WATCH OUT: Cynnara Tregarth
SC:I want to welcome you all to another edition of Watch Out. This week I’m excited to bring you author Cynnara Tregarth.
Welcome to Watch Out, Cynnara, it is so great to have you here.
SC:For the readers out there who might not know about you or your work, can you please tell them a little about yourself.
CT:My name is Cynnara Tregarth and I write erotic romance. More importantly, I’m known for writing BDSM romance as well as paranormal stories that make you believe they can really happen.
SC:Can you tell us a little about your current release?
CT:My current release is Ride Me, Baby out at Aspen Mountain Press. It’s my first contemporary erotic romance. Since I have a fascination with motorcycles, I had to write a story with a hot man who rides one. Little did I realize the heroine was one who not only rode one herself, but restored vintage classics to mint condition. So you put the two in an auction where a special bike is up for auction and they’re the only two left bidding—what could happen then? Who would win and how? It was that idea and a play of innuendos with Nancy Warren at the eharlequin.com site that started this story being written.
SC:The publishing industry is constantly changing; do you think that eBooks will one day make paperback books nonexistent?
CT:I’d love to say yes, but the reality is- no. The tactile feeling of books is too much in today’s society and the technology is too new to declare the end of all print books. However, with the trends towards greener use of paper, lowering production costs and increasing profits, not to mention the increase of publication technology, one day—probably in my great-great grandkids future there might be a time when print books become a specialized, high end product that is cost prohibitive, just like it was when printing was first invented.
SC:I saw on your site you have written articles about BDSM and Submission. What do you think is the biggest misconception about both of them?
CT:The biggest misconception about BDSM that most people have is that it’s all about kink and letting someone control everything you do. It’s not. It’s about exchanging the power. It means being able to let go, within your boundaries and pushing them in a proper way to bring yourself into a place where all you can do is sense and feel. Many people think that dominates are the ones in control when the reality is that the submissives have the power to tell the dominate to stop. In the end, they have the control to continue or not, depending on how they feel within the scene. The other misconception in regards to BDSM is that you have to be really kinky to enjoy BDSM. That’s the farthest from the truth! BDSM is as light or as heavy as you want it to be. It can be as simple as you enjoying role playing while engaging your lover in a sexual manner or as deep as horse play, which means dressing up and acting like a horse.
SC:For people who might be curious about the fetish, BDSM lifestyle what do you recommend for them as a beginner?
CT:First, if you can find a local club- go to it! Why? Because nothing beats actually seeing in person what you’re interested in. Second, it’s time to do some reading. I recommend a few books: SM 101 by Jay Wiseman; Screw the Roses, Send Me the Thorns by Philip Miller and Molly Devon; The New Bottoming Book by Janet Hardy and Janet Easton, The New Topping Book by Janet Hardy and Janet Easton, and Erotic Surrender: The Sensual Joys of Female Submission by Claudia Varrin. Lastly, if you’ve got a good imagination, use it. This means creating a safe, yet fun environment where you can explore at your pace as you discover new ideas.
SC:What influences the topics, and genre’s that you pick to write a story in?
CT:Normally, the ideas come from whatever I’m interested in at that moment. In fact, I have a lovely notebook and folder on my computer with ideas and half written chapters that came to me without anything else to go on. When it comes to complete stories, normally they come to me either out of the blue formed whole or someone will ask me about something and go, “You should write about that.” Then I’ll mull it a bit and out will come a story. As whether or not BDSM is in it, sometimes it creeps in whether I want it to or not. As for paranormal elements, they come in too when I don’t expect them to, though I often write in that genre because it’s so open to how you want to play various ideas.
SC:Being an author means that most of the time you pour your heart and soul into a story. You sometimes reveal bits of yourself. Do you think writing erotic fiction reveals more of yourself to your readers or no more than the average author?
CT:I think it depends on the author. For me, I don’t hide the fact that I’ve got a lot of experience in the sexual department. It’s part of what’s made me what I am, including the erotic author aspect. The other thing I’ve discovered is that you always show parts of yourself in your writing- whether it’s your soul or perhaps an insight you wanted to show to readers in the way you’ve just discovered it.
SC:Do you ever write about personal experiences in your books?
CT:Yes, I have actually. In each book there’s at least one scene that I’ve seen, participated or overheard in person. It’s usually a lynchpin in how the story grows for me- gives me a kick to continue on and a lot of times, gives me a special little inside joke to know that scene exists in that book and it’s a personal one.
SC:One thing readers might be surprised to know about you?
CT:That besides making jewelry, I’m wanting to learn how to become a vintner as well as learn to make my own whiskey. I can’t help it—I LOVE liquor and wine!
SC:Your favourite part about being an author?
CT:I love creating new worlds and stories for people to read. Hearing that people love the stories and got the understory gives me a thrill that is unlike anything else I’ve ever experienced. It’s a giddiness you want to feel again and again!
SC:What are you currently reading?
CT:On my Nook Color, I’m reading the latest book by Dana Marie Bell’s Noble Blood, book 2 in the Grey Court series. In print, I’ve just finished reading Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning.
SC:Currently listening to?
CT:*looks at mp3 player* Tonight at bedtime will be guided meditations. But normally, it’s whatever’s on Max 98.3 FM or my music list for writing—which at this moment is a U2 compilation. (I love God—I mean Larry Mullin Jr.)
SC:What do you think sets your stories apart from other authors?
CT:I’m not your average romance author—I love stories where the romance happens as other things are going on in the story. You can’t take the love story out and it stand alone, but because the sparks are flying, it entangles the plot even more as the characters are trying to deal with other things. I’m not traditional and I try to make all my stories feel like they could happen to the reader and expand them further to take them to that next precipice to say, “What next?”
SC:Is there anything you’re currently working on that you can give us a taste of?
CT:There’s a story I’m working on for submitting to the Changeling contest—and in honour of Selena Illyria. I call her a pixie a lot, so she challenged me to make her a story about a pixie and a dragon. So, I created one. *grins* Here’s a small sample of it.
Pierce looked around his renovated kitchen that was both private and professional; happy that everything was finally in place and that his catering business would be able to continue without any further delays. It wasn’t easy being a full blooded dragon that catered to not only the royalty in the mortal world, but in the immortal realm as well. Luckily he didn’t have an event to worry about until the next day when he had to start preparations for the royal wedding between Mystra, the Seelie fae princess and her soon to be hubby, Prince Raynor of the werewolf clan, Petrov. He was happy his two friends were marrying, but at the same time, he wished he could havethat same kind of happiness. But everyone knew that dragons mated for babies, not to live together. Wasn’t going to happen anytime soon since most female dragons thought he was gay because of his cooking profession.
Dismissing the thought, he waved one hand towards the refrigerator in the back corner and called out what he needed. “Fresh basil and pine nuts, to the counter.” Gesturing towards one particular cabinet, he called out again. “Extra virgin olive oil, cumin, onion powder, cayenne pepper, and oregano.” They flew out of the cabinet and landed neatly on the counter in front of him. Without any thought to the amounts, he began putting the ingredients except for the olive oil into the food processor. Pierce flipped the switch, watching the ingredients meld together in strong sweeps of the blades. Carefully guarding his glasses, Pierce poured in the oil, a teaspoon at a time until the consistency was just about perfect.
Then a noise at his back door caught his attention. “Who the hell would be stupid enough to bother me at this time in the afternoon?” Stopping the food processor, Pierce stomped over to the door, trying hard to control his temper so he wouldn’t shift from human to dragon form. Flinging open the door, he looked around. “All right, whoever you are, if you don’t tell me what you want, I’ll fry you with fire!”
A flash of purple blasted past his shoulder and a sweet, melodic voice spoke as he turned around. “I need your help, Pierce. You’re the only one who can pull this off. So, get your things and let’s go. We don’t have time to waste. The Pixie queen needs her supper party for tonight and you’re the only one who can make it happen.” The pixie which grew to human height, tugged at his arm. “Come on, we don’t have all day, Pierce.”
Recognizing the curvy pixie, Pierce groaned inwardly. Selena. She was the peskiest pixie to ever walk the mortal or immortal realms and the only one who could get under his dragon skin. She made hummingbirds on crack look slow with how her mind and mouth worked. Now she wanted him to leave his brand new kitchen for what? “Selena, calm down and repeat yourself. What do you need me for?”
Selena’s shapely foot tapped his floor impatiently. “I told you, her Highness, Queen Petunia of the Pixies needs a supper meal catered immediately and you’re the only one who can make it work. Now grab your chef’s bag and some food and let’s get this done and over with so we can talk about the next pixie bash I want you to do for me.”
Pierce looked over the top of his glasses at Selena, making her fidget. “No. It took three weeks for the repairs to be made to my kitchen from the last time you demanded my immediate attentions. No, Se, I don’t think so. Tell Petunia to find someone else to muddle her meal for her. I’m not available for another month.”
Her lush lower lip came out as her hands slid down to her curvy hips. “But, Pierce…you always help us pixie out. We didn’t mean to cause a fire in your own kitchen. I asked you to come with us so you wouldn’t ruin the kitchen. It’s not like you’re making anything import-”
“My pesto!” Pierce rushed past a surprised Selena and looked into the food processor. The mound of green looked over oiled and Pierce let out a bellow of smoke. “You ruined my pesto, you freaking pesky pixie. I ought to punish you for messing up my signature dish!”
He didn’t see Selena until her long brown hair tipped with purple brushed against his arm. “It doesn’t look that bad. Just add a bunch more green stuff in it and it’ll thicken right up. Or use some cornstarch or something.” She stopped when he glared at her. “What? Can’t you do that?”
“No. I. Cannot.” He growled and removed the bowl from the processor, stomping towards the sink. “Now I’ll have to redo this from the beginning. I can’t just toss something else in it and have the same dish, now can I?”
Selena’s voice sounded soft. “But why can’t use that stuff in something else to make a sauce? Or a marinade…you know, stuff you can lick off a gorgeous body like yourself?”
Pierce stopped. There’s no way in hell he just heard Selena not only tell him to make do, but that she wanted to lick the sauce off his body. Pixies were annoying, though very sexual creatures. But they don’t mix with dragons, everyone knows that pixies would go poof if they did. “What did you just say?”
He faced her, his gaze looking over the rims of his glasses. “Say that again, the last part about licking.”
“I wanna lick the sauce off your gorgeous body. You’re so fucking hot, Pierce,” she squeaked as he stepped towards her. Her breathing was shallow and fast. Her arousal lit the space between them and he stopped in his tracks. The pixie really wanted him! Did she have a clue what she’d be in for?
“You think I’m hot? You’re a pixie, and we dragons have been known to roast a pixie for a snack when they annoy us,” he growled as she moved closer to his body.
SC:What is the best advice you ever got with regards to writing?
CT:Lori Foster once told me, “You need to make sure you write what you know, research what you don’t, and keep moving forward, even when you want to quit.” Her advice has gotten me through a lot of tough times. You must always look forward and keep moving and changing what you do as you learn and grow with your writing—and don’t quit- quitting never wins you anything in the publishing life.
SC:What is one pet peeve you have when it comes to publishing?
CT:*blinks* Me, have a pet peeve? *snortles* I think my biggest pet peeve is when people don’t realize that having a public presence means that whatever you write publicly will be seen by many—publicly. So if you can’t play nice or say something politely when you’re talking about professional things—don’t talk at all. It will hurt your career in the long run, especially in this day and age where everyone is on Facebook, Twitter and the like.
SC:Any advice for new writers out there?
CT:Don’t stop writing and more importantly, don’t stop taking classes to improve your writing. If you’re not learning, you won’t grow or improve as a writer. If you want to be published and really make a name for yourself—you need a good backlist and to do that, you need to write good solid stories.
SC:Where can readers find out more about you and your work?