Interview by the Short Fart with the author of The Seduction of Lady Bea, C L McCullough, better known as the Older Fart
SF: Congrats on your first book release, The Seduction of Lady Bea. It's a contemporary romance featuring a buttoned down heroine and a free-wheeling, sexy Spaniard. Can you tell us more about the story?
OF: Actually, it's a conglomeration of many of the things I like - history, old houses, beautiful voices and sexy Spaniards. I tried to show how beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As my hero got to know Lady Bea, he discovered the beauty within which spilled over into physical beauty. She went from being nondescript in his mind, to beautiful. Best of all, he didn't hesitate to tell her.
It's also a story about trust. The hero's reputation has been shredded. He refuses to talk about it. Bea must learn to trust the man she's getting to know, despite his past.
SF: Well, that's just fascinating. While you were penning this opus how often did you clean? j/k Actually, who was the inspiraton for this sexy male?
OF: Oh, I don't mind answering -I cleaned just as often as I usually do. ;-)
You know damn well who was the inspiration - Carlos Marín of Il Divo. I think there'll always be a bit of him in any of my heroes, no matter how they look or what they do for a living.
SF: No kidding. Well, he inspires me too. (These questions are being typed before the answers are provided so this is totally tongue in cheek.)
Next question... Do you find any specific writer/writers that inspire you?
OF: I love the way Nora Roberts pulls you into her characters. There's only been one or two heroines I've found unlikable and even then by the end of the book I'd learned to tolerate them. Unfortunately she head hops a lot. Doesn't bother me, nor any of her other readers apparently, but head hopping is a big no no. It was almost the first thing mentioned in critiques when I submitted a First Page to DA (Dear Author). Well, that and the tester bed. *rolls eyes* One should not emmulate La Nora in the head hopping department.
Lately the paranormal or urban fantasy, or whatever it's called, has really caught my interest. Authors like Ilona Andrews, Meljean Brooks, Patricia Briggs - they reassure me you can have a great story and great characters without having sex every other page. I'd rather the emotions than the actual act. I tend to get flowery with it, lol. Not quite purple prose because no body parts are involved, but you for sure know 'he's the one'. ;-)
SF: You have more books being released. Can you tell readers what's coming?
OF: Be glad to. The Trials and Tribulations of a West Coast Southern Belle is being released August 15. Hey - I have back to back releases!
The third book hasn't even gotten into edits yes. It's called Song of Life.
I've submitted a book that's a mishmash of genres - fantasy, romance, paranormal? I have a hard time classifying it. It's called Mariposa and involves dragons. *grin*
And, of course, there's the one we're working on, Letters from Greece. By God, this time we're finishing it!
SF: I love the world building you do in your fantasy/sci-fi works. How did that work with a contemporary romance?
OF: I had to bite my tongue and clasp my hands together real hard to keep out 'otherworldly' stuff. And still it managed to sneak in at the end of Song. I think the other two are 'clean', lol.
SF: Do you want to take this chance and say something wonderful about me?
OF: Shore do. Sounds maudlin, but you inspire me. There would be no TL if not for you. No Bea. No nothing. We work so well together, even if it's just a piece of shit like Bodice. I wish I could write with your humor and poetry.
SF: Well, now I'm blushing. Thank you dear. Okay, then let's talk about Bea. I love the secondary characters, especially the opera company and Bea's father. How do you do such a fun and fascinating cast of characters?
OF: I love eccentrics. The Earl threatened to take over the whole book. I loved writing him. I hope I made him believable.
SF: One of the things I love about your writing is the heroes are wonderful betas with alpha instincts. Do you think of your heroes as alpha or beta types?
OF: I love me some beta heroes. But deep within every beta is the heart of an alpha. Just depends what triggers it. Usually it's the heroine, he's a lion in her defence. It doesn't have to be physically either.
Everyone likes a small serving of alpha hard headedness, but who could live with one in real life? Jealous of anything male that looks sideways at his bondmate, dominant to the extreme. Great to read about though. :-)
I write men I could live with for the rest of my life. Easy going but will stand up for his beliefs. Masculine but not afraid to show his tender side. Willing to listen and be a true partner. Willing to compromise.
SF: Bea throws up a lot of walls in her burgeoning relationship with Carlos. In one of your future books, Song of Life, the heroine also has a similar reluctance in getting involved with the hero. But your heroes are so freaking hot I have to wonder what's wrong with these women.
So what's wrong with these women?
OF: They have to grow into themselves, find their confidence. With Sunny it was her age. With Bea it was the son of a bitch in her past who shattered her trust. Even TL had to change her perceptions and believe she could be loved for herself.
You know, the usual stuff most women go through.
The Seduction of Lady Bea by C.L. McCullough is available at Lyrical Press and Amazon.com.