Scribal Love Welcomes Author Elaine Lowe!
Elaine Lowe is an author of erotic romance. Her newest work Magic Eights is available from Ellora’s Cave on July 8th.
What is the name of your latest book? And how did you come up with the title?
Hi Clare! Thanks for having me here. My upcoming release Magic Eights is my latest book, although I’m also part of one of the latest Ellora’s Cave print anthologies, Some Like It Sweet (my story is Nancy’s Sweet Spelling Bee). For Magic Eights, the title was simple! Unlike most of my books where I agonize about the title for ages, Magic Eights has a very important character – a Magic Eight ball, and also a confluence of other eights, it’s the couple’s eighth anniversary, there are eight copies of William to deal with, et cetera. Eight is my lucky number, and I abused it thoroughly in this particular book!
What is this book about? And what genre is this book in?
Magic Eights is about fulfilling the wild fantasies of a happy but slightly frustrated wife. Susanna makes an idle wish to a Magic Eight ball she receives from a good friend, who happens to style herself as a witch. That wish results in not just one, but seven different copies of her husband being created, each with a purpose to fulfill! It’s a sexy romp, but it’s also a loving story of two people in love who still have insecurities and secrets and find deep fulfillment in rediscovering each other and opening up completely. This is a contemporary paranormal, a highly erotic romance and a quick fun read that I had a ball writing. It’s very different from my usual deeply-researched and plotted historical romance, but I think it’s true to the heart and soul of my writing style.
Who is/are the main characters? And why did you choose them?
Susanna Walker-Wong and William Wong are just your everyday couple in San Francisco, he’s a programmer, she’s a biologist, and they have a four year old son who’s out visiting his grandparents. And I’m not so sure that I picked them, when I’m pretty certain Susanna picked me! She waltzed into my imagination while I was knee deep in a completely different manuscript and demanded that her story be written. When a character takes control like that, it’s pretty hard to deny her!
What is the coolest or best part about your book? (Any Favorite scenes, the world-building etc..
The book is a departure from my other work, in that the interaction between the characters is so intense and so much the focus rather than external plot factors and the world in which they live. In my other works I do a lot of worldbuilding, and set up their universe to guide the characters. In this book, the characters and their interaction is the entire world, and their reactions and emotions are an intense palate to work with. As to a favorite scene, I have to say then when Darcy Will walks in, I simply can’t resist sighing. I’m a sucker for a Regency twist, even in a thoroughly modern setting.
Do you have a favorite character in the book? If so, why?
I love William, the husband. I think he takes the events and the resulting disorientation extremely well. He just wants to make his wife happy, and revels in being able to do just that.
Is this book part of a series? If so? What can we expect in future books?
Not yet, but I’m certainly interested in expanding into a series. I’m still in the planning stages, but Susanna’s friend Esme Morgan, who gave her the Magic Eight ball in the first place, is beginning to demand her own story be told. Esme sees magic everywhere, and owns a magic shop, but she’s not entirely convinced that she’s sane and magic is real, or that she’s insane and deluding herself. When she goes to a local psychologist for counseling, she certainly doesn’t expect him to be the Fae who’s courted her for years!
If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
I would love to more in depth about their life together and the pressures each of them face, and how time together is so precious to both of them. I think that’s something anyone in a relationship needs to recognize and value.
Did you learn anything from writing your book and what was it?
I learned that having countless copies of the man you love would really, truly be exhausting. But I think it’s become my favorite fantasy!
Do you have a publisher? And if so, why did you choose them?
I have several great publishers that I’ve worked with, but for Magic Eights my publisher is Ellora’s Cave. They do a really great job, I adore my editor Helen, and they have a wonderful art department. I’ve lucked out with some incredible covers over the years! My personal favorites are the covers for Scandalous Profession, Lady Six Sky and Enchant the Dawn. All of them are beautiful!
If you had to choose, which writer would you consider a mentor?
I enjoy so many different kinds of genres that it is very difficult to choose. I adore the wry style and deft social commentary mixed with true romance of Jane Austen, the brilliant wit of Mark Twain, and yet I adore the speculative fiction of Eric Flint and the authors at Baen. But as a romance writer, I have to say that I will always love Katherine E Woodwiss, and she is greatly missed. My mom used to read her books (highly highly edited!) out loud to our family as we crisscrossed the country on car trips, and I think her style and brilliant characterizations made me love romance.
What books are you reading now?
I’m waiting on tenderhooks right now for Gail Carriger’s steampunk romance Heartless to come out! Her parasol protectorate series is incredible and I love her style (and I crave her parasols!) And I just finished fun cross-genre romp of myth and scifi called Pyramid Scheme, which also results and Medea and Arachne finding love in the arms of some heroic American soldiers. I highly recommend it.
What are the current writing projects that you are working on?
I often have two or three manuscripts going at any one time, and countless short flash fictions and drabbles. The more I write, the more I write, and I like to keep my mind agile with whatever is flowing the best. At the moment my main projects are that infamous interrupted Hawaiian story, which is part of my Passion Magi series along with Enchant the Dawn, Reveal the Heart, Foretell the Flame and Command the Wind. Competing for my writing attention is a very cool tale of demigods and would-be vampires set in 1880’s London, with a five thousand year old heroine and a snarky thermodynamics professor. And finally, there’s the first stirrings of Esme’s tale, which is shaping up to be a whole lot of fun.
I’ve got a whole huge file of story ideas, and characters that occasionally pop into the forefront of my mind and demand that I scribble notes about them on paper napkins, the back of envelopes, or the always useful palm of my hand. After all, I’ve got a day job, or two, and I’m a mom and a wife, and I’ve got to grasp on to inspiration when it comes and hold on tight to the heart and soul of it before it disappears back down into the chaos of the everyday.
Do you write full time? If not, do you hope to do so one day?
I wish I could, but alas I’m a mom to a special needs child, and I work several part time, at-home jobs. Writing is my fun time, and my escape! I worry that if I was ever so lucky as to be able to write full-time, it would become work instead of the joy that it is now.
Still, I wouldn’t mind trying! And I don’t see myself as ever giving it up. I have to write, my fingers itch otherwise.
Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?
I’ve always loved stories and storytelling. My Dad read to me every night, and we started The Hobbit when I was four, and by the time I was seven I was reading The Return of the King back to him. I blame my mother for my need to tell stories. While waiting in line as I child, Mom would regale me with stories about the people around us, based on their clothes, the way they stood, the objects in their shopping cart or the looks on their face. They weren’t meanspirited, and they did pass the time, but more than that, those stories encouraged me to become a good observer of the world and the people in it, and to contemplate what happened in their lives and what made them who they are today. I think that made me a natural writer, and a good citizen and friend as well.
Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?
I really try to make sure to reveal key information in context and in dialogue rather than the infamous “infodump”. I try not to blather out too much too fast and instead give juicy crumbs of information that come together later on in the story. It’s always the hardest part of me, especially in a complex story sent in a rarely discussed historical period!
Do you have any advice for other writers seeking to get published for the first time?
Persevere! It’s easy to get discouraged, but keep writing. Get lots of feedback, join critique groups, and really listen to the comments others have about your writing. You don’t have to take every comment as dogma, but try to be open minded about your baby. And once one manuscript is done and you’ve submitted to a publisher or an agent, don’t wait around and twiddle your thumbs. Begin writing the next one!
Want to know more about my writing and me? Check out my webpage at
www.elainelowenovels.com, or connect with my on Twitter.
I’m elainelowe there, and I tweet about anything and everything, although I promise I won’t give a play by play of how I brush my teeth, but you might see pictures of my latest goggles
I’ve acquired for my steampunk Dickens costume, or get a hot and juicy quote from whatever manuscript I’m working on at the moment. I also love to hear comments, ideas and input from readers, so drop on in and say howdy or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Have fun and keep reading!