Thursday, May 20, 2010

Getting Sassy With Cari Quinn!!!

All I can say is TGIF!!

Has your week been a lesson in endurance? Well, you've come to the right place for a little pick-me-up!

The always sweet and sometimes spicy CARI QUINN is cooling her heels in the TLN Hot Seat!

Cari's voice is fresh and full of sparkle and I've enjoyed watching her writing career blossom. So, it goes without saying that I'm as pleased as chocolate creme pie to have Cari here today!

Better hang on tight and be ready to get dazzled! Hip-hip-yo and away we go!!!

1) If you were a book, what would your blurb be?

Short, LOL. I'm good at talking about my books, not as good at talking about myself. But I'll take a shot at it:

Cari Quinn has spent her life deferring her dreams. Consumed with practicalities, she took a job as a graphic designer and proofreader, always relegating writing to nights and weekends. Now as she begins to see some of her stories make their way into readers' hands, will she delve deeper into the mundane, secure world she's always known or will she go for broke and go after what she wants most?

2) Using three words, describe your voice.

Sexy, snarky and fun.

3) Novice to Published Author: How has your writing changed?

I have a little more confidence in my writing now, at least when it comes to erotic romance. At first I thought the genre demanded stories be told "a certain way" and I've found that's not necessarily true. A hot story can be funny and emotional and the sex doesn't have to start on page 1 to qualify. That's been really freeing. It's also changed because I've started trusting my characters and my subconscious. So many times I'll add a bit of backstory or some detail I'm not sure has any relevance to the story, only to discover later on that it's the piece I've been missing. Can't claim to understand the creative process, but it's an amazing thing!

4) What was it like to receive the "Call"? Give us the 411 on what happened!

It was last August when I received the email from The Wild Rose Press that they wanted to buy Full Disclosure. I was excited, of course, although my amazing CP, Tara Leigh Coons, was more excited than I was initially because I always expect the other shoe to drop (consumed with practicalities and a nervous nelly...that's me.) FD was the first story I'd ever officially submitted, so it was really cool that my first attempt at writing erotic romance had worked. I always wrote hot, but not erotic romance hot. I might not have given it a try if not for my other CP, Helen Hardt, encouraging me to give it a go. Knowing people other than my CPs were actually going to read my stories...that was surreal. It still is. It boggles my mind anyone would pay actual money to read words I wrote!

5) Since becoming a published author is there any token bit of wisdom you know now that would have been handy back in your novice writer days?

It's a lot of work! Back when I started writing, I figured you wrote a book, sent it in, polished it a bit, and sat back to wait for the check. Uh, no. Writing the book is just the beginning. Even if an editor loves your story, more than likely you'll be going over that book so many times before it's published that you can count yourself lucky if you still like the thing at the end. There are forms to fill out (lots of forms!) and edits and galleys and promo. Always promo. Every time you enter a public venue you're representing yourself as X author, the brand of you. And then, no sooner do you have the first book finished, you need to be writing the next. It's too easy for your readers to forget you until you've made a name for yourself, and the only way to keep that name out there is building a backlist. Backlist is my new erotic word because it gives me chills. I want one, LOL!

With all this in mind, I try to caution people wanting to write about what being a writer actually entails, especially the time commitment. I would never discourage anyone from following their dreams, and ultimately, every step has been worth the end result for me. But I also think helping other authors navigate the road ahead of them is important.

6) What are some of your tricks of the trade in keeping yourself motivated and on track?

Hmm...good question, Sarah! What keeps me motivated is that I'm finally starting to see my dream come to fruition. I want to succeed at this career, and I want to continually improve. Like a lot of authors, I give myself word count goals - at which point I usually cease writing entirely. Sad, but true. I work in spurts. I'll go weeks without writing more than a few words, then all of a sudden churn out 20K in a week or two. That's normal for me and as much as I've tried to train myself to write on a more consistent basis, it doesn't happen. So I try to keep my overall goals in mind, and deadlines never hurt either!

7) What's been going in Cari Quinn-land?! Give us the good word!

The latest news for me is the upcoming release of two more erotic novellas. Ex Appeal, the followup to Full Disclosure, will be coming out soon from The Wild Rose Press Wilder Roses. Ex Appeal was really fun to write, and I was lucky enough to get to choose the photo for the cover, which I can shamelessly admit I love. ;) Right now I'm working on the third and final Hunk Du Jour story (Hunk Du Jour is the website where Alex and Holly meet in Full Disclosure) about Holly's sister Haley. I'm also preparing for the release of my first story from Ellora's Cave, Personal Research. It's been a really exciting spring for me, and hopefully I'll carry that momentum through the summer and fall. Here's the blurb and a little teaser excerpt from Ex Appeal to whet your appetites!

As the webmistress for one of the Northeast’s hottest dating sites, Hunk Du Jour, Jenny Talbot is no stranger to reading the applications of potential clients. But when the latest application that crosses her inbox belongs to Ty Randall, the guy she broke up with a mere twenty-seven days ago, she does a double take. Reading what Ty wants in bed not only gets Jenny hot, it also makes her rethink ending their relationship. All she longed for was a little more spice in the bedroom—okay, a lot more—but he let her go without an argument. Faced with the possibility that Ty may really be moving on, getting her ex back becomes more appealing than ever. But will revealing exactly what she needs allow Jenny to finally experience ultimate pleasure or will she drive away the man she loves for good?


Ty inhaled deeply. His head swam at the scent that filled his nostrils, an aroma that was all Jenny. His fingers clenched on the doorframe above his head as he took in the sight of her lying nude on the bed. God, she was beautiful. Her golden skin glowed under the track lighting, and her wet pink lips pursed as she concentrated on what she was doing. The pain that had seized him moments ago when he'd walked in the unlocked door and heard her moans coming from the bedroom faded away in a flood of lust.

He couldn’t stop the sound that escaped him. Part groan, part growl, all need. Her gaze swung toward the door, her pupils widening until her hazel irises all but disappeared. He met her eyes briefly, electrically, before he deliberately shifted his attention back between her thighs.

Abruptly, her movements stilled.

They stared at each other in silent challenge. Her flushed face reddened even more, the color inching all the way up to her hairline. She’d always been a blusher, but he hadn’t seen that reaction from her in too many years to count. It had been a long time since he’d flustered her, and he liked it.

For a moment, neither of them moved. Hello, awkward. But in spite of the strained circumstance of their reunion, he only wanted one thing.

For her to finish.

“Don’t stop,” he murmured.

Ex Appeal hasn't been released yet, but my first novella, Full Disclosure, is available here:

And for author interviews, book news and contests, please check out my blog:

Thanks for allowing me to visit today, Sarah! I look forward to returning the favor soon!

Anytime, Cari! Boy, oh, boy! Does she know how to make a screen steam or what?! Hope that little bit of naughty goodness made your day bright! I'd like to thank Cari for her time and wonderful advice. If you're looking for a good time, be sure to bookmark Cari's blog. It's definitely one of my favorite haunts!

Thank you, TLN'ers!! In honor of Cari, I've got
GARY ALLEN singing SMOKE RINGS IN THE DARK!! Have a kick booty weekend, ya'll!! Catch ya back on Monday for another edition of A NOVICE TO WATCH!!


tara leigh coons said...

GREAT blog, Cari! What an awesome set of questions--and I do love any answer that puts me in the awesome column. ;)

I can't wait 'til this one comes out. You know you're my hero since you got to pick out your own cover pic. LOL Helps when you have that Graphics background baby. LOL

This has been a wild road, babe--can't wait to see what else you have in store for me and the rest of the reader world!

Great post, Sarah! Thanks for interviewing her. She deserves the attention even if she hates it. ;)

Kaye Manro said...

Wow! it's so good to see you here with your new cover, Cari! Good answers too. So much congrats on all your success! New releases coming out everywhere. Well, we who love your work can't wait!

Jacqueline Paige said...

Great interview! I can't wait to read Ex Appeal, Cari.

Angela Kay Austin said...

Cari, I love that you mentioned that after the book is written, and signed there's still so much to do. I didn't know that either. I kind of thought it magically happened ;-)

Great interview!


Juniper Bell said...

Hey there Cari! How fun to learn more about you and your writing journey. Ex Appeal sounds fantastic. I can't wait to read more! Congratulations on everything you've got going on.

And lovely blog, Sarah! I'll be stopping again, I'm sure.


Cari Quinn said...

I'm late (story of my life) but I wanted to thank Sarah for having me and everyone for stopping by! This is one of my favorite blogs to hang out at so it was really fun to be in the hot seat. :)