Bold Strokes Books author Renee Roman is here!
Before we begin, thanks so much for stopping by today for a chat.
Thanks so much for having me and for the great program you provide to lesbian fiction readers and writers.
You grew up with three older brothers. What was that like? Were they uber protective? Pranksters?
Ha, funny you should ask. My brothers are 10, 11, and 12 years older than me and they all lived at home at one point during my early years. The eldest and I were at odds most of the time. (I think he was secretly jealous of my father’s affection toward me.) The middle brother was always in so much trouble he rarely bothered. My youngest brother and I have always been close…friends from the time I was barely a teenager. We knew how to have fun, and we sometimes got in trouble together. 😊
Where do you live now and how does it influence your writing?
I live in Albany, NY, same city I grew up in. There are familiar settings and references in my books. I love living where there’s changes in seasons, and I’d be hard pressed to live where the weather is always the same. A cozy cabin, a crackling fire…the stuff dreams, and romances, are made of.
Recently you attended Women’s Week in Provincetown. How was it and what was the most memorable experience?
I love P-town! It’s always been the lesbian mecca of the east coast. If you haven’t been its hard to explain. There’s such a deep sense of community, family, there. It’s quaint and beautiful. 2017 was my first year attending as an author and while I didn’t have a book out yet, I did get to participate in panels. That was fun. This year I had two books available, Epicurean Delights (released in January 2018) and Stroke of Fate (Exclusively available in P-town, and general release in November 2018). I did two readings and signing. I enjoyed meeting readers and authors, and forming new connections…the sharing of love for the written word, is a gift.
What was the first lesbian book you read and did it inspire you to write lesfic?
Some may be surprised to know it was Venus Envy and Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown. I read them consecutively. At the time, I’m not sure I even realized it was lesfic. I was in high school and a voracious reader. I read everything I could get my hands on. It wasn’t until decades later I discovered Safe Harbor by Radclyffe. That’s the one that did it for me. I was hooked and remember saying, “I’m going to write these kind of stories.”
What genre(s) do you write and why?
Lesbian romance, intrigue, and erotica. I’ve never been an “in the box” type of person. I break the “rules” when it comes to most conventions, including the notion that an author needs to stay in her chosen genre. Why limit my creativity? I love a good “Happily Ever After,” as well as erotic tales that get my (and readers 😊) libido amped up. Romantic intrigue and romantic suspense are harder to craft because of the two parallel story arcs that need to be carefully interwoven. I like reading all genres, so why not write them?
I’m also a panster. For those that don’t know, a panster (Someone who writes by the seat of their pants.) is an author who doesn’t outline a story before it’s written. All my novels start with a single line or paragraph, or a character, and everything else develops from there.
Tell us about your latest release. What inspired this story?
Stroke of Fate is a romantic intrigue. Jade Rivers is an author who finds herself on the NY Times Best Sellers list and is suddenly in the mainstream literary world. She has an encounter with a zealot at an LGBTQ event and her publicist insists she hire protection. Sean Moore is ex-Secret Service who was involved in a political scandal and left for the private sector. It’s been a favorite of mine since I wrote the first line. I love these characters. They have weaknesses they try to hide (Don’t we all?), but there’s so much more to them. Jade was the initial impetus for this novel. She’s is facing the loneliness of living between two worlds…fantasy and reality. Sean became her bodyguard and the perfect counterpart in the relationship. She is everything Jade isn’t.
Hard copies were available exclusively at P-town, but available from Bold Strokes Books on November 1st, everywhere books are sold on November 15, 2018.
What kind of research did you do before penning Stroke of Fate?
Well, the author part was easy (smiling). There’s so much that happens internally. I am constantly writing, constantly formulating scenes and scenarios. I pulled from some of my own experiences for Jade. I did quite a bit of research into the Secret Service, positions in the State, political policies, etc. for Sean and her role. A lot of the research I do never reaches the pages and I think that’s true for most authors, but it helps to round out the characters and give them depth.
I hear you enjoy cooking. If you were cooking a romantic meal for your wife Sue, what would it be?
Ah…now there’s a novel waiting to happen. It would be one of her favorites, chicken parmesan with spaghetti, garlic bread, and Caesar salad. Candles and wine would round it out. And for dessert, well… I’ll leave that to the reader’s imagination.
You have two frisky felines. Do they keep you company while your write and have they ever appeared in any of your stories?
Sassy is Sue’s girl and Gizmo (a tuxedo) is mine. They will both come and join me in my study. Gizmo likes to sit behind me and purr. Sassy wants attention, so she rubs on everything she can. She’ll push under my hand if I’m typing, wanting to be pet. She also has a pen/pencil and a post-it note fetish. She’s definitely a handful at times. You know, I’ve yet to write a pet in one of my novels, but I like the idea.
Thanks so much for chatting today.
It was a pleasure meeting you in the UK. Thank you so much for the opportunity to speak with you and your followers.
Sean Moore is a dedicated agent for the Secret Service until a political scandal forces her into the private sector, making her question the values she has always held true. Jade Rivers has only ever wanted to be a writer. A breakout success catapults her into the mainstream literary world and she couldn’t be happier, but fame comes with a high price.
When an religious fanatic becomes a stalker and threatens her life, Jade hires Sean to be her personal bodyguard. Neither expects the instant attraction that sizzles between them. Will the perfect working relationship end in disaster when Sean’s true feelings for Jade are revealed? And can Sean protect Jade before the stalker ends any chance they have of finding the kind of love that’s always been missing from their lives?
MEET THE AUTHOR
Renee Roman writes lesbian romance, mystery, and erotica. Her first novel, Epicurean Delights, was published in January 2018 by Bold Stokes Books. Her second work, Stroke of Fate, released November 2018. She will have an erotic short, On Her Trail, in the anthology Escape to Pleasure (also by Bold Strokes Books) available January 2019. Her third novel, Where the Lies Hide, is scheduled for release in August 2019. She’d love to hear from readers and is happy to discuss her works and writing with you.
CONNECT WITH RENEE ROMAN
Thanks so much for stopping by today.