Sharon Page has always loved to write (tapping out a first novel at 14), and juggles managing an R&D program with writing. She finds writing tales of sexy Regency rakes and seductive vampires is the perfect escape from her technical world. Sharon will be an erotica panelist at the 2008 Romantic Times convention.
Awards: 2006 National Readers’ Choice Award Winner for Erotic Romance
Author Web site: www.Sharon Page.com
Blood Rose: Serena Lark’s erotic dreams of vampires are so vivid, so intense . . . could she be one? Drake Swift and Lord Sommersby, two daring vampire hunters, might know the truth about her past—and her future. But Serena cannot say no when the two men introduce her to another existence entirely, one in which only extraordinary sensual pleasure matters. . . .
What do you think distinguishes your work from that of other authors of this genre?
My “Blood” stories are distinctive because they weave action, magic, and danger into highly emotional menage a trois stories. Blood Rose gave me the chance to really stretch my limits, allowing me the chance to develop an intensely emotional relationship between two strong heroes. These men had both faced death as vampire hunters, both saved each other’s lives, and while they are jealous of each other on the surface, they have a deep, powerful bond that neither would admit to. Both, though, fall passionately in love with the heroine.
What is your writing process like?
Blood Rose took my writing process in a completely new direction. Normally I write a short marketing synopsis, and then expand that into a longer synopsis. But with Blood Rose, I first “storyboarded” the book by writing small sections of scenes—mainly dialogue and the emotional turning points of the scene. In each snippet I had to capture the motivation for the scene and its emotional impact. From that storyboard, I wrote a chapter-by-chapter outline, again focusing on the emotional importance of each plot point. This let me develop my characters with more depth and work out subplots before I began writing. I liked the technique so much, I’m using it for my current work in progress.
Where do you get your ideas?
I find my stories come together from a lot of unrelated ideas. Suddenly the pieces that I’ve mulled over connect and I have a book! I wanted to explore vampire-hunting heroes in Blood Rose. I was reading The Da Vinci Code at the time, and suddenly found I was writing an intense action-adventure plot for Blood Rose. While out for a walk (a great time to develop ideas), I realized my heroine should be a governess who was fired from her post due to impropriety. She suddenly became the perfect foil for my heroes—one is illiterate and a former child of the slums; the other was always punished by his governesses.
What do you see as some of the biggest mistakes beginning writers make?
Since hindsight is twenty-twenty, I feel that I’ve made a few mistakes in the launching of my career. Here’s two:
1. Thinking that once you’ve sold, you’ll definitely sell again on a nice, regular schedule. I assumed that once I got into the publishing world, I’d be able to write two books a year, have regular releases (again two a year), and slowly and steadily build a career. Now I realize that I may have to reinvent myself regularly. Markets change, so I may not be able to sell stories in a genre I love to write. Schedules, slotting, and all sorts of other variables could mean that I have long droughts without sales. Salable ideas may not come for a long time. Or ideas that I think are great may not click with editors.
The solution, I think, is to keep your writing fresh, keep the faith, and explore new genres. Discover where your voice fits, what your strongest writing skills are, and play to those strengths even if you do have to switch gears and move from writing frothy comedy to angst-ridden paranormals.
2. Thinking release dates will stay set in stone. I’ve learned that schedules change. This happens to many authors, and there is nothing to do but roll with that punch and make lemonade out of those lemons. I wrote a Christmas-set story for a December release that’s been moved to April. But the book is still hot, sexy, exciting, and fun—even with the snow.
Feel free to ask Sharon any questions in the comments section and she will pop in during the day to answer them.