What is the last romance novel you read?
This Charming Man by Marian Keyes – what a lady. Not sure this one counts as romance though (the hero is a gruff cross-dresser and the book is all about emotional and physical abuse?! Only Ms Keyes could pull this off.)
What type of Romance / what genre do you write?
Hot, humorous and heartfelt! I write both African romance and erotic romance.
Are you published yet? If so, with whom?
Yes, with Ankara Press and Tirgearr Publishing (City Nights series).
What do you love most about writing?
The way it has nothing to do with me. I just show up and the characters do the rest. It’s very relaxing, awe-inspiring and amusing. Oh, and I do the research! That’s not that relaxing! But interesting. For example, recently I’ve needed to work out which are the one-way streets in Denpasar, Bali!
And what is your biggest challenge as a writer?
Not getting overwhelmed. Just opening the document, taking baby steps, trusting.
Do you have a playlist while you write?
Absolutely not. I find music very disturbing – I can’t hear the book then. But it’s cool if the kids are playing in the same room, or even clambering over me! I’ve developed persistence!
What was the inspiration behind your last book?
My hero (One Night in Venice). I had this vision of a very sexy, artistic man whom everyone thinks is arrogant and aloof – but really, he’s wounded – and as he falls in love, this very young student is the catalyst for turning it all around for him. So I liked that, that she’s just going about her business, being plain and ordinary, and suddenly she does this extraordinary thing for someone else, and in the process for herself as well, and her life becomes extraordinary. As does theirs, together. God, I love romance!
What is your proudest achievement as a writer?
You know, it’s having taken a chance. It was saying “I’m going to try that.” “I can do it.” Then, it was finishing the book. I was helped, I really do believe that. It was such fun. I discovered a whole new avenue of joy. And originally I wanted to make money! Plus, write somehow.
What advice would you give someone who tells you they want to write?
GO FOR IT. Nike: Just Do It. Then do it again. Don’t let anyone or anything stop you and never give up.
If you could give your life / dreams / goals a hashtag, what would it be?
What keeps you motivated to write?
My life feels so incomplete without it. It’s like this jewel I’ve discovered, a beautiful place I can go to again and again. I’ve tried doing without and I just get grumpy. It’s worth ignoring any fears you might have about it, any judgement or self-criticism, and just getting on with it. Enjoying it is the best way forward. Silence those inner voices. But learn from any critique you might get. That’s very important, to grow.
What is your writing schedule like - do you write every day / a certain time of day?
It’s best if I prioritise writing, otherwise it falls off the map. So I write in the mornings, and more throughout the day or night when I can.
Tell us about the first love story you ever wrote.
This Crazy Paradise is about a psychologist who gets divorced, falls in love, and becomes a romance writer. That’s my life, right there. Not the first story I published, but the first one I wrote (I published it second).
What is the best part about being part of ROSA?
Romy Sommer, who’s a brilliant organiser as well as writer! And the sheer kindness of strangers. I love it, thank you.
What’s your latest news?
One Night in Venice comes out on 27 September and is #32 in the scintillating City Nights series from Tirgearr. It’s an erotic romantic suspense.
E-mail me at email@example.com and I’ll send you a free digital copy in the format of your choice (first 3 respondents). If you like it, please remember to review it!