Interview with Kallypso Masters

Please welcome erotic romance writer Kallypso Masters to my blog today. You might recall that, last month, I was a guest on Kally’s blog, “Ahh, Kallypso…The Stories You Tell.”

Kally’s debut novel, Masters at Arms, was published in August, an introduction to her Rescue Me series. (At the end of this blog, there’s a coupon for a free download at Smashwords—good thru Oct. 10.) Now the first of the “happily ever after” romances has been published—Nobody’s Angel, which tells the story of Marc D’Alessio, one of the three band-of-brothers Doms who run the Masters at Arms BDSM Club.

 

 I wanted to introduce her to you by sharing a conversation that reveals some things about her and her stories. And you’ll find a description of Nobody’s Angel below, as well as an excerpt on a negotiation scene from the book.

 


 Tell us a little bit about yourself. How does your day go? What keeps you writing?

I began writing romances in high school (more than 35 years ago), but it took me until 2009 to actually complete one. Then a month later, I completed Nobody’s Angel. (You wouldn’t recognize that version compared to the one just released, other than the names of the main characters. I rewrote it three times, including the most major revision during the three weeks before publication. I write about rescue, recovery, and reunion. I also write about dominant men and the strong women who can bring them to their knees. I love to have the hero and heroine rescue each other in the stories—and include both physical and emotional rescues. My Doms are never perfect—but they are perfect for their heroines.

I write full-time now and my day can be whatever I want it to be. I try to journal three pages every morning (something I learned with The Artist’s Way book). This is where my muse spills her guts and gives me plots, scenes, character development, and all kinds of things to aid me in writing my books. I turn the computer on and do an hour or two of social networking (mostly Facebook, although I also check my Gmail account, and several days a week, Twitter). I may look for new reviews, check on sales, and do interviews and guest blogs. Then it’s time to write. (Sometimes I write first and reward myself with social networking later.) I am probably at the computer for 12-15 hours a day, if I’m really rolling along. Yes, it’s not a job, it’s an obsession.

I write fairly quickly and generally linearly, at least for the first draft. Later, my editor (Jeri Smith, of Booksmith Editing), will suggest additional scenes, if needed. When I edit, the book always gets bigger, not smaller. I don’t plot, but do have turning points and key scenes in my mind before I write. I don’t always know the ending of the story’s external plot—because the characters really don’t come to life for me until I place them in a scene and see what they say and do. I usually know how far I want the internal plot—or relationship—to go, but sometimes the characters surprise me, as Master Marc did with his book. Three weeks before publication, he told me I had the ending all wrong and to rewrite it. “Yes, Sir.” You see, I have these Doms in my head and, well, I pretty much do whatever they tell me, good li’l subbie that I am. (Of course, Master Marc was totally right.)

On the home front, I am married to my own hero of 29 years and live in rural Kentucky. We have two adult children, a rescue dog, and a rescue cat. I have a degree in journalism and have worked as an editorial assistant.

What brought you to writing erotica? What do you love about it?

In March 2009, I attended the annual workshop held by the Kentucky Romance Writers. I had been out of Romance writing circles for about a decade, so I was surprised to learn about e-books and erotic romances. I knew about erotica, but I couldn’t write sex-focused stories. I prefer to write emotional stories about relationships that go beyond sex to love. So, this new subgenre sounded perfect to me. Without even reading one, I went home and wrote a novella in about a month–even though it probably won’t see the light of day. But it helped me improve my writing.) Then I read Cherise Sinclair’s Club Shadowlands and learned what a BDSM romance could be like. The next month, I wrote Nobody’s Angel. Life intruded for a couple of years, but this was the first manuscript I picked up when I quit my job this past April and decided to pursue a full-time writing career.

I’ve tried to figure out why the books appeal to me so as a writer and a reader. In part, I think it’s because they remind me of the non-PC romances I read as a teenager—the Kathleen Woodiwiss, Johanna Lindsey, and Rosemary Rogers “bodice-rippers,” of the 1970s and 1980s. (Yes, there actually was a lot of bodice ripping going on in those. Consent was dubious, at best. Bondage, spanking, all that good stuff historicals are made of.) No, I don’t do force or dubious consent OR historicals (yet)—but bondage, spankings and other discipline, heck, I even have a sensual sadist/masochist love story coming up in February. But I try to use Safe, Sane, Consensual—the motto for the BDSM community—in all of my scenes. With the erotic romances of today, there’s quite a range of books, but I tend to write the long, extremely erotic, emotional ones. (You laugh, cry, and scream in the course of a book). I don’t deliver sex on page three—or sometimes even chapter three. But when there is a sex scene, you can expect heat, emotion, and humor.

What are you working on now?

I just finished Nobody’s Angel last week, so I am now on a marketing break and am working on a non-fiction local history book with a friend. But the wheels are turning in my head for my December release, Nobody’s Hero—the romance for Masters at Arms club co-owner, Adam Montague, and the club’s singer, Karla Paxton. I left readers hanging with Angel and will pick up at about that same scene. The holidays are the darkest times for Adam, whose wife of twenty years died nine years earlier. He wasn’t able to work through the stages of grief because he had to return to the military within a couple weeks of her death and eventually was deployed to Iraq. But he will be forced to work through that grief at long last—with the woman who fell in love with him at the age of 16 after he rescued her in a bus station a couple weeks after his wife’s death (the opening scene of Masters at Arms).

Also featured prominently in that book will be Master Damian, who is like an adopted son to Adam. He suffered greatly as a result of the firefight in Iraq, and is about to open a lot of old wounds as he is forced to deal with a traumatic family situation with his niece and her PTSD episodes will trigger some of his own. In the process, though, he will be reunited with Savannah Gentry, who is now Savi Baker. This couple probably has the most obstacles to overcome and this will at least allow them to begin to work on them, but their February release will deal with the bulk of them.

What is your—or your character’s—favorite erotic book? Sexy movie? Sex toy?

My favorite erotic book? Anything by Cherise Sinclair. I can’t choose just one of the Shadowlands series books, but I’d also add her Hour of the Lion. First shapeshifter book I’d ever read (and a ménage to boot) but it was awesome.

My favorite sexy movie? Oh, I tend to watch romantic movies and my favorite of all time would be French Kiss (1995), with Meg Ryan and Kevin Kline. His French accent as “Luc Teyssier” just melts me every time—and at the end, after the credits rolls, he sings “La Mer,” to her. Gets me every time.

Sex toy? Butterfly vibrator with a remote control (for public places). I’m actually planning to get one soon so I can research a scene. I cut the scene from Nobody’s Angel, but I’m sure I’ll find a place for it in another book. It was fun to write.

What’s the one thing you’ve always wanted to do? The top thing on your personal bucket list?

When I turned fifty, some friends chipped in to give me money to purchase me a ticket for a ride on a hot-air balloon. Well, over the course of six months, we scheduled liftoff as many times, and each time, the ride was cancelled. Too rainy. Too much wind. No wind. After six failed attempts, I thought perhaps the Universe was trying to tell me this wouldn’t be a good idea. (My then 78-year-old mother and a sister wanted to go up with me, and I was worried perhaps something might happen.) So, I stopped trying to schedule the trip. But it’s still on my bucket list. Someday, I’ll try again. (Maybe I’ll do it as research for a scene in an upcoming book next time and it will be tax deductible.)

What’s your personal romantic (or erotic) fantasy?

Well, I’ve already been blessed with the fantasy of seeing my husband doing the dishes. Let’s see, what else? Um, well, there is this one that involves riding on a Harley. One of my fans has promised to loan me her hubby and his Harley for a ride later this year when they’re visiting my state. I can’t wait! Now I’ll be able to write the scenes with Savi and Damian on the Harley from first-hand experience. (Now, get your minds out of the gutter—it’s just the RIDE of the HARLEY I’m looking for. I mean, if it sounded like I wanted more that that, would you offer your hubby to take me for a ride on HIS Harley?) But I did notice at fetlife.com (a fetish community online) that Harleys do show up in several fetishes on their list. I just thought it sounded sexy—but didn’t take it to the realm of a fetish!

Thanks for being so open, Kally! Now, let’s share the description for Nobody’s Angel and a short excerpt.

Description for Nobody’s Angel

 Marc d’Alessio might own a BDSM club with his fellow military veterans, Adam and Damián, but he keeps all women at a distance. However, when Marc rescues beautiful Angelina Giardano from a disastrous first BDSM experience at the club, an uncharacteristic attraction leaves him torn between his safe, but lonely world, and a possible future with his angel.

Angelina leaves BDSM behind, only to have her dreams plagued by the Italian angel who rescued her at the club. When she meets Marc at a bar in her hometown, she can’t shake the feeling she knows him—but has no idea why he reminds her of her angel.

When Marc’s search-and-rescue partner, widower Luke Denton, confides he believes Angelina is the angel his wife promised to send him, Marc is convinced she is meant for Luke. A painful incident from his past keeps Marc from letting any woman drive a wedge between him and a friend.

While Luke can provide Angelina with love and stability, Marc knows his friend can’t satisfy her submissive needs. Marc offers one night to show her that BDSM is not about pain, but a power exchange with mutual trust and consent. But he knows he can’t commit emotionally to anything more.

When the abusive Dom from Angelina’s past threatens, Marc’s protective instincts kick in; he must keep her safe. Again at the Masters at Arms Club, she turns the tables on him—and turns his safe, controlled world upside down. (Book Two in the RESCUE ME series; follows introduction to series, MASTERS AT ARMS.)

 Excerpt from Nobody’s Angel

One of the key elements in a safe, sane, and consensual BDSM relationship is communication/negotiation. This is a scene where Master Marc tries to convince Angelina to let him show her she is a sexual submissive, to help her overcome the abusive scene she suffered before. Of course, he’s only agreed to be her Dom for one night. He makes no commitments beyond that—and wants no ties on him. Also, he is an Italian-born American, and “cara” means “dear.”

Anxious to put distance between them, she pushed him away, surprised that he let her up without resistance. She bolted upright and stood in one motion, feeling dizzy for a moment, but moved a few feet away before turning to face him. Looking at him sitting there so calmly, she said, “I won’t be anyone’s submissive, Marc.” When he only smiled back, she screamed, “I am not your pet. And I most certainly am not anyone’s pain slut!”

He spoke calmly, not letting his voice rise with emotion as hers had. “Cara are you trying to convince me…or yourself?”

He got up from the bed and came to stand a few feet in front of her. “You are spending too much time in your head, ignoring the needs of your body, blocking your body from feeling anything. Someone hurt you, Angelina, but I am not that Dom.” He came closer to her, towering over her as he rubbed warmth into her cold arms.

“If I promise you I will not cause you pain, will you let me show you how your body responds to dominance?”

She remembered back to when she’d tried and failed to seduce him on her bed only minutes ago. No response from her body at all, and not for a lack of attraction. She found him very sexy, but she’d been too busy trying to figure out how to please him—trying to get him excited—to pay attention to her body’s wants and needs.

No flames ignited. Not even a flicker.

Because you were too busy trying to analyze it in your head, Angie.

Oh, God. She had. Then he’d restrained her arms, bit her nipple, and… Dear Lord. Just thinking about the scene sent her clit into spasms again. Was she a pain freak?

Wait. He said he could show her if she was submissive without pain. Maybe she should at least give him a chance to try. Under her terms.

“No restraints.”

He smiled, as if he’d won some victory. “No restraints—as long as you obey me.”

Obey? The seemingly minor clarification sounded like semantics, but just what commands did he plan to deliver?

Really, she had only two other criteria. “No pain, no humiliation.” She felt like she was ordering a sundae—double scoop vanilla, peanuts, no sprinkles, please.

Only this kind of sex wasn’t vanilla; and it was all about the sprinkles.

He grew serious. “Let’s clarify pain.”

“What is there to clarify? Pain is pain.”

“When I bit your nipple a moment ago, was that painful? Be truthful.”

Her face grew warm at the memory and she felt her clit jerk at the sensory memory. Oh, yes. It had hurt—hurt so good.

“No. It…it excited me.”

“Good girl. Thank you for your honesty.” She felt her stomach turn to mush at his praise. “Now, let’s get started.” She had a feeling he was afraid she would change her mind—a valid concern, given how shaky her resolve was.

“I’m going to gather together some items we’ll need for our scene. This might be a good time for you to take care of any bathroom needs you have. You’re going to be tied up for a while.” When she flinched, he added, “Figuratively speaking, pet. Don’t worry. I take your trust very seriously.” His hand reached out and stroked her face, causing her insides to quiver.

“Now listen carefully, pet.” His smile faded. How did he switch from gentle to authoritarian mode so seamlessly? Dom mode. “When I return, I want you kneeling on the floor.” He walked over to the bed and took one of her pillows, placing it on the floor about two feet from the bed. “Here,” he said, pointing to the pillow. “Back straight. Head down. Hands clasped behind your back. Facing the bed. Completely naked. Is that clear?”

“Ye—.” The word didn’t quite make it past the lump in her throat. She cleared it and tried again. “Yes.” Would she remember all of his instructions?

“During this scene, you will refer to me as Sir.”

She swallowed down the uprush of fear at the thought of being naked and vulnerable before him. Could she submit to him? It wasn’t as if he hadn’t already seen and touched her girly bits. But she’d still had her clothing then. And she hadn’t given up control. Well, not entirely.

But, truth be told, what she felt wasn’t fear alone. His words excited her more than when he’d touched or bitten her. She swallowed hard.

“Yes, Sir.”

He smiled, satisfied with her response.

Dear Lord, what had she just agreed to?

Masters at Arms (the prequel/introduction) should be read before you read Nobody’s Angel and is available for 99 cents for the Kindle at Amazon, (also at Amazon-UK and Amazon-Germany); for the Nook at Barnes & Noble (or at Smashwords), and for all formats at Smashwords. LIMITED TIME (thru Oct. 10): Use the Coupon Code QV99H at Smashwords for a FREE copy of MASTERS AT ARMS!

Comment below (BE SURE TO INCLUDE AN E-MAIL ADDRESS and preferred e-book format—mobi, epub, or pdf) for a chance to win a FREE e-copy of Nobody’s Angel. The contest ends October 10th.

Want to know more about Kallypso Masters or her books? You can find Kally online at:

Blog: http://kallypsomasters.blogspot.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kallypsomasters

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/kallypsomasters

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17 Responses to Interview with Kallypso Masters

  1. Regina Ross says:

    Great interview !!! i would love to win a copy so please enter me 🙂

    reginamayross@gmail.com
    PDF

  2. Thanks, Regina!

    If the winner already has Nobody’s Angel, I will put you on my list for giving free copies of Nobody’s Hero, my December release. Hope to see lots of comments!

  3. Kimberly Morgan says:

    I thought Nobody’s Angel was terrific, and am very much looking forward to Nobody’s Hero. I enjoyed the interview! Thanks, Kally!

  4. windybon says:

    Kally, I’d like to know who your cover model was for “Master at Arms.” He looks scrumptious.

  5. Layla says:

    Just found out about your books from the BDSM group on Goodreads. Mmmm Loving what I read. Can’t wait to get started with “Master at Arms.”. Funny how you can have a to be read shelf of over 200 and ONE book suddenly moves to the top.. Hotttttt Stuff. Thanks…

  6. Rita Zani says:

    I am so glad that Kallypso Masters has decided to write this type of romance book. I ate up Master At Arms and Nobody’s Angel. Her writing style and take on BDSM is like someone who has written many books before this. Looking forward to anything she writes. Great interview. Liked to learn more about the person behind the books. Would love to win Nobody’s hero.

    zani5@hotmail.com

  7. Kristin says:

    I love Kallypso’s characters, and the emotions they pull out of the readers as they take us along for the ride. Can’t wait for “Nobody’s Hero” and would love a copy! Great blog 🙂

    harris.kristinr (at) yahoo.com

  8. Zeneida says:

    Hi Kallypso.
    Love the interview and learn lots of what makes you write. Read both the books and can’t say that is a wonderful series and can’t wait to read Master Adam’s book, so please enter me in the contest. Thanks.

  9. Zeneida says:

    Hi Kallypso.
    Love the interview and learn lots of what makes you write. Read both the books and can say that is a wonderful series with lots of emotions and traumas and yes I want more so please enter me in the contest. Thanks.

  10. Thanks for all the kind words! It thrills me to share these characters and stories with you all! I have a feeling I’ll be writing them forever. Heck, I’m even planning a historical Western with Master Adam’s great-grandparents as the Hero and Heroine! (I love genealogy, too! ) Oh, and the rope-bondage thing for him must be genetic. 🙂

    The chest on Masters at Arms is Master Adam’s. Other than that, I can’t say. I picked him up, I mean out, at a stock photo site. And I plan to buy the full-use photo soon so I can put him on my series merchandise, so stay tuned for announcements in November at http://www.kallypsomasters.blogspot.com!

  11. Nancy E says:

    Kally’s books always rise to the top of my TBR pile! 🙂 She is an amazing new voice in erotic romance.

  12. amy2e says:

    Masters at Arms set the stage from some great stories to come. Haven’t picked up Nobody’s Angel yet but am looking forward to reading it. Master Adam’s chest – yum!
    amyDOTtooheyATgmailDOTcom

  13. Eva P. says:

    Hi Kallypso, I read Masters at Arms, about a week ago and loved the introduction to each of their stories. Great interview! I too first read Cherise’s series and fell in love with each and every one of her Dom characters. I have gone on a hot air balloon ride about 10 years ago, my BFF gave it to me for my birthday, it was an awesome experience (and a bit scary!). I cannot wait to read the books that follow this series 😉

  14. Pogonip says:

    Putting in here for a copy of Nobody’s Hero, who is actually my hero, and everyone else who reads about him, but if I don’t win a copy you know I’m going to buy one, because I am hooked!

  15. Thanks for the great response. Don’t forget e-mail addresses! Or check back here Oct. 11 to see if you won, then you can contact me at kallypsomasters@gmail.com.

  16. Oh, my! What happened to the time? I just realized I never came back here to announce a winner yesterday! Well, better late than never! The winner is Nancy E! I think I know who this is and have sent a PM on Facebook, but if you didn’t get that message, then I’m wrong, so I’ll need your e-mail address.

    Thanks, all, for your comments!

  17. Nancy E says:

    Thank you Kally!! 😀 I’m so excited to read Nobody’s Hero!
    Nancy E
    everitnm (at) hotmail (dot) com

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