Today, Pauline Allan is joining us to tell us a little about herself and her brand new release "Gilded Lily." So, grab your favorite beverage, slip off your shoes and come join us on the couch. There's lot's of room, and we love company.
Hi Kathryn. I'm so excited to join you today. I look forward to hearing from your readers and spending time chatting about the exciting world of writing.
Welcome, Pauline. I'm so glad you were available to join us. Out of curiosity, since I wrote for a long time before one of my manuscripts was accepted, how long did you write before you were published?
-Goodness gracious, what a question. I was looking through boxes in my basement and came across a "newspaper" I had put together for my family. I had interviewed my family and friends and wrote stories about the happenings at the time. The binding was put together with yarn! It was really a step back in time. So, I was nine years old when I did that and I had the writing bug since that time. I began writing short stories in the horror genre. That led to poetry and finally set my sights on romance five years ago. I wrote three novels in one year. "See Me," my debut novel, was written almost a year and six months ago. It was the fifth book I wrote and decided to throw my hat in the ring and submit it to two publishers. It was the first time I submitted my work to a publisher. Loose Id picked it up and the rest was history.
Loose Id is a very prestigious publisher, so congratulations on being picked up by them first time around. Gilded Lily has two Doms and one sub and takes place in New Orleans, right? So, tell us what sort of research you did for your book.
-I enjoy visiting Louisiana. Everything about the South intrigues me. I go to New Orleans two to three times a year. The magic of the city always inspires me. The plantation homes are steeped in history. There beautiful architecture is aesthetically rich. The huge houses were the inspiration for Lily's home. As for the BDSM aspect of the book, I have attended three BDSM clubs. Through asking questions and witnessing what happens in that type of setting I was able to compile my research to create the true aspect of the lifestyle.
Gilded Lily appears to be a very personal story. Did you include any experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
-Gilded Lily was written in a small bedroom in my old house. My husband made me a makeshift desk in one corner and I banged away on my laptop for three months. I ignored my family and dealt with the most gut-twisting grief I've ever experienced. My grandmother had died and writing, as always, was my only way to handle the intense feelings I was experiencing. Lily also lost her grandmother and it was my way of processing my grief.
I can relate to that on a very personal level myself. So, do you consider yourself a plotter or a pantser?
-I am a little bit of both. With my research for any project I begin with a brief description of the characters and their arcs. I use note cards to keep things organized. I then flesh out the story arc and sit down at the computer. I'm a firm believer the characters write themselves. They even surprise me in their responses and actions. I can't keep a firm outline for the stories because they tend to curve and wind around into their own new creation. My characters drive the story and remain at the forefront. The story or back drop of the situations comes about from the hero and heroines reactions to different obstacles.
I don't know of any authors who keep to a firm outline on their stories. Keeping strictly to an outline doesn't allow the creative muse to offer input. In all your reading, what book do you wish you’d written?
-Honestly, I should probably say some huge contribution to the literary world, but I must say it's a book that touched my heart on a deep level. It took me to a dark place and gave me redemption on the last page. The book was written by the talented Megan Hart. The title is Precious and Fragile things.
I haven't read it, but I'll definitely look it up. What books would you say have influenced your writing most?
-There are six books that make up my sacred library. Story of O, The Beauty Series, Alice in Wonderland, and the unabridged book of Edgar Allan Poe's short stories.
I have read Anne Rice's Beauty series, but it was a long time ago. If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
-Stephen King. His book, "On Writing," is a roadmap for writers describing how to write for the joy of putting a story to paper, but also how to get that story published. He made a life-changing statement in that book. It's okay to declare that I am a writer. Underneath everything else, when you strip me down to the bare bones, I'm a writer. He made it okay for me to admit that. An author doesn't have to be published to be a great writer. Never be ashamed of creativity. That was what Mr. King taught me.
I read Mr. King's book a long time ago and agree with you. You write, therefore you are a writer, and no one can take that away from you. Back to Gilded Lily. Can you share a little of your current work with us?
-Gilded Lily hit the shelves on June 11th. Adam's ferocious sexual appetite for submission has left him frustrated and alone. He turns to the photo in his wallet. The woman's full lips smile with laughter. The yellow sundress hugs her soft curves. The beautiful muse. His elusive flower.
Lily has a dark secret. A submissive without a Dominant, her life had derailed with grief, solitude, and rejection. Until a mysterious stranger's erotic education led to unfathomable pleasure.
Tony knew Lily's training would be his last attempt to escape the void in his life. An experienced Dom with the very nature of his control shaken, he has to run. There's one last responsibility to take care of before he can leave.
Lily, his once timid sub, is testing her boundaries and craves more. A love he can never give.
Tragedy leads Adam to Lily's plantation in Louisiana. While packing his brother's belongings, Tony offers the one precious thing Adam could never deny. The submission of his elusive flower.
The clock is ticking. Tony wants freedom. Adam demands total submission. Lily must choose. Does she cling to the safety of Tony's commands or risk the rejection of Adam's love?
Either way, a submissive's trust is a fragile thing. Once broken...it's lost forever.
The theme of a lot of my books is that trust is precious, so that's another area you and I have in common. If you could talk directly to your readers, is there anything specific that you want to say to them?
-I write for the everyday woman. My heroines are curvy and full-figured. I want my readers to know that we are in the plus size numbers and have the right to enjoy our sexuality and bodies as much as our single digit friends. I want my books to transform you, leave you feeling satisfied and smiling. The tears I hope my books generate lead you on a journey to redemption. Whether you're folding laundry, tending to the kids, attending corporate meetings, or walking on the treadmill—my stories are for you.
I really like the way you said that. Okay, next I'd like you to name one entity (person, place or thing) you feel supported or inspired you outside of your family members.
-My best friend Anne has always been my cheerleader. She's an avid reader of romance and erotic romance. She keeps me grounded and on task when it comes to my writing. She encourages me to tackle the farthest reaches of my creativity. We share a love of the South and it's always fun bouncing new ideas around with her.
Writing can be such a solitary activity, I think we all could use a cheerleader to back us up. So, tell us what is your best guilty pleasure? (By best I mean worst.)
-I would have to say I have two. The peach bellini at The Court of Two Sisters in the French Quarter and a bag of beignets from Cafe du Monde at four in the morning. Yummy!
I'm smiling at that. May have to make a trip to New Orleans. I like to end my interviews with a few words of wisdom. What advice, if any, would you give to other writers?
-Write. Write. Write. Anne gave me a sweatshirt that reads Just Get The Crap On The Page. The shirt hits the nail on the head. You can't be a writer if you don't get the words on the paper. Many people have the desire to write a story. Fewer actually put the idea on paper. A very small minority actually complete a book. Another good piece of advice is to promo and make contacts as if you've already published the book. The advice you receive from other writers is valuable. Establish your voice and stay true to it. Publishers and agents are looking for your personal style. Let your quirkiness come through and delve into your darkest emotions to really solidify your spirit in the stories.
That is perfect. Thanks so much for visiting with us, Pauline. I wish you much success. Now. we'll post the information so people can pop over and purchase "Gilded Lily."
For an excerpt, click HERE
Loose Id: http://www.loose-id.com/gilded-lily.html