What is sure to distract you from sitting down and working/writing?
During the day, anything and everything! I am compulsive andalso suspect I have ADD! This is one of the reasons I write at night when the house is quiet and everyone is asleep.
What’s your “aha” moment when writing a sex scene in a book – the point at which you realize you’ve captured the essence of a naughty scene?
Great question, Nat! Although I have written some highly erotic love scenes in a number of my books, none of them are purely gratuitous. I try to always use the love scene to advance the plot and/or show something new about my characters and their growing relationship. Even the Othaheitian Feast of Venus in A WILD NIGHT’S BRIDE was used as a plot device for it was there that we could clearly tell that Phoebe and Ned were both out of their element and that they belonged together.
In TREACHEROUS TEMPTATIONS, there are several erotic scenes (I won’t call
them love scenes) that are used to demonstrate the moral depravity of the characters. I felt the visual depiction would be exponentially more effective than “telling” of their wickedness. I love the opening scene in Venice between Hadley and Barbara. This scene immediately follows a “wallbanger”.
His gaze narrowed and his voice took on a frigid overtone. “You think I left Paris under my own volition? Pray let me correct your misapprehension, madam. You see, I’ve traded on my good name a bit too long and was induced to leave before my creditors installed me in the Bastille.”
“Is it truly as you say, Hadley?” She regarded him with overt skepticism. “What of your annuity? Do you mean nothing remains?”
“Latera ecfutūt,” he replied darkly.
Her blank look forced him to translate with a mirthless laugh. “Fucked away, my dear. Literally and completely.”
Her frown deepened. “How can you expect to continue living large across the Continent at my expense, while I’m forced to suffer alone in London playing the mournful widow under the disgrace of a ruined name?”
“Mournful widow, eh?” Hadley raked her with a blood-shot gaze that lingered on the brilliant gems adorning her hands, ears, and neck. He reached out to stroke her collarbone, tracing the diamonds resting above the milky white flesh of her bared breasts. “You don’t appear to have suffered.”
He grasped an erect nipple, indolently rolling it between thumb and forefinger, an act that elicited a convulsive shiver from her body and a low moan from her lips. Remarking the lust-filled glitter in her eyes, Hadley cupped both of her breasts and dipped his head to lick the length of her neck. While his tongue played in the delicate hollow behind her ear, his hands went to work deftly removing her necklace. “Ah,” he pocketed it with a smirk. “This should just about cover tonight’s losses.”
“You bastard!” Barbara shrieked. “You would steal the very jewels from my body?”
“Needs must…” he shrugged. “Right now, I would steal the gold from a dead man’s teeth.”
In my true “love scenes” the “aha” moment is when I manage to capture the emotional connection, the “awakening” between the hero and heroine. This happens several times between Hadley and Mary as their relationship slowly evolves. For the innocent Mary, the “aha” moment follows her first kiss.
“Come now, Mary.” He turned her bodily back to him, his warm gaze seeking hers, his honeyed voice cajoling. “It’s only a kiss, after all.”
Only a kiss?
Perhaps he had no idea how devastating a kiss could be…or mayhap he knew exactly what it did to her. “Perhaps this is normal for you, my lord, but I am an unsophisticated girl and unaccustomed to casual kisses.”
“No? Then perhaps it’s past time you became accustomed. Shall I really kiss you, sweet Molly? Truly and thoroughly?”
Was this the course of a seduction? Is this what he had planned all along? She searched his face for the answer only to lose herself in his blue eyes. Fear gripped her. Not of him, but of her weakening will. “Don’t,” she whispered.
He muted her protest with his mouth, catching her breath and replacing it with his own. This kiss was different, paradoxically soft and firm, it demanded a response that she was helpless to deny. Mary closed her eyes, responding and melting into him as he nipped, and licked, and suckled her lips. Like a vortex, he pulled her into the kiss, stealing the air from her lungs, along with any remaining will. His warm slick tongue teased, gently urging her to open. When she parted, just a fraction, he took command. He entered her mouth deeply, seeking, exploring with his smooth, wet tongue, the contact of which instantly sent a flood of warm moisture between her thighs.
Only a kiss?
It was staggering.
Her mind was lost to time and place, as if nothing existed beyond his divine mouth. He discarded her bonnet and tangled his fingers in her hair. She whimpered, clutching at his lapels, yet he refused to relent. Mercilessly, he intensified the kiss, pulling her so far in; submerging her in so much sensation that Mary thought she would drown in the pleasure of it.
For the rakish and debauched Hadley, the true “aha” moment occurs much later in the course of his planned seduction, but it begins when he finds himself more affected by Mary than he ever would have thought. (Here is a snippet from Hadley’s POV later in the same scene)
He pasted on his languid smile with an effort. “I think perhaps this is enough for the nonce.” His voice was thick and heavy, an effect of his throbbing erection and the sexual frustration constricting his chest. She regarded him in wide-eyed bewilderment and he couldn’t suppress the compulsion to stroke his thumb over her damp and kiss-swollen lips.
With her bonnet discarded, her hair mussed and tangled, she looked scandalously and deliciously tumbled, thoughts he struggled to tamp down. But then in an impulse he couldn’t have controlled to save his life, he claimed her mouth once more, savoring the most intoxicating of concoctions—wine, innocence, and strawberry tarts.
If you could write an anthology with two other romance authors, who would they be and what would the anthology be about?
Since you didn’t specify living or dead, I choose one of each! My all time favorite historical romance author is Georgette Heyer, mainly for her unparalleled wit. Although she is best known for her Regency books, she also wrote several Georgian romances which all sit on my DIK shelf.
As for living authors, my favorite erotic romance writer is probably Robin Schone, for her ability to meld powerful emotion and erotic elements into a romantic historical setting. Although some of Ms. Heyer’s romances are quite suggestive (Venetia, in particular comes to mind), I can’t quite imagine Georgette Heyer and Robin Schone sharing the same book covers! I often wonder, however, how much steamier Ms. Heyer might have been had she lived in our modern world. As to the theme of this fantasy anthology, other than being a steamy historical romance, I have no earthly idea!
How to you like your heroes and heroines to be? What can you tell us about the characters in Treacherous Temptations?
I love extreme heroes! Most of my favorites are either honorable gentlemen to the core (Ned Chambers from A Wild Night’s Bride, Captain Hewett DeVere from The Virgin Huntress), or utterly and completely debauched! (Ludovic DeVere from The Devil You Know and The Devil’s Match, and Hadley Blanchard from Treacherous Temptations)
Is there a genre you haven’t tackled but would like to try? I am a true history geek at heart, and I used to believe that I only had a writing voice for historical fiction, but then I got pushed by my first editor into historical romance. From thence, I moved into more erotic waters, which I never could have imagined doing either. Now, I am writing my first contemporary romance series, and am very pleased with it. If it’s a hit, I also have an idea for a contemporary romantic suspense series. I’m not sure if I could pull that one off or not, but the only way to find out is to try. In the long term, however, I always see myself returning to my historical roots.
In your opinion, what is timeless about historical romances? The characters and the essential element of finding one’s soul mate. Times may change, but people don’t. Love also is changeless.
This or That:
1. Alpha or Beta? Alpha but not Alpha-hole!
2. Wallflower or Belle of the Ball? Wallflower because I am one.
3. Debutante or Spinster? Bluestocking Spinster. Again because I likely would have been one!
4. Virgin widow or Secret baby? The Virgin widow, although perhaps secret baby goes better with Bluestocking spinster. Nat, I think you are giving me a new story idea. LOL!
5. Titled peer or Working man? Titled peer, although I don’t like extremes in this area. I prefer heroes who are outsiders. Although Viscount DeVere is a peer, he is definitely on the fringe of “polite society!”
6. Love at first sight or Second chances? I have done both, but personally prefer second chances. (Charlotte and Robert from The Highest Stakes, Philip and Sukey from Fortune’s Son, Marcus and Lydia from A Breach of Promise, Diana and DeVere from The Devil You Know and The Devil’s Match.)
7. City or country? I’m a country girl.
8. Writing or Reading? Both as long as I can lose myself completely in the story.
9. Plotter or Pantser? Panster. No contest on that one!
10. Your turn to ask a question: Alright! This is for all your blog followers:
For a giveaway of any e-title form my backlist who is your all time favorite romance couple?
ABOUT VICTORIA VANE
A lover of history and deeply romantic stories, Victoria Vane combines these elements to craft romantic historical novels and novellas for a mature reading audience. Her writing influences are Georgette Heyer for fabulous witty dialogue and over the top characters, Robin Schone , Sylvia Day, and Charlotte Featherstone for beautifully crafted prose in stories with deep sensuality, and Lila DiPasqua for creative vision in melding history with eroticism.
A reluctant heiress resigned to her fate… Mary Elizabeth Edwardes has one of the largest fortune’s in England, but has no desire to leave her quiet country existence… and even less to acquire a husband she cannot choose for herself.
A dissolute nobleman bent on retribution… Trapped in a duplicitous existence since scandal destroyed his fortune and family name, Lord Hadley Blanchard has spent the better part of a decade posing as a disaffected exile while spying and seducing in the service of the English Crown.
A dangerous game of seduction, and intrigue… When summoned from abroad by a former lover, Lord Hadley perceives an opportunity for vengeance at last. By employing the full measure of his seductive charm, he woos the ward of the man who destroyed his life, little knowing that winning Mary’s fortune will mean risking his own treacherous heart.