Today, I’m happy to welcome Roni Loren to Bookish Temptations. She’s written a guest post that I think you’ll really enjoy, and then there’s a snippet from Not Until You Dare. This will be an e-serial, releasing in 8 parts.
Genre Blending – Gray is the New Black
By Roni Loren
When I first got published back in the ancient days—you know, last year—what specific genre your book fit into was a BIG deal. You didn’t want to be mixing all kinds of elements together because no one would know where to put your book in the bookstore. You had to be easily defined. And in some ways, that’s still the case because we do still have bookstores (thank goodness) with shelves. And most authors would still categorize their books in one dominant genre. For instance, I would call my books erotic romance first and foremost, and they are shelved in romance at your local Barnes and Nobles.
However, now that ebooks are so prevalent, and there are no “shelves” online per se, there is a lot more leeway for writers. This is why the New Adult genre finally found a foothold. Authors can experiment and blend things they like from different types of books and create whole new things. How awesome is that?
And that’s what I decided to do a little bit of in my latest release, NOT UNTIL YOU, which is an 8-part e-serial. At the heart of the book, it’s a BDSM erotic romance story. That’s what I write and that’s what my series is. However, this time, I decided I wanted a college-aged heroine who was facing the monumental task of separating from her overprotective family and stepping out on her own two feet. I also wrote her in first person, which I’ve never done in any other book, and that gave a younger tone to the story. So even though it’s an erotic romance, it has some themes and elements that are very New Adult. And it was so much fun to write something a little different that pulled from another of my favorite genres.
So how do you feel about authors blending genres? Do you prefer to have a book be one thing or are you excited when it’s mixed up a bit?
And here’s a little snippet of Part 1 of the serial, NOT UNTIL YOU DARE:
As soon as I’d cleared the entrance and turned toward the stairs, male voices sounded behind me. Of course someone would show up right after I didn’t need help anymore. I peeked back to see who it was, Andre’s danger warnings still echoing in my head, but found something more distracting than criminals—my neighbors, Foster and Pike.
Foster stepped through the main door first and glanced my way. As usual, everything went melty inside me, his smile like a zap of heat to my system. Ridiculous. “Need some help, neighbor?”
I straightened, but forgot about my phone in the process. My brand new I-Phone went sliding off my shoulder.
“Crap!” I lurched forward, trying to save it from its imminent demise, and accidentally dropped my plastic bag of Chinese takeout on the way.
“Whoa, there.” Pike, Foster’s roommate, was at my side in a second. His hand caught my elbow, saving me from losing the ginormous bottle of liquor along with my balance. But my phone clattered to the ground, the harsh sound mixing with the splat of my noodles hitting tile.
I winced, anticipating a broken screen. “Dammit.”
Foster bent down, his tie brushing the ground as he swept my phone off the floor. He peered at the screen, dark brows lowering over pale eyes, then he turned the phone toward me—the happy puppy screensaver staring back at me in tact. “All is well. Luckily, these things are built to take a licking.”
My brain got snagged on the work lick, and the back of my neck went hot. My lips parted, but words failed me. Great, imitate a gaping goldfish–that’s cute.
Pike cleared his throat, easing the tequila from my arms, and then crouched down near the open bag at my feet. He grabbed a noodle from the spilled box of Chinese food, tipped his head back and dropped it into his mouth, his eyes watching mine. “The lo mein’s a loss, though.”
I swallowed hard, his gaze even more bad boy than the tattoos peeking out from his open collar. His pierced tongue snaked around the noodle. Look away. I forced my face upward, but then ended up focusing on Foster again. Say something. God, I was standing there like an idiot. This was why I always avoided these two like they were contagious. They made me go stupid.
Foster held out my phone, and I managed to take it, the slight brush of his fingers against mine hitting the reset button in my brain. I managed a feeble, “Thank you.”
Foster glanced at the mess on the floor. “I’m really sorry I said anything. I didn’t mean to distract you from your intricate juggling act.”
I shook my head. “No, it’s my fault. I shouldn’t have been trying to carry everything at once. It’s been a long day, and I was hoping to save myself a second trip up the stairs.”
“The joys of a walk-up.” Pike grabbed a few napkins and started cleaning up the noodles at my feet like it was his mess to worry about.
“Oh, you don’t have to do that.” I lowered down to my knees. “I’ll take care of it.”
He grinned over at me, the mirror opposite of his roommate. Ian Foster was all suits and dark looks—a man who preferred to be called by his surname. Whereas, Pike didn’t seem to even have a last name. He was a drummer in some popular local band—jeans, a sex-on-the-mind-smile, and spiked, bleached hair his usual uniform. Not that I had studied either of them. Or listened to their escapades through the wall I shared with them. Not at all.
Keep telling yourself that, Cela.
Despite my protest, Pike helped me finish picking up the mess. “So what’s the big ass bottle of tequila for? No one could’ve had that bad of a day.”
I glanced over at the bottle I’d set on the floor, debating whether I could be trusted to have normal conversation with these two without sounding like I had a speech impediment. “I, uh, graduated today. It was a gift.”
“Oh, right on.”
“Congratulations, Cela,” Foster said, dragging my attention upward. Just the sound of him saying my name in that smooth, dark voice had my stomach clenching. He was all southern refinement, but I didn’t miss the glimmer of a drawl underneath it all.
Ay dios mio. My body clamored to attention like an eager Labrador ready to be petted. Down, girl. These guys were way above my pay grade. I wasn’t dumb or delusional. I’d seen/spied on/secretly hated the women who’d passed through their apartment door—women who looked like they’d earned their doctorates in the art of seduction.
I hadn’t even reached the kindergarten level in that particular department.
NOT UNTIL YOU DARE
Not Until You: Part I
From the author of the Loving on the Edge novels comes a story of a good girl who discovers that once you dare to cross some lines, it’s hard to turn back…
On the night of her graduation, innocent veterinary student Cela decides to play a game of Never Have I Ever with the two hot neighbors she’s been quietly crushing on for the last year. Always the prim and proper student, Cela thinks she’s earned a wild night before she has to move back home under the watchful gaze of her family. But what starts out as a simple game is about to take a very sensual turn…
Ian Foster is tired of playing games. With his membership to The Ranch, an exclusive BDSM resort, and a musician roommate who brings home groupies with a taste for ménage, Foster has a life most guys would kill for. But lately, his need for dominance is no longer satisfied via one-night stands. He craves the full surrender a woman—a submissive of his own.
But when his quiet, sweet-as-sugar neighbor shows up at their door with a bottle of tequila and an invitation, Foster decides he and Pike may have time for one more fling…
About the Author:
Roni Loren wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. Though she’ll forever be a New Orleans girl at heart, she now lives in Dallas with her husband and son.
If she’s not working on her latest sexy story, you can find her reading, watching reality television, or indulging in her unhealthy addiction to rockstars, er, rock concerts. Yeah, that’s it. She is the National Bestselling Author of The Loving on the Edge series from Berkley Heat. For more information visit Roni’s website at www.roniloren.com and follow her on Twitter @RoniLoren.
And don’t forget to check out Penguin’s NOT UNTIL YOU page!