BDSM is hot. Both in popularity and its ability to get the reader worked up. Want to hear about a debut erotic novel? Then welcome our guest today, Elene Sallinger!
Lexi: You have a debut book, Awakening. Congrats! Though this is not your first foray into the world of being published. You have written and illustrated children’s books, congrats for that too! So how did you come from children’s books to writing an erotic novel?
Elene: The transition was actually quite organic. My children's writing began with my own daughter. The stories I wrote and illustrated were for her. I began classes in children's literature and set out to be published in that genre. I never made it into the main stream, but I did place in the Annual Writing Competition for Writer's Digest with two of my stories. As my daughter got older, I found I didn't really have a taste for the young adult market. There are prolific authors out there who do it so well. As a result, I turned my attention to my second love – diamonds – and began writing consumer education pieces on the industry and how to shop for diamonds. Eventually, the desire to write fiction once again grew, but my daughter is a teenager now and my own tastes had gravitated into darker, erotic fiction. I was, however, struggling to find a wide enough selection of erotic stories with strong plots and character development, something I require in the stories I read. So, one day I decided to write the story I wanted to read. The rest, as they say, is history.
Lexi: Kids are powerful and can make you do things you never thought you were capable of. And you are clearly capable of writing more than one genre if the reviews for Awakening are to be believed. Claire and Evan are your characters, going in did you know you would write a HEA for them?
Elene: Kind of … how's that for a vague answer! I knew how I'd like the story to end, but one thing I've found in writing is that characters will go where they want to go. I've lost count of how many times I started a scene planning it one particular way and somewhere in the middle it all changes. Something will come out of one of their mouths or they'll do something unexpected and then everything shifts. So, while I knew I wanted an HEA for them, I wasn't sure it would happen. I always let the story go where it will and sometimes it's a different place than I plan.
Lexi: I think I can vouch for our readers by saying any of us could have a happily ever after with Evan, he is a book shop owner! Did you take their play into the book store at all?
Elene: Evan is a wonderful guy and Bibliophile is so fun. I had a blast creating the bookstore of my dreams! As for their play, there is one scene in the shop that is particularly hot in my opinion :-)
Lexi: Play and BDSM go together, along with trust. Do you feel like the perception of BDSM has begun to change with the recent popularization of the genre?
Elene: That's a tricky question. I think the general knowledge of BDSM has changed, but I'm not so sure perception truly has. I think the people who were open to it anyway, now feel validated by the popularization of the genre, but there are still a lot of people out there who think anything that deviates from the accepted norm equates to something deviant. My hope is that with the popularization of the genre, that the real education can begin and, hopefully, Awakening can be a part of that.
Lexi: Awakening sounds like a book that can shine some light on how a BDSM relationship can heal. Claire and Evan have to face their fears before they can be free, and you allow us to go along for the ride! Thanks for stopping by Elene! We hope you enjoy your crossover into the Romance community!
Elene: Thank you so much for having me, it's a joy to be here.
Sourcebooks is giving away one copy of this book to one reader, US/CA only please. To enter, just leave a question or comment for Elene on this post and then fill out the rafflecopter below Good luck!
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