, I know when I sit on writer panels I am always asked this question. When did you start writing?
Well, the long answer is since the first grade. For much of my life, I have written in one form or another. I didn't start writing professionally until after college. I sold my first story at 19, published my first book at 29, and haven't looked back.

What inspired your first book? What was the title? Was it published?
I wrote my first erotic romance, Truth or Dare, in early 2004. The idea to write the genre came from two events: 1) the rise of erotic romance in eBook format, specifically when Ellora's Cave launched, and 2) pregnancy. I had all these hormones raging inside me, and I had to find a release! When my mystery published announced they were launching an erotic imprint I outlined the story and submitted the completed work. Truth or Dare was one of the first books published by Phaze Books.

Have you always written erotica? If not, what else do you write/have you written?
As I mentioned, I started out in mystery. I still write it, and I've also written sweet romance, non-fiction, and poetry.

What made you decide to write erotica?
Well, there was the hormone rage I described earlier. After I finished Truth or Dare, I realized I enjoyed writing the book. I simply enjoy telling stories, and if the ideas I have are a bit kinky I'll get them down in a book. I do admit the fact that my kink far outsells my mystery is another factor, but it's not the deciding one.
How would you classify your erotic writing?
I'm on different points of the map. My Dareville series is primarily M/F but there are ménages and some M/M stories. I've written M/M, F/F, shapeshifters, some rom-com, and the occasional BDSM.

Do you have a specific writing style? 
I have one or two 1st person stories, but I prefer 3rd. I think readers do as well.

What is the process you use for writing?
It depends on the story. Some stories I'll completely outline, and with others I'm a total pantser. With series books, like Dareville, I do outline to avoid continuity errors between books. I find, too, I have to read older books of mine to get facts straight.

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
Finding time. I work full-time, edit on the side, and I have a family. Sometimes I sleep.

How do you come up with your book titles?
Some are song titles, others are plays on phrases. With the Dareville series, each title has "Dare" in there somewhere.

If you had to name one character you have written that was the most like you, which character in which book would that be?
I have a series of cozy mysteries featuring a snappy heroine named Ronnie Lord. I feel she is the most like me of anybody I've written. She's quick with a comment and likes to over-analyze things.

What other types of jobs have you held before becoming an author?
I have worked in call centers, bookstores, and fast food restaurants. For the last decade, though, I've worked in Web marketing and social media, helping clients with their Facebook and Twitter.

Do you travel much concerning your books?
I did over the last three years, but this year I have only two gigs. As we move more into digital publishing I find myself looking for way to promote online. I will still attend major events like RT and AAD when I can afford it.

What current projects are you working on?
My next novel, Act Daring, is due from Ravenous Romance this summer. I am also writing the sequel to a shapeshifter romance in my Bliss series. That will be called Pure Bliss.

What is your latest release and where can readers find it?
Odd is an exclusive release with All Romance. It is a funny M/M erotic romance and can be bought here.

Most authors offer some sort of e-pub of their work. Do you offer traditional paper versions as well?
I do, mainly to reach readers who do not read e.

What is the toughest criticism you have ever received? How did you handle it?
I once read a review that started "I hated this book." It seems a bit harsh at the time, but I realized I inspired an emotion in a reader. Next time I hope to inspire a more positive one.

Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
Revise, and repeat!

Thanks for stopping by, Leigh! *waves*
To find out more about Leigh, visit these links!

Also check out these other Sizzling July Interviews!

Amara - July 1-3
Evan J. Xaiver - July 4-6
S.L. Armstrong - July 7-9
Brita Addams - July 10-12
Leigh Ellwood - July 13-15
Blaine Arden - July 16-18
Leigh Jarrett- July 19-24
A.D. Cooper - July 22-24
Giselle London - July 25-27
Rachel Haimowitz - July 28-30
Aleksandr Voinov - July 31-Aug. 3

Don't forget to stop by my Smashwords for the Summer/Winter Sale! Selected Titles are up to 50% Off!

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