Jen: This weekend we welcome Denyse Bridger to Romancing the Book. Denyse, will you please share a short bio with us?
Denyse: Canadian born and bred, and a lifelong dreamer, I began writing at an early age and can’t recall a time when I wasn’t creating in some artistic form. My life has had several on-going love affairs that shape much of what I write, the American West, Victorian England, cowboys, a passion for pirates, Greek Gods, and Ancient Egypt. The other endless love affair in my life is Italia and all its magic, beauty, and dazzling culture. That passion spills into all aspects of my life.
My first major fantasy novel is As Fate Decrees. (Available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon’s international sites.) The novel relies heavily on Greek mythology, and is set in Ancient Greece and modern Athens. If you enjoy a tale of Gods, Destiny, and the battles of an Eternal Champion, this is the book for you! (Less than six months after publication, it was a finalist for the 2008 Aurora Award.) Not surprisingly, there’s a touch of romance throughout, of course! A visit to my website will show the diversity of what is currently available, and the mixing of genres and styles that will be employed in many up-coming projects as well.
To stay current with all these projects, or to just say hello, please feel free to email me anytime, there’s a contact link on the mail menu. I promise I will do my best to answer everyone, though it may take a day or two, so please be patient! Or, feel free to sign up for my newsletter, which is called Romance and Fantasy.
Jen: Tell us about “Games of Seduction” and where it’s available.
Denyse: Games of Seduction is the first part of a set of three stories that are telling the story of a love that begins one night via the internet. I actually wrote it for a man in Italy that is someone special to me, and this was written as a Christmas gift for him. What began as a kind of game became a very real story, just like what began as a casual chat between us became something much more intense and real. So, the dedication and the premise is personal for me. Moongypsy Press is the publisher, and I hope they will also be the publisher on the next two pieces that will make this story complete. It’s due out on May 25th, I believe.
I’ve also just had my first release with Noble Romance, an erotic action/thriller that is very hot, very sexy, and a bit James Bond meets martial arts…. the hero is a ninja, one of the secret warriors, and he’s also a “spy” – so it made for an exciting novella! The covers on both these new books are to die for, as well, thanks to the talents of Dawné Dominique (Games of Seduction) and Fiona Jayde for Retribution: Silent Death at Noble.
Jen: Describe your writing in three words.
Denyse: Passionate, diverse, entertaining.
Jen: How do you approach your writing? Do you plot or go with the flow?
Denyse: Depends on the story itself in most ways. I tend to go with the flow on shorter pieces, but if I’m writing a full length novel, I tend to prefer to work from a detailed outline. It keeps me focused and on track. Also, once you’ve committed the story to the page in this format, you get a better overview of where you’re going and have to pace and balance the story. If you have a complicated plot, or a lot of information that is integral to the story, you really need to make the notes to keep it properly on track, I think. Plus, this is, ultimately, a job, so you have to treat it as such, with the respect and hours that its due.
Jen: Have you noticed your writer’s voice has changed over the years due to your experience? If so, how?
Denyse: My writer’s voice is in constant flux and change because I write so many different genres. What works well for one story might not work for another type. I remember when I was writing fan fiction and I produced a fanzine. I put several of my own pieces in it, but did not credit the author – a best-selling author who was a friend of mine read all of it and asked who the other authors were, she didn’t recognize me in them. So, that’s a good thing, in my opinion. I like to keep things diverse, otherwise I get bored with it all, and if I’m bored, the reader will be bored, too.
Jen: What is it about the romance genre that appeals to you?
Denyse: I think the romance genre appeals to me personally because it’s an escape from the mundane life, and it’s also a way to grow in emotional terms, because all well-written stories teach us something about ourselves. Whether it’s the level of passion that can exist for some lovers, or the struggle that it sometimes takes to find and hold love – it’s all present in a good book. And, to some degree, reminds us that nothing is ever easy if it’s worthwhile – especially the things that change your life dramatically. You can get that in many ways from almost any book, but a love story is touching what is commonly the one thing ALL people have as a bond. You get to experience love in different circumstances, in exotic locales, and through the eyes and hearts of people we would all like to be sometimes… I think there is a magic in romance that is universal in appeal, truly.
Jen: How do you pick the character’s names?
Denyse: I find the character’s names either present themselves to me, or I just go to my sourcebook and open the pages to the country I want to set the story in, and they’ll sort of jump out at me from the lists.
Jen: Do you become attached to your characters and have a hard time letting them go, or are you happy that their story is told and you can move on?
Denyse: Most of the time I am working on so many things that it’s relief to wrap up one story and continue on. There are certainly special creations that never quite leave you, but mostly, I love the process and just want to explore new possibilities, so it’s never really hard to let go of anyone. Real life should be this easy!!
Jen: What five authors or people, from the past or present, have been important to you as an author? What question or comment have you always wanted to say to them?
Denyse: My dad, because he wasn’t always too sure I’d made a good choice with writing, but he supported me because it’s what I wanted. Arthur Conan Doyle, because Sherlock Holmes might be fictional, but I learned a lot about how to write by reading those stories, and a lot about observing life because of Holmes and his expressed views in the stories. Lucy Monroe, because she has never lost faith in me, and continues to support my efforts to grow as a writer. Riccardo Foresi, my friend and the hero of a novel I am waiting to hear about now, he’s an Italian singer with a heart of gold and incredible talent – Riccardo believes in me as much as I believe in him, and that’s a precious gift. Lastly, Margaret Mitchell – because this lady wrote Gone with the Wind which will forever be my favourite novel, and the fact that she only wrote this one book is a great loss to literature.
As to what I’d want to say or ask – I think mostly I would just want to thank each of these amazing people for bringing something special and lasting to my life and my heart.
Jen: If Games of Seduction was made into a movie, which actors would you choose to play the hero and heroine?
Denyse: Stuart Townsend and his lovely lady, Charlize Theron – even if she did have to change to redhead for it….
Jen: What has been your highlight of your career to this point?
Denyse: I think so far it has to be the release of As Fate Decrees, my first major book to be sold worldwide. I was thrilled to recently find it listed in an Italian university catalogue, and friends in the US have told me it’s been requested at libraries in some universities there, too. That’s quite exciting, really.
Jen: What’s the most interesting comment you have received about your books?
Denyse: Honestly, I think they’re ALL interesting, and they are ALL appreciated, because good or bad each person who takes the time to express their thoughts and opinions is to be valued and their comments are important. Reviews are wonderful things, but the people who buy the books are the real voice that matters, in my opinion. If a reader enjoys your work enough to take the time to express their observations and insights, then you know you have reached them, and chances are they’re going to look for more of your stories if they enjoyed what they read. At the end of the day, my job as a writer is not to preach at, educate, or change the views of my readers – my job is to entertain them and allow them to escape the everyday and smile… when that happens, I’m happy.
Jen: What’s next for you?
Denyse: Wow – that’s a tough one, because there are so many projects in the works just now. I have the next fantasy novel plotted and ready to begin work on, plus there are always about a dozen shorter pieces on the go. I have my first werewolf story started, two sequels to Games of Seduction, one called “Treasures of the Heart” that is a cougar story, I’m toying with a ménage tale, and a really special one called “Viper’s Nest” that is for a soldier friend who is going to be shipped out to Afghanistan on the first of June. There’s a trailer for that on my YouTube page, and the photos are of the real man this book is for. I never seem to have enough time to tell all the stories I want to explore, so there’s no end in sight at this stage.
Jen: Where can you be found on the web?
Denyse: I have pages at The Author’s Den, Book Tour, LinkedIn, Manic Readers, etc., and the main sites where I am are here:
Romantic Moments (Free Reads): http://www.romanticmoments.webs.com
Sensual Treats Magazine: http://www.sensualtreats.webs.com
Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Romance-and-Fantasy/458701180391
Also, my newsgroup: http://ca.groups.yahoo.com/group/denysebridgernews/
Jen: Is there anything you’d like to ask our readers?
Denyse: Sure, what do you like to read, and how can I entertain you?
Jen: Readers, Denyse is holding a contest for you. Go to her website and check out her links page. Then come back here and leave a comment telling us how many links she has to various performers and what 3 of them have in common. With your answer, leave your email address to complete your entry. One grand prize winner will receive any download from her back list as well as a special prize that will be mailed to you. Three other winners will win the download of their choice. The winners will be chosen on Thursday, May 27.