Today my guest is Denysé Bridger, multi-published author in several sub-genres of romance. The books she’s featuring today—Hunter’s Game and Reckless Assignation—will be awarded to one lucky commenter on today’s post.
Welcome to Susana’s Morning Room, Denysé. What inspired you to start writing?
I’ve told this story before, but in a funny way, a lot people don’t believe how I landed in the author role. I started writing seriously back in 1984, and it happened because I was so annoyed at the way my favourite television series was progressing. So, I decided I’d write my own story. I had never heard of fan fiction at that time, had no clue about fanzines, etc., so imagine my surprise when someone asked me if I’d like to publish the story? The feedback was so good, I sent it to the actor I loved in the show, too. I was shocked stupid when 13 days after mailing it, he called me during a break and told me he’d read the story and it was better than what they were shooting!! That began a 20 year “training” period, and in 2004 I won the Amber Heat contest and my first pro contract. Haven’t stopped since then!!
How long have you been writing?
As cliché as it sounds, I have been writing virtually all my life. It started with essays and stories in school, and just carried through my life. I never thought of it as a career choice, though a couple of my English teachers told me I’d make an excellent writer.
What advice would you give writers just starting out?
First and foremost, you have to understand two simply things—there is no such thing as a perfect book, you’ll never write one, so write the best book you can, and then move on to the next project. I don’t know how many people I know who want to write, but never seem to stop tinkering with their book, so it never sees the light of day. You also have to be able to accept honest critique, which goes back to the perfect book syndrome. Editors aren’t there to tear your work apart, they are there to give you honest, professional advice on how your book can fulfill all the promise you feel it has.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, what do you do about it?
I’ve never really suffered writer’s block—for me it runs the other way, I have so many ideas all the time that I know I’ll never live long enough to write them all into the books I see in my head! It’s a frustration almost as disheartening as not being able to write at all.
What comes first, the plot or the characters?
Plot usually. Then the characters present themselves. I can get an idea from anything, and then the story begins to shape itself in my mind. Once I know what the story is, the players begin to emerge.
Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.
The newest release, which is a paranormal with some very wicked twists and plot points, began as a challenge from a fellow author when we spent a night visiting goth clubs and bars in Toronto. The club in the book was one of the places we went, and I was just absorbing the atmosphere to such an extent she told me to write something based on what I was seeing and feeling… I amped it to deadly levels for Hunters’ Game.
With Reckless Assignation, I chose Halloween as the backdrop and it became a well planned seduction, with a deadly edge of thriller. The story started because I wanted to challenge myself to create something that had an almost tangible atmosphere. From the reviews I’ve seen, it worked! So that’s great!!
Are you working on something at present you would like to tell us about?
I’m finishing up one of the best novels I’ve ever written. It’s been several years in the making as I’ve left it a number of times to do other projects. But, it’s now calling out to be done, so I’m having fun getting to the end at last. The book is set in Rome and Amalfi, and is about an internationally renowned singer who is harbouring some very dark secrets that have kept him away from his home, and real love. He meets a tourist who’s stranded, and when she’s almost killed and it looks to be linked to him, he insists on taking care of her until she’s well enough to return home. Of course, he has no intention of letting her leave him when he falls for her. It’s a very romantic and sweetly sensual story. I hope people like it when it is finally released.
What are you reading now?
I have several things on the go just now, some writer’s guides and technical books, but for relaxation I’m rereading Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed series, Opal Carew’s His To Command, and Lori Foster’s wonderful series Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor.
What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?
Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes stories have long been among my favourites; they taught me to pay close attention to small details that most people don’t notice, but they create the subtle nuances of tone and atmosphere. If I had to name a couple of romance authors who’ve influenced me they’d be Margaret Mitchell for Gone With The Wind, just for complex, sweeping plotting; and Lucy Monroe for the passion and tension that creates sparks and makes your heart smile.
What is your work schedule like when writing?
Chaotic, honestly. I grab what time I have to write, and then there are the blogs, promotions, etc. Every day something new comes at me, so I tend to multi-task—a lot! I usually start with the mail, then I do promo, and the afternoon is spent writing if I can manage it. If not, late at night when things settle down.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I think it changed from year to year—once I wanted to be a nurse, then a teacher, then I wanted to get into music. I never considered myself good enough to be a writer anyone would ever want to read. Still find it unbelievable, really.
What is your favorite food? Least favorite? Why?
Favourite food… is popcorn a food? I love popcorn!! As for least fav, that would be scallops—I’m not a lover of shellfish anyway, but scallops are a special kind of horrid for me… I love the smell of freshly baked bread, too—it’s heavenly. Maybe it’s a scent thing, popcorn smells so warm and comforting, too.
Are you a plotter or a pantser?
Depends largely on the length of the story I’m telling. I tend to want to plot and outline novels; it keeps me focused and clear on what I want to write. There will always be deviations and new things will come into play, but if I have the outline it keeps me moving in the right direction. With short stories and even some novellas, my outlines can be a few lines, or a page, usually nothing more than that. I prefer well plotted stories, really.
What is one thing your readers would be most surprised to learn about you?
That I am painfully shy. I tend to be fairly open and easy-going when I interact with readers and people who don’t know me very well find it hard to believe that I tend to be very private about my life.
Is there a writer you idolize? Is so, who?
I don’t think there’s a writer I idolize, but there are several I admire greatly. Lucy Monroe, Lori Foster, and Lara Adrian just amaze me with the passion and scope of their work. The create fabulous heroes, larger than life, strong, vibrant people who make you feel their stories and fall under their spell. I think when a book leaves a reader smiling long after they’ve finished it, that’s a special kind of talent on the part of the writer. I hope I manage to do that for readers from time to time.
What would we find under your bed?
Hmmm… a few board games, and a shoebox of old photos.
Say your publisher has offered to fly you anywhere in the world to do research on an upcoming book. Where would you most likely want to go?
Without hesitation it would be Italy. I’d love to walk the streets of the small towns on the south coast especially, then see Venice! Venice in winter would be so incredible, ice fog on the canal, Carnevale in February… It would be heaven!!
Do you have a favorite quote or saying?
Who so loves, believes the impossible….
Do you write in multiple genres or just one? If just one, do you ever consider straying outside your genre?
I write all over the place. I can’t stay in one genre, I get bored, so I love to experiment, and mix them up, combine genres that people don’t expect at times. I have so many interests, and I love different eras and styles, so it’s fun to switch it up.
What is something you’d like to accomplish in your writing career next year?
Two things, I want very much to get an agent, and I’d like to see a new novel in print. So, we’ll see!
In modern Toronto, two vampires stalk the night, their hunting a game that is seductive and deadly. In a darkly compelling Goth Club, they find the prey they seek for their pleasures, and the night runs crimson with blood and unquenchable thirsts….
From New Dawning International Bookfair
Excerpt on the publisher’s page
About Reckless Assignation
A haunted and abandoned hotel on Halloween is the setting for a very private party between two lovers, one of them a world-class, sophisticated intelligence operative who’s trying to teach his young and innocent lady that curiosity can sometimes take you places you’d be better not to go. Amid elaborate trappings meant to scare and entice, Rick’s seduction takes some unexpected but wickedly wonderful twists. But, Rick also has a lesson to learn, when his past collides with his present, and almost destroys everything he cherishes most.
From Ellora’s Cave
One random commenter will win a copy of both of Denysé’s featured books: Hunter’s Game and Reckless Assignation. Be sure to include your email address in your comment.
About the Author
Canadian born and bred, and a lifelong dreamer, I began writing at an early age and can’t recall a time when I wasn’t creating in some artistic form. My life has had several on-going love affairs that shape much of what I write, the American West, Victorian England, cowboys, a passion for pirates, Greek Gods, and Ancient Egypt. The other endless love affair in my life is Italia and all its magic, beauty, and dazzling culture. That passion spills into all aspects of my life.
My first major fantasy novel is As Fate Decrees. (Available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon’s international sites.) The novel relies heavily on Greek mythology, and is set in Ancient Greece and modern Athens. If you enjoy a tale of gods, destiny, and the battles of an eternal champion, this is the book for you! Not surprisingly, there’s a touch of romance throughout, of course! A visit to my website will show the diversity of what is currently available, and the mixing of genres and styles that will be employed in many up-coming projects as well. The Italian influence is in evidence with several of the more important works, as many people already know.
Website : http://www.denysebridger.com
Adult content blog: http://boundpassion.blogspot.com
Sensual Treats Magazine: http://www.sensualtreats.webs.com
Authors Who ROCK: http://authorswhorock.blogspot.com/
Facebook Fan Page: http://www.facebook.com/Romance.and.Fantasy
Amazon Author Page: http://amazon.com/author/denysebridger
Great interview Susana and Denyse, The blurbs for Hunter’s Game and Rekless Assignation ROCK. I’ve gotta add them to my TBR pile too. Will either book have a sequel?
Great post. Love interviews with authors that I like. Love finding out more about great authors. Also a huge fan of Lori Foster. Love the Men of Honor series and also love Lara Adrian’s Midnight Breed. Just found that series this year. Have read and loved several of Denyse’s books. Both of these books look great. Thanks for the giveaway.
christinebails at yahoo dot com
Thank you, Mindy – and Chris. Nice of you to have stopped by. I’ve been asked to write sequels for both books, but who knows? I’m still trying to get out from under the current commitments, so it could be awhile before I revisit these characters. I did a wild interview with two of my most deviant vampires recently and that was a blast, one of them was Demetri from Hunters’ Game. Chris, Dare MacIntosh is totally swoon-worthy, isn’t he? And Lucan Thorne…. wow….
Always enjoy learning more from and about you. Thanks for the inspiration. Please never stop writing, you are very good at it.
Amazing interview Susana and Denyse, I think the Blurbs for Hunter’s Game and Rekless Assignation Are Awesome, and Can’t wait to get my hands on the books to read them 🙂 I think your an amazing Author Denyse!! 🙂
Interesting and informative. Thanks 🙂
Thanks for taking the time to hang out, Denyse! Best wishes with starting a relationship with an agent, and looking forward to a new print title from you!
f dot chen at comcast dot net