I’ve been a fan of hers for a bit now. I love her style and I gobble up everything she writes. The latest is Reasonable Doubts and it is amazing. My five star review can be found here. It’s paging turning hotness. Just wait until you read the excerpt she brought. You’ll want to keep reading. Remember, I warned you.
I recently asked if she’d stop by and answer a few questions. She said yes. Squee! Yes, I’m having a fan girl moment. 😀
She’s also brought something for everyone, as long as supplies last, and there’s going to be a prize drawing too. All of that is below.
Okay. Deep breaths and here we go.
SJ: Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.
Cara: Oh gosh, I deliberately omitted or only hinted at certain things because I didn’t want to spoil the story, such as Liz’s former boss’s identity, that Reasonable Doubts is an older woman/younger man romance (though not a huge gap, only 6 or so years), and that I killed off a character readers had met in previous books. The prologue to Reasonable Doubts came from a scene that was cut from False Pretenses (Rod and Cane book 2) during editing.
SJ: What are some of your favorite things about the Rob and Cane Erotic Romances?
Cara: How much it has grown and expanded over what I originally envisioned. The characters and the Rod and Cane Society have become real to me. Because characters reappear in different books, readers have the chance to get to know them, and each book is like visiting old friends. Yet, I think I’ve been able to write the books in such a way that one can read them as stand-alones. It’s a fun series to write; there are so many different characters and potential story lines.
SJ: All of your books are page turners for me. At the end of a scene or a chapter, I always have this need to keep reading. What are some tips or tricks you’ve picked up to keep the reader hooked through the whole story?
Cara: Thank you! That’s what an author loves to hear. I think writers are told so often that a book or a chapter has to have a beginning, a middle, and an end so that the inclination is to “wrap up” each chapter. But that’s the last thing a writer should do. A chapter should end unsettled with a mini cliffhanger, or at least with an open question. One technique I use is to end a chapter with the character believing one thing while showing the reader that the real situation is the opposite. I try to make things tense, not relaxed.
SJ: I know you and your husband like to travel. Which place would you most like to revisit? Where would you really like to go next? Have any of these trips inspired the stories you’ve written?
Cara: I would love to go to China again. It is magical, so entirely different from the Western world. When you look at what China was doing and building while North/South America was in the Stone Age, it blows your mind. China changed the way I viewed travel. Before China, traveling was for vacation, for R & R, so I tended to gravitate toward places that were familiar to me. After China, I wanted to see more of what is foreign. I’d love to go to China again and the Orient in general (I’ve also been to Thailand). That said, our next big trip will probably be a river cruise through Prague and Budapest. My trips don’t tend to inspire stories because I do go for R& R, so I’m not thinking about work. However, I did use my travel experiences as background for the Wife on the Lam story in the Coming to Terms anthology.
SJ: What have you cooked that ended up tasting a lot better than you anticipated?
Cara: I have been cooking my way through The Gourmet Slower Cooker by Lynn Alley. I decided to try Chicken Pipérade, a French dish that calls for 3 red bell peppers. I wasn’t sure if I would like that much red bell pepper (and was really worried my husband wouldn’t), but it turned out great. My husband loved it, and said it would be a good recipe to serve company.
SJ: I’ve learned so much from you these past couple of years. You’re very generous in sharing your experiences. Thank you! What gives you the most trouble in this business and has it changed over the years?
Cara: When I had my first few books published, getting noticed and getting books to sell was difficult. You work your butt off and nothing happens. Or nothing seems to happen. That has changed for me. My work sells now, and my readership is growing, but I’ve learned that you cannot rest on your laurels or coast for very long. There are peaks and valleys and some books do better than others. You have to continually produce and promote, although the latter gets easier. There is a point in an author’s career—beginning with the third book or so—when there aren’t enough hours in the day to do everything that needs to be done. You become like a crazed, frantic circus performer. You start to wonder how you can possibly keep up the pace. But that is the turning point, and if you can power past it, the craziness eases and the workload becomes manageable. But if you expect to make a career out writing, know it that it will always require full time effort.
SJ: Which one of your characters would you most like to meet in real life and why?
Cara: I would like to meet Marc DeLuca of Body Politics, although I think he would intimidate the hell out of me. I was half in love with him by the time I finished writing the book. And I would love to meet Liz Davenport. I think she and I could be great friends.
SJ: What is your greatest extravagance?
Cara: Traveling and books. My husband and I rarely eat dinner out, never go to movies, generally don’t do all the typical sorts of things that other people do for entertainment. But as you pointed out, we’ve traveled all over the world. The other extravagance is buying books without reservation. If I want one, I buy it.
SJ: What are you reading now?
Cara: Life’s Unexpected Gifts by Livia Grant.
SJ: Tell us a bit about some of the other releases you’re planning for 2015.
Cara: In March or April, I’ll publish The Goddess’s Curse, a fantasy, sci-fi story inspired by the mythological Amazon women. In my sci-fi Breeder series, the characters live in male-dominated world. In The Goddess Curse (Heartmates), I flip it around and put the women in charge—but the men are still alpha. Depending on how readers react to The Goddess’s Curse will determine whether I turn it into a series. I will also write another Rod and Cane, and this one will be Jordan Bevy’s story—he’s the disciplinary proctor. I also agreed to participate in a spanking romance boxed set with Celeste Jones, Renee Rose and Sue Lyndon. And I have some other stand-alone novel and nonfiction ideas demanding to be written. But it’s not getting crazy. Nope. Negatory. Not at all.
Widow Liz Davenport assumes when she begins to date, her new man will be like her late husband–a member of the Rod and Cane Society and an experienced disciplinarian who can provide her with loving guidance she requires to feel grounded and secure. So why is she attracted to Grant Davis, an ex-Naval JAG officer who works for her nemesis and has never spanked a woman in his life?
Events in his recent past have forced Grant to take stock of his life and try some new things. But spank a woman? He’s never considered that before, but with Liz’s coaching he’s willing to try.
But when the past collides with the present, will he be able to step up and become the disciplinarian Liz needs?
Reasonable Doubts Excerpt – 454 words
“If you’re seeking a fun spanking, I can accommodate you. But I can’t hit you to punish you, Liz.”
That was a common hang-up for many men who’d been taught to never raise a hand to a woman. “Not hitting. Spanking. Paddling.”
“Hit you with a paddle?” He looked aghast now.
She said, spank, and he heard hit. Liz sighed, frustrated for feeling out of her element in a situation that had been her element her entire adult life. She’d never had to broach the subject with a man. How did other women deal with the issue?
Grant curved his arm around her. Thinking he intended to hug her, she curled against his chest, but he continued to exert pressure. “What are you doing?” she asked.
“Placing you over my lap.”
Her jaw dropped. “Are you serious?”
“It’s what you want, isn’t it?”
But—but—Liz peeked at him, but he wore his courtroom face. Unreadable. Did he desire this—or was he going through the motions to please her? Did she want to be spanked this way? Not coldly, more…dispassionately. Yet heat curled in her tummy. It had been so long since she’d been spanked. The few playful swats he’d given her the other night didn’t count.
Her body decided for her by melting into a submissive puddle over Grant’s lap. He smoothed his hands across her bottom, rubbing her cheeks through her clothes. “You do have a nice ass,” he said.
Her heart migrated to her throat where it drummed a rapid beat, as a familiar excitement zinged through her.
Cool air breezed across her skin when Grant raised her skirt to her waist. Another good sign: he adjusted her clothing without her having to prompt him. With his finger, he traced the line of her panties across her lower back and the tops of her thighs. Belatedly, Liz realized she wasn’t wearing her best underwear. Not her worst, thank goodness, but beige bikinis with an elastic band of lace for adornment qualified as more functional than sexy. But how could she have known she would be spanked today?
Grant smoothed his hands over her buttocks, a patch of rough skin on his palm catching on silk. His gentle touch electrified her, created a muscle-deep ache, a longing she could taste. Liz pressed her face against the sofa cushion and closed her eyes. Please, please. She wanted him to spank her so badly, but she’d made her case, and the decision rested with him. She couldn’t force him into being a spanko. He needed to step up and take control of the situation without any more instigation from her.
He hooked a thumb into the waistband of her panties. “Lift,” he ordered.
Where you can find Reasonable Doubts
Where you can find Cara Bristol:
How would you like to become card-carrying member of the Rod and Cane Society? To receive a membership card, leave a comment for Cara about Reasonable Doubts or this blog AND your email address in the body of your comment. Cara will contact you to arrange to send you a membership card. This is not a drawing. Everyone who posts a comment with an email address can receive a card—as long as supplies last. In addition, by commenting on this blog and leaving an email address, you’ll be entered into a drawing for Rod and Cane coffee mug.