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Friday, April 2, 2010

I'm baaa--accck! Ready for some Friday Fun? Let's hang out with Darah Lace!

Wow, what a week. Once again the bug takes a bite and I go down like a ton of bricks, LOL. But I'm back! Able to get my coffee cup past the end of my nose this morning, so that's a huge plus!

Today we're hangin' with my buddy, my bff Darah Lace. Do you have a CP that really makes you step up your game--that forces you to become a better writer just to keep up with her? LOL. Well that's Darah in my world. We've been buds for 7+ years now and I still mean it when I say she's one of the best writers out there. Not only am I a better writer for having spent these past seven years learning from the Queen of Steam herself--I think I'm a better person just for knowing her!

But enough mush... take it away, Darah! I'll just be here staring at that cover.... don't mind the drool running down my chin.

Hi Nicole! Let me get my Dr. Pepper and I’ll be ready to roll.

Tell us a bit about yourself and why you write the genre you do.

Not much to tell. I’m a wife, a mom, a friend and a writer. And I write what I write because no matter how hard I try to control them, my characters always want to be naughty.

LOL. Yes, they really do. Where do you get your ideas?

From songs, events, dreams, or maybe just a word triggers a thought, but mostly my ideas get me. They come from nowhere in particular. Sometimes it’s a line of dialogue. I’ve heard a lot of erotic romance writers say they get the story down and add sex later. I usually start with a sex scene I want to write and build a story around it. In Unmasking Zorro, I saw the h/h disguised and having sex in an alcove of a garden. With Bachelor Auction my characters were in a closet and with Saddle Broke I envisioned a barn and a saddle.

Describe your typical writing day

No day starts without a 12 oz. can of caffeine. My dh knows I’m up when he hears the pop from the kitchen. The buzz of my computer is next. Email, then a little back and forth IMing... yes, I procrastinate as long as I can...and up comes Word and my wip. I usually read through the previously written passage so I can get a feel for the characters’ moods then my fingers either thrum on the desk, 1-2-3-4, 1-2-3-4, while I continue to stall or they tap out a rhythm to match the words on the page. At some point I realize I’m hungry or I need another Dr. Pepper. Then there’s more email and chatting and back to writing until school’s out. I try for 1k per day but when I’m in the zone, I can get 2 or more. I do love those few and far between “more” days.

What was your “Aha!” moment—when you knew you had to be a writer?

I don’t really know if it was an “aha!” moment, but I do remember the book I read just before I started my first ms. I had never stayed up all night to read a book before but I can still hear the alarm clock going off as I started the last chapter of Courting Miss Hattie by Pamela Morsi. After that, the characters of my first book formed and they pestered me until I wrote their story. Of course, I had no idea what I was doing, but I loved every moment and it was then I decided I wanted to write.

If you weren’t a writer, what would you be?

More organized? A better housekeeper? An inmate in a loony bin? LOL I don’t know. I can’t imagine being anything else.

Tell me your best cure for writer’s block?

I wish there was a cure, but for those times when I have “treat the symptoms” I usually back off, read, watch movies, take a drive without the radio on, clean my house (surprising what clarity comes while washing dishes or sorting laundry), but then it all comes back to parking my butt in the chair.

Let's talk about UNMASKING ZORRO!

My contemporary erotic romance, Unmasking Zorro came out today at The Wilder Roses and I’m so excited. I had a lot of fun trying to keep up with Spencer/Zorro and who he was at any particular moment. He was confused half the time and so was I. Poor Melody didn’t stand a chance.


Business becomes pleasure when Spencer Preston attends a masquerade ball and encounters a red-hot she-devil. Especially when the sexy siren turns out to be none other than his prim and proper, no nonsense secretary, Melody Jamison. He’s been fighting his attraction to her for months. Hiding behind the black mask and swirling cape of Zorro, Spencer intends to discover all her deepest desires.

A plain-Jane persona is the only way Melody Jamison can ensure her business assets outshine her physical. Her only priority is attaining a coveted promotion at Preston Enterprises—and based on job skills, not T&A. Yet she desperately needs release from her uptight alter ego. A chance meeting with Zorro provides just the outlet she needs—and allows Melody to explore her most intimate fantasies when her masked lover seeks her out time and again.

When an unknown threat to Preston enterprises throws Melody and Spencer even closer together, will they trust each other enough to reveal their secret identities? Or will Spencer lose Melody forever by Unmasking Zorro?


Headlights flashed at the end of the drive, and a car pulled through the open wrought-iron gate. Spencer ducked to the left between a white Rolls Royce and a black Mercedes. Damn. Just his luck for one of his brothers to show up and bust him for ditching the party early.

He waited for the car to pass, but instead of continuing on, it stopped next to his hiding place and backed into a spot behind the Rolls. He groaned when he recognized the red Corvette with vanity plates “REESE 3.” His instincts had saved him once again.

Crouching low, he poked his head around the front left fender of the Mercedes. Charlotte Reese slithered from behind the steering wheel. She glanced toward the house, and Spencer reared back, immediately moving to the other side of the car.

He was about to round the opposite fender when the passenger door opened and the toe of a red stiletto appeared. A pair of shapely legs followed.

The door shut, offering him a full-length view of those legs. Sheathed in red-tinted stockings, they led to the sexiest red dress he’d ever seen. A clingy bit of nothing with a hemline that swirled around the top of slender thighs then shrank to hug curving hips and a tiny waist. The neckline—if you could call it that since it came nowhere near her neck—revealed ivory swells that made his mouth water.

He lifted his gaze to see if her face matched the rest of her perfection and promptly fell on his ass. It couldn’t be.

But it was. He’d know that mouth anywhere. In the last six months, it had haunted his dreams almost nightly with the sweet taste of its lush fullness, its soft warmth against his skin. Those lips had promised many things but only in his dreams. And never in such vivid color. Fiery red.

Spencer watched as his secretary—or as she insisted he call her, his Administrative Assistant—settled the red sequined mask over chocolate brown eyes. It looked nothing like the black-rimmed glasses she usually wore. Little red horns topped the mask. Appropriate for the virago who taunted him by day with just a hint of the woman beneath all that starch, while by night she obviously lived a much different life.

“Would you hurry up?” Impatience tinged Charlotte’s voice. Probably eager to sink her hooks into some poor bastard. Spencer wondered who her next conquest was or if she even knew. Didn’t matter as long as it wasn’t him.

“I can’t believe I let you talk me into this.” Yep, that stern voice definitely belonged to Ms. Jamison. “What if someone recognizes me?”

“Too late,” Spencer muttered under his breath, frowning at the reasons why his prim and proper, no nonsense Administrative Assistant might want to hide her more feminine assets. And more importantly, what the hell was she doing with Charlotte Reese, the daughter of his most fierce competitor?

Ms. Jamison moved out of sight, and he was back on the balls of his feet, ready to shift the opposite of whichever direction they took.

They swept past, oblivious to his presence, and his gaze followed the red stocking-clad legs upward to an indecently short hemline that fluttered teasingly in the breeze. Heat speared straight to his cock.

“I don’t know what you’re so worried about.” Charlotte snapped him out of his lust-filled stupor.

“Mitch Preston is supposed to be here.” Did he hear a bit of panic in the she-devil’s voice?

“So? You said yourself you hardly ever see Mitch. And when you do, you’re practically invisible to him. It’s not like Spencer will be here. He shuns these things like the plague.”

“He’s still out of town. I wouldn’t be here otherwise. Too much rides...”

Spencer strained to hear more, but whatever else Ms. Jamison had to say was filtered by distance.

The shadows swallowed them, yet he waited another full minute before rising, disappointment pressing in on him. In the past three years, Spencer and his brothers had run the firm their father built from the ground up, and they’d done a hell of a job turning the moderate business into a multi-million dollar corporation. But over the last several months, they’d begun losing clients. Big money clients.

At first they’d blown the loss off as a streak of bad luck, but over the next few months Reese Consolidated underbid Preston Enterprises by just enough to get every contract they competed for. No way was that a coincidence. Someone at Preston Enterprises was leaking information to Ben Reese. If his suspicions proved correct, he’d just found her.

Spencer looked at Zorro’s mask in his hand. He had to know for sure, and there was only one way to find out.

Anything else in the works you can share with us?

I recently sold to Ellora’s Cave and Saddle Broke, my contemporary BDSM cowboy ménage, will be out April 16!!! Click here to read more but be prepared to saddle up for a smokin’ hot turn between two cowboys who like a little twist with their ride.

Also, the sequel to Unmasking Zorro, will release September 3, 2010 at The Wild Rose Press. Bachelor Auction is Marcus and Charlotte’s story and all I can say is these two fought every step of the way toward their happily ever after. And they were the opposite of most of my characters. He was the stuffed shirt and she was the fun and flirty vixen!

Thanks so much for letting me be here today! I had fun!


It was fun, Darah! I hope you'll stop back soon to introduce us to the next hot, hunky Preston brother!

Speaking of, Darah is giving away a free PDF copy of Unmasking Zorro to one lucky winner! Just post a comment and tell us the name of the sequel to Unmasking Zorro--she'll draw from the names of those who get it right!

Darah Lace

Slip into the seduction of Lace...


Cari Quinn said...

Very fun interview, Nic and Darah! Unmasking Zorro sounds great...and that's a seriously gorgeous cover! Can't wait to read it!

Good luck also with Saddle Broke at EC. I sold to them this week, so we'll be line mates at two epubs now. ;)

L. Rosario said...

Great interview, Darah, and congrats on the EC sale and the upcoming sequel to Zorro!! Can't wait to read them all ;)

Paty Jager said...

Great interview Nicole and Darah!

Darah Lace said...

Congratulations on your sale to EC, Cari! That's awesome. And yes, I absolutely love my cover. Thanks for dropping by!

Darah Lace said...

Hi L., I'm glad you made it to the party! I hope you enjoy Zorro as much as I did Valentino!

Darah Lace said...

Hi Paty, good to see you!

Helen Hardt said...

I had to laugh -- your typical writing day sounds exactly like mine! Procrastinate, and then procrastinate some more, lol. As I've said before I love UZ's cover. Very hot! Happy release day, and I'm looking forward to reading your latest!

Darah Lace said...

Hey Helen! LOL - writing day and procrastination - yes, which is why I don't get as much done as I should.

swampfox said...

Hi Miss Lace,
I feel you are one of the top writers in your genre. I enjoyed what I have read of Unmasking Zorro. If I were to write a sequel I would call it The Mark of Zorro. Because in Unmasking Zorro he does make his mark. However BACHELOR AUCTION suggest many ideas you could really run with.

Darah Lace said...

Thanks Wade, that's very kind of you to say. I hope you enjoy the rest of Spencer and Melody's story.

Sarah Simas said...

Awesome interview! I really enjoyed the tasty teasers. Thanks! Best wishes for continued success!

As always, Nic, you're simply the best. ((HUGS!!))

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