Carol Ericson is my buddy from the GIAM writing community and one of my favorite authors. As a wildly popular Harlequin Intrigue author, Carol has thrilled her fans with books of suspense and hot romantic action – what a combo! She has also entered into the world of self-publishing with her sexy, romantic contemporary novels – The Body Politic, Kick it Up and Dead Air.
10. Writing sex scenes – agony or ecstasy?
I love writing sex scenes. 😉 I used to write erotic romance, and when I first started writing for Intrigue, I’m afraid I got a little carried away with the sex scenes. Intrigue sex scenes are fun to write because if the hero and heroine are about to have sex, having sex, or have already done the deed, you just know something bad is about to happen!
11. Briefs, boxers or commando?
Well, my man is a tighty-whitey guy all the way, so I’ll go with briefs, but it’s funny you should ask that question. In one of my recent books, before the heroine shoves her hands down the hero’s pants, she wonders boxers or briefs. When she gets there, she discovers…commando. My editor put a note in the margin asking why he’s commando because really he wasn’t in a hurry or anything. I responded just because it’s sexy! I don’t know yet if she left it in or not.
12. If you could go anywhere to research your next book – where would you go?
Ooh, I love to travel, but I’ve never been to Spain so maybe Espana. And although I’m not particularly fond of the World Cup champion Spanish National soccer team, I’d really like to personally meet their goalie, Iker Casillas for umm, research purposes.
13. What is the story behind your success? Your first call?
I used to enter lots of contests, like someone else I know. 😉 (Robin – who, me? *bats lashes innocently*) After a few wins, I started getting serious and would target the contests where one of the HQ Intrigue editors was a final judge. I finaled in one of those contests, the final judge placed me first and requested the full manuscript. I sent it in and eight months later, I received a four-page revision letter with an invitation to call the editor to discuss the changes. Of course, I took that opportunity. The editor and I hit it off immediately on the phone – she’s a fast-taking New York girl and I’m a fast-talking L.A. girl – and I got busy on the revisions. I sent off the revised manuscript a few weeks later. She called about a month later, told me she loved it, and was sending it on to the senior editor. About six weeks after that, I got “the call.” I was home on my lunch break on Jan. 4th, 2007 at about 1:00 PM PST – LOL. I was calm and coherent and even managed to go back to work. Then I spent all night emailing my family, friends, online communities and drinking a bottle of champagne left over from New Year’s. My first Intrigue, The Stranger and I came out 11 months later in Dec. 2007, and that editor has been my editor through 13 more books and I hope many more!
14. What is your favorite word? Your least favorite?
I love words, so there’s no way I could name a favorite, and I don’t have a least favorite word, although I tend to avoid the word “plop.” And just as an aside, for people who love words, I highly recommend Markus Zusak’s novel, The Book Thief, a beautifully written book.
15. What are your strengths as a writer? What areas are you still working on?
I write clean – probably from my years as an English major, English teacher, and technical writer. I’m one of those one-draft wonders. I think my pacing is good and I’m strong at writing dialogue. I’m always working on all areas of my writing, but I think the best way to work on your writing is to write. The more you write, the better writer you become.
16. What is your best advice for pre-published and newly published authors?
Finish a book and move onto the next book. Don’t spend years polishing the same book, especially once it has been rejected. Move onto the next best thing, and it will be better than your previous effort. Many times when you get rejected, the editor will ask you for something else. You’d better have something else to send her. In my case, after I sold my first book, my editor asked to see other completed projects. I sent her three completed books. Umm, she rejected all three of them, but she knew I could finish a book. So you need to keep writing. Although they can be invaluable, don’t get hung up with critique groups or partners, who would have you revise one scene over and over. Write. Finish. Repeat.
Carol is giving away a copy of Top Gun Guardian to a lucky commenter and if you want a chance to win another book and read the rest of the answers to my questions and another giveaway, hop on over to blog home of the Waterworld Mermaids. See you there!
Bio: Best selling series romance author Carol Ericson suffers from a lack of privacy. She always has a few characters floating in her head as well as snippets of dialogue and several “what if” scenarios. She periodically purges all these voices and images by writing stories of romantic suspense for Harlequin Intrigue and recently for self publication. When she’s not writing, Carol is busy reading other fabulous stories or running to her teenage sons’ soccer matches, water polo games and basketball games. Carol and her family live in Southern California near the beach, where Carol is now officially the shortest person in her household.