The JR Bunnies are excited to welcome Author Bonnie Dee!
In June I re-released a book previously published as Loving Peter. The new title is Peter and Wendell.
Here’s the blurb:
A historical romance with a wink and a nod toward Peter Pan.
Peter Woods is content to live a gadfly life, darting from one experience to the next with no thought of responsibility, commitment or the future. He has no desire to grow up.
Stable, sober banker Wendell Rhodes has only recently discovered an underground London club where men meet and briefly mingle. At Ever Lads, Wendell encounters Peter and flint strikes tinder. The two opposites discover in the other what each lacks, but the journey from lust to love isn’t easy.
Determined to make a man of his son at last, Peter’s father attempts to curtail his hedonistic lifestyle. When Wendell’s reputation is threatened, will Peter sacrifice his freedom to protect the man he’s grown to care deeply for, or is there another way for crafty Peter to save the day?
Tell us a little about *** (above work), what inspired you to write ****(above work)?
Peter Pan was my first love. When I was really small I adored Disney’s Pan, that carefree selfish boy who refused to grow up and who flew! I wanted to marry him when I grew up and I wanted to be him too. If you’ve never read JM Barrie’s original work, Peter and Wendy, I highly recommend checking out this charming piece of literature. It’s certainly not just for children.
I wanted to do something similar to Jungle Heat, my Tarzan reimagining, which was to take a familiar and beloved tale and twist it just a bit. I really loved using quotes from Peter and Wendy at the beginning of each chapter to illustrate what that chapter is about.
When you start writing, do you already have the story plotted out or do you let the characters dictate what will happen?
I have a general idea of the shape of it and what the protagonist needs to learn in order to grow, but often I’m not certain what the Big Climax needs to be to push them that last step over the learning curve. Usually something occurs to me as the story develops and if not, I whine to my collaborator, Summer Devon, who will brainstorm ideas with me.
What inspired you to write in your genre? Is this the genre you started writing in or have you morphed to this one?
I write in so many romance genres it’s made my career a bit difficult. At the beginning of my writing career, I didn’t really “get” author branding and that readers want to know what to expect from you. I wrote whatever interested me from historical to contemporary, paranormal to sci fi, heterosexual and gay. I made things tougher for myself by doing this, but I can’t regret it because I’ve enjoyed the exploration of all of these genres. Last thing I want is to get bored and repetitious in my writing.
To answer the rest of the question, I wrote the love stories and only later realized I had a knack for gay romance as well.
Who was the toughest character for you to “get right” that you have written so far?
I’ve written so many books now I can’t even recall all my characters. In general, I’d have to say that the quieter ones, the protagonist who’s like the straight man to a livelier hero, are harder to bring to life. Everybody loves that bright, hard, magnetic, sharp, bombastic individual, but the quiet, calm and stable one can be just as interesting.
Do you draw inspiration for your characters from real life? Any fun stories you could share?
Not at all. I don’t even think about real people I know. If I base characters on anything, it may sometimes be a character I’ve enjoyed in a movie or show. I guess that reflects on my humble beginnings as a fanfiction writer.
What do you find the hardest part of writing?
The late-middle through the climax. Starting is a breeze and I can steam along very quickly for a number of chapters, but then I have to create that Dark Moment in which the character has to overcome a situation to push him/herself to a new level of growth. In suspense or action, this might be a physical thing like sacrificing self for a greater good. In contemporary romance, it’s usually overcoming a character flaw in a more subtle way—without fighting a villain to achieve it. Deciding whether my dark moment is dark enough and the climax is big enough, is very had for me. I prefer low-key, but low-key isn’t always sufficiently exciting.
Do you have a guilty pleasure?
Sugar, Glee, Chips, Way too much TV.
What TV Show/s are you addicted to?
I could fill a page with answers to that question. A lot of Showtime and HBO shows from Game of Thrones to Masters of Sex. Testosterone-fueled shows like Justified or Sons of Anarchy. But also the family drama of Parenthood or Switched at Birth. My DVD sets include Buffy, Veronica Mars, Gilmore Girls, Freaks and Geeks, and so many more. Is it any wonder I write in numerous romance sub-genres?
Do you have a hobby that you like to try and squeeze in?
Is walking a hobby? I walk every day with my two Yorkies. My evening hobby, while the TV is on, is jigsaw puzzling. There’s something very Zen and soothing about making the picture come together. And like those monk sand paintings, I have no problem immediately pulling it apart and starting on another.
What do you need before you start writing? Anything that is just a must have or the creative juice don’t flow?
Early morning. I don’t function as well later in the day. I’m sharp and ready in the morning and if I miss that window, I’ll drag my heels about getting started. I don’t require caffeine or anything like that. And I can write other times of day if I must, but I really prefer morning.
Does music influence your writing? If so, do any of your stories have a theme song?
Background music must be very soft so the words of the song don’t interfere with the words I’m trying to craft, so usually I just don’t have any sound at all. That works best for me.
Do you write one book from start to finish or are there multiple works underway at any given time?
Sometimes I’ve written one thing from start to finish. More recently, I usually have a project of my own as well as one I’m working on with my writing partner, Summer Devon. I’ve learned to switch gears from one sort of writing to the other pretty easily.
Where were you when you got your first contract? What was the book and who did you tell first?
It was a short erotic story accepted by Black Lace publishing. I got an email while I was at work. I told my husband, who was the only one at the time who knew I was writing. My first novel accepted for publication was Bone Deep at Liquid Silver books. Again, notified by email and I don’t remember where I was.
How old were you when you read your first romance book?
Maybe twelve? I remember reading some Mary Stewart around that time. I loved the Gothic atmosphere in the books. But mostly I read horror, starting with those classic Alfred Hitchcock Presents books and when I was older, Stephen King, of course.
Do you have an all-time favorite romance book (not written by you J)?
Not really. I can’t think of a specific book in the romance genre that was my absolute favorite. But ask me about King and I’ll say The Stand just because it was my best book of all time for a very long time. I don’t know that I have any of those any longer. I like a little bit of a lot of things.
What author causes you to “go fan girl”/ squeal over/anticipate upcoming books?
Not any one in particular. I’m a nibbler. I hunt and peck like a chicken at various books by various writers.
If you still have one of those pesky non writing jobs what is it?
I quit my office administrator job at the end of last October to finally write full time. I realized one day I was making more by writing and that my day job irritated me by cutting into writing time, so I moved on. It’s a very different vibe being at home with just me and the dogs and online friends every day.
Do you have a favorite movie you have seen in the last few months and an all-time favorite?
I watch so very many movies that I can’t even pick one out of the flock. I tend toward independent movies, low profile films that many people have never heard of. They often involve deep character studies that you simply don’t get in blockbuster movies. On the other hand, the last movie I went to the theater to watch was Seth Rogen’s Neighbors, so that tells you something about my eclectic taste.
As for all-time favorite, again there are so many movies in my collection I’d be hard-pressed to say which I’ve watched the most. But to give an example of the sort of quirky, angsty, humorous and romantic films I enjoy most, I would say Eating Gilbert Grape. I’ve watched that a LOT. To me, it’s just a perfectly satisfying little movie. Plus, early Johnny Depp and an amazing performance by young Leo DiCaprio. What’s not to love?
What are you currently working on, and what else is in the wings?
I’m currently writing a story about a man with healing powers who drifts into a small town looking for sanctuary and a break from his “gift” which is draining the life out of him. He meets a waitress who has a brother with a serious disability. Romance and life-choices ensue.
With Summer Devon, I’m working on a sort of Moulin Rouge set story about a cross-dressing singer and the stuffy British businessman who tumbles headlong for him: The Bohemian and the Banker.
I’m loving both of these stories so much! When the writing is easy, it’s golden. Other times it’s like banging your head against a brick wall.
If you could co-write with another author who would it be?
Well, I’ve got Summer so that’s enough for me. I’ve also written with Marie Treanor and several others, all good.
Ideally, I think it would be great to write with someone who does all the plotting and all I’d have to do is add the emotional parts. Ie. something like The Bourne Identity books by Robert Ludlum. I loved the movies (especially the reboot of the series with Jeremy Renner), but I tried to read the first book and found it really dry. My perfect collaboration would be with someone who could write all the technical, outwit-the-bad-guys stuff and leave me to focus on the character’s more intimate moments.
How did you hear about the “bunnies” at Joyfully Reviewed?
From existing in the romance writing world. Every romance writer must know about Joyfully Reviewed.
Where can readers find you?
Whether you’re a fan of contemporary, paranormal, or historical romance, you’ll find something to enjoy among my books. I’m interested in flawed, often damaged, people who find the fulfillment they seek in one another. If you want to stay informed about my new releases, please SIGN UP FOR MY NEWSLETTER. I’d love to welcome you to my street team at FB. Learn more about my backlist at http://bonniedee.com or find me on FB and Twitter @Bonnie_Dee.
And for the silly side –
What is your favorite type of ice cream?
Anything coffee or chocolate flavored, but I like to mix it up. Just like in my reading or movie viewing or writing, I don’t like to glom onto one thing. I like to sample.
Team Sam or Team Dean? And Why.
Those ships have run aground. The show should’ve been cancelled several seasons ago. It’s gotten too repetitious, IMO. Because so many people seem to have a serious hate-on for Sam, I’ll go with him even though Jared Padalecki does the same set of expressions over and over and tends to have a really whiny tone to his voice. But based on who the characters were way back in the beginning of the show, I always felt Dean would be really annoying to spend time with—especially for a woman, because he seemed so sexist. I like Sam’s more cerebral nature. I love a smart man much more than a he-man.
Thanks for hosting me today and letting me share news about my latest release.