How did you get into the field?
I've been in the writing business for over 12 years: As a book editor at Random House, then as an editorial consultant and a writer. My first book was Brown Sugar: A Collection of Erotic Black Fiction published by Viking/Penguin. It became a best seller that spawned a 4-book series. I then published Wanderlust a travel themed erotic collection. The success of my books have made me a "sexpert," the go-to person for all things erotic. I'm presently working on an erotic novel.
Have you always thought of yourself as a sexually adventurous/open person? Or does writing erotica come from a different place—more of a cerebral one?
Before writing erotica, I wouldn't have thought of myself as overly sexually adventurous, probably average. I'm willing though, to try anything, at least once. I'm a private person but in my writing I'm quite open. Writing in general is cerebral; that's writers are so internal. Writing erotica, or any fiction, comes from somewhere outside of yourself, or actually somewhere deeper inside. Ultimately, writing gives you the freedom to be anyone or do any thing.
Were you self-conscious initially to have others read your work? Or was it freeing?
Both actually. My erotic stories are extremely sexy and sexual, and because I write in the first person: "I" and "me", instead of "her" or "you"—it can seem like I'm writing about my life, in a sense I am. But half is fact and half is fiction. The reader has to guess which is which. Ultimately I'm a writer with a good imagination. Sometimes the reader forgets this and confuses me with my characters or with what I write. This has presented interesting situations with men I'm dating. When they find out what I write they can become insecure. I usually having to explain they're stories, that I make them up.
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