I’m delighted to welcome back Rosanna Leo today, with her new book, Predator’s Kiss, a bear shifter paranormal romance. Read on to find out how she got the idea for the book, what she thinks makes a good sex scene and what she does when she’s not writing :).
Welcome, Rosanna. Great to have you visiting again :)
How did you get started writing?
Well, it was a long and bumpy road, marred by many years in the wrong careers. However, I believe we sometimes have to travel a certain road to finally make that destination. While I was on my first maternity leave, I had all this time on my hands, as my son took really long naps. I hadn’t written in years and decided to give it a try, just to have a new hobby. I was hooked, and when I saw how open the romance industry was to new talent, I made it my aim to become published.
What was the best piece of writing advice you received?
The best advice I received didn’t apply so much to writing as it did to life: believe. I am an eternal optimist and don’t believe in entertaining negative thought. It doesn’t help at all. I’ve always tried to remain upbeat about my work and my ambitions, knowing they’d one day reach fruition.
That is great advice, Rosanna :). What do you think makes good erotica?
You need a downright sexy hero and a heroine who needs someone just like him. The characters have to speak to one another, have to connect in a way they never connected with anyone else. The emotions need to be engaged; it can’t just be about the sex. You can have the wildest sex in the world, but if there is no real emotion behind it, it won’t draw me.
Very true! Where do you get your ideas and your characters from?
A lot of my characters come from the world of myth: Greek gods, selkies, etc. However, I’ve been inspired by the firefighters at the local station too. I don’t base characters on people I know. They simply spring from kernels in my mind. I usually try to come up with a couple who seem wrong for each other, and explore why as I go along.
You’re known for writing about hot Greek Gods. How did you get the idea for a shifter series?
I love the world of PNR and shifters are a huge part of that world. I didn’t want to do wolves, as they’ve been done before. Bears felt a little newer, but for the most part, it was the animal itself that inspired me. Once I started researching bear behavior, I was taken by the fuzzy predators. Plus, they have very interesting mating rituals, which I touch upon in the book.
Who would play Ryland and Lia in the film of the book, and why?
Good question! I don’t think I’d like to see a major star in any of my roles. I’d prefer a total unknown, someone the viewing audience hasn’t seen before. As far as Ryland, he would need to be brooding and hairy. For Lia, we’d need a voluptuous brunette with a talent for getting into trouble!
What do you think makes a good sex scene?
No matter the heat level, or kink level, you need characters who appeal to each other and the reader. And they can’t just appeal on a physical level – we have to root for them. For me, the best sex happens when the characters touch on each other’s vulnerabilities as well as their strengths.
Do you have any advice for new writers of paranormal erotica?
Learn the genre, and discover what’s out there. It’s very hard to be original, so if you’re planning on doing it, make sure your story is unique. There has to be an interesting twist.
I know you have a degree in history and literature. How much do you use that in your writing and how much research does it take generally take to come up with one of your stories?
I research a lot, but it depends on the type of story. If the character has a certain profession, then of course, I will want to research that work. In my Greek stories, I read the myths over and over, and then I took them in another direction. You can deviate, but you have to know what you’re dealing with. And readers are smart – they will know if you haven’t done your homework.
Do you have a writing routine? Do you need absolute quiet to write or background music/noise?
I have two sons so…QUIET PLEASE!! LOL
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block and if so, how do you get over it?
I do, although not often. The best thing, the only thing, to do is walk away. Take a break. It’ll get better.
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
A bit of both. I have an overall outline, but like to leave it fluid so I can change as I go along. Makes it more interesting for me.
What do you like most about being a writer?
Reader appreciation is a wonderful thing. Getting a good review, and knowing your story touched someone, is one of the best feelings in the world. I love my readers!
What do you do when you’re not writing?
I like spending time outside, gardening and going for walks in the country. Oh, and I love eating! Hate cooking, but will eat anything you throw my way!
Out of all your books, do you think you could pick a favourite and why?
It probably changes everyday LOL. Right now, I’m pretty keen on Predator’s Kiss because I was very pleased with the humor in the book. I love writing madcap stories and this one just felt so fun.
It sounds it! :). What’s next for you?
Well, book two of my selkie series, Selkie’s Revenge, is on its way, as well as the second installment of my bear shifters! Look for them soon!
Oooh I’ll look forward to those! You’re welcome :). Love the excerpt and this has got to go on my TBR pile :).
Bear shifter Ryland Snow just wants peace. The peace and quiet afforded him at his woodsy retreat, the Ursa Fishing Lodge. As owner of the lodge, Ryland enjoys the tranquil life he’s created among his fellow shifters. He lives to maintain a safe haven for them, away from meddlesome human eyes.
When his rock star brother arrives, bringing trouble in the form of a possible hitman, Ryland is incensed. He’s been cleaning up Soren’s messes as long as he can remember, and is tired of his brother’s lecherous exploits.
Things go from bad to worse when Lia Goodblood stumbles upon Ryland and his lodge. Yes, the reclusive erotica author is easy on the eyes, but the human woman is more trouble than she’s worth. To say nothing of her bizarre fear of furry creatures.
Ryland determines to rid himself of her presence. But when he learns she’s on the run from a crazed fan, Ryland’s protective bear instincts flare. And the bear won’t be denied.
She was already reviving a few minutes later. Ryland let out a sigh of relief.
Thank God. When he’d first seen the petite woman hurtling through the trees, he’d worried someone was after her. But no one else had barreled behind her. And yet she’d seemed so scared.
They hadn’t helped, presenting her with a couple of snarling bears.
She moaned a little, and the soft sound warmed him, making him hard again. Damn. He glanced around the room, remembered he didn’t exactly tend to stash clothes in guest cabins, and raced for the bathroom. He grabbed a couple of clean towels off the rack and tossed one to Soren. “Cover yourself.”
Soren grinned like a devil and motioned to his nude bottom half. “I can conduct my flirting business much more efficiently this way.”
Ryland glared as he wrapped his lower half in the towel. “Cover yourself or I’ll strangle you with it, lover boy.”
His brother placed the woman’s backpack on the floor and threw the towel about his waist. “Such animosity is really not in keeping with your sainthood, Brother Ryland.”
Ryland ignored him and turned back to the woman. He didn’t know why it mattered so much she recover and feel comfortable in his presence, but it did. Of course, as owner of the lodge, it made sense he didn’t want to see anyone scared or hurt.
Yeah. That’s it. That’s all.
His rationalization did nothing to quell the nervous tremors in his gut, though. Or his excruciating hard-on.
Okay, she’s sorta pretty and has a body made for sin. So what? Get over yourself.
Clearly it had been too long since he’d allowed himself to get lost in a woman’s body for more than a quick fuck. And this woman’s body deserved slow, leisurely loving. Greedy licks. Sensual tugs. Why, her breasts alone were so full and perfect, they just begged one to suck. To say nothing of those rounded hips and soft, womanly ass.
Ryland ran a hand over his face, feeling overly hot. Jesus Christ. Stop thinking like a horny teenager. You sound like Carter.
Besides, she was nothing like him. Human. And if time had taught him anything, it was the pursuit of romance with a nonshifter was a fool’s errand. She didn’t belong here on his resort, on his island. He needed to revive her and get her out of there.
Desperate to relieve the sudden, raging desire shooting up through his body, Ryland forced himself to look away from the woman. In doing so, he caught a glimpse of his brother. Soren was sitting next to her, his gaze contemplative, his eyes trained on her boobs. Ryland realized he didn’t like the way baby brother was looking at her. “Hey.”
Soren looked up. “What?”
“What are you staring at?”
Without batting an eye, Soren turned back to their unexpected guest. “Her. Can’t I stare?”
Ryland’s eyebrows shot up. “Staring at women has already gotten you into trouble. Maybe you should find a new hobby.” He stifled the low growl building in his throat. Now wasn’t the time for brawling, but he didn’t appreciate the way his brother gawked. His cool eye, appraising, as if he’d never seen anything like her before.
“You were checking her out too,” Soren replied.
“No, I wasn’t. I’m not interested in this … person,” Ryland retorted. As he uttered the words, he bit his tongue hard by mistake, as if confirming the words were a lie. “Damn,” he whispered, tasting blood.
“Do you think someone was chasing her?” Soren asked in a pensive tone, picking up one of his drumsticks and stroking it as if it were a lover’s finger.
“I don’t know.” Ryland sat on the other side of her small body and looked her up and down as she lay under the covers. Despite his mistrust of humans, he couldn’t help wondering who would frighten such a tiny, delicate thing. Had someone tried to hurt her? The very idea made him want to bash his head against the wall. Or better yet, bash any lowlife who dared to touch her.
No one touches her but me, his heart declared.
As another stress headache shot through his brain, he wondered at the ferocity and lunacy of the feeling.
Predator’s Kiss is available at www.lsbooks.com and all ebooksellers.
Rosanna Leo is a multi-published, erotic romance author with Liquid Silver Books. Her books include For the Love of a God, Up In Flames, Sweet Hell, The Selkie, Sunburn and her newest Predator’s Kiss. When not writing, she can be found haunting dusty library stacks or planning her next star-crossed love affair.