1. How long have you been writing? What inspired you to pick the pen up one day and create characters that capture the imagination?
For over twenty five years (YIKES!) I’ve been writing, starting with yearbook and school newspapers back in junior high. Then I worked as a college newspaper editor-in-chief, a layout artist for The Charlotte Observer, magazines, radio, television…
I always wanted to write fiction, but was busy with life - you know how that goes - up until 2005. It all began when went on a cruise to Mexico. I was laying around drinking margaritas, sunbathing and started having a little movie playing in my mind about a guy in the casino on a ship. I’d never seen this guy before and had no idea what it meant, but because I was relaxing, I ignored it. The movie kept popping in my mind for several days, and once I realized it wasn’t going away, I decided to write it down and it became my very first novel of 100K!
That one was called Deep Currency about my Mexican born homicide detective Mario Martinez who solved a murder on the high seas. That book will FINALLY be coming out later this year from Red Rose Publishing.
2. What influenced you to get published? How long did it take? Can you tell us the name of your first published work?
Despite my interest in fiction, I never pursued it. I was busy with my other career which has been all consuming and after a particularly hectic travel schedule in 2006, I had it and decided life is short and finally decided at the end of that year to devote my full attention to fiction because I had a lot of new ideas floating around my head. I spent early 2007 winding down my other business and by summer of 2007, I started writing full time. Once I had some material finished, I began submitting and sold my first novella series Famliar: End of Eternity about a sexy group of cursed cat shifters to Red Rose Publishing by the end of 2007.
The big influence to want to get published was the fact that I had to save face. I literally had been traveling around the world lecturing up to that point and once I decided to write full time, I literally canceled a lot of my speaking engagements and cut off known sources of income, bought a new house and sat down to write. To those who thought I had lost my proverbial marbles, I had to show them that somebody wanted my work.
3. Most people envision an author’s life as being really glamorous. What’s your take on this? Can you tell us something unglamorous you did within the last week or so?
Oh yes, of course! (insert uppity British accent here!) Funny stuff, Jude! Yes, my life is one glamorous episode after the next! LOL!
I think folks like to romanticize the writer’s life as one of fluffing around in a robe (which I do), commanding servants to your beckon call (which I wish I did) and eating bon bons all day (I do consume chocolate, yes) Hey! Maybe my life really is glamorous! I need to take time to smell the roses!!! LOL
I must say, I do enjoy sitting around in my jammies eating chocolate! I do that, and I have been known to “fluff around” in my bed, writing steamy novels under a pile of blankets. The truth is though, that despite these few and far between moments, much of the novelist’s life is spent staring at a screen, working odd hours and locked down in more concentrated effort than I’ve ever spent at anything in my life. I do love it though! There is no other profession I’ve found as simultaneously fascinating and frustrating. Fascinating because in fiction you can be who you want and live in any world of your choosing. Frustrating because I am still wondering what it is the publishers out there want. I feel very blessed to have a few houses, especially eXtasy Books, who are keen on publishing everything I write.
Non-glamorous events are plenty. Today I had to take out the trash, clean the cat litter and…yes, I’m afraid…do the laundry! Where was my hunky manservant when I needed him? Ah…I hope to aspire to that one day! The journey continues…
4. Plotter or pantzer?
Pantzer all the way. I am writing first to entertain myself so it’s important for me to have only a vague idea where I’m going, but not divulge too much about my plot in advance because that is what entertains me. It’s like I am reading it while I am writing it, if that makes sense. It’s quite self-centered! LOL
A long time ago, I read Stephen King’s book On Writing, which I believe has some awesome tips in it. He basically said the same thing about why he writes. He has what he calls one ‘ideal reader,’ who in his case is his wife, Tabitha. He writes for her first, him second. If she laughs and loves it, he knows he is on the right track. I’ve tried to follow that advice. I have a couple readers/friends who are my ideals. The fact is you can’t make everybody happy in this world. (Darn!) Fiction is so subjective, you must enjoy it, which I truly try to do.
5. What do you do when you’re suffering writers block?
Go to the gym, the lake park near my house, go see a movie…or CLEAN! Cleaning really clears out my mind, for some reason. I went to a super Romance Writers of America lecture about this where the woman said that the process of stacking clutter up then cleaning it is some representation of the inner workings of the mind. I know it’s true for me. I have some process I go through which includes straightening everything up when I am between projects. This seems to help me set the pace for what’s coming next.
6. Looking over the past year, what has been the best moment for you in your writing career?
In February, I participated in a play writing festival and wrote a play which appeared on stage. That was a thrill seeing how the audience reacted to the work. It was so immediate to hear the laughs, gasps, etc. I loved it! It was one of the scariest and most thrilling things I’ve ever done.
7. What do you enjoy doing with your spare time, your non-writing time?
I am an avid spin cyclist. I go to the gym nearly every day of the week. Working out helps me create things and also it’s my social time with friends I’ve been working out with for – ahem – over a decade.
I love travelling! That’s my main passion! I have a map on the wall and I write checkmarks over all the places I’ve been. I want to see as much of the world as I can! I’ve been to a lot of great places, but there’s still a lot more to see!
And finally, I enjoy a girl’s night out once a week. That’s always fun!
8. What are you working on now? Can you tell us a little about it?
I have several projects in the mix. One is a 25 novella series for eXtasy books about my characters from my earlier sci-fi trilogy called Beyond 2012. This new series is called The Venusians and will document the migration of these sexy creatures across the galaxy as they escape from Venus and begin colonizing other parts of the solar system.
9. What kind of comfort food do you like best?
Chocolate and coffee! I love a good bowl of noodles too!
10. I noticed you write across different genres. Which do you enjoy the most?
Wow! That’s a tough question! It all depends on what mood I’m in. I think I will write more horror in the future and I would have told you horror would be my favorite, but science fiction has probably emerged as my current favorite. I really enjoy the fact that as long as the story makes some logical sense in the world I create that I can pretty much do what I want in sci-fi. It’s so liberating! I am really excited about my forthcoming series on the Venusians…so stay tuned for that and others.
Series: # Tarot in series: Hierophant
by Annette Shelley
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Cover Artist: Martine Jardin
Categories: Recent Releases, Tarot Series, Major Arcana
Categories: Recent Releases, Tarot Series, Major Arcana
*** Note – this is not categorized as romance
Charles Daughtry goes to a society party to do business on behalf of his father when he is bewitched by the lovely and married mistress of the house, Claire Davies. The two engage in a lascivious episode in an upstairs room during the party. Charles narrowly escapes discovery, but vows to rekindle the flames of passion, regardless of the cost. After some unfortunate events leave Charles shaken, he confesses his sins to a Bishop. Charles hopes for absolution. Will he find forgiveness from the spiritual leader or crucifixion at the end of a hangman's noose?
He unlaced the bodice, pressing it open until her bare chest toppled out before him. "My God, you are a sight."
She giggled shyly. "You are too kind."
"No kindness here, milady, only appreciation." Charles studied her every line and feature, burning it into his mind where he hoped it would stay forever. All the while his hardness increased. He lowered his breeches to the floor, unbuttoned the first few buttons.
His lover's delicate fingers found their way to his chest. Claire tugged at his sleeves until his shirt hit the floor, landing on top of her garments. She kissed his shoulders, his neck, his chest. Each proclamation made him more eager for her. She traced her fingers over the tip of him and instinctively tasted his wetness. "Mmm. Quite good."
"Am I?" Charles slid his torso down hers and spread her legs wide, dipping his tongue inside her sweet center. With wet mouth, he lifted his head. "You're quite tasty yourself."
For someone who never had a lover before, Claire arched her back and moaned out like no other Charles had ever had.
The sight of this made him wild with passion. Without her express permission, he rushed over her, guiding himself into her center and forced himself to the deepest parts without incident.
"Agh," she moaned.
He pulled out and checked for blood. There wasn't any, which surprised him. If she was a virgin like she said she was, shouldn't she have been in pain, shouldn't there have been blood? He rested the tip of his member just inside her folds. "Are you okay?"
"Yes, I want more." She reached her hand around his neck, kissing him and sending her tongue dancing inside his mouth.
And more he gave her. Again and again he thrust until he unloaded himself inside her. The pair crumpled together in a sweaty heap of lust.
At that moment, there was a loud knock at their door and a familiar voice of William Davies spoke. "Darling? Are you in there?"
Annette Shelley's bio
Annette Shelley is author of over fifteen novels and novellas who loves living in the worlds she creates. She is an avid horror, sci fi and mystery fan who lives near Dallas Texas. Annette is also a member of RWA, Horror writers of American Association, North Texas Speculative Fiction Writers and the Southwest Chapter of Mystery Writers of America.
Visit her online at www.annetteshelley.com Friend her on Facebook at Annette Shelley or follow her on Twitter at AnnetteShelley