Thank you, Gwyneth for spending time to be interviewed on Read Between The Lines. Could you tell us how you got started writing and what you like best about your chosen genre?
I’ve always wanted to be a writer. But I didn’t always know I wanted to be a romance writer. It was only after I wrote and published a nonfiction book that I remembered that I used to have a dream to one day write a novel. It didn’t take me much longer to realize that my love for reading romance would turn into a love for writing them. I love so many things about the romance genre. I love handsome heroes and happily ever after the most though.
Please tell us about your latest release?
My latest release is Sweet Sensation. It’s a novel that melds my love of hip-hop with my love of romance. It’s the second book in my Hip-Hop Debutantes Trilogy that takes the classic “secret child” and “lovers reunited” story lines and gives them a hip-hop remix. At its core it is a pretty traditional romance story with lots of flavor, some spoken word and music. It also has a few steamy scenes and some intrigue thrown in for good measure.
What is your favorite book/ and scene from one your books?
My favorite books of mine so far as If Only You Knew and my forthcoming Protect and Serve. And then there’s that scene in the dungeon between Kara and Darwu the Warrior Prince… I really loved that scene.( smile)
Do your books tend to have an overall theme?
Not that I know of.
How would you describe your writing?
I just came up with the tagline “Sexy Romance With Urban Flair…” I like that a lot and really see my work, especially my contribution to the Cuffed by Candlelight anthology and my Hightower Honors series fitting that tag. But I also think that my all my work is a mix of deep emotion, passion and dose of funny for good measure. I think my novels take readers through a wide range of emotions… a read you can feel.
Which character in one of your books can you relate to and why?
Hmm… good question. I ‘d have to say that I probably have to say Alicia Taylor from I’m Gonna Make You Love Me and Penny Keys from my forthcoming novel Protect and Serve. I think I relate to Alicia because of her attitude and drive. She’s the character that my husband always says, “That’s you. She reminds me of you.” And I relate to Penny because she comes from where I came from.
If you could picture yourself having a wild affair with one of your characters which one would it be?
Hmm… That’s a hard one. I could teach that little young boy Darren Whitman in I’m Gonna Make You Love Me a thing or two. And I think I could tame those overbearing alpha men, Carlton Harrington III in If Only You Knew and Darwu the Warrior Prince in Divine Destiny. And it would be kind of interesting to see what that DEA Agent Lance King could do with those handcuffs of his… And Lord, what I wouldn’t do to get my hands on one of those Hightower men from my forthcoming Kimani Series Hightower Honors. Those men are, strong, fine, honorable, protective and did I say fine? Did you say pick one? Because I want them all…
What’s your writing routine? Music? Candles?
Pulling out the laptop and letting it flow. I don’t do anything special like music or candles while I’m writing. But music does inspire me and get me in the mood to write. I’m feeling blocked I can sometimes play a certain song that makes me think of the character and then I can write again. For example the heroine in The Law of Desire is from Los Angeles and she has lost her brother and is on the run for her life. She ends up hiding in New Jersey. And for some reason Tupac songs inspire me to write her when I’m stuck. All I have to do is listen to “To Live and Die in LA” and “Pour Out Some Liquor” and I’m back in her feisty, tough-girl frame of mind.
Who were some of your role models when you started writing?
I admired the work of lots of writers. I of course give the most credit to those early African American romance writers who paved the way: Sandra Kitt, Rochelle Alers, Gwynne Forster, Leslie Esdaile, Frances Ray, Angela Benson and Brenda Jackson. Seeing those first romance novels penned by black women about black women in the early nineties changed my life. At the time, it gave me something to read that I hadn’t had before. And know I realize that they planted the seeds or me to one day realize my own dream of writing these kinds of novels. They are trailblazers and I look up to them all.
In your opinion, what is your definition of sensuality and how do you display this in your writing?
Sensuality makes you feel sexy, not just sexual, although it can make you feel that too. It can arouse your sense of self and it can arouse you in a way that makes you desire some one else. In high levels, it can make you fan yourself as heat rises to your neck. It makes you feel. It’s about language and phrasing. But it’s also about images. It’s the way the characters talk to one another. What he says to her when he’s wooing her, putting his mack game down… It’s about her inner thoughts and wildest desires… I think that in order to best convey sensuality a writer has to tap into all of these things. Hopefully I do it in my novels…
Who are your must-read authors?
There are too many to name and I’m always adding to the list. It’s one of the perks… or drawbacks depending on how you look at it… of being a certified bookaholic. Here’s my short list: Brenda Jackson, L. A. Banks, Jennifer Crusie, Christine Feehan and Adrianne Byrd to name only a few…
What is the perfect get-away day for you?
Sitting with a stack of books and reading one after the other uninterrupted…
Do you have a guilty pleasure? If so, what is it?
Reading. Reading romance novels. Reading erotic romance novels. Watching the soaps and the Food Network comes in a close second though. (smile)
What are you currently working on?
The third and forth books in my Hightower Honors Series, The Law of Desire and Sizzling Seduction. The series is billed as “HIGHTOWER HONORS Four brothers on a mission to protect, serve, and love….” The Hightower family has a legacy of public service and the men are usually either cops or firemen. These brothers have two of each, two cops and two firemen. The cop novels have a little intrigue, some drama and lots of passion. The firemen stories are hot, sexy courtship novels.
What future releases do you have coming up?
PROTECT AND SERVE, Kimani Romance, July 2008
Blurb: THE LAW OF ATTRACTION
Police detective Jason Hightower is flooded with memories when Penny Keys comes home to New Jersey. After fifteen years, he still wants to understand why she loved, lied and left him. And he needs to know before she disappears from his life again….
Penny came home for family reasons, not to face her difficult past… or the man she still loves. But Jason is determined to have answers, answers that it breaks her heart to give. And it seems that nothing will keep Jason from the truth this time. Or, hold him back from what he wants to protect and serve the most… their chance for a future together.
MAKE IT HOT , Kimani Romance, September 2008
Blurb:WHERE THERE’S SMOKE…
After a career-threatening injury, brooding firefighter Joel Hightower’s only hope of regaining his cherished livelihood is a sassy spitfire named Samantha Dash. As the by-the-book physical therapist helps Joel get ever closer to achieving his professional goals, Samantha also ignites a sensual spark in him that he finds impossible to ignore!
THERE’S FIRESamantha is totally unprepared for the sizzling attraction that intensifies each time she is near “Tall, Dark and Surly” Hightower. As she helps Joel get better, their relationship goes way beyond patient and therapist. It flares into full blown passion. But when it threatens to end her career, Samantha must decide if a future as the partner of a risk-taking hero is really worth fighting for?
THE LAW OF DESIRE, Kimani Romance, December 2008
Blurb:GUILTY PLEASURESDecorated police detective Lawrence Hightower’s instincts click into high gear when a beautiful but suspicious stranger appears in his stakeout zone. Soon he realizes Minerva Jones is in danger and needs protection. He can’t trust her. But he can’t get this tough, feisty, stubborn siren out of his head.Desperate to keep a low profile, the last thing Minerva needs is a sexy cop getting too close for comfort. Not that she’s guilty of anything, except her own intense attraction to the too fine detective. But she’s got a few secrets, and trouble is closing in. Dare she surrender to the promise this sensual hero holds in his strong, protective embrace? SIZZLING SEDUCTION, Kimani Romance, October 2009
What advice would you give to aspiring authors out there?
Write everyday. Learn the publishing business. Watch out for predators. Read. Always work on writing a better novel than the last.
To learn more about Author Gwyneth Bolton’s work, check out her website at: