Q&A with Daire St. Denis, Sweet Seduction

What are five words that describe your writing process?

Erratic, Daydreamy, Morning (ish), Manic, Plantster (half plotter, half pantster) 
Which would you rather do: Never write another story or never read another book?

Oh man. This is such a hard question! I guess technically, if I write another book and then read what I’ve written, I’ve read another book too… There have been times when I’ve read one of my old files and honestly have no recollection of writing it so I have no idea what’s going to happen next. It’s like I’m reading someone else’s work.  I think that’s normal for writers. Or I’m losing my mind. Either way…I don’t think I answered this question.

How important are names to you in your books? Do you choose the names based on liking the way it sounds or the meaning?

Names are very important and I try to choose them carefully. Often it is the combination of sounds and meanings and I’ve been known to peruse baby naming websites and etymology websites to find names. Other times the names just come, almost like the character shouts it at me, “This is my name, so there!”

Are you spring, summer, fall, or winter?

Please share why. Summer, all the way! I love summer activities, love the long hours of daylight, I love the feel of sunshine on my skin (as long as it doesn’t burn). I love sitting out on patios and sipping wine, going for long walks. Ahhh. The weird thing is, I live in a cold climate. My five year plan is to spend part of the winter in a warmer climate. We’ll see how that pans out…but I’m learning Spanish, just in case!

Is there a certain type of scene that's harder for you to write than others? Love? Action? Racy?

I like writing all scenes, but I do have to be in the right mood for the scene. For example, racy love scenes are really hard to write when my house is full of kids, who are shouting and arguing and barging in at inopportune times, reading over my shoulder and asking me what certain words mean... If I’m struggling with a scene (for whatever reason) I usually try to get myself in the mood by listening to appropriate music, maybe having a glass of wine and chilling out, letting the scene unfold naturally. If it still doesn’t come, it might mean I’m forcing it and I need to go back and figure out what the characters would do, which may not be what I want them to do as the author. 

What was your favorite scene to write in Sweet Seduction? Why?

Oh, my favorite scene was the boxing scene between the hero and heroine. The heroine (Daisy) is really upset with the hero (Jamie) and makes an off-the-cuff remark about wanting to smack him. He takes her back to his private boxing club where he teaches her how to punch him properly. During the course of the ‘lesson’ Daisy’s anger morphs into another equally passionate emotion and, well, the two them get even hotter and sweatier…ahem. 

If you had your own talk show, who would your first three guests be?

If I had a talk show my first guest would be Jane Austen. I’m a big fan of Jane’s books and I’d love to sit and talk writing as well as find out what life was like for her as there is very little biographical information about her. My second guest would be Ellen Degeneres because I think she is smart, funny and incredibly savvy. She could fill me in on this whole talk show gig and then I’d prank her like she pranks so many of her guests! My third guest would be David Bowie. I love how he reinvented himself over and over again and then found privacy when he needed it. I think I could learn so much from all three of these individuals.

What did you find most useful in learning to write?  

What was least useful or most destructive? The most useful thing I found when I was learning to write was joining writing groups. I learned so much from my fellow writers: from information about the craft of writing to industry trends. Most importantly, writing groups held me accountable for my writing schedule particularly in the early days before I had any real publishing deadlines. The least useful thing I did was get some of my early work over-critiqued. Having a good, solid critique partner(s) is essential but in this instance, there was so much conflicting advice, it became debilitating and I ended up questioning everything I wrote instead of trusting myself and my process.

What are you working on now? What is your next project?

I’m working on the third book in my Seduction series, called A Christmas Seduction which features some of the characters from Sweet Seduction, and the sequel, Big Sky Seduction. As the title implies, it will be released December 2016 and I’m very excited about it!