Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Talking Books with Sarah Leyton, author of 'Defending Nora'

Sarah was small town girl who got a hell of an education about life and the world when she moved to the city. She writes about strong, independent women who love giving their hearts and bodies to alpha males who are more than up for the challenge. These are the stores written to embellish the lives we lead.

She might be a grown up who writes some very spicy love stories, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t still love hello kitty, high heels, art and travel. However, her first love will always be to that majestic, powerful force of nature called coffee.

Her latest book is the romance erotica, Defending Nora.

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About the Book:

With nothing more exciting in her life than her bangs catching on fire while trying to flambé, Nora Connolly’s life was terrifically uneventful. Well, uneventful until her house got raided and she found out her boyfriend was actually a CIA agent turned traitor. When he escapes custody and begins stalking her she is forced to turn to the only man she knows can protect her, the man she’s been swooning over since high school.

When Nora shows up on his doorstep looking for protection, Jack Coleman tries to turn her way. Staying sane with Nora’s sexy ass was already hard enough, but she needs a safe house and keeping his hands to himself while trying to keep her protected would be more than even his rock hard control could handle.

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Thanks for this interview, Sarah.  Can we begin by having you tell us about yourself from a writer’s standpoint?

Hi! So, me as a writer. Well, I feel like I’ve been writing forever. I even majored in English in college, but I got a D in my grammar class so be gentle with your judgment of my prolific adverbs and improper comma use. I write sexy contemporary romance stories, and I love writing funny, strong willed women who enjoy giving their passion over to men who love them for who they are.

When not writing, what do you like to do for relaxation?

I am a firm supporter of coffee shops. The best part of my day is grabbing my iPad, aka my bookshelf, and sitting down in a chill coffee shop with enough espresso to get a college coed through finals. It might not sound that relaxing but I have this superhuman tolerance to caffeine. Other than coffee shops, I like to shop and spend time with people I love.

Do you have a day job? Or a night one?

By day I am the marketing manager for a local company and I write a lot of very dry literature for the healthcare industry. Not too exciting but most days I do actually love it. It also allows me to travel the world, which is an incredible bonus.

Would you say it’s been a rocky road for you in regards to getting your book written and published or pretty much smooth sailing?  Can you tell us about your journey?

Writing is always rocky for me, but the publishing part has actually been surprisingly smooth. My first book, Sharing Annabelle, was something that I worked on for about two years just for fun. Once a few friends found out about it they bet, browbeat and cajoled me into finishing it then sending it to some publishers. I really didn’t have any expectation that it would actually get picked up, but Siren-Bookstrand contacted me about a month later and the deal was done. I got some great feedback after it came out and some readers wrote to me asking for Jack’s story, thus Defending Nora was born. I will say though, that book two was a much more strenuous writing journey. The writer’s block was hard-core on that one and in the end I just had to lock myself in a room and not come out until I had a manuscript.

What is it about the contemporary romance/erotica genre that appeals more than any other genre you would choose to write?

Honestly, it’s the reality/reality escape of it. I love contemporary because the characters seem like real people that you know or could know. Their love story seems plausible and their obstacles are never too much to handle. Real life is a hard thing and having an escape that seems like real life, real love going the right way just makes me happy. As for the erotica, what can I say? I like things spicy. ;)

If you had to summarize your book in one sentence, what would that be?

It’s not too late to find love with the one you thought you’d never deserve.

What makes your book stand out from the rest?

Hands down it’s the characters. These people are quirky, funny, emotional and sometimes impetuous, but they’re also relatable. Who wants to read about someone they can’t connect with?

Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?

I suppose I get them from the same place as other writers. I have a pretty vivid imagination, I have some pretty good inspirations in my friends and family members when it comes to mannerisms and I pay close attention to the world around me.

Do you have any suggestions to help me become a better writer? If so, what are they?

Read your stuff out loud, especially dialogue. You’d be amazed at what you come across by hearing the words out loud. You can catch little things that way, things you skip over when reading things through in your head. If something sounds weird when you say it out loud then it sounds weird in your reader’s head. A badass contemporary hero is not going to wax poetic like a Regency Duke. Also, have someone else read your stuff out loud to you. By hearing the way someone else interprets your words and style you can make adaptations or changes you might never have considered otherwise.

What’s next for you?

I am very excited to say that big things are in motion for book three in my Chicago Sin series, the sequel to Sharing Annabelle and Defending Nora. Keep an eye on my Twitter, @LeytonSarah, for details to be announced soon!

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