Friday Spotlight: Wendi Darlin

More, more, more! By Wendi Darlin

This time I am talking about sex – in erotica and erotic romance. The market for explicit stories is huge, and the demand for hotter, hotter, hotter books always seems to be there.

Not everyone wants to jump into sex on page one and only come up for air every other chapter or so, but plenty of people do. There are readers who want a heavier plot, more developed characters and in general a lot more story with their sex. Books like that have a strong foothold in the market too.

I write both. I enjoy writing both. But I’ll be honest with you. The books that are all sex, all the time, are exhausting to write! I’m not kidding. It’s like being in the middle of a marathon love-making session. Sure you love it. You don’t want to kick anybody out of bed. But could somebody bring in a glass of water or a cool towel every hour or so just to make sure you don’t dehydrate and get left for dead.

I’m kidding. Sort of. I can’t speak for every writer, but I know I don’t write nearly as fast as I read. And I don’t write every scene straight through without going back to change things or rethink the direction I’m heading. Now imagine, if as a reader you are reading a sex scene that goes on long enough that you need a break. Lord, what that writer must have gone through! She was probably there in bed (or in the barn) with those characters at least three times as long as you were. It’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it.

If you like more, more, more, next time you’re reading a book you love, think of that poor writer and maybe send her a glass of water. Trust me, she needs it.

Thursday Spotlight: Wendi Darlin

Darlin, Party of Three? By Wendi Darlin

I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m a prude. Yes, I write erotic romance. I even toss in some mild kink every once in a while. I write m/f/m menage and a little m/m on occasion. But I can’t wrap my head around more than three moving bodies at once.

LOTS of readers buy multiple partner and menage stories. I swear these books sell by the truckloads. And for some fans, three is not enough. Lots of wonderful writers write stories that involve mind boggling numbers of lovers. But I don’t think I could.

I was looking at one such book not too long ago and if I remember correctly, the ratio was 1:6. That’s one female to six men. In erotica shorthand, we’re talking, f/m/m/m/m/m/m.

Ok, excuse my bluntness here, but that’s a lot of cock. I couldn’t help but think, do they stick ’em in her ears?

NO. They don’t! But you get the idea. It’s a little overwhelming for me as a writer to even think about the logistics and coordination a single scene like that would require. Trying to imagine an entire book makes my head spin.

I’m not judging or putting down this combination at all. I respect all the subgenres of erotica, that don’t cross legal or depraved lines. It’s fantasy, not reality. The characters are in a safe sexual environment and they want to be there. So I’m fine with it.

I’ve just never read a menage that involved that many people, but I’m sure at some point I might. Curiosity will demand it. But for now I’ll limit my bed parties to three.

“Darlin, party of three, your table’s ready. Next scene we’ll seat you in the bedroom.” See how easy that is? I like easy.

Wednesday Spotlight: Wendi Darlin

Brown Bagging It by Wendi Darlin

I love my e-reader and I love ebooks, so don’t take what I’m about to say the wrong way. I’m not discounting the green factor and all the trees we save. I’m not denying the convenience of carrying loads of books with you wherever you go. I’m not about to deny the cost factor in this challenging economy.

But come on, is it just me, or do you always wonder if the people you see out in public with their e-readers might be hiding something? That maybe they’re reading stuff as hot as you are?

It’s like the paper sacks that some people leave over their beer in public. The brown long neck is still sticking out the top. We can still smell it on your breath! We know you’ve got the good stuff and not a cola in there.

So what about that lady sitting there across from you at the DMV, waiting to renew her driver’s license? Why is she crossing and re-crossing her legs so much? Didn’t she just scoot around in her chair a minute ago? Are these seats really that uncomfortable?

Maybe they are.

Or maybe she’s reading something that would give the poor old man next to her a boner for the first time in years if he got a gander at the cover.

We won’t ever know, will we? But the good thing is– no one knows what we’re reading either. Long live e-readers that allow us to take our books out in public without offending anyone or having to defend ourselves and our taste in reading material.

And as an added bonus you can’t smell it on our breath.

Tuesday Spotlight: Wendi Darlin

A Part of Me by Wendi Darlin

Years ago, after I had begun writing seriously, but before I became published I remembered something I’d seen on TV and hadn’t been able to shake. It was probably meant to be a joke, but it rang true, and I never forgot it.

People coming out of a movie theatre were being asked what they thought of the latest blockbuster they had just seen. I can’t recall which movie it was, but this one beaming young lady said, “I laughed. I cried. It became a part of me.”

I think at one point the comedians on Saturday Night Live may have even made a spoof of that. Funny or not. It has served as my recipe for writing the kind of stories I want to write, in my longer novel-length work especially.

I aspire to have the reader think the same thing about my book. I want it to make you laugh, make you cry, and ultimately become a part of you. That’s what wonderful books have always done for me, and that’s what I, as a writer, want to give to the readers who pick up my books.

My stories make me laugh and cry too, and in essence, I’m giving you a little part of me. I fall in love right along with my characters, every time, and I hope that comes through for you. There’s nothing more personal than what writers and readers share. We open up to one another on an emotional level, and we trust those emotions are universal. The fiction writers create is spun around little truths we’ve learned, and we can’t ever write without laying at least a tiny part of our soul on the line.

So if my stories ever make you laugh and cry and in some small way etch out a tiny little place in your heart, my job is done. And I thank you for giving me the opportunity to share this experience with you.

Monday Spotlight: Wendi Darlin

An Undeniable Urge by Wendi Darlin

For as long as I can remember the strongest urge I’ve ever known came over me when I closed a really good book. I’ll bet as an erotic writer, you thought I was going somewhere else with that.

I began reading early. Very early. You probably wouldn’t believe me if I told you how old I was when my mother discovered I could read. So for as far back as I can remember I have gotten lost in books. When I was in elementary school, I remember closing a book that had touched me and feeling this incredible heaviness in my chest. It was the strongest desire I’d ever known, a need that I could almost taste, but couldn’t fully comprehend.

I needed to write a story like the one I had just read. I needed to create something that could move myself and other people that way. So now you might expect me to say, I curled up with a crayon and some notebook paper and scrawled out my first novel.

I wish it happened that easily. I knew I couldn’t write a book like I wanted to write. I understood even then that I didn’t have the experience. I didn’t understand my emotions enough. I hadn’t lived enough. I hadn’t loved in that earth-shattering way yet.

Years passed, and I came upon that feeling time and time again with every good book I read. And I read a lot. Eventually, as a young adult, I tried my hand at piecing together a novel. It was awful. Truly awful. And I had unintentionally plagiarized some of my favorite authors. I hadn’t found my own voice yet, and I didn’t have the confidence to create a story that was uniquely mine. Thankfully, no one ever read that piece of literary poo but me.

Life went on. I lived. I loved. I cried. And I got some of that experience I had been lacking. And then one day the urge to write struck again. Only this time, it wouldn’t be ignored. So what did I do? I wrote another truly awful book, of course! But this time it was mine. It came from me, not from others I had read.

I did what I could to learn the craft of writing. I got to know other authors and learned the industry. I spent a few years getting my skin thickened by too many rejections to count. And then I wrote another book. This time when I came to the end, I knew I had done it. I had created what I always wanted to create. And though I’ve been published many times over now under a few different names, that book is still my favorite. It’s The Water Bearer, written as Wendi Christner, and I’m proud to say it’s mine.