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Desiree Holt | How and why I ended up writing erotic romance

January 25, 2013

Desiree HoltCUPID'S SHAFTLately I’ve been interviewed a lot by people who ask me why I write erotic fiction and how I’d describe it. And I discovered a vast population of people that had no idea what it really is. It’s a genre that has kind of snuck up on the reading public, graduating from behind closed doors and plain brown wrappers to now full out discussions on places like Goodreads.

I didn’t start out to write in this genre. Actually I didn’t start out to write romance at all. Everyone who’s heard this next part, you have permission to take a break to get a cold drink. I actually intended to write mysteries. My mother and my sister devoured them and that was all I read growing up. I won’t even tell you how old I was before I read my first romance novel.

So, okay, I sat down to write the mystery that I’d plotted so carefully, and in a week I had three chapters carefully written. The problem? Two months later I was still looking at the same three chapters. Not a good sign. Then I read my first romantic suspense and I was off to the races. Sort of. It helps when you pour your heart and soul into a manuscript if some publisher wants to buy it, but no such luck.

Then I took a chance on an open submission call for a themed series at Ellora’s Cave. I had never written erotic romance before (heck, I’d only just started writing any romance) but I bought some of their books to understand the genre, felt comfortable with it, and wrote CUPID’S SHAFT. Ta da! A sale! I was black and blue from pinching myself. It’s been a wild ride ever since then but now to get back to the main question: why do I write erotic romance?

The biggest different with other genres is that the sex is plentiful, graphic and explicit. But not distasteful. And not out of context.

I tell people I write relationship stories. I start with the two main characters with all their good points and their flaws, their internal and external conflicts, and the chemistry that is so explosive it’s almost visible. In erotic romance I have the luxury of exploring every facet of their physical relationship and how it’s an expression of their emotional connection.

In erotic fiction I can really take the readers into the heart of each person. Every act, every movement, is another manifestation of their deep connection. No hold barred, but always in good taste.

I like to think my readers can lose themselves in my stories, that I have created an erotic fantasy world for them and perhaps they can take some of it back into their real lives.

If you haven’t tried it yet, go ahead. Dip your toe into the heated waters of erotic love.

Answer a question by Desiree, “What’s the name of my short novella about a wedding?” and you’ll win either a
$25 GC to either B&N or Amazon. Only one book has “wedding” in the title.

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