Interview With Sloane Taylor

Interviewed by: Maya Reynolds
October 06, 2007

I’m on a deadline this weekend, and my good friend Sloane Taylor agreed to visit and talk about her books, writing and her life as a writer. Sloane is one of the nicest, most humorous people I know.

MR: Sloane, thanks so much for visiting.

ST: Hi, Maya, thanks for having me come out and play this weekend. I love your blog. You have wonderful information that’s helped me a great deal.

MR: Let’s jump right in. Why erotic romance? Why did you choose this genre?

ST: I’ve kept a writing journal since before books were bound and rarely miss a day of writing an entry.

One day, my insides simmered and then boiled into a story that just had to be told.

Like every other writer, I was sure if I hadn’t written the Great American Novel, it was at least in the top two. I sent it off to an editor who told me it was too explicit, not fit for category romance.

Explicit? thinks I. Okay, so maybe there weren’t any “shafts of hot steel” or “womanly cores,” but…come on…who the hell really has those?

Surprised by the editor’s response, but not disillusioned, I turned to my mentor, mystery writer Beth Anderson. She taught me the technical side of writing and how to bring out my voice, loud and clear. And she had this 2′ x 4′ with lots of rough edges that she had no problem wielding across my bony backside…hmm, sounds like the start of a new novel.

We were soon joined by Yasmine Phoenix, who can spot a scene that needs more sexual tension and how to do it faster than I can reach for another Fanny May. She tortured me into taking an online class with Jan Springer, the Queen of Hot, who encouraged me to be more serious about a God-given gift. Erotica, here I come, no pun intended.

Following Jan’s class, several of us formed what has become the Brazen Hussies group. These fine authors are a great group who honestly help one another. Although I’ve never met any of them in person, I feel like they’re some of my best friends.

With the help of these patient and talented people, my life has become very sweet. Now I have the best of all worlds, writing erotic romance set in exotic foreign countries.

MR: You have two books out right now: French Tart and Francine on Fire. Tell us about them.

French Tart French Tart is the first of five books in the “Naughty Ladies of Nice” series.

Donatienne Dubois is determined to prove herself and shed her party girl image. She pins her hopes on an exclusive cooking school in Nice, France.

One by one, Doni’s expectations are shattered by a foul-mouthed parrot, a bogus Michelin chef and a headmistress with a heart of tungsten steel. Her lifesaver is a bad boy hunk she longs to get into her bed.

Sebastien Reinard is a classmate of Donatienne’s, incognito and hating every minute of the cooking school. To pose as a student while protecting a rich wild child is his version of hell, until he’s partnered with a slice of crème brule good enough to eat.

Class takes on a whole new meaning as Doni and Sebastien heat up the kitchen and discover honey has better uses than sweetening tea.

Francine on Fire Francine on Fire is Francine Daniels’ story. She doesn’t trust men–two husbands and a con artist have guaranteed that. After years of struggle – during which she took back control and soared to new heights – there is no place in her plans for a German hottie…Even if she does burst into flames at his touch.

Heicke Brewer already made one disastrous trip down the aisle, and has no plans to go that route again. He prefers the parade of international beauties who line up outside his bedroom door to enjoy his ‘satisfaction guaranteed’ reputation…until he meets an American pixie too hot not to handle.

MR: Where can we buy them?

ST: French Tart is published by Eternal Press. Their website can be found here:

Eternal Press doesn’t link to specific books, but if you’ll click on “New Releases,” you’ll find French Tart for $2.95.

Francine on Fire is published by Aspen Mountain Press. The link to the book is here.

MR: I’ve read French Tart and was delighted with your sense of humor and your hot storyline. That brings me to the question: Your heroes are usually European and very alpha. Is there a reason for this?

ST: I started traveling to Europe during the Ice Age. LOL. I found the men there so very different from what I’d experienced back home. There was an instant appeal that I’ve never quite figured out, but thoroughly enjoy.

As for the alpha heroes – I’m a strong woman. If I don’t have a man with as much or more oomph, I’d run over the poor guy and come to resent him.

MR: You also feature exotic locales. Do you travel much?

ST: I’ve been fortunate to travel a great deal in my adulthood. It started as pleasure. At one point, I owned a travel agency. Almost all my travel became business-related. For more years than I care to remember, I escorted groups throughout Europe. It was also necessary to go over in advance and make all the arrangements like tours, hotels, meals.

My very first tour was all set up through phone and fax. Not good. I’d inadvertently booked the group into a revamped brothel in Rome. LOL.

After that embarrassing episode, I made it a point to check out all aspects of what my clients were purchasing.

MR: Tell us more about your personal life.

ST: I was born and raised in Chicago, then lived in Houston for two years with my first husband. A second marriage brought me back to the Midwest where I’ve remained to be close to my wonderful daughter and her terrific family. Not too proud, am I?

Every possible moment is spent with Studly DooRight, my mate for the remainder of my life, either at our home in Lansing, IL or our weekend cottage in Highland, IN.

I love to cook for Studly and my daughter whenever they’ll let me. They claim I’m good at it. You can check Stud’s waistline if you need proof.

MR: LOL. Let’s stop for today. Tomorrow we can talk more about your writing process and your journey toward publication.

Part Two of Interview With Sloane Taylor

October 07, 2007

Today is the second of our two-part interview with Sloane Taylor, fellow writer, Brazen Hussy and friend.

MR: Thanks for coming back, Sloane. Let’s start by talking about your writing process. Are you a plotter or a pantser? What are the advantages and drawbacks of your approach?

ST: I’m in the “P” category alright, but it’s called a procrastinator. LOL.

Actually, I’m quite anal about my writing. At least that’s what my critique partners claim.

I do a spiral notebook for each book with the cast of characters and their characterizations. Each chapter has its own page and what has to go into that section to move the story forward. It also shows me where I can logically drop in snippets of back story. Every day I list the number of words I want to write and how I feel the story’s progressing. It’s also where I lambaste myself or my computer.

This process works good for me even though it is time-consuming. Without it, I flounder and play Mah Jong for hours on end. Not good when deadlines are looming.

MR: Can you talk about your road to publishing? How long did it take?

ST: Actually, it was very short by anyone’s standard. I started the first book in 2003. It took almost two years to write because I hadn’t a clue as to what I was doing. That’s when Beth Anderson came along and set me straight.

A Silhouette editor, at a spring conference in 2005, asked me to send her the book and, a couple of months later, told me it was too explicit for category romance and suggested I consider going mainstream.

The next fall, I attended a writer’s conference and met one of the honchos from Triskelion. We talked for over an hour, and she requested my book. Off it went and, a month later, she offered me a nice contract. That book was released in June 2006 and my career’s been going well ever since.

MR: Your books are primarily e-published. Can you talk about how e-publishing differs from print publishing?

ST: Hmm, I may not be the best person to answer this, but I’ll give it a go. Rumor has it that print publishing editors are the best and that e-pubs simply scan for punctuation. It’s also said e-pub editors become editors because they love to read. In many houses, that’s probably true.

My publishers, Aspen Mountain Press and Eternal Press, aren’t like that. Those editors come with a long list of reputable credentials that make my head spin. It was one of the main reasons I chose to sign with both publishers. There isn’t an author out there who couldn’t use a good edit.

Of course, there’s the more commonly known reason, e-books are cheaper. I’ll go along with that. We’re in an age where monies are tight for a lot of people, so why spend $15.00 for a paperback you’ll probably never get back if you loan it out.

We’re in an electronic/conservationist age. Everything has to move faster while we save our resources. Anything a person could want can be found on the Internet, some good and some bad, but it’s all there. I truly believe that, within twenty years, print books and newspapers will be obsolete.

MR: You’re one of those writers who has secured contracts with multiple e-publishers. What’s your secret?

ST: No secret, Maya, just great luck. After my first publisher went bankrupt, several others contacted me to sign with them. Pretty amazing, huh? I checked them out and chose the ones I thought were the best for my needs. I also had to think through what I wanted for my career. I decided I’d never be exclusive to one publisher again.

MR: Any tips for aspiring writers?

ST: Writing is a business. You have to treat it as such. It’s just like working at any 9-5 job, only a writer has flex time.

You must sit yourself in front of your computer and work. It’s tough, but if you’re serious and writing is more than a hobby or a game, you’ll do it.

The writer should prepare a schedule. If you commuted to a job every morning, five days a week, you’d have a routine. It’s the same with writing. If you don’t do that, you’re lost.

MR: What’s next on your agenda? Tell us about your next book.

ST: Currently, I’m working on the second of five books in the Naughty Ladies of Nice series, French Delights, which will be released in December.

Hopefully, the blurb says it all. LOL.

Lisette Hugo arrives in Nice, France to first rescue her irresponsible friend and then to pamper herself with an overdue vacation. As an added delight, her rundown rental cottage comes complete with a sexy French gardener well equipped to satisfy all of her fantasies.

Paul D’Laquois, an impoverished research scientist scraping by on the remnants of his family’s estate, has poured his meager resources into his work. He couldn’t be happier when a wealthy tourist rents his dilapidated cottage. That she’s beautiful, seductive and more than interested in him convinces Paul he’s not as dried up as his orchard.

MR: Sloane, thanks for taking the time to stop by.

ST: Thank you, Maya for having me visit. It’s been fun.

Interview with Erotica Romance Author – SLOANE TAYLOR

Interviewed by: Kat Celeste Bryan
October 11, 2007

Recently I interviewed Sloane Taylor, writer excellente of erotica romance! Read below to hear what she has to say. By the way . . . you can find her latest release, French Tart at Eternal Press:

Kat: Welcome, Sloane. We’re here to talk about your new release “French Tart” coming out soon from Eternal Press, along with a host of other stuff about writing.

Sloane: Hi Kat, thank you for having me visit with you today.

Kat: When did you begin your writing career and what genre was your first book in?

Sloane: It seems I started before dirt was invented. Lol. Actually, I wrote my first book in 2002. Prior to that, I never considered writing professionally or at all. The first novel was a romance because I am a true romantic at heart. I struggled to shove it into category romance. Not good. A Silhouette editor at a conference requested the book. She held onto it for a year while two readers combed every page. Of course I was bouncing between elation and fear. I finally received the most beautiful rejection letter. It’s framed and sits proudly on my work table. The editor stated my work didn’t fit category romance and strongly advised me to go mainstream. Worked for me!

Kat: What’s your favorite genre to write?

Sloane: Hands down it’s erotica. The evolving of a love story with a true culmination puts me right into the book. I am no longer a reader, but an actual character in the story. Sounds strange, but I swear I’m not crazy. Oops, that’s what we all say here in the asylum. lol.

Kat: Which do you think is more important when writing a book — depth of characters or story line?

Sloane: For me it’s both. A few explicit grunts and feels won’t make me an author and I refuse to have hack chiseled into my tombstone. The characters have to be strong hence the plot becomes more involved.

Kat: Who are some of your favorite authors?

Sloane: Hmm, tough question and I always avoid it. Too many people know my address. lol. If I have to pick one author through all time I’m going with Alexander Solzhenitsyn who wrote One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich. His heart-stopping book first came out in 1963 with many reprints to follow. It’s a depiction of the Soviet work camps and a man’s struggle to survive through a manmade hell. Solzhenitsyn writes with a passion that rises off the pages, griping the reader in the horror of that world.

Kat: What’s your favorite part of the writing process, i.e., outlining, research, editing and rewrites or plotting? Which is your least favorite?

Sloane: Wow, you do make a writer think hard! I’ll take outlining for $200. lol. Actually, it is outlining which to me is just a long synopsis. I get a clear picture of where my characters are going and how they get there. It’s my road map to the happily ever after. Without a doubt editing my work before I turn it in is the worst. My brain sees what I’ve written and reads it as I wanted it to be, not necessarily what’s on the monitor. The only way I can overcome the problem and not kill my computer is to let the book or chapters rest for a few days then read it outloud. VERY time consuming.

Kat: What do you think about e-publishing and why?

Sloane: E-publishing is the way of the future. Everything a person needs is on the internet. Children learn at an early age how to surf and shop from their computers plus more. It’s also a conservationists dream come true. Encyclopedias are a thing of the past and printed books will follow in probably another 10 years. One specific reason printed books will become a rarity is their cost. Why spend $20.00 plus dollars for a book you’ll read once, probably loan out and never see again when you can buy a book for $7.00 off the net and store in your computer forever? E-publishing has brought people back to reading. If not then why have all the New York houses gone to e-books? Of course there are e-pubs who don’t know squat about editing, formats, and cover art. Those are the companies that won’t make it in this highly competitive industry. The publishers I’m now with know what they’re doing and produce beautiful books. They also have the savvy to be consumer oriented. All major pluses which will make them successful.

Kat: Do you write to please the market, the readers or just write the book of your heart each time you begin a new story?

Sloane: I could be a real suck-up here and claim the readers. lol. Kat, my stories come to me in silent movies. Little flashes of people in a world unknown to me. The damned things run more often then a bad commercial. It gets to the point that if I don’t write them down I’ll go nuts because there are four or five stories going on at the same time. Therefore, I have very little control over what I write or why, so my work must be from the heart.

Kat: If you could be one of the heroines in any book you’ve read in the last ten years, who would it be and why?

Sloane: This one I can’t answer. I’m an avid reader and whatever book I’m into at the time is the heroine or hero I want to be. I get so wrapped up in the characters and their dilemmas until I move onto the next book and then it starts all over again.

Kat: What will we find if we visit your author web site and what’s the address?

Sloane: At you’ll find the greatest menus for everyday life. My second passion is cooking to which Studs’ waistline is proof. lol. There’s also tips for upcoming writers, monthly author interviews on the blog and excerpts from my books. Last, the quarterly letter newsletter which is short and has a reader contest every issue with prizes ranging from gift certificates at nice stores to free downloads. My site is updated monthly so there’s always fresh info to check out.

Kat: And finally, tell us why we should run out and buy one of your books?

Sloane: Because they’re damned fine books. Kat, you stop laughing, you know I’m not a braggart. lol. My stories are exciting contemporaries that take place in Europe with plenty of umph to satisfy my readers. Let me share with you what one reader emailed me not too long ago: “The lead characters are loveable and draw you into their lives where you experience all their joy and pain. The bad guys make you root for their downfall and an eternity of them burning in hell.” I couldn’t say it any better. Thanks, Kat, for allowing me to chat. I’ve had fun.

Kat: No, thank you for taking the time to chat with Eternal Press and we look forward to reading all your releases!

Sloane Taylor Interview at Red Rose Review

Interviewed by: Linda

Tell us a little about yourself.

Hi Linda, first, thank you for having me today. I’m excited to be here.

Well, let’s see…I’m 5’9″, 115 pounds and a natural blonde. Calories never appear on my hips because they know better. You believe all that? LOL.

Actually, I’m an average woman who lives in a dream world more than reality. I was born and raised in Chicago then lived in Houston with my first husband. A second marriage brought me back to the Midwest to be close to my daughter and grandchildren. Life happened and my husband died. Years late I met my mate for the remainder of my time on earth. Now I have the best of everything, family, Studly, and writing.

What do you write?

Contemporary erotica and love it. All my books take place in Europe and have some element of honey in them. That’s why my tagline reads Sweet as Honey…Hotter than Hell. One day I’d like to do an erotic suspense, but that has to be way down the line.

Why do you write?

A few years ago these silent moving pictures popped into my head. I later learned they were scenes and had to write them down or I got no peace. When it first began I thought I was losing my mind and it actually scared me. Then I discovered writing gave me a sense of balance. That I can’t figure out since I only do fiction. LOL. I still get the movies, but now welcome them.

What are you writing now?

ISABELLA IGNITES which is the book four and the last in The Magnificent Men of Munich Series. Issy is a frisky chick and hard to handle. She’s putting me through my paces.

What kind of clothes do you like to wear?

When I write I love my old ratty green bathrobe. Don’t know why, but the words just flow when I wear it. Otherwise, if it’s not a go out for dinner deal, I’m in jeans and turtlenecks.

And to bed?

Zip! I like the freedom of sleeping in the nude. Summer, winter, makes no difference. Absolutely drives my daughter nuts whenever I mention it. Somehow it comes up frequently. LOL

Are you in love? Have you ever been?

It once seemed like every time I turned around. LOL. Yes, for the first time in my life I am now really, truly in love. The kind where you have freedom and yet prefer to spend every minute with him. Studs offers support, humor, aggravation, and a love that blows me away. I’m very fortunate and grateful he found me in this over populated world.

Do you have a dream lover – and what does he look like?

Good question and had never thought about a dream lover. Hmm, he’d be a cross between Sean Connery, Mathew McConaughy, and a little Cary Grant thrown in for good luck. Most important – he’d be available!

What kind of comfort food do you like best?

Disgusting as it is – anything with mayonnaise. If you ever saw me walking away you’d know I speak the truth. LOL

What makes you laugh? Cry?

My two granddaughters tear me up with their unique humor. Okay, I can’t help it I’m prejudiced toward those little cuties. I also enjoy good jokes, but I never liked slapstick. It always seemed on the cruel side to me.

I cry when I see children or women being abused. They are both so helpless and don’t know how to escape.

What do you do to amuse yourself when not working?

I love to cook. So much so that I drive Studs’ waist line to the limit. Check out the What’s Cooking page on my website, You’ll find a variety of easy and yummy menus. They’ve all been Studs tested and approved. LOL

What is it in a man or woman that turns you on? The clean version please!

Ahh, come on, that’s no fun. Okay, I’ll behave. The clean is a man’s eyes. I do believe they are the showcase to his soul.

Another big turn on are the little things a man will do. The first time I invited Studs to dinner I told him we were having a Mexican meal. He showed up at the door with a six-pack of Corona beer. To most women that wouldn’t mean a thing, but to me it was better than diamonds. Of course I like diamonds, not dumb here, but it was the thought that got me. It has been my experience that men don’t usually exert themselves with little things.

What do you hate about life?

Frankly, the damned thing is going to be too short to do all I want.

What do you hope to achieve in life and when will you know that you have been a success?

Lady, you are making me come out of my self-imposed dream world and think. LOL. Success is a personal standard and different for everyone. I have achieved success and know it. A year back my daughter told me she loved me and was proud of me. I could never ask for anything more.

What are you going to write next?

Definitely more erotica and somewhere that suspense I mentioned earlier. The next book is for Triskelion Publishing entitled Taste of the Dragon and takes place in Prague. It will be an over the top hot read and I can’t wait to start the research for it. LOL

Thanks again, Linda, for letting me come out and play. It was a good experience.

10 Questions with Tami Dee

Interviewed by: Tami Dee

Hi Tami, it’s great to be here with you.

1 – Tell us about your featured book, Teddi Turns On.

Teddi Howard is determined no one will take advantage of her again, including the tour operator who screwed her on an important contract. Her only option is a face-to-face confrontation with the weasel. Along the way she meets David Steifel, a strong-minded German who lets nothing stand in his way, even if she is the sensual Mrs. Howard.

Teddi Turns On has had great reviews, including 4.5 blue ribbons from Romance Junkies. I’m dazed by the whole thing.

2 – Tell us about your journey to becoming published.

Tami, do you have a half of a century to listen? lol. I guess my life “just happens”. Writing or being published was not a conscious effort.

The original manuscript of Teddi Turns On was rejected by Silhouette after a year and two readers as being too mainstream. I’m just not into ‘shafts of steel’ cause they gotta hurt or ‘womanly cores’ cause they sound icky. Not thinking the mss or I would go anywhere, I tossed it into a closet and forgot about writing and returned to my exciting life of baby-sitting.

Then a very close friend suggested I take an online class offered by Jan Springer, who I refer to as the Queen of Hot. The class was short, sweet, and ohh baby, explicit. I was a natural at laying down the words, movements, and emotions of a damned hot sex scene. Jan suggessted I quit my day job and get my flabby rear into a chair and write instead of wasting a God given talent. No sweat. I was happy to follow her direction and the rest has been a sweet tease to my creativity.

October of 2005 I was at the Autumn Authors’ Affair conference and met Terey Ramin who represented Triskelion Publishing. We talked, I pitched, and she was interested. I submitted and they bought. It was the best day of my life.

3 – What do you enjoy most about being a writer?

Hmm, those big royalty checks? lol Seriously, I love to be alone, always have, and writing is a lonely business. But I never feel lonely, especially when I’m at my keyboard and pounding out a story.

4 – Is there anything that others do that drive you crazy when you are trying to write?

And how! It’s when friends call me on the phone. I tell them I’m working and can’t talk right then which are the last words I get to utter. They blow me off with, “This will only take a moment” then half an hour later I’m banging my head on the desk in frustration. It’s got to the point where I lay the phone down on the desk and grunt occasionally while they rattle off about something. I know I shouldn’t even answer when I’m working, but I always worry it might be urgent.

5 – Do you prefer complete silence, music, or something in between when you’re writing?

Usually it’s complete silence. When I get into the story I can’t stand distractions of any kind.

6 – Are you working on anything now?

More erotica. My next book, Lonnie Heats Up, is the second book of the Magnificent Men of Munich series. It’s in the hands of my wonderful editor, Linda Wisdom. I’m not beneath sucking up. lol. The release date is set for June 2007.

Lonnie is Teddi’s younger sister. She’s a psychologist for the criminally insane. After one of her patients falls over the edge, Lonnie takes a well deserved trip to visit Teddi in Germany. Not much of a navigator, she makes a wrong turn and ends up in Austria.

Wolfe Deider is a bad boy with problems of his own. He’s a lawyer and sick of his pampered rich clients. He wants out bad. Deciding what to do with his future is easy, implementing the plan is another thing. Wolfe does not have time for a woman to muck up his agenda.

Now it sure wouldn’t be much of a romance, Tami, if the sexy American didn’t battle wits with the German hunk would it?

The next book is Francine On Fire. Francine Daniels is Teddi’s working partner in the travel agency. When Teddi breaks her ankle, Francine agrees to fly to Munich and work a charity golf outing. Francie hasn’t a clue about golf and that’s okay because she’s too wrapped up in one of the golfers and his great rear action when he’s driving.

Heicke Brewer own four posh hotels in Munich. He’s the kind of guy who believes one night stands are a committed relationship. He does have one unique attribute; he knows exactly what a woman wants in bed right after he meets her. It’s what Francine needs that scares the living hell out of him.

Each book kicks the sexual activity up a couple of notches. Isabella Ignites is the fourth and last book of the series and whoa baby! Isabella is a classy rich girl who has the perfect life, nothing ever goes wrong. So what does a woman who has everything do for fun? Check behind Isabella’s bedroom door.

7 – Where and when do you do your best writing?

Usually when I’m in my office and it’s very early in the morning. Frequently, ideas pop into my head while I’m driving. That’s not good when I’m trying to write notes and dodge semis.

8 – How many hours per week do you spend writing?

My goal is six hours a day, five days a week at the computer and any other time I can squeeze in. Some days it goes great, but usually not. lol

9 – How do you balance your everyday life with your writing?

That’s becoming harder every day and I sure wish someone would tell me the magic solution. I do a great deal of baby sitting for my two granddaughters, at least four days a week. On those days it’s next to impossible to write love scenes when you have a two year old singing along with Barney. lol

10 – Where do you get your story ideas?

They just come to me, Tami. I love Europe and have been fortunate to spend a great deal of time there over the years. When I walk the streets or watch people these scenarios pop into my head that are like silent movies. I write them down and have used many in my books. There’s a file cabinet filled with info, plot lines, characters, and you name it for future books.

Thank you very much for having me, Tami. I’ve had fun spending time with you.

Sloane Taylor Interview at Road to Romance

Interviewed by: Road to Romance | July 2006


The best thing my parents taught me was to read. The best thing my first husband taught me was to travel. What a combination! As an adult I discovered reading on vacation was the epitome of self-indulgence. My favorite reads were and still are fiction. Escaping into an author’s dream world forced my mundane life into the background.

I’ve kept a diary since before bound books and rarely miss a day of entering something. One day my insides simmered and then boiled into a story that had to be told. The words finally cooked up into a novel not fit for category romance. The editor told me it was too mainstream, too explicit. Explicit? thinks I. Okay, so maybe there weren’t any shafts of hot steel or womanly cores, but come on, who the hell really has those?

Like every other writer, I was sure if I hadn’t at least written the Great American Novel it was in the top two. Shocked but not disillusioned I turned to my mentor, mystery writer Beth Anderson. She took me by the hand and taught me the technicals of writing and how to bring out my voice, loud and clear. Plus, she’s got this two by four with lots of rough edges and has no problem wielding it across my bony backside. Hmm, sounds like the start of a new novel.

We were soon joined by Yasmine Phoenix who can spot a scene that needs more sexual tension and how to do it faster than I can reach for another Fanny May. She also tortured me to take an online class with Jan Springer, the Queen of Hot, who encouraged me to be more serious about a God given gift. Erotica here I come, no pun intended.

Through all these patient and talented people life has become sweet. Now I have the best of all worlds, writing erotic romance set in exotic foreign countries.

I was born and raised in Chicago then lived in Houston for two years with my first husband. A second marriage brought me back to the Midwest where I’ve remained to be close to my wonderful daughter and her terrific family. Not too proud, am I? Every possible moment is spent with Studly DooRight, my mate for the remainder of my life, either at our home in Lansing, IL or our weekend cottage in Highland, IN. I love to cook for them whenever they’ll let me and I love to hear from you all the time.

I invite you all to sign up for my monthly contest and quarterly newsletter at The newsletter is announcement list only. No chatter so no clogging up your inboxes.

Sloane Taylor Interview at Euro-Reviews

Interviewed by: Chantay | Euro-Reviews

Euro-Reviews: Meet Sloane Taylor, the author of “Teddi Turns On”. Read the review on her book here.

Sloane Taylor: Hi Chantay, thanks so much for inviting me. I’m happy to answer any questions you have.

Euro-Reviews: Where do you live?

ST: Right now it’s Highland , Indiana in the U.S. , but I was born and raised in Chicago and have lived in several cities over the years.

ER: Are you married?

ST: I’ve been married twice and later was dumb enough to have been taken for way more money than should be legal. Now I have a great guy who supports my decisions and wants nothing in return I’m not happy to give. Studs is the best!

ER: Children?

ST: One beautiful daughter who now has her own family. We live about 15 minutes away from each other. It’s close enough to be there when she needs me, but way too close when it’s time to baby-sit. I do a lot of that because both my daughter and son-in-law work two jobs. It’s tough here for young people starting out.

ER: Pets?

ST: Not anymore. All my life we’ve had dogs, cats, birds, and once a pretty green snake. Over the years I’ve had to put down too many of my lovies and have decided no more. It’s too hard on me when their time comes. I freely admit I miss the companionship.

ER: What are some of your hobbies and how did you come to discover them?

ST: I have three. The first is cooking. Many years ago my uncle, a cook in the army, intrigued me as he worked in the kitchen. He was kind enough to take a five year old girl under his wing and share all his secrets. The second is reading. As a child I learned it was a great escape from the reality of my life. And last is gardening because my second husband enjoyed it so much. I’m not too good in the yard and get lazy by the time August rolls around, but in the spring I’m a dynamo.

ER: What are you reading right now?

ST: This is not a good question for an erotica writer, at least this one. See, I love mystery and murder as a mind relaxer. Ya think there’s a problem in my psyche? Lol. This week’s read is Windy City Blues by Sara Paretsky. Next week I’m going back to erotica with The Lover by Robin Schone.

ER: How many houses have you lived in your entire life?

ST: Chantay, it’s going to sound like the bill collectors have been chasing me. Lol. Over the years I’ve lived in 19 different homes. The longest time in any one place was 11 years. I have this vagabond thing going on and can’t seem to shake it. Lol.

ER: Got any strange habits or talents?

ST: There aren’t any sacrifices to the muses, but… When I write I have to check my word count every 15 minutes. It’s an insane practice and really drives me over the edge. Somehow I can’t seem to shake it. If I delete words I’m compelled to add more to keep the count high. Also, I must work two crossword puzzles every morning before I start writing. If I don’t, can’t write. Both are foolish habits that seem to be with me for life. The last is when I drive. Sometimes if I’m having trouble with a story I hop into the car and head out. My mind relaxes and the story flows. I keep a pen and paper on the passenger seat to scrawl out the notes. Trust me, it’s not easy while dodging cars on our expressways.

ER: What is your favorite food to eat?

ST: This ought to set off the animal activists. I really enjoy veal. It’s easy on the palette and the taste is marvelous no matter how it’s prepared.

ER: What is the worst car you ever had?

ST: I lived in Chicago where the winters can be bitterly cold. All I could afford after my divorce was a 1960 VW. The car ran like a charm but had no heater. It just wasn’t designed for creature comforts. I liked to freeze to death that year. In order to go anywhere I had to wrap myself in a blanket. Although buying ice cream that winter was great because I never had to worry about it melting. Lol.

ER: When was your most embarrassing moment?

ST: YIKES! I promised myself I’d answer truthfully, so here goes. It was summer and I was on a first date with this hunk I really wanted to impress. I was dressed to kill in starched white pants and a skimpy navy halter. We went to an amusement park for the day with plans to share dinner afterward. Sometime in the middle of the afternoon my white slacks felt funny across my rear. You guessed it! Red streaks fanned out across the back. And the hunk turned out to be a jerk. He told me I had embarrassed him and he never wanted to see me again. I would love to look up that idiot and – well, maybe I’ll just cast him in a novel. Lol.

ER: What was the first story you ever wrote?

ST: Believe it or not, Teddi Turns On was the first fiction I ever wrote. Previously I’d written travel articles for Successful Attitudes which was an airline magazine and a booklet 117 Ways for Stress Free Travel.

ER: What made you decide to become a writer?

ST: As did everything else in my life, writing just happened. I joined Rendezvous, a book review group, and wrote reviews for several years until one of the ladies suggested I take an online class offered by Jan Springer, who I refer to as the Queen of Hot. The class was short, sweet, and ohh baby, explicit . I was a natural at laying down the words, movements, and emotions of a damned hot sex scene. Jan suggessted I quit my day job and get my flabby rear into a chair and write instead of wasting a God given talent. No sweat. I was happy to follow her direction and the rest has been a sweet tease to my creativity.

ER: Who/what gives you inspiration to write?

ST: There’s a variety of things that trigger my brain. It can be sexy music, a unique person in a crowd, or a name I see in the newspaper. If I have to choose a person I’d say my critique partners. There are six of us and we each write a different genre. They’re a sharp group and constantly challenge.

ER: Do you have a favorite author or authors? If so, why?

ST: TOUGH question, Chantay and one I’m going to shun. See, it’s difficult to use just one or two names and not offend someone. So let’s suffice it to say that when I reviewed for Rendezvous a treasure trove of excellent authors was right at my fingertips. I do believe a writer must read books in their genre. We learn so much on technique that way.

ER: Are you looking to write in any other genres?

ST: Eventually I’d like to do a straight mystery and a series in children’s books. There are meager outlines for both those genres. I just need to find the time to apply myself.

ER: How did you come up with the theme for Teddi Turns On?

ST: It was a fluke. One day all these pictures began to flood my brain. They were like silent movie, no dialogue, just action. It was driving me crazy. Actually, I thought I was losing my mind. I figured if I wrote this stuff down I could clear my head. It worked and I ended up with an abundance of adjectives and adverbs that would make an English teacher puke. Talk about your purple prose.

Since I love Europe and especially the foreign men, I jotted down the scenes as even more characters and their actions reeled through my gray cells. Sometimes I got headaches because the pictures came to fast to record. There was never a conscious action to write a book let alone create a series. Once I did start the process it soon became apparent there was too much for one story. If I wanted these people to leave me in peace I had to write a series.

ER: What was the reasoning behind your choice of location for Teddi Turns On?

ST: As I said, I love Europe . Munich was the last city I’d visited when all those damned pictures began to take over my mind, so it wasn’t really my choice. The characters always seem to pick the locals.

ER: What was the inspiration behind Teddi and David (backgrounds, past, etc)?

ST: Teddi comes from my history. At one time I owned a travel agency. David just came out of the blue. Actually, all the heroes’ backgrounds are like that. What I do with each novel is spend two days writing the backgrounds of the characters from childhood until the start of the manuscript. It’s amazing to me what they’ve lived through, the good and the bad. With this simple act I can write easier because I know how my people will react to a situation.

ER: Something interesting I saw while reading Teddi Turns On was when you wrote in what the characters were fantasizing. Why did you choose to do this?

ST: Let’s just say that Teddi’s fantasies could sooooo easily be my fantasies. As for David, it just came while I was writing.

ER: What lead you in the decision of Teddi’s sister, Eleanor’s occupation?

ST: This is an easy question. Again, murder is my passion, so when my daughter was taking a criminology class in college I “borrowed” her career for Eleanor. Probably not fair to do, but it sure made an interesting career for a young woman.

ER: Where do you see your writing career in the next five years?

ST: Since you’ve asked about the future I’ll be happy to share some info. Triskelion has in their hands a synopsis for an 85,000 word erotic suspense novel that takes place in a small town in Illinois . I’m waiting for their decision on it. Should they approve the book it will be released late fall 2007.

Winter of 2007 and spring of 2008 will bring out the first of an erotic suspense two book series about sisters who are amateur sleuths. The first book is set in Salzburg, Austria and the second is in Belgium. I hadn’t figured the location but am seriously considering Bruges.

Following all of the above is an erotic suspense series of three friends, one of which plays in the London Philharmonic. I’m still mapping out the other two careers so I can’t add more on the content. These books will be up for sale beginning summer of 2008, continuing through the spring of 2009.

In between all these novels will be approximately eleven Ferverish Interludes that run about 25,000 words each. They’ll be published starting in spring 2007 all the way through summer 2010.

After all of that I’m planning on finding the world’s longest straw to fit into the biggest bottle of vodka money will buy! My future is pretty well mapped out at the moment and I’ll either be one busy writer or an alcoholic in the very near future. LOL.

ER: What is (are) your next novel(s) about and when will it (they) be released?

ST: My next book, Lonnie Heats Up, is the second book in the Magnificent Men of Munich series. It’s in the hands of my wonderful editor, Linda Wisdom. Hey, I’m not beneath sucking up when necessary. The release date is June 2007.

Lonnie (Eleanor) Copely is the younger sister of Teddi Howard. She is a psychologist for the crimanally insane and works in an Illinois state penitentiary. After one of her patients falls over the edge, Lonnie takes a well deserved break and visits her sister in Germany . Not being much of a navigator, she makes a wrong turn and ends up lost in Austria.

Wolfe Deider is a bit of a bad boy with problems of his own. A lawyer by profession, he’s sick to death of his pampered rich clients and wants out. Deciding what to do with his future is easy, implementing the plan is another thing. One thing he doesn’t have time for is a woman to muck up his agenda.

It sure wouldn’t be much of a romance novel if a sexy little American didn’t battle wits with a German hunk now would it? And for positions – let’s just say that everything is possible even if you’re not agile. Research is a wonderful experience!

The book I’m working on now is Francine On Fire which is the third one in the series. Francine Daniels is Teddi Howard’s working partner in a travel agency based in Chicago . When Teddi breaks her ankle, Francine agrees to fly to Munich and work a charity golf outing for Teddi. Francine hasn’t a clue about the game and that’s okay because she’s too wrapped up in one specific golfer who has great action when he swings his club.

Heicke Brewer owns four posh hotels in Munich and is the kind of guy who believes one night stands are a committed relationship. He also has the unique ability to know exactly what a woman wants in bed within a matter of minutes of meeting her. It’s what Francine need that scares the living hell out of him.

Each book in the series kicks the sexual acts up a couple of notches. Isabella Ignites is the fourth book and whoa baby! Isabella is a classy rich girl who has the perfect life, nothing ever goes wrong. So what does a woman who has everything do for fun? Check behind Isabella’s closed bedroom door.

I love writing the books because they stretch my imagination and did I mention the research is great? Time to shag done Studs for more legwork.

ER: Thank you so much Sloane Taylor for interviewing with Euro Reviews! In the future, we hope to read more of your fantastic books of literature.

ST: And thank you, Chantay. I’ve had a great time.

Sloane Taylor on the Craft of Writing

Interviewed by: Yasmine Phoenix | September 2006

Yasmine Phoenix: Can you describe your office setup and why you have it that way?

Sloane Taylor: Again this dear friend offered her opinion so I went the feng shui way.

I’m in a room dedicated to writing. My desk faces the door on a slant. I love angled furniture, don’t know why. There’s this fantastic floral and black settee that I use when my bony rear is tired of the computer chair. A blue lapis world globe stands by the door. The windows are on my right side. All the tools I need, dictionaries, translation books, etc. are on an old trunk under the windows. Directly across are my overloaded built-in bookcases and the collage of my current WIP. The walls are very pale lavender with charcoal and ink black framed pictures. There’s plenty of natural light as well as table lamps. The atmosphere is very conducive to writing.

My desk is another issue we probably shouldn’t discuss. LOL.

Y: What books are on your reference shelf?

S: Probably way too many. I freely and ashamedly admit I have books that I’ve never read once they hit the shelf. The ones I use daily are Roget’s Super Thesaurus and J.L. Rodale’s The Synonym Finder along with two Webster dictionaries. Because my books take place in Europe there are several language dictionaries from Germany and Italy. And of course, the bible for all writers, The Elements of Style by Strunk and White. The other two important reference books are Daily Sex and Pocket Karma Sutra which I should utilize more often.

Y: Your Blogs contain a lot of hard earned lessons on writing, thank you. Why did you post them?

S: I’d learned everything from my CPS who are a small group of talented and patient women. It was important to me that other new writers move forward and not waste as much time as I had.

Y: What’s the worst advice ever given to you regarding your writing?

S: There were two pieces of bad advice;
My writing was good. You should have seen that first pile of liter box filler.

Write category romance. I wasted a lot of time trying to be a round peg.

Y: What’s the best advice given to you regarding your writing?

S: Quit your day job. Jan Springer told me I had a God given talent and not to waste it.

Y: Your favorite books run the gamut, romance, mystery, fantasy, philosophical, how do these different genres influence your own writing?

S: You know how we’re always taught to read the genre we want to write? That’s missing waaaay too much good writing.

A book has to grab me in the first page, preferably the opening paragraph. Not very unique, am I? LOL. My favorites all begin with a throat grabber, at least to me.

The variations in style allow me to stretch my mind. I love to write fantasy scenes in the character’s head. Let them explore their sexual desires without embarrassment. Just like we all do. J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series taught me how to write fantasy with depth.

Beth Anderson, James Patterson, and Kathy Reichs books taught me how to plot a manuscript, even though I wasn’t writing suspense. Through their worked I also learned not to dump the entire back story all at once, boring the reader to suicide.

Lisa Marie Rice’s Midnight Run is great for the sensitive feelings required in monogamous erotica. Jenna Howard’s addition to the Zodiac Series educated me on the finer points of writing a sexy novel. The Good Girls Guide to Sex filled me in on positions and attitudes I never knew existed.

London by Edward Rutherford and The Word by Irving Wallace proved to me facts have to be researched and then checked again.

Solzhenitsyn’s One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich is the perfect example of accepting your life and rising above it.

I needed to read each of those books over my lifetime to comprehend the depth a writer must achieve.

Y: You’re working on your Magnificent Men of Munich books. How did you come up with this series? What is it about each of your heroines you like?

S: It was a fluke. I love Europe. I especially love German men. Like I said before, it all started when these pictures began to ramble through my head. As I jotted down the scenes more characters and their actions reeled through my gray cells. Sometimes I got headaches because the pictures came to fast to record. There was never a conscious action to write a book let alone create a series. Once I did start the process it soon became apparent there was too much for one story. If I wanted these people to leave me in peace I had to write a series.

The four heroines are different personalities. Teddi Howard is unsure of herself without any need to feel that way. Lonnie Copley is almost too sure of herself and gets tripped up at every turn. Francine Daniels is a hard and bitter woman. Isabella Carrington is a spoiled rich kid.

What do I like about them? They are feisty and each of these women has a lot to give. Their facades are self made. They grow and learn their real value through the right man.

Y: I’ve read your Bio, what about reading made you believe you could write?

S: Nothing! One day all these pictures began to flood my mind. They were like silent movie, no dialogue, just action. It was driving me crazy. Actually, I thought I was losing my mind. I figured if I wrote this stuff down I could clear my head. It worked and I ended up with an abundance of adjectives and adverbs that would make an English teacher puke. Talk about your purple prose.

Y: Before you discovered, erotica, what did you write?

S: CRAP! Yes ma’am. Just ask my critique partners.

Y: How many manuscripts did you complete before you sold to Triskelion Publishing?

S: Just this one which was why I was amazed Triskelion bought it. When the excellent reviews came in I was even more surprised. I’m guessing many authors feel the same way.

Y: What is the good part of a writing day for you?

S: When the world leaves me alone.

A very dear friend returned from the RWA conference and brought me a doorknob hanger that reads, “STOP! 1. Are you bleeding? 2. Is the house on fire? If the answers are NO then GO AWAY!” I’ve changed my answering machine message to a variation of that. Not many of my friends are happy, but I can’t allow them to disrupt me.

Y: What is a bad writing day for you?

S: When I go blank. Not writer’s block, but when my logical mind is too full of every day life and refuses to let the creative side have her way.

Y: What erotica writers and/or romance writers have inspired you in your own writing?

S: TOUGH question, Yasmine and one I’m going to shun. See, it’s difficult to use just one or two names and not offend someone. So let’s suffice it to say that when I reviewed for Rendezvous a treasure trove of excellent authors was right at my fingertips. I do believe a writer must read books in the genre. We learn so much on technique that way.

Y: Describe how you and Triskelion hooked up?

S: Terey Ramin and I met at Autumn Authors’ Affair October of 2005 where I offered to buy her a drink. I pitched, she listened. We finally agreed on three chapters and a synopsis as my submission even though she wanted the full novel. What really got me were the diverse topics we discussed after the pitch. Terey spent over an hour listening to me babble.

Y: Describe, in brief printable words, your first, third and last reaction to Triskelion buying, Teddi Turns On?

S: Hehehe. I was sitting in my bathrobe drinking my usual hot water and lime when my inbox dings. I’d already sent an email to Terey apologizing for not having the rest of the novel to her. Personal situations had caused a major delay. So here’s this email from Terey and I’m positive she was telling me to take a hike. Instead she wrote how she understood the stress I was under and if it wouldn’t be more stressful would I sign the attached contract and get it back to her ASAP. That beautiful email is framed and sitting proudly on my trunk.

The first reaction was shock. I had sent her the pages because she was kind and hopefully her rejection would be as well.

When the reality of it all hit, I was screaming, crying, and jumping all over the house. Not a pretty sight, but who cared. Hell, I was going to be PUBLISHED.

I emailed Terey six times during this frenzy trying to be coherent. Each time she came back with understanding and humor. Once I emailed Kristi Studts, the owner, by mistake. She responded with humor and I died from embarrassment.

Finally I got myself professional. HA! Sent off a proper acceptance email then screamed and jumped some more.

Y: We’ve all suffered rejections, how did you handle your first one? What did you learn from the first one, about yourself, your writing and your support group?

S: I have a mentor who whipped my sorry rear into shape long before I submitted my first novel. The book had gone through two readers at Silhouette. The editor sent a beautiful letter telling me the book was too mainstream and to stop wasting my time with category houses. Shocked the hell out of me. Handling a rejection like that was painless. The editor had spurred me on to be even more creative, take chances.

A shy dear friend then advised me to take Jan Springer’s Erotica Writing class. And the rest is history.

It’s these three women who opened up a world I never thought was available to me.

Y: I know you’re a plotter, to put it mildly, why and how does plotting work for you?

S: It gives me focus. I know where the story starts, even after I dump the first few chapters, and how to get to a successful end.

I have this spiral notebook with characterizations on the mains and secondary people. Each chapter is listed with a general run down and on the corresponding page are the high points for that chapter.

The front inside cover is filled with my personal rules of writing and the back inside has columns for each chapter with the original and edited word counts.

Each morning I try to list my writing goals for that day and stick to it. Actually, if I don’t do that part I end up playing Spider Solitaire and accomplishing zip.

The plotting is my way of forging ahead.

Sloane Taylor Interview at Fallen Angel Reviews

Interviewed by: Tammy | September 2006

Tammy: Today I’d like to welcome Sloane Taylor to Fallen Angel Reviews. Thanks for taking the time to answer a few questions for us today Sloane!

Sloane Taylor: It’s my pleasure, Tammy. Thank you for being interested.

T: To start, will you please tell us a little bit about your current release, Teddi Turns On?

S: Teddi Howard, a travel agency owner, is off to Munich determined to confront the tour operator who cheated her on a contract. Along the way she meets David Steifel, a man who is almost too much male. Teddi has some tough decisions to make, but with David’s help, she ends up on top.

T: Of all things you have accomplished, is there one accomplishment you are most proud of?

S: There are three successes that make me happy. Being my daughter’s friend now that she’s a grown woman is important to me. My work published is a mind blower. Triskelion contracting me for three more books has rocked my world.

T: When you begin writing a story, do you have a pre-planned idea of where it will end, or does it change as you go along?

S: I write out extensive characterizations for the hero and heroine, secondary characters get short write ups. The story is outlined with all the major points noted. The ending is always happy. I’m a romantic at heart. Every story of mine has to have a happy ending. It’s a compulsion of mine.

T: How long have you been writing?

S: Since before bound books were on the market. LOL. I started as a child, Tammy. It was the only way I could express my emotions. I’ve always been shy until I really know someone. About four years ago I began writing a novel, my first. I played with it until a good friend who became my mentor snapped her infamous whip and I got off my flabby rear, the end result is Teddi Turns On.

T: I learned from your website that you love to travel. Can you tell us some of the places you’ve been?

S: I’ve had a good life and been a fortunate woman. Work and pleasure has taken me to almost every country in the world and all but one Continent. Not in any order of preference, I’ve been to China, Kenya, Australia, Israel, Egypt, Morocco, Japan, New Zealand, Brazil, Panama, and most of Europe.

T: Is there one place you’ve been that you would never like to leave? Or one place you would not like to go back to?

S: Salzburg, Austria is like going home for me, so yes, I can honestly say I never want to leave when I’m there. There isn’t one place I’d not want to revisit. I’ve learned something new each time I travel, no matter to where.

T: What would you like to accomplish with your writing career?

S: Be more prolific with each novel so I could produce four a year. Down the road I’d like to write mysteries and finally children’s books.

T: You say on your website that you have hosted a weekly travel show. What was that like?

S: Do I have to keep it clean? LOL. Actually , Vacations Can Be Fun was enjoyable even though it was a great deal of work. The program ran for three seasons. There were two of us who planned each program. We would invite tour operators, people who had traveled to specific locations and could provide movies or slides, travel agents, and anyone we could drag off the street for our half hour interviews. We also had the police and fire departments on to inform people of how to protect their homes while away.

The viewers seemed to like the show. At least it seemed that way by the fan mail. People would write with questions and/or suggestions. We always gave them credit when we used their ideas.

T: Could you tell us what you’re currently working on?

S: Do you have a year or two to listen? LOL. Earlier I mentioned the three book contract with Triskelion. It’s for the remaining books in the Magnificent Men of Munich series, Teddi Turns On was the first one. The next are Lonnie Heats Up, Francine On Fire, and Isabella Ignites. Right now I’m about three quarters through with the second book. Sure hope my editor isn’t reading this. The book is due to her like yesterday.

T: What would be the theme song to your life?

S: My Way sung by Frank Sinatra. In fact, my daughter knows it’s to be played at my funeral. LOL. I’m almost ashamed to admit the lyrics are so true in my case.

T: Congratulations! You just won a year off from work to travel anywhere in the world and write the story of your dreams. Where do you go, what type of book do you write, and what’s the title?

S: Tammy, you’re a terrible tease. No thought required here. It’s the Hotel Kobenzl, high up in the Austrian Alps, overlooking Salzburg. The book is a mystery named Raining Bodies. A pretty far stretch from my reality. LOL.

T: Is there anything you would like to share with your fans today?

S: Oh yes. Thank you all for buying my book and making it a success. I’d also like to thank all the people, male and female, who have emailed me with their generous opinions and kind comments. You all have made me a happy author.

T: Thank you for taking time to speak with me today Sloane. Readers, be sure to check out Sloane’s website.

S: Thank you, Tammy. It’s been a lot of fun.

Sloane Taylor Interview at Beth Anderson – Hotclue Live

Interviewed by: Beth Anderson | June 2, 2006

Sloane Taylor’s FIRST book is out as of yesterday, June 1, 2006, a day that will go down in infamy! Sloane is one of my crit partners and a dang fine one if I do say so myself. Her book, a pretty hot erotica, is titled, TEDDI TURNS ON. (We won’t go into details here, you should go to and download a copy if you want the details, and with today’s huge focus on erotica novels, who doesn’t?) Or, you could visit her website at and read a lot of things, including recipes, can you believe it. Recently I asked Sloane if she’d like to do an interview when her book is ready and although I had to beg and plead (yeah, sure 😉 ) she finally agreed, so here we go:

Beth Anderson: Sloane, did you have a desire to write when you were very young?

Sloane Taylor: Hey woman, I’m still young. At least I think so until I look in the mirror. Ugh! To answer your question, not really. I’ve kept a diary or journal since before paper was invented. Sometimes I wrote short stories. My favorite class was English and I loved essays. I had never thought of being a writer let alone try to make a living as one.

B: Oh wait, you mean we can make a LIVING doing this? Hmmm…well, when did you decide you wanted to write novels?

S: Ten years ago my husband died. At that time I owned a travel agency and to overcome the grief I literally traveled the world. About four years back a tremendous pressure built in me and grew daily. I began to see these short scenes before me, like watching disjointed movie clips. I wrote the damned things down because it was the only way to clear my head. A friend knew of a group of writers who met weekly, and shoved me in that direction. They welcomed me about three years ago and have suffered through my work ever since. One of the members decided she would be my mentor. I’ve always felt she was either on drugs or desperate for a good laugh. Anyhow, this well-known author who wishes to remain anonymous–the chicken–took me under her wing and spent time, which I’m sure she feels has been an eternity, teaching me the technicals of writing. To her I will always be grateful.

B: What a wonderful, dear, sweet, beautiful and talented friend she must be! 😉 What made you decide this?

S: It was never a conscious decision. It was a path I stumbled onto.

B: You’re currently writing erotica. Tell us about your first book, TEDDI TURNS ON.

S: TEDDI TURNS ON is about a widow who owns a travel agency. Gee, what a surprise! She gets screwed over by a German tour operator on a group tour contract. Her only recourse is to confront him, face-to-face, and force him to honor their agreement. Along the way she meets David, who owns a successful boot manufacturing company. He’s not a cold man, sex is an important part of his life, but commitment is not. Teddi hasn’t yet learned to let go of the past. The attraction she feels for David brings on guilt she doesn’t know how to deal with. Their story is a learning experience for both people.

B: Ah, I see! An erotic learning experience, right? You have more books planned in this series. Tell us about the series concept that got you a four book contract right off the bat.

S: All the characters are older, thirty-five plus. I’m older and got sick of reading all the cutesy, perfectly shaped girls who got the guy. I wanted to read about women and how they solved real life problems. I figured the best way to do that was write it. The Magnificent Men of Munich series is based on four university friends who have become successful men in their chosen fields. Their lives weave in and out of each others’, leaving little time for women unless it’s a one-night stand. Each has a problem from their past they refuse to face. The four American women these guys hook up with all have a connection of some sort to the travel agency. Each woman has a unique strength that attracts their man, thus allowing him to recognize and overcome his weakness.

B: Oh, I’ve gotta read THOSE books for sure! So, after you do them, what’s next?

S: Wow! Do you have enough time and space for all that info? There are five more books in various stages of progress. All are romances and definitely erotic. Two are a series and two others will be suspense. (I have a lot of faith in my publisher, don’t I?)

B: I guess! Sloane, you’re doing a lot of promo. Tell us about it. What do you like least about doing it, and why?

S: I’m a “not in your face” type of person, so for me it’s daunting and a hell of a lot of work, but it has to be done if I want people to know about my book. On my publisher’s loops I read everything other writers were doing to promote but some of it just didn’t suit my personality. I did feel comfortable about pens, so with the help of friends we built the Ink Infantry. (Stop laughing. It works.) Each of these people took a bag full of pens and my postcards then distributed them to everyone they know. Conferences need goody bag items so I selected five across the US and one in Germany to ship pens and postcards. To celebrate the release of TEDDI TURNS ON we are doing drawings on June 1, 5, and 8. Each day two people will win a bath scrubby and two bars of honey soap featured in each of my books. Also, I hooked up with Coffee Time Romance, Road to Romance, and Romance Junkies to advertise my book. Copies of Teddi Turns On were sent to them, along with Rendezvous and Wantz Upon a Time, for reviews. Now I’m biting my nails to the quick, waiting to see what’s said about my baby.

B: And your baby was finally born yesterday, congratulations! (SECRETARY, OH SECRETARY, please order a silver mug and have it sent to Sloane, will you?) So what do you like best about doing promo, Sloane?

S: That I hired Karen Simpson as my publicist. The woman is a dynamo and sets up reviews, interviews, lectures, anything she can think of.

B: How do your family and friends feel about your writing career?

S: My true friends were elated when they heard the good news that my first book was being published. My adult daughter is supportive, but wishes I didn’t write erotica. I guess no kid, no matter how old, wants mom to know too much about sex. Studly, my S/O, thinks it’s cool and prods me forward daily. My critique partners are brilliant writers who have no problem offering advice or vetoing a scene. My mentor faithfully wields her 2×4 across my backside when I get lazy. See? This is all good stuff and uplifting to a writer.

Now…the other part of the family and other friends…by their reaction you’d think I’d authored the DaVinci Code and they were the Spanish Inquisition. They had a variety of reactions. Some were glad to know I’d developed a little hobby to fill in my spare time. Others were positive “this little fancy” would pass when I realized no one was interested in anything I had to write. My favorites were the ones who, after I announced the book was sold, immediately changed the subject. Nice people, huh? What they haven’t figured out is, their negativity and jealousy won’t hold me back.

B: Now that you’ve done the deed, what do you think is the most important thing anybody who wants to write novels has to do first?

S: Decide if writing is a hobby or a career. If you want it as your career then treat it as such. Develop a writing regimen. Join a critique group. And learn, learn everything you can get your hands on. No one is so good they have nothing to learn from another human being.

B: And after that?

S: Get your ass into the chair and write.

B: You’ve traveled extensively all over the world. If you had a choice, where would you love to live right now?

S: I would never give up my American citizenship, nor would I become an ex-patriot. So with that in mind, I’d like to live on the Geisberg, a mountain just outside Salzburg, Austria, for one year. I’d have to have a roof over my head and that roof would be the Hotel Kobenzl, a luxury spa hotel with all the balconies overlooking Salzburg. That atmosphere would be very conducive for my writing.

B: When you’re writing, what holds you up most, if anything?

S: Myself. I procrastinate unless I’m super excited about my project and then I won’t stop to sleep.

B: What do you feel is the most important thing to understand when you become a published author, and how did you go about understanding it yourself?

S: Unlike the diet du jour we switch off whenever a tempting dessert appears, or in my case a fresh jar of mayonnaise, you’ve made a commitment. There’s now a publisher who had enough faith in you to offer a contract. Readers have decided to spend their hard earned money on your book. You have to live up to that commitment and produce better books.

How do I understand that myself? That’s another toughie. After all the excitement and celebrating settled down I had an epiphany. This wasn’t a game or a fluke. This was the real thing, and my life had made a major right turn onto the high road. It scared me to death, so I had a long talk with myself to determine if I could handle being an author. After I tossed aside my barf bag and calmed down, I knew I could because I love writing and I’m good at it. Don’t get me wrong here, I’m not an Ernest Hemingway nor do I profess to be like him. I’ve just learned there’s a God given talent in me and I need to use it, cause I don’t want to mess with the Big Guy.

B: This JUST cracks me up–you’re also a gourmet cook. What’s your favorite food that you love to cook?

S: Italian because it’s the easiest. No measuring. It’s all by taste and the aroma that fills the house is the best.

B: So what’s your favorite food when you go to a restaurant?

S: This might tick off the animal rights activists, but it’s veal. All menus I see have a big neon arrow pointing right at those tender little medallions.

B: What’s your idea of a perfect day?

S: Let’s see, the phone never rings, my cup of hot water and fresh lime juice is endless, and 4,000 flawless words magically appear on my computer. Don’t ask for much do I?

B: Okay, we get the picture, you never have perfect days. What keeps you going as a writer?

S: My mentor and Studly. I’ve built this image in my mind that if I let either of them down by not producing, I’ve failed them and they’ll be disappointed in me. (Giving away too much info here.)

B: Anything else you’d like to add, either personal or professional, or both?

S: Professionally – If a person is serious about writing as their career choice they must remember that writing is a business. There’s no room or time to be anything but being professional. You can’t run and hide after a rejection or negative comment. Those things must spur you on to be better. Keep your mind open to new things. You’ll never stop learning unless you choose to, and that’s a shame because no one is that smart. Should writing become “work”, get the hell out of the profession. Negative attitudes will shine through in your writing.

Personally – Life should be fun or at least have many happy aspects to it. People make their own fun. You can’t rely on others to do it for you. So how do I do it? Many years ago a very good friend said she eliminated anyone from her life that dragged her down. Gwen didn’t mean the person who had problems they needed to discuss and wanted to resolve, she meant the whiners and bitchers who never let up and therefore change you. I’ve adopted her policy and my life has changed one hundred percent.

B: Sloane, thanks for dropping by and allowing me to blast to the entire universe that you’ve got a new book out. Folks, I read it and it is very, very good. Go nab it.

Romance novels bloom in Southland

Sunday, April 30, 2006
By Steve Metsch, Staff writer

Everyone loves a happy ending. And who doesn’t love a good love story?

Romance books rack up $1.2 billion in sales every year, so it’s easy to see why many folks — including a handful from the Southland — have penned romance novels or are planning to.

Be it a traditional love story or one that features vampires, tries to solve a murder or delves into the steamy world of erotica, romance novels are big business.

“It’s an unbelievably huge market. We are romance-starved,” said Penny Sansevieri, a book marketing specialist for Author Marketing Experts Inc., which has offices in San Diego and New York City.

Sure, romance writers tend to follow a formula (more on that later), but it’s a recipe that cooks up success.
“I’ve always said to romance writers groups that people are in love with love,” Sansevieri said. “In a lot of these books, a woman hates a guy who is rich and famous, whatever, and then they end up together. It’s very formulaic, and we buy it.

“It feeds a need, and it has a happy ending. And people love happy endings. If they don’t get them in real life, they get them in a book.”

And those books are flying off the shelves.

According to a 2004 study by the Romance Writers of America, romance fiction accounted for 54.9 percent of all popular mass-market fiction sold, and represented 39.3 percent of all fiction sold.

A whopping 2,285 titles were released in 2004, and 64.6 million Americans read at least one romance novel that year.

Sloane Taylor, a one-time South Holland resident who now lives in Highland, Ind., hopes her debut effort, “Teddi Turns On,” is among the hot sellers this year. It’s definitely a hot book.

We’d love to reprint an excerpt from it, but the details may be a little too explicit for some. That’s OK with Taylor (that’s a pen name, by the way; she declined to give her real name). Her debut effort made such an impression with Triskelion Publishing that the company bought the book rights after seeing just three chapters.

That’s rare, Sansevieri said.

But it wasn’t instant. Taylor’s first attempt at the book was deemed good, but “too mainstream,” Taylor said. Or, more specifically, it was lacking in “smut,” she said.

So her friend Beth Anderson, author of seven romance mystery novels, gave her some advice. “Beth told me, ‘Look at how you talk and act. You’re an erotica writer,'” she said.

Back at the drawing board, Taylor reworked the book and added five sexy scenes in which just about anything goes.

That did the trick — her book comes out in June.

“It’s different writing erotica, but it’s very easy,” she said. “Romantic erotica is not vulgar. It’s the consummation of love between two consenting adults who plan to stick together. I don’t write about a one-night stand.

“The only words I can’t use are ones that start with a ‘c’ and end with a ‘t'” she said.

OK, we get it.

But not all romance novels get an X-rating. Today’s authors steer clear of the “bodice ripping” that seemed to rule the genre back in the 1970s, when Harlequin was the reigning queen of romance publishers. Most books nowadays are a great deal tamer.

Anderson, of Lansing, said she broke out in gales of laughter the first time she had to write a love scene.

“I thought it was funny. I’m not interested in writing about sex. There’s lots of romance in my books, but I don’t go into graphic detail,” Anderson said.

Tricks of the trade

Taylor and Anderson are members of a local chapter of Romance Writers of America, which has 9,500 members nationwide. On one recent evening, they were joined by fellow chapter members Gabrina Garza, of Griffith, Ind., and Mickie Witvliet, of Dyer, Ind., in talking to a group of would-be authors at a romance writing seminar held at the Glenwood-Lynwood Public Library.

What it boils down to, they said, is you follow 12 simple steps: Meeting, attraction, denial, admitting attraction, growing attraction, fevered pitch, genuine love scene, plateau of happiness, worries creep in, black moments, resolution, and conclusion.

“If you follow these steps, you should have a book at the end,” said Witvliet, who has not yet published a book but has had several manuscript requests from publishers.

Don’t be fooled, though; it’s not as easy at it sounds.

“You can’t have one line that says, ‘He really didn’t do it.’ That’s not going to work. You have to explain things,” Witvliet said.

And be prepared for long hours of homework.

Anderson typically spends six months researching and six months writing a book. She spent three months in Valdez, Alaska, to research background for her new thriller, “The Scoutmaster’s Wife.”

Anderson keeps a separate folder for each book idea and jots down thoughts as they pop into her head.

Garza, who won an online contest for best romance based on “Phantom of the Opera,” is a writing machine. After her two toddlers are in bed, she’ll be up till 1 or 2 a.m., words flowing from her fingers to the computer keyboard.

“I wrote 700,000 words last year,” said Garza, who has two books under consideration by a publisher. Her current projects include a Viking time travel erotica, a high-fantasy novel and a paranormal romance.

Hey, whatever happened to manly men tearing apart bodices in the heat of passion? The writers laughed at the reference to “bodice rippers.” So did Sansevieri.

“Romance is now no longer ‘just romance.’ This genre had been divided into quite a few micro-genres, like chick lit, mommy lit, hen lit, daddy lit, romantic suspense, etc.,” she said.

“If you’re not reading what everyone else is writing in this category, you need to be. Know who is doing what. Get to know your competition.”

Michael Ray Smith, chairman of the Department of Mass Communication at Campbell University in North Carolina, is a “script doctor” for friends who write romance novels. He offers advice.

“There is a formula to these, but it doesn’t matter,” he said. “It’s like if you go see Bob Dylan in concert. He’s going to do things to his songs to keep himself amused. The same thing goes for writers. They attempt to freshen up the formula with their stories.”

Two women who attended the romance writing seminar, Vickie Fotis, of Flossmoor, and Kathy Lazzara, of Glenwood, say they’re interested in giving it a try.

“I’ve been writing on and off for 20 years,” said Fotis, a children’s librarian in Matteson and a former columnist for Star Newspapers. “This meeting is sparking me to get going and to get some stuff out. I do have the idea folder, things to work on.”

Lazzara said she’s “been toying with the idea … but I don’t know how to start, so that’s why I’m here. I won’t be writing about any bodice ripping. I’m not into erotica. But there will be a love interest in my book.”

Steve Metsch may be reached at or (708) 633-5996.