Sunday, August 10, 2014

ALEXANDRA CHRISTIAN: Five Things I Learned Writing GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES

 
 
 
 
 
Fangirl favorite Alexander Kingston has a “type”—blonde, willowy and sophisticated. He doesn’t give mousey wardrobe mistress Elizabeth a second look, until she transforms herself and sets out to seduce him.
 
But dark desires are at play. Before long their erotic encounter will turn into a date to die for.
 
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1. WRITING ISN’T ALWAYS A CHOICE.
Writing “Gentlemen Prefer Blondes” was a complete and utter accident.  I had no intention of writing it.  In fact, I was pissed off when the idea came to me.  I was right in the middle of writing another novel that I was really excited about (which, incidentally, was also an accident) and just couldn’t be bothered with a creepy little erotica piece.  I was having a conversation with a friend about Tumblr and how “fangirl culture” was a scary place that I wanted no part of.  She sent me a link to this massive Twitter war between two fangirls over some celebrity.  The details aren’t important, but as I was reading this ridiculous internet fodder, I got to thinking about how both of the girls involved felt that they knew this person.  That their appreciation of his portrayal of characters made them feel as if they had a stake in his life.  The more I thought about it, the more creeped out I was.  The idea that in our media saturated culture, everyone is either our best friend or our worst enemy.  We have so much access that we begin to feel connected and trusting of people we’ve never met.  That thought disturbed me so much that I was compelled to write this cautionary tale—whether I wanted to or not.
 
2. OBSERVING THOSE AROUND YOU IS A POWERFUL WEAPON IN THE WRITER’S ARSENAL.
I come from a long line of “people watchers.”  My father can sit in a shopping mall food court for HOURS watching the people that walk by.  He makes little deductions and tells little stories about them.  It’s remarkable.  Over the years, I realize that I’ve started to do the same thing.  I have created so many characters and been inspired to write so many stories just by watching the people at the coffeeshop where I like to write.  It also helps to create realistic reactions to various situations.  I’m constantly cataloguing incidents and people to use for stories. 
 
3. APPARENTLY I’M AFRAID OF LOSING MY MARBLES.
I have written a few horror tales in my time and looking back over them—mostly they feature women that have a psychotic break over some guy.  They say you write what you know and that the best horror writers write about what scares them.  Sudden and uncontrollable madness is definitely something I find completely horrific.  The thought that a perfectly normal human being could wake up one day and mow down their office with an AK-47 scares the shit out of me.  But I assure you—my love life is very healthy and I don’t think I’ll be stalking any celebrities anytime soon.  Well… maybe just that one…
 
4.THE REAL MONSTERS ARE US.
I write paranormal romance for the most part.  A genre that is utterly saturated with girls falling in love with a monster (i.e. vampires, werewolves, zombies, dragons).  What I’ve learned writing this story and others is that supernatural stuff isn’t particularly frightening.  It’s the guy sitting next to you on the bus. Or the guy washing the produce at the supermarket.  Or the guy you’re talking to on Facebook.  Those are the ones you have to watch out for.  Those are the real monsters.
 
5.YOU DON’T ALWAYS HAVE TO TAKE SOMEONE’S ADVICE ABOUT YOUR STORY.
I don’t generally use beta readers.  It isn’t that I don’t like using beta readers or that I’m super-secretive about what I’m working on.  I always take opinions way too much to heart.  I agonize over details and wondering, “What if they’re right?” instead of following my instinct.  But with this story, I did let someone beta and they gave me some really good ideas.  Many of which I used, but one that I agonized over for quite a while.  Now, I’m not going to tell you the suggestion, because I’d spoil the book to do so, but needless to say—I loved the beta’s idea.  But not for this book.  I considered it for a long time going back and forth, but in the end I remembered that this was MY book and I had to do what I felt was right.  Following your instincts and writing the story that only you can tell is probably the most important lesson a blossoming writer has to learn.  And ultimately, it’s what separates the real writers from the ones who think anyone can do this.
 
 
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About the Author:
 
Alexandra Christian is an author of mostly paranormal erotic romance and horror.  In case you don't know what that means, she writes about not-so-nice girls getting it on with out- of- this- world heroes.  Vampires, werewolves, dragons, angels and demons-- and that's just recently! 
A self-proclaimed “Southern Belle from Hell,” Lexxx is a native South Carolinian who lives with an epileptic wiener dog and a pet ghost hunter.  She has published several novels, novellas and short stories with Ellora’s Cave, Purple Sword Publications, Mocha Memoirs Press and most recently, Seventh Star Press.  She looks forward to sharing her twisted view of reality with the masses through erotic paranormal romance and horror.  Lexxx’s long-term aspirations are to one day be a bestselling authoress and part-time pinup girl. 
 
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