- Have the main character of your last novel introduce you to our readers.
Hi, I’m Adam Lehmann, former cop and bar bouncer and, uh, [looks around nervously, then lowers voice] current alpha-phase cyborg. Look, Ava Cuvay said I could trust you, but I’m still cautious with that tidbit. Cyborgs aren’t very popular in my world, and keeping the details of my… uh, cybernetic condition… to myself is basic self-preservation. You all might be cyborg sympathizers, but I’m an old dog and talking openly about it is a new trick. I’d blame Ava for creating that fucked-up world, but she also introduced me to the woman I love, Eve Myer. Plus, Ava is a best-selling, award-winning sci-fi romance author… so I guess she can’t really help herself. Honestly, she’d throw the blame back in my face, claiming she just listens to what her characters tell her. She once admitted that Eve and I jumped in the sack way before we were meant to, not that I’m complaining. Yeah, so Ava might be a bit sadistic toward her characters, but she makes the end worth it. I wouldn’t change a thing as long as I get to keep Eve in my arms… the organic one *and* the cyborg one.
- Without giving us spoilers introduce your latest and greatest novel or work in progress and let us know which it is and if it’s a WIP let us know when it goes live.
My current WIP is “Tin Toy,” the second book in my Silver Cyborg series, a slightly-futuristic (150+ years) Sci-fi Romance series set in my stomping grounds of Indianapolis, Indiana (“Tin Man” is the first book, featuring my surly former-cop character Adam, who so nicely *cough!*cough!*side-eye* introduced me). “Tin Toy” is the story of Betty, a forty-something cyborg-spy-turned-librarian. She looks like a pin-up model, kisses like an angel, and fights like a trained assassin. I’m still only about half way through the story, so don’t have a go-live date on it yet (crossing fingers by the end of Summer!).
- What do you like best about your main character in your latest and greatest or WIP from above?
I love that Betty has been around the block, seen and done horrible things, but it hasn’t stripped her of her kindness. She might be once bitten, twice shy, (to which, she’d respond, “Oh, honey. I’ve been bitten so many times by life, I’m practically a chew toy at this point.”), but she’s not bitter. Neither is she a pushover. She kicks ass, and does it with a perfect Customer Service smile in place.
- Tell us a little about one of your side characters from your latest and greatest or WIP?
“Tin Man” has an automaton bartender that works with Adam, named Arthur (or “Artie,” as the public calls robots). As 100% automech, it is a nice counter-point to Adam, who struggles with the synthesis of his organic and cybernetic parts. Arthur was fun to write. It had been vandalized by bar patrons with black markers, much like the poor guy who passes out first at a fraternity party. And the bar owner just went with it, dressing Arthur in costumes such as pirate and Shakespearean fop. Arthur even makes a bet with Adam, for a new hat. J
- How did you come up with your idea for the above story?
“Tin Man” began with my desire to write something more earth-side, so I wouldn’t have to do so much world-building (joke was on me: there was still a ton of world-building! Lol!), and wanting to pursue the question of how society might react to the introduction of cyborgs. Would society accept people who were part machine as readily as they would a fancy toaster? The answer is Oh Hell No, because distrust of AI and machines are a common Sci-fi trope. And also because it makes for a far more interesting story when there’s this much tension.
- What was your writing plan for this book or WIP?
HAHAHA! Plan?? We don’t need no plan!
Lol. I’m kidding. Kind of. Most of my stories (“Tin Man” and “Tin Toy” included) start with a vague idea, and then I usually let the characters take it from there. Which often leads us into some interesting areas and any plans I might have made usually get chucked out the window. Adam was correct: he and Eve got intimate way before I had planned, and it was like “Oh, wow… we’re doing this *now*? Uh, um, ok.”
- How do you handle writers block?
If I’m just not feeling it, sometimes I bully through the section to get to the next section, and hope when I go back I’ll be more inclined to make it jazzy and awesome. Sometimes—and sadly this last year has been “one” of those times—I just have to walk away for a bit and wait for the muse to get her sh*t together. In those cases, it’s equally as frustrating to be writing as it is to NOT be writing. Not a good place for an author to be in. L
- Do you have a secret writing ritual and what is it?
Unfortunately, I don’t have a writing ritual, which would probably help with my aforementioned muse issue. What I *do* have is two active teens, a hubby who likes to talk to me, a full time job, organizations I
have been suckered into volunteer for, and an aging aunt I’m taking care of from a state away… it makes for a roller coaster lifestyle at the moment, which is awesome even though my writing opportunities are more random as a result.
- What is your writing snack?
Whatever is in the fridge, which is usually requires cooking and is therefore usually disappointing. But if I could choose anything, I’d say a balance of savory and sweet… Twizzlers, bacon, chocolate, kettle cooked chips, and Sour Patch kids.
- What do you do when you’re not writing?
I work full time as a Substitute Teacher, and I have two active teens. And if that wasn’t enough, I’m Treasurer for the Futuristic, Fantasy, and Paranormal RWA chapter and a local lacrosse organization. AND anxiously await the next season of The Mandalorian.
- What is your favorite season and why?
Summer, because then I have way more free time to write. Otherwise, I’d say Lacrosse Season because most of the family is involved one way or another in the sport.
- What is your favorite genre to read and what do you like about it?
Other than the over-arching genre of “Romance,” I don’t have a favorite. I read it all. Naturally, I lean toward Sci-fi or paranormal, but I also love a great contemporary, historical, male/male, reverse harem, various heat levels… if it’s a good story with engaging characters, I want to read it!
- Do you have a writer mission statement? What is it?
Sorry, no mission statement. That would involve me being very organized. Lol!
- What do you spend your music so you listen to when you write? How does it help to put you in the mood?
I can only listen to music if hubby is not home, because he always has the TV on for background noise. If I do listen to music, it’s often basic non-descript “white noise.” The summer of quarantine, I listened to a lot of relaxing yoga and hand drum music which had no lyrics or even a beat. I also got turned on to BTS, a popular Korean group, which was great because I couldn’t understand many of the lyrics.
JUNE QUESTION OF THE MONTH
June is full of hope and new beginnings what do you hope spring brings you?
I hope I can finish both the “Tin Toy” book and the second book in my Star of the North Dragons series this Summer! (So, not really a new beginning, but an ending… which would lead to new beginnings of with the next books in the series)
NEW BOOKS FOR JUNE
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