Ask the Author: Christina Thacher

“Ask me a question.” Christina Thacher

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Christina Thacher I'm occasionally tempted to murder my boss, so the mystery wouldn't be a whodunnit (I've already confessed, right?) but a "how-did-she-do-it"? Seriously, though, my answer is one I suspect others can relate to. I write about kinky sex. I try to make non-vanilla encounters seem exciting but also fulfilling--no one walks away unsatisfied or compromised. Safe, sane and consensual. In real life, though, some of the certainties of fiction are missing. You always *know* who the hero is in an erotic romance novel, right? In real life, that's not so clear. So the mystery in MY life that could drive a novel is this: Who's my hero, and will he help me explore the kinkier side of my own nature?
Christina Thacher [I wonder what I would have said two years ago? Again, my apologies for not knowing these questions were here!]

In another answer, above, I said I'd thought of a new series. I wanted to explore how famous people (actors, business tycoons, sports stars) negotiate their kinky sexual tastes in a vanilla world. [This seems almost quaint now in 2017...]

At the time, in late 2015, I was watching football on TV. Really, I was listening to the announcers as I did other stuff around my home. Anyway, I started thinking about a former quarterback-turned color commentator. Ordinarily, that would be enough inspiration, but even though I like him and I like the woman I was prepared to drop into his life, I couldn't quite make them fit.

Inspiration fail. Or it's the day job. Don't know. Sorry.
Christina Thacher Nothing. I wrote two trilogies and just stopped. My day job interfered, life interfered, I didn't need the money I made from writing, and my publisher (a lovely mom & pop operation 150 miles away) accepted that I wasn't going to produce anything else.

Also, I had some ideas for a new series, and they (the ideas) never quite gelled. Plus, I love the BDSM genre, and I started to get caught up in inconvenient mental questions about consent, abuse, etc. It's...thorny, to say the least.
Christina Thacher Two answers, one easy and one hard. The easy answer is to keep writing. Learn to edit. Join a critique group. Grow a thick skin and accept criticism as people's well-intended efforts to help. Get better. Keep writing. Repeat as needed.

Now for the hard answer. If you want actually to make money, you have to know your market, and in this era of self-publishing, that's super tough to do. Do tons of research on what people think are the best ways to go about the job of being a writer. I think the writing is the easy part; selling your writing is so much harder.

Good luck!
Christina Thacher Creating stuff. It's like playing with a doll house: everything is there, so you can decorate it, populate it, enjoy it, bring it to life...and then, close it up and go do something else.
Christina Thacher First of all, I apologize to the reader who asked this...TWO YEARS AGO! I don't think I even knew I'd been asked anything. My bad. And I'm sorry.

I don't think I had writer's block when I was writing. (As you'll see in my answer to another of the two-year-old questions, I'm not writing right now.) I always had some aspect of my characters' struggles in my mind, so I could run scenes in my head like a movie or TV episode. I'd do this as I was falling asleep. It allowed me to audition dialogue and think about how the characters moved, acted, looked, etc. When the time came to sit down and write, the words weren't hard to find. (It helps that my day job, as a bankruptcy lawyer, lends itself to writing on demand and often on deadline.)

If you put a gun to my head now and demanded that I write another book--I think Stephen King handled this fear in dramatic fashion--I'd be in trouble. I don't have any books or characters or set-ups or plots in my head. THAT'S the definition of writer's block!
Christina Thacher So many to choose from. For example, I love Cherise Sinclair's Shadowlands BDSM series, which starts with Master Z and Jessica. He's a preternaturally-gifted psychologist and she's just waiting to be seen for who she is. Their chemistry and the unfolding for a physical passion growing into love is pure gold.

Another example: Pia and Dragos in Thea Harrison's Dragon Bound. He's the alpha of alphas and she's magical in her ability to stay grounded and face him. Another blissful romance, this time in the paranormal range.

But if I'm being honest, I have to pick Mary Balogh's couple in Slightly Dangerous. It's the final book in her Bedwyn series, so reading them in order introduces us to various facets of her hero, Wulfric Bedwyn, Duke of Bewcastle. He's aloof, superior, unknowable and almost unlikable. And then, finally, he meets Christine, a widow of no particular distinction. She, too, is impervious to his pretension-destroying methods. (He's deadly with a quizzing glass!) But there's a spark between them, and it never dies. How Wulfric deals with that spark is a bit like the twists and turns of trip through a garden maze (which is maybe why Balogh sticks a maze in the middle of the book). More than any other couple in romance, I keep wanting to revisit Wulfric and Christine.

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