Jen: Today we welcome Victoria Blisse to Romancing the Book. Victoria, will you share a short bio with us?
Victoria: Victoria Blisse is a mother, wife, Christian, Manchester United fan and award winning erotica author. She is also the editor of several Bigger Briefs collections, and the co-editor of the fabulous Smut Alfresco, Smut in the City and Smut by the Sea Anthologies.
Victoria is also one of the brains behind the fabulous Smut events, days dedicated to erotica, fun and prizes. Check out http://facebook.com/smut.uk for more details.
She is equally at home behind a laptop or a cooker and she loves to create stories, poems, cakes and biscuits that make people happy. She was born near Manchester, England and her northern English quirkiness shows through in all of her stories.
Passion, love and laughter fill her works, just as they fill her busy life.
Jen: Tell us about your newest release.
Victoria: Good Manors is a romance with a sexy twist, set in a Georgian stately home. India is a journalist with a shady secret connected to Mallard Hall which complicates the relationship between herself and the owner, Xander Patrick.
I’ve always wanted to write something historical but have been loath to do so because of all the research involved. I thought this was a good way to dabble as the setting is ancient but the timeframe for Good Manors is contemporary. I did have to do some research into rare breed sheep and Georgian copper jugs for example, but it was at a level I could cope with.
Here’s a short excerpt from Good Manors:
“Oh my God, Xander, I mean, Mr. Patrick, oh shit, are you all right?”
“Yes, I’m fine, are you okay?”
India’s warm curves pressed me down into the soft grass. I tried not to think too much about her body so I wouldn’t embarrass myself.
“Oh, yeah, yeah, nothing broken.” Her gaze kept me pinned down. Her cheeks were flushed and her hair draped forward and into my face, the pink tips tickling my nose.
I wiped it away and hooked it around the back of her ear without thinking.
“Jeez, I should get up off you, shouldn’t I?” She shook her head and scrambled backward.
I watched her breasts swaying in the bright turquoise top and coughed. I hoped she hadn’t caught me leering at her. I couldn’t help it, she fascinated me.
“Sorry, again.” She scrambled to her feet and smoothed down her long, white skirt. “Do you need a hand up?” Thrusting her hand forward, she smiled down at me.
I reached up and took the proffered fingers in mine. I attempted not to put too much of my weight on her as I scrambled up. Her fingers were smooth and delicate, her hand cool in my own. I didn’t want to let go.
“Thanks.” I grinned. “I think I should be the one apologizing. I wasn’t paying any attention to where I was going, I was walking on autopilot.”
“Oh, no, no. I didn’t see you coming either. I was wrapped up in thinking about stuff to add into my article.”
“All good, I hope.” I was still holding her hand and was sure she was as aware of it as I was. I didn’t know how to let it go. I mean, clearly I knew physically what to do, but I was caught in the awkwardness of the situation. I didn’t want to be the one to let go first, I didn’t want her to think I was eager to get away. An awkward schoolboy had nothing on me. Hot cheeks, tapping foot, dried mouth. I might not be the heart and soul of a party but usually I was cool, calm, collected and able to hold a whole conversation with someone without dithering. Not with India, though.
“It’s a secret.” She winked. Squeezed my hand and let it drop. “I don’t tell anyone before it comes out in the magazine.”
Oh God, she thinks I’m an idiot.
I cringed internally. Clearly all the weird chemistry stuff was on my side only. I’d have to restrain myself.
“Sure, of course, well, I better go. I’ve got so much to do.”
I didn’t wait to hear what else she had to say. I walked off, but I might as well have run away crying. It was so obvious I was making a tactical retreat. I didn’t have time or energy to waste on being infatuated with a woman. Especially a journalist. Mum had often tried to match-make me with suitable women. She’d not even have put India down on a reserves list. I resigned myself to a life of singledom, dead on track to becoming a crazy sheep man.
Jen: Are you a plotter or pantser?
Victoria: I’m so very much a pantser. I do create a little bit of a plan these days for my longer works. It’s difficult not to when you’re writing a novel. You need to know where things are headed. Mostly though, I just get an idea in my head and start writing it. My notes, even on novels, tend only to be a few paragraphs long at most. Writing is a voyage of discovery for me, I might know where I’m starting and have a vague idea of where I’ll end up but the bit in the middle is a total mystery adventure!
Jen: How do you remember ideas that come to you at odd times?
Victoria: I write them down, the number of good ideas I’ve forgotten because I’ve not made a note scares me. If I have an idea on a bus (I get a lot of my inspiration on public transport) or from a dream I will write it down as soon as I can. Thank God for my trusty phone. I may still have to translate half asleep typos but I can at least read what I typed later. If I write actual notes it’s much more of a challenge to translate my scrawl.
Jen: What’s the most challenging aspect of writing? Easiest? Most rewarding?
Victoria: I hate editing. Hate, hate, hate editing. Did I say I hate editing? Well I do. I find it tedious and annoying because no matter how much I try to grasp it, a lot of grammar rules just go right over my head. God bless my infinitely patient editors who go over with me time and again what the past perfect tense is, stop me from filtering and waving about independent body parts. Edits are always a challenge.
Easiest bit of writing for me is coming up with the idea. I have a million ideas and I often say ‘Oh, I still haven’t written that one yet’ and the most rewarding is definitely seeing the finished product.
Jen: How do you come up with characters names?
Victoria: Character names either just come to me in a flash of inspiration or they take forever to find. I will have an idea of the person I want to capture and so the name for that person is very important. India’s name came to me easily for Good Manors. She’s an artistic, free flowing (if a little neurotic) kooky kinda character so her name had to match that. Naming Xander was a little more difficult though I don’t think on this occasion I had to open up the baby name dictionary!
Jen: Do you have a favorite character or one you most identify with?
Victoria: My favorite character is always the one I’m writing or have just written. I’m so caught up in their story that I find it hard to think of the others, the many others I’ve already written. I’m in the middle of edits for Something Brave right now and Sir is my very favourite character, possibly because he’s based on someone I know but I couldn’t possibly divulge more…yet. 😉
Jen: What’s next for you?
Victoria: My next release with Totally Bound is the fourth book in my Point Vamp Series, The Point of Evil which I thoroughly enjoyed writing. There’re some seriously evil villains in that one and some super sexy vampires too. Following close on its heels is Something Brave, which will also be available from Totally Bound and is the story of a shy girl’s discovery of her submissive side at the hands of a handsome man she only knows as Sir.