Welcome to Writer Wednesday! As I mentioned last week, a couple of Wednesdays a month, I hope to feature another writer and their work. Any writer of any genre is welcome to request participation by sending an email to email@example.com with the subject title WRITER WEDS COUNT ME IN! and I will get back to you about the details of participation.
Last week, we talked to Cat Grant. This week I’m excited to talk with to Francesca Hawley of Romance with Dangerous Curves.
1. Your web site has the tag line “Romance with Dangerous Curves”. What does this mean?
The meaning is two-fold. I asked Rae Monet to redesign my web site a couple years ago and her first design, while really great, didn’t match my vision. As I looked at it, I thought to myself, “It needs curves. Where are the curves?” And like a lightning bolt, I had an epiphany — Romance with Dangerous Curves. I needed curves because of who I am and the kind of women I write about. My heroines are all plus-sized because I am too. Even if a magic fairy could wave a wand and make me weigh 110 pounds tomorrow, I know that mentally, I’d still feel like a fat chick. I wanted to emphasize that with the tag line and the web site.
2. What inspired you to begin writing romances featuring curvy women?
When I began to write seriously, there were very few plus-size heroines. I’d read about beautiful women. Feisty heroines. And while I could relate to those traits, I couldn’t relate to the descriptions of those heroines as slender, with waists a man could span with his hands. That’s never been me and I wanted to write about women who’d had similar experiences. I wanted to write about heroines who represented women like me so I decided to give it a try.
3. Have you found that there are many women (and men) who are craving romantic stories like these?
Yes, I have. I’ve received a number of emails and comments from readers when I meet them. It’s really gratifying to talk to my readers. Many of them thank me for writing about heroines that represent them. Women that they can relate to and it’s been great to have the positive responses.
4. What has been your most rewarding experience with regards to writing these books? Has it been something you learned, or has it been fan reactions?
I think the most rewarding thing about writing has been finding my voice – as a writer and as a woman. I realized that I didn’t need to be slender to find love or to deserve it, and neither did my heroines. It’s been a journey for me to grow stronger within myself and my heroines have helped me make that journey.
5. Is there a particular book that is closest to your heart or which you learned something important while writing?
I think that Seeking Truth is the book closest to my heart, and for a number or reasons. I’ve belonged to the SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism – go to http://www.sca.org/ to learn more) since 1995. The SCA is a group that educates about the Middle ages and recreates them in a creative way. With Seeking Truth, I was able to tap into my love of history and of the Medieval time period to create as realistic an erotic romance as I could. And the research was a lot of fun – not just on the erotic side. Wink…
As I wrote this story, I absolutely fell for Eaduin Kempe, my hero. He’s flawed and filled with pain, yet strong and loving. Seeing him with his foster mother made both me and the heroine, Vérité, fall more deeply in love with him. Any guy that loves his mom like that is really hot. It shows he has a deep respect for women and that’s highly attractive. I also had to draw on some deep emotions within myself to write a very dark scene in this story and it made my writing more intense and the story more emotional. At least, I hope so.
6. Do you have a new book out now or are you releasing a new one before long?
My most current release is also my oldest. Alpha vs. Alpha was first released in 2005 by another publisher and when my rights reverted back to me, I had a chance to edit it so it met my vision for it better. The new version of AvA was released by Ellora’s Cave in 2011. The story takes place in the shapeshifter world I created and explored in Protect and Defend. The heroine of this book, Serena, runs a matchmaking service and dating web site for shapeshifters called Predator-Match.com. The hero, Damien, has a bad experience with the service. When he meets Serena, he realizes that she’s his True Mate. Unfortunately, Serena’s not convinced. It was fun to write a fast paced, highly sexy story between these two.
As to future works, at the moment, I’m working on another shapeshifter story where the hero and heroine are introduced to one another by Serena through her matchmaking service. Both are in tight spots and need a Mate because of pressure from outside sources. Per Goldwolf needs to impress a boss and Yohana Whitewolf needs to placate her pack where she’s the pack leader. They are a fun couple and I get to explore the dynamic of two Alphas again, but the fight is even more pronounced because Yohana is a pack leader and bows to no one. Once I finish it, I’ll submit the story to my editor at Ellora’s Cave and I’ll be crossing my fingers that she likes it and offers a contract.
7. Where can people find you and your books online?
My web site is Francesca Hawley Dot Com and people can discover more about me there. I also maintain a blog at Blogspot. I post on the first Monday of the month at Authors by Moonlight and on the 10th of the month at Sweet ‘n’ Sexy Divas . They can also visit my publisher’s web site at: Ellora’s Cave but the books are also for sale at Barnes and Noble and at Amazon.com.