WZ: Hi Nichelle!! So glad to be here!!!
NG: I'm happy to have you! What are you reading this summer?
WZ: Wowza...lots of things. Hmm... let me narrow it down a little bit. I just got by Jambrea Jo Jones, I’m in the middle of Tell Me Now. Possession by Jessica Skye Davis. Anything by K.A. Mitchell is a favorite. I just discovered Rosemary Entwined by Bianca Sommerland, and can’t wait to read Doll by ...you!!!
NG: Ooo, nice reading list! ;-)
WZ: I read a lot of different books so it’s hard to pick a few.
NG: Me too, Wendi, variety is the spice of life! It's summertime! Do you prefer lemonade or iced tea?
WZ: Lemonade. Never caught the tea bug. Just doesn’t do anything for me.
NG: switching gears now, let's talk about your work. What genre(s) do you write and why?
WZ: I write mostly contemporary and paranormal, but always hot. Why hot? You tell my characters to be behave. Seriously. I was challenged to write a sweet romance and my characters actually laughed. “Um, we don’t know how to behave.” They’d be right. I think everyone should go with their strengths and writing hot is one of mine.
NG: What draws you to erotic romantic novels?
WZ: The passion. In straight erotica, there’s lots of sex, sure, but in erotic romance, there’s passion to accompany the sex. The characters want to be together, want to show their feelings for each other, and well...want to have oodles of sex. I like reading that. I like seeing the progression of the relationship and the development of the feelings from crazy, gotta have it lust to love.
NG: Same here! Are there any particular authors you enjoy reading or that have influenced your writing?
WZ: There’s lots of authors I love to read. I’m always finding new ones. Zhara Owens, Desiree Holt, KyAnn Waters, Cheryl Dragon, Jambrea Jo Jones, K.A. Mitchell, Belinda McBride. But the ones who’ve really influenced me...well there’s a story there. I was having a conversation with Cheryl Dragon and Michelle Witvliet and we talked about writing hot and m/m. We discussed the pros and cons (meaning, Wendi soaked it up like a sponge, because I was a super nubie at the time) and Cheryl says, ‘once you get past the lube, it’s all downhill’. Now mind you, that was a rather flippant comment and it’s not totally all downhill, but it’s the point that it’s a comfort thing. Some people are more comfortable with writing some things and others aren’t. I took that with me. So yeah, that influenced me and from then on I let the muse run rampant and followed my heart.
NG: Wonderful advice! Describe your writing process...are you a careful plotter or laid back pantster?
WZ: I tend to write the first scant of an idea in a notebook. Yup, pen and paper. I’ve got at least one notebook with at least four stories with me at all times. Why? Because I never know when I’ll have the muse strike. Then once the idea is in the notebook, usually it sits and percolates.
NG: Has your writing process changed since your first book was published?
WZ: I go to my crit partners much more often. I found out I don’t know everything and that’s a good thing. I also listen to the fans. When you have no releases out, there’s only so much feedback from fans you can get. When you have more, then you tend to get more feedback. I listen. Okay, so reading some reviews can be tough, especially when it’s not constructive. Part of the growing process as an author is to learn from the good and the bad, to take what you can use, and to grow a thick skin. I’m still working on the thick skin. I’ve learned, in the immortal words of Ricky Nelson, “you can’t please everyone, so you’ve got to please yourself.”
NG: So true! What are you working on now?
WZ: A Prequel to Tangled Up. Fans said they loved the heat in Tangled Up, but they wanted to know the rest of the story. How did Mindy and Arran end up together? Why is she so laid back? Why did they get married? So, I listened and am working on that. It’s actually rather fun.
NG: I'm sure your readers are going to appreciate you giving them what they want! Let's talk about your latest release What Might Have Been. What's this sizzling tale all about?
WZ: Second chances at first love. Football player with secrets realizes he passed on the best thing to happen in his life. Artist/author hides her emotions to keep from getting hurt. Reunion time brings out the best and the worst of memories, but it’s what they make of them that’s the hottest part.
NG: Mmm...I like it! What inspired you to pen this sexy story?
WZ: My 15 year high school reunion is coming up and well, there’s one person who made me wonder, what if? So instead of running with the idea in real life, I ran with it in prose form. Plus, Tanner kept hanging around in my head, begging for his story to be told. Who knew it would end up being What Might Have Been? :)
NG: Which movie stars would accurately portray your main characters?
WZ: Tanner would be Tyler Connolly from Theory of a Dead Man. Yup, was rather inspired as I had a marathon listening session of their then latest album. Jessica Biel would be good for Macy as she’s got a thick skin, but can turn on the charm in an instant.
NG: Nice! If you had to add a song/soundtrack to your manuscript what would it be?
WZ: There’s a soundtrack. It would start with Jeremy by Pearl Jam. Not a huge fan of PJ, but the hero is and he spent lots of time trying to get the heroine to understand the thrust behind the song, so yeah, it would be there. Then What Might Have Been by Little Texas. ‘Nuff said. I’d also include Addicted by Saving Abel, Not Meant to Be by Theory of a Dead Man, and I’m on Fire by Bruce Springsteen.
NG: Fantastic! Were there any creative challenges faced and conquered before you wrote, 'The End'?
WZ: Yes. Macy is more dominant than most of my heroines. She’s not a Dom, but she wants to be in charge in the bedroom. That was kind of hard because my brain didn’t want to work with her in the lead. I kept letting Tanner take charge when it was Macy’s show. So it was a little hard, but I got past it with the help of my editor who I love!
NG: Give me three reasons readers will love What Might Have Been.
WZ: Tanner is a tall, dark, handsome, yummy hero. Macy appears to have a thick barrier around her heart, but she’s like everyone else—she wants to be loved, flaws and all. This story shows you really can go home again.
NG: Awww...I love that! What's the one thing readers can always count on when picking up one of your books?
WZ: I’d like to say an animal for fun. I love animals and I love to have cats and dogs in the stories for a humane touch. I’d also like to say scorching sex. I think the stories melt the screen, but that’s my opinion.
NG: Wendi, thank you so much for stopping by Simply Sexy Stories!
WZ: Thanks for having me!! I’m open to more questions, reader comments... Let’s have a party!
NG: Whoo ooo!
Blurb: A second chance has never been this sweet or sexy.
Macy Shibley left Mason, Ohio, to figure out who she was and what she wanted. But after more than a few disastrous relationships, she refuses to let anyone tie her down. She’ll control the tying, thank you very much. No man has ever managed to chip away the walls around her heart...except for one man.
Tanner Connolly has never forgotten his high school crush. The sweet blonde with the vibrant eyes fills his dreams and fantasies. He’d had a shot in school to make her more than a friend, but blew it for the sake of appearances. Now he’d like to know what might have been and use it to create a future. But he’ll have to let her go to prove he wants more than one night...
Caution! Super Sexy Excerpt Below:
"A kiss like that and you want me to leave you in the foyer?" Tanner stopped short. Had he misread the connection? He crooked a brow, not content to give up and play dead. "Couldn’t we negotiate a bit more?" At least enough to melt her defences a little further. "I’m not the same heartless shit I was in high school."
"You don’t give up." As she spoke, she led him into the foyer, her fingers tangled with his. "Unless you get what you want, you won’t back down, will you?"
At the elevator, he caught her up in another embrace.
"I’m a guy. We’re hardwired to keep trying even when we know we’ll be shot down." He traced his index finger over her kiss-swollen bottom lip, proud that he had created her reaction. "And I’m not ready to give up until you’ve called my name at least three or four times tonight. But hey, I’ll back off if you’d rather. I’m thick, but I’m not stupid."
"Oh, fine." The bell dinged and signalled the car’s arrival. Macy’s words came out flippant, but the glitter in her blue eyes told a different story. "You can take me upstairs, but don’t get any ideas that this will lead to anything other than a night of hot sex and scintillating memories."
Tanner thanked God when the door shut before other riders could enter the elevator car. He wanted Macy to himself. "Which floor?"
"Fourth." Her voice came out gravelly and low. She averted her gaze.
"Mace, I won’t do anything you don’t want me to." Tanner pressed the button and cocked his head to consider her. Maybe she had just needed the time to come into her own. Did she realise how amazing she looked? Were her hands trembling? "I’m all for starting a fire with you, but I don’t buy your BS about wanting to be alone. I’m willing to bet that tonight you’ll decide you really do want to settle down—with me." He clamped his lips shut, afraid to say more.
"I don’t know why this is so hard—I want you, you want me. Seems pretty simple without the settling down part." She spoke to the floor, but he heard every word. "I love a good fire, but I’m warning you, I’m just not a relationship type of girl."
The car stopped at her floor before he could question her further. When her wide-eyed gaze met his, he melted for her a bit more. She toyed with the strap of her purse, picking at the beaded decoration.
Tanner measured his words carefully, sure she’d changed her mind. "I’ll walk you to your door and bid you goodnight." He yearned to push, to make her see how much he cared but, at the same time, he wanted to give her an out.
"I don’t want you to feel pressured."
"I want you to come in…me."
Buy it HERE!
Visit her website: www.wendizwaduk.com
and blog: www.wendizwaduk.blogspot.com