WATCH OUT: Lex Valentine
SC: I want to welcome you all to another edition of Watch Out. This week I’m pleased to bring you author Lex Valentine. Welcome to Watch Out, it is so great to have you here.
LV: Thanks so much for having me, Savvy!
SC: For the readers out there who might not know about you or your work, can you please tell them a little about yourself.
LV: I’m a middle aged crazy woman who lives in a canyon in Southern California, works at a 100 year old cemetery, has a Halloween birthday, and writes erotic love stories with vampires and other immortal creatures.
SC: You write across multiple genres, what draws you to write it all?
LV: I write what I like to read. I don’t just read one genre so I don’t just write one genre.
SC: Can you tell us a little about your current release?
LV: My most recent release is Encounters: Weylyn’s Gift. It was originally a short story for the Pink Chair Diaries, but when the site went away, I cleaned up the story and sent it to my editor at Pink Petal Books with an idea for doing shorts connected to the Tales series. Luckily, she loved the idea. Weylyn’s Gift is the second release in the series and it tells how Weylyn my bi-sexual werewolf finds his mate.
SC: Which do you prefer eBooks or paperback?
LV: These days eBooks. I have too many paperbacks and when we bought this house, my DH complained about the number of boxes of books. So I’m allowed all the books I want as long as they are digital.
SC: What influences the topics, and genre’s that you pick to write a story in?
LV: Pretty much everything. Everyday life. Stuff in the news. Other books. Music.
SC: One thing readers might be surprised to know about you?
LV: I’m a total wallflower in public. I’m shy and awkward. I would have been lost at RT this year without my pal Z.A. Maxfield, who always takes care of me in a crowd.
SC: What is the biggest misconception you think people have about erotic authors?
LV: I’d say the biggest misconception is that we write porn. Porn isn’t about love. It’s about lust. Erotic romance is about lust AND romance. It’s about love and happily ever afters. I don’t do stories without some anticipation of a HEA.
SC: Your favourite part about being an author?
LV: Besides the royalty checks you mean? LOL I love the fans. I love getting fan mail and I loved it when people walked up to me at RT and told me how much the loved the Tales books or The Pixie Prince or Rock My World.
SC: What are you currently reading?
LV: I’ve got Z.A. Maxfield’s next instalment of the St. Nacho’s series queued up, The Book of Daniel. And I just finished Eve Langlais’ Bunny and the Bear, which was really amusing.
SC: Currently listening to?
LV: I’ve been wearing out 30 Seconds to Mars’ This Is War CD. My DH and I love Hurricane and the 13 minute crazy video Jared Leto did. I also love Kings and Queens and Closer to the Edge.
SC: Oh I adore 30 Seconds To Mars myself. Jared is amazing when it comes to the videos. When the band first started to shoot the video for Hurricane and they would post tease videos on the net it was amazing. That is one of my fave video’s I must say.
SC: Do you find it hard to balance family life and author life?
LV: Sometimes. Especially when my DH complains that I’m married to my computer.
SC: Describe your books in 3 words.
LV: Blazing Hot Sex.
SC: If you could step into the shoes of another author who would you pick? Why?
LV: Kate Douglas. She’s so at ease in her skin and comfortable with her life. She’s gracious and talented and humble…everything I’d like to be after a dozen years in this business.
SC: What do you think sets your stories apart from other authors?
LV: My voice for one. I like to think that my books sound as if I’m narrating them in my typical somewhat irreverent tone. Mostly though, I think it’s my characters and their love stories, their dialogue. My stuff is always character driven and those characters can often be exquisitely eloquent.
LV: I’m finishing up the sequel to my Don’t Ask Don’t Tell story Afterburner. It’s a Christmas story for MLR Press called Breath of Heaven. In this sequel, Sebastian and Ryder get custody of Ryder’s brother’s kids and it changes the focus of their lives and their future. I’m also working on this year’s Christmas Cowboys story for Pink Petal Books. Cupid Christmas might be the last of this series since I can’t seem to come up with any more characters for it! In this story, Grayson Forbes’s ex-lover Steve visits Forbes Ranch for Christmas and comes face to face with Dalton Emory, the man who broke his heart years before. And finally, I’ve got three projects going for Ellora’s Cave, Safe Haven is a contemporary romance featuring a plastic surgery story. The other two novellas are being developed out of two short stories I just got my rights back for, Mating and Runaways. I’m expanding those stories to about 15K and they’ll be EC Quickies.
SC: What is the best advice you ever got with regards to writing?
LV: Mary Winter told me to not be in a hurry to be published. At least, not in such a hurry that I took any offer that came along. She taught me to check out publishers and go with the ones that offered me the most exposure and best distribution among other things.
SC: What is one pet peeve you have when it comes to publishing?
LV: Authors being ripped off by publishers.
SC: Any advice for new writers out there?
LV: The same as what Mary gave me. Aim high. Don’t be so eager to be published that you’ll take any contract offered. Do your homework on publishers. A lot of them have some dirty laundry and black marks on them. Don’t think you’re not good enough to sub to the biggest epubs. If they reject you, take their comments and work on your manuscript, work on your craft rather than just toss the submission at a little pub that will take anything. Have pride in your work and respect for yourself and just aim high.
SC: Where can readers find out more about you and your work?
LV: My website has all sorts of info at lexvalentine.com. You can also check out my personal blog at sunlightsucks.com. I have both an author page and a regular Facebook page and interested folks can follow me on Twitter, @lexvalentine.