Archive for March, 2006

Good Sex and Love

March 9, 2006 | Writing

Erotic romance is one of the hottest, subgenres of romance writing right now. Good erotic romance can be found in westerns, contemporary, futuristic, and paranormal stories. Every major publisher is jumping ( yep, that’s a pun ), on the sex bandwagon. Just like chicklit, erotic sells. Ellora’s Cave, paved the way, demonstrating that female readers are looking for hot stories, hot men, and if the hero is a bodice ripper, he better know what to do after that garment comes off. Erotic romance is NOT PORN. Yes there is sex, sex scenes that make you want to spray ice cold water on your body, or have a hunk do it for you. Jan Springer is a excellent writer of erotic romance, and this month she is answering questions on my website about writing erotic romance. I’m going to post a few of her answers to questions, here. She is also an online instructor, and last year, taught an erotic writing class, that resulted in the online writers support group, called Brazen Hussies/Vixens. I’m one of these vixens, and our group is strong, with many of the members being published in the past year. We provide support, both writing and personal to one another. I’m glad I took the class. My critique partner, Sloane Taylor, took the class, found her niche, and is being published this spring! If you have questions for Jan, send them to YasminePhoenix@aol.com and she’ll answer them. Enjoy!

Question: When did you start writing?

I was a hobby writer since my teens, writing off and on. I seriously started writing romantic suspense in the late 1990’s following a car accident.

Question: You wrote Peppermint Creek and its sequel, As Big As The Sky, which were romantic suspense, how did you switch to erotic romance?

Being an avid reader of romance and many of it’s subgenres I found myself loving the romantic suspense genre and decided writing it. I thought I would write it forever but a trip to the Romance Writer’s of America’s New Jersey chapter changed my whole writing path when on a whim I took an erotica workshop. The teacher read hot sexy excerpts from erotica books and I was blown away! I had no idea these types of books were out there. (Boy was I ever innocent back then!) At that point though I was convinced I couldn’t write such graphic stuff…it looked too hard.

When I went home I started to read erotica. Soon after that I discovered Ellora’s Cave and erotic romances. Yummy to say the least! I picked up several of their ebooks and became immediately hooked to the genre. It wasn’t long before a little voice in the back of my head was saying “hmmm maybe I can write this hot stuff too?”

Question: Why do you write erotic romance?

For me it is the rush! Literally. Writing sex scenes allows me to incorporate my own fantasies in my writing which is lots of fun. Writing the romance part allows me to explore how I’d like my own real-life hero to be (when he comes along). I hope my enjoyment shines through in my writing allowing readers to enjoy the stories as well.

Question: Could you provide your definitions of romance, erotic romance, erotica, and pornography?

For me I think romance is the development of a caring relationship between a hero and heroine that blossoms into love. The sex is a byproduct. Not a big important part of the picture.

Erotic Romance is equal parts or a big part of the plot being a solid romance as well as an equal part being sex. And let’s not forget the purpose of an erotic romance is to arouse the reader as well as using those naughty words that your mom told you not use.

Erotica is mostly sex driven with the plot being secondary and less emphasis on a romance. Or the romance doesn’t exist.

Pornography – it’s just sex with some or no plot. LOL.

Anyways that how I see them.

More later.

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Sex, Love and Romance

March 8, 2006 | Writing

Jan Springer, an award winning erotic romance writer, will be answering questions on my website, www.YasminePhoenix.com/writing.html , this month. Stop by and take a peak. If you have any questions for Jan, just sent them to YasminePhoenix@aol.com
Next week, I’ll post some of her answers to questions on my blog.
Good Hunting and Writing!

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I Ache!

March 7, 2006 | Tennis

I ache. My knees hurt. My back hurts. My shoulders hurt. I ache all over. I played second singles Sunday, and lost. But, I played well, and my opponent was a very experienced player. The important issue is, I exercised. I was very saddened to read about the death of Dana Reeves. She was the widow of Christopher ‘Superman’ Reeves. Dana Reeves died of lung cancer. She was not a smoker. According to doctors, eighty five percent of lung cancer deaths come from smoking. The rest are attributed to second hand smoke. Doctors say one in five women diagnosed with lung cancer are not smokers.

Black women are highly susceptible to many of the major health diseases. Heart disease is the number one killer of black women. Black women are four times more likely to have heart disease than White women. Black men, also suffer from high cholesterol, and heart problems. Kirby Puckett, the Minnesota Twins all-star, died today from a massive stroke. He was 45 years old, African-American, about five feet eight, and over three hundred pounds! Apparently, a heart attack waiting to happen.

All women have to be be aware of their health. We put ourselves last, taking care of other family members first. Two years ago, I wasn’t feeling very well, and had my blood pressure taken at the health club. The physical trainer went pale. He said I should see my doctor – soon. I said I would. I went home, fixed dinner for our son, and then went to the urgent aid center. Then, I took a ride in an ambulance to the nearest hospital. Was I worried? Nope! About my extremely high blood pressure, and the possibility I might have a stroke? No! I was freaking out about the two hundred dollars in floor tile in the trunk of my car, sitting in the parking lot of the center. See, we have our priorities screwed up. I bet our kids don’t miss their dental or doctor appointments. Sloane, after my little hospital visit, gave me a pamphlet with the warning signs of a heart attack. It ain’t called the silent killer for nothing. We think we’ve got the flu. We think we’re run down. We think if we lay down for an hour, we’ll feel better. Most of the time, that could be the case. But don’t you think it’s better we find out for real what’s wrong with us?

Now, I equate every medical visit with Dustin Hoffman’s dentist experience in Marathon Man. I recently had my first colon test. If you want to see color photos of my colon, let me know. I was suppose to take the test two years ago, but found every excuse I could, including the one, I just didn’t want to. But, recently a friend of mine’s wife, died from colon cancer. She was in her mid-forties, and had eleven year old twins. Colon cancer ran in her family, but my understanding is, she didn’t get checked in time. She died on Christmas Day. Of course, my doctor proceeds to tell me about two more women, both black, in their mid-forties recently dying of colon cancer. My test came back clean. Pun intended. Both colon and lung cancers are silent, deadly, and hard to detect. The warning signs come very late. I hesitated, and the worse part of the test, was drinking the crummy phosphate liquid. Fasting all day, wasn’t a problem, but I really don’t want to see Garden Vegetable Broth any time soon. The test took fifteen minutes. The sedative was great, and I woke up long enough for the doctor to show me how he was removing one polyp. Cool! Couldn’t even feel the device up my butt. Not a bad day. Hubby even waited on me, and I ate Chinese food. So, it was all good. We rush, rush, rush, rush, and say we don’t have the time. YES WE DO! YES WE MUST!

As romance writers, we write about the happily ever after. As women, we need to make sure we have our own healthy, happily ever after, right now.


Is The Glass Empty, Half Full, or Almost Full?

March 2, 2006 | Writing



My last blog was about writing as a career. Was I bitching, or excited? Can’t really tell, probably both. My critique partner, Sloane Taylor, responded agreeing with my analysis, but also reminding me of my accomplishments in the past year. Somehow, they’d slipped my mind. Lots of things slip my mind these days. I have been growing my writing career. Sloane reminded me I had created a website, designed by Karen, attended my first RWA conference, submitted to agents, taken more online workshops, and read the illustrated version of Strunk and White. I also forgot, I’m coordinator for this year’s Chicago North’s Fire and Ice Contest, the chick lit category, joined the newsletter staff of FF&P, and also signed up to work on the By-Laws Committee for FF&P. Apparently, I am involved in my career, and making progress. I must make a copy of this blog for my yearly evaluation. Boy, won’t the boss be proud of me! But, I know my Boss is going to want the answer to the following question. When are you going to be published? According to Simone, the President of the Chicago North RWA Chapter, the answer to this questions is simple. A member told her, “We have blank number of rejections. When we’ve reached said blank number, we will be published.” Now of course, this also means that in order to reach said blank rejection number, we must submit. So, we must submit, not quit, is another way of looking at it. If we don’t submit, we won’t reach the rejection number. Still doesn’t answer the question posed by the Boss. I’m working toward having a suitable answer for her by my evaluation date. Meanwhile, I’m updating my spreadsheet with all my writing responsibilities. Looking at the spreadsheet, does make me smile. I see more and more activity on it. Again, thank goodness for Market Day. I think I’m going to add their link to my website.

Just like any other career, we must involve our selves in activities that promote our business. It helps keep us current with trends, make contacts and friends, and we learn. No business is staid, if so it will cease operations quickly.

Today’s career hint: I have a writing spreadsheet I use to chart my daily progress on my work in progress, and I have to add the other activities I’m involved in. It helps keep me focused. Some writers count words daily, I don’t. I chart according to what I worked on, where I left off, and what’s left to do. The other tool I use is a daily Dilbert 2006 desk calendar. It is ONLY FOR WRITING. No doctor or hair appointments, no tennis matches, nothing but writing. Writing or article deadlines are inked in, I use flair color pens, relatively cheap, and long lasting. As Sloane can tell you, I like nice things, I’m a gadget freak, and am colorful.

Have a great weekend, see ya March 7th.


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