Hello Calinda and thank you for visiting today. Tell us a little about yourself.
I’m an award-winning web designer and certified SEO specialist, and have worked in the Internet industry as a web page designer/developer since the early 1990's. Before that, I taught dance and aerobics. I even taught and performed hip hop in Russia! (Yep, I studied hip hop back in the day when white chicks weren’t supposed to know how to dance. I was good, though.). I’ve explored crazy adventure including rock climbing, bending rebar with my throat, breaking boards with my hand, and fire-walking (I used to teach it). In addition to writing, I enjoy scuba diving, kayaking, and havoc wreaking. My home is in the Pacific Northwest with the love of my life and my two red-headed cats.
My secret mission is to inspire the planet to be chock full of loving passion and I’m doing my part by working on my next sexy book, be it a contemporary romance or a juicy paranormal romance. I love to write sexy books and do it daily.
Thanks! It sounds like you have an interesting life. I never thought of Russia and hip hop together! Now on to some personal questions. If you could go back in time to when you were seven years old, what wisdom or advice would you pass on to yourself?
Wow, age seven was such a tender year! I have this picture of myself somewhere at age seven, resting a big leaf over my head, eyes closed…I look so sweet! My seven year old self would have encouraged me to retain my innocence despite the travails of life (yes, seven year old me experienced sad travails).
For what are you grateful? The first answer that jumps into my head is my life. I woulda, coulda, shoulda died in 1999 from a brain aneurysm. I spent six weeks in a coma deciding to live or die. I am so glad I decided to live, because I have a fantastic life now (I was miserable back then) and am grateful for just about everything.
If a zombie virus took over the world, how many days do you think you could last before you were infected? And what would you do to postpone the inevitable? Well, if it was inevitable that I’d succumb to the zombie virus, I’d probably be safe out here in the woods for a while (I live in the Pacific Northwest, overlooking trees and water). I’d spend my days enjoying the hell out of my remaining life and meet my zombie maker with fierce determination and sly distraction. When I knew they were coming, I’d amuse myself by finding endless ways to distract the zombies -- like leaving a trail of Chocolate Devil cupcakes that drew them into the woods, along with signs posted: Sexy Zombies, This Way. Chocolate and sex work every time!
Hmmm sounds like you have thought out a plan! What television sitcom is most like your family? Why? Probably a version of Modern Family. We’re different, we have loads of gay friends…I was even the vice president of our local gay dive club for two years in a row, and I can assure you I am NOT a gay man.
What’s your favorite thing to do to relax? Write. Scuba dive. Travel. Music, either sitting here or at a concert.
Let’s find out a little bit about you as an author. Did you always want to be an author? No! I’d say hell, no! A high school English teacher told me she saw me as a writer but I didn’t want to be one. I received lots of praise throughout the years for my writing abilities but I wanted to experience life not write about it.
What authors had an impact on you growing up and as an adult? JR Ward, Karen Marie Moning, Anais Nin, to name a few. I appreciate their ability to boldly weave sexy into the evocative writing.
Do you have any “must haves” with you while you’re writing? Yep, I need to be immersed in beauty (which is easy because of where I live), Jasmine tea by my side, music in my ears.
How did you decide to write a Young Adult story? Do you feel passionate about that age? There’s a lot of growth that happens in your twenties. I remember when I first had total passion with a guy - he was sizzling hot and we couldn’t keep our hands off each other. There’s something truly transformative about the way a passionate sexual encounter can burn up your insides and leave you truly changed when all the flames die down.
What have you learned the most from being in the writing business? Writing is easy, marketing is hard. A lot of people make money off the talent, be it a writer, musician or artist, while the talent struggles to make it. I’ve also learned to persevere and not give up just because a snarky writer wants to tear me up. I don’t mind the reviews where a book was just not a person’s cup of tea - I’m talking about the reviewer who wants to inform the world as to why I need to be taken off the Writing Planet - those are the worst. Thankfully, my excellent reviews far outweigh those snarks.
Tell us about your latest release: (blurb, excerpt, cover)
Looks like Trouble to Me: Blurb: "Last name's Savage -- it means wild and uncontrolled," Jace, a party boy, yacht builder and skilled photographer with a quicksilver temper, tells the pretty waitress at Chica Rios. He's desperate to get laid, but there's something in the way of his driving, overactive libido and the girl standing before him - trouble...big trouble, and a whole lot of it, from the trustifarian prick who works by his side, to his messed up twin sister, to the secret hiding at his house.
He sets out to woo Marine Dubois, keeping her away from his trouble at home, encouraging her to let go of her inhibitions and live “Savage style,” riding with him on the back of his motorcycle, exploring the great outdoors in a variety of oh, so delectable and naughty ways.
He ends up with way more than he bargained for. Turns out she's the kind of woman who demands the truth...and that's just not the way he rolls. He uses his sexual experience to teach Zoe how to surrender and his strong will to get his way with her. She leverages his love for her to get him to let her into his troubled world and tender heart - something he's stubbornly determined to protect. Their passionate, erotic, romantic connection keeps them bound together while the trouble he brings threatens to tear them apart at every turn.
“You don’t know me. You talk as if you’re making some kind of commitment.”
“Ground rules. Exploration can’t begin unless we have a few rules in place. One of mine is exclusive rights.” He rocked his cock into her soft belly.
“How can you ask that of me if we don’t know one another?” she said, her eyes half lidded.
“I’m not playing unless I like the answer,” he said.
She opened her eyes. “What about last night? You didn’t ask for rights then.”
“I didn’t know I’d want them until I tasted you. Now I know. Will you grant me exclusive rights or won’t you?”
“I said, there’s no one else in the room.”
“That’s a hedge betting answer.” He nuzzled his nose against her cheek. “Will you grant me exclusive rights?” he asked again. He placed his hands on the counter, one on each side, his thigh pushing between her legs, spreading her knees apart. He studied the pulse throbbing in her neck, pumping strong, fast, and steady, before letting his gaze lazily roam along her face.
“I don’t know you yet.”
“Wrong answer.” He grazed the side of her neck with his teeth. “I want you all to myself.” He bit her lightly.
She let out a short gasp.
“I’m going to possess you.” He nibbled and kissed her neck before sucking deeply, drawing her flesh into his mouth.
He released it with a pop. “I’m going to consume you. But only if you give me my rights.” He fingered the red mark left behind before looking into her eyes. “Will you grant me exclusive rights, Zoé Dubois?”
“Yes, Jace,” she said, returning the gaze. “Exclusive rights. I’m a one man woman.”
Fuck. He brought his lips so close to hers he felt her warm breath puffing against his lips. He savored the heat rolling off her body and the feeling of being pressed against her. “We’d better go,” he said softly into her mouth. “We don’t want to be late.” He drew away from her, smiling at the look of frustration she bore. “Don’t forget your promise.”
How did you decide on your story plot? It’s inspired by my life and the life of others. I’ve lived in and around abuse and substance abuse. I wondered what it would take to make a bona fide party bad boy actually change. I’ve been with many a bad ass and they never seemed to want to change. I learned, through writing that it takes a lot of chaos, angst and determination and the story’s not over yet (meaning there’s a part 2).
How did you choose your characters names and location for your story? All my stories take place in and around the very fertile region known as the Pacific Northwest. Character names evolved. I tend to fixate on a first letter of a name in a book. My editor and beta readers urged me to stop the madness with this book and use different letters (I had many names beginning with M inLooks like Trouble to Me).
I tend to choose a name depending on the effect it evokes in me so Jace Savage seemed like a great name for a bad ass boy and I pictured Zoé as a no-nonsense, super cute gal - or “farm girl fresh with attitude,” as Jace envisioned her.
Do you have a favorite scene? Why? Without a doubt, my favorite scenes are the ones with Jace and Zoé in the West Seattle bar called Moonlit, with friends Tony and Tanya, and the subsequent two or three chapters that take you to the yummy resolution. Jace was literally cut off at the knees…flat lined, devastated by what happened…but oh, so pleased and transformed by the outcome.
Do you have a character that you identify with? Who and why? Both Jace andZoé represent parts of me -- that’s the cool part about writing characters. I can be the fearful, mistrusting type (having lived through several affairs in relationships where the guy swore I was his beloved one and only) and the reckless, stubborn type and the incredibly willing to give into my passion and explore type…yep, I share all of those characteristics with my hero and heroine.
Let our readers know how they can get a hold of you…
Stop by and say hi at https://www.facebook.com/calindab or https://www.facebook.com/CalindaBauthor or sign up for my newsletter: https://www.facebook.com/CalindaBauthor/app_100265896690345
Is there anything else that you want to share… feel free!! I really hope you take a whirl with Looks like Trouble to Me. A lot of people contributed, from the friends who said things like, “Ooh, ooh, make sure you include the Port Townsend shed boys!” or “Back burner babes - there have to be back burner babes!” to the people who freely offered up facts. My editor pushed and pushed with this one to help me make it my best book ever!
For More Information
Thank you Calinda for stopping by! I hope everyone enjoyed the interview and will connect with Calinda!
To get your own copy...
Musings from Michigan