Author Interview & Giveaway
Please give a warm welcome to one of my favorite authors Bianca Sommerland! Thank you so much for being my very first blog interview!
We are celebrating the amazing 4th installment of The Dartmouth Cobras series OFFSIDE.
I was extremely lucky enough to receive an ARC of OFFSIDE and you can read A review here:
Ø I’m going to start off with a hard one. JWhat was the hardest part of writing OFFSIDE?
Ouch, you didn’t wait long to drop the gloves!:P
Honestly, even though I knew what had happenedto Scott, and had some experience with the situation due to someone close tome, I think it was the research that was the hardest. Abuse is horrible in anyway shape or form, but that type of abuse is so minimized with boys even now.Many won’t speak up because they think, as ‘men’ they should either have beenable to control the situation, or it’s something they should want. It made mesad to see how difficult it has been for some young men to come forward, to seethe ridicule they face from their peers. Men are often seen as the perpetratorsof sexual crimes against children, but women are just as capable of trulyhorrible acts.
Ø I know you are a VERY BIG Hockey fan, so how didyou come up with the name Dartmouth Cobras, and what inspired you to start thisseries?
Much easier question to answer! I thought it would be cool to have a team inthe Maritimes, but I knew a team there would likely struggle and it would takea family with money and a love of the game—maybe even a bit of an obsession with the game—to pull it off.I searched for different cities where an arena could potentially be built.Technically, Halifax would probablybe a better choice, but Dartmouthis close enough to be feasible. And the Dartmouth Cobras just sounded reallygood. I had lots of fun designing the logo and mentally building the DelgadoForum. 🙂
Ø The covers for the entire series are beautiful!Who designed them?
Reese Dante! I searched long and hard for acover artist who could do the series justice and she’s just incredible. I loveworking with her. I would recommend her to anyone who wants to catch the eye ofreaders with a cover that really stands out and gives an amazing visual of theheart of your story. http://reesedante.com/
Ø I know everyone is so excited to read more aboutRebecca, Zach, and Scott, I know I am (especially) Scott *winks* Did you haveany inspirations for these specific characters and what did you want to makesure everyone got out of the 4th Dartmouth Cobras story?
My characters tend to sit around my head,chatting with my muse, waiting for their turn until they start gettingimpatient and speaking up a little louder. Becky and Scott’s relationshipintrigued me from the beginning, and then Scott and Zach just . . . wow. Mymuse laid it all out for me, I was just the hands tapping the keyboard! 😉
What do I want people to get from it? Well,I’m, hoping they will love these flawed, wonderful characters as much as I do!
Ø If you had to do it all over again, would youchange anything about this book, or any books before it?
Absolutely not. I follow the characters livesjust like everyone else and I’ve enjoyed the ride!
Ø What were the challenges in bringing thesecharacters to life?
Hmm, well, some of the kinks are challengingto explore. Like in Breakaway, how Jami enjoys humiliation, or in Offside, withBecky’s service submission. YKISMK (Your kink is not my kink) but I have astrong belief that if you’re going to write about something, you have to have arespect and understanding for it, even if certain acts wouldn’t be enjoyable toyou.
Ø How have you celebrated April fool’s Day in thepast?
I don’t celebrate it. Honestly, I’ve seen somany mean pranks in the past that it’s just not something I want to be part of.
Ø What is your favorite Hockey memory? Do you havea favorite team?
Total Habs fan here. My favorite memories areof watching hockey with my grandfather when I was little. He made SURE I reallyunderstood the game and it was our special time together. He used to smile atme when I got mad at refs about stupid calls and I was actually right about itbeing a bad call. He inspired my deep love and appreciation for the game.
Ø What is your cure for writer’s block?
Pencil and paper. Whenever I get stuck, I stepaway from the computer and do things the old fashion way, either straight outwriting the scene or jotting down notes of what I see happening. I don’t reallyoutline because I like giving my characters free rein, but sometimes I have togive them a different way to communicate with me.
Ø What books or authors have influenced yourwriting?
Definitely Cherise Sinclair, but that’s morerecent. Growing up it was Johanna Lindsey, Kathleen E. Woodiwiss, OctaviaButler, Stephan King, and Anne Rice. Too many others to name. I’ve always beena big reader.
Ø Do you have any idea how many books you want forthis series?
No, but I do have plans for up to book nine.After that, we shall see! I’ve got a whole roster to work with! 😉
Thanks so much for the interview, Shayna! Greatquestions!
I LOVED being a part of your BLOG TOUR and I LOVED Offside! Please, if you haven’t read this yet, you are missing out!
Tell youabout me? Hmm, well there’s not much to say. I love hockey and cars and mykids…not in that order of course! Lol! When I’m not writing—which isn’toften—I’m usually watching a game or a car show while working on promo. Goingout with my kids is my only down time. I get to clear my head and forgeteverything.
As for when and why I first started writing, I guess I thought I’d get extracookies if I was quiet for awhile—that’s how young I was. I used to bring mygrandmother barely legible pages filled with tales of evil unicorns. She toldme then that I would be a famous author.
I hope one day to prove her right.
To findout more about me, swing by my website:
“Across the room, Becky trailed Richter as he checked in with each of the DMs, both Dommes. Richter overlooked a piercing scene, then moved to a sitting area, motioning for Becky to kneel as he gestured toward the bar for a drink. He idly stroked Becky’s hair, reclining on a leather sofa, speaking softly to her as she relaxed at his feet, resting her head against his thigh. Just being in that position seemed to bring her to a peaceful state.
But Zach knew he could give her more.
“Your pet is lovely, Sir.” Zach clasped his hands at the small of his back, resisting the urge to touch the woman he knew was under Richter’s protection for the night. “May I speak to her?”
“You may.” Richter rubbed his hands on his leather pants, his tone light, but hesitant. “But first, I have to admit I’m a little confused. You’ve made your preferences clear.”
“I’m not sure I have.” Zach forced his tone to remain neutral. “I appreciate a precious gift, and it doesn’t much matter who gives it.”
Lifting her head, soft brown hair drifting over her shoulders, Becky looked up at him, lips parting slightly, blinking as though she couldn’t quite believe the word “precious” could possibly be aimed at her. She drew in a soft inhale as he regarded her steadily to make it clear this was exactly how he saw her. Precious and beautiful. He caught uncertainty in her gaze. Something vulnerable.
You didn’t come of your own accord, did you, little doe? He tightened his grip on his wrist behind his back. He needed to touch her, more than he’d ever needed to touch anyone. Her eyes were a soft grey, like the fur of the kitten his sister had as a child. But something about her eyes reminded him more of a doe, something he hadn’t noticed when they’d first met. Out in the world, she came across bold. Fearless—except when it came to her daughter. Here she was timid, exploring the darkness with wide eyes, ready to dart away at any careless approach. The part of her that would brave out a scene just to satisfy her baser urges would shield the tender side which would run for cover.
But he didn’t want her to hide. Not from him.
“There are many Doms here you could play with, Becky. And then there’s me. I’ve thought about you a lot today, hoping you weren’t alone, dwelling on things you can’t change. Seeing you here . . . I think I can help you.” He glanced at Richter, waited for his nod, then held out his hand. “And I promise you won’t regret it.”
Her throat worked as she swallowed. She lifted her hand, lowered it, nibbling at her bottom lip. “What do you want from me?”
“Only what you’re willing to give. We’ll start slow.”
“This is just for tonight. I’m not sure if I can come back.” Her brow furrowed. “I’m not sure I should be here now.”
“But you are here. And we’ll see if you’ll be happy with ‘just tonight.’ Because I already know I won’t be.” His breath caught as she laid her wrist in his palm. His skin tingled under the warmth of her smooth, delicate flesh. He pulled her to her feet and brought his other hand up to cup her cheek. Then he smiled. “I haven’t scared you away?”
“No. Damn you, you said exactly what I needed to hear.” She looked down at her bare feet. “I didn’t want to come.”
She hadn’t seemed all that resistant when she’d arrived. He stroked her cheek with his thumb. “Why not?”
“Because, if I’d wanted something meaningless, I could have made one phone call and had it.” She glanced up at him quickly, then away. “But I don’t want that.”
He knew she was thinking about Scott. Which made it even more important that he keep the man out of his head. So he teased the hair at the nape of her neck with his fingertips and chuckled. “I take it you wouldn’t object to talking, before and after? And perhaps a date, even though it could be considered a little backward?”
“I don’t mind doing things backward.” She grinned. “My mom still wants you to come over.”
“And I plan to take her up on the invite.”
“Good.” She nibbled her bottom lip. “But tonight . . . ?”
“Tonight I’d like to explore your needs.” He already had something in mind. Something that would leave her fulfilled, yet wanting more. “Make you happy you came.”
She turned her head and pressed a light kiss on his palm. “I already am.”
“Good.” He leaned close, brushing his lips over hers. “Then I guess it can only get better.”
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