Sunday, November 27, 2011

Monday Author's Spotlight - Lilth Duvalier

Today, in the Author’s Spotlight, I am pleased to have author Lilith Duvalier. Lilith has a new book, The Promise of Silk, published by and available at Evernight Publishing. 

You can buy A Promise of Silk by Lilith Duvalier here:

Teaser Excerpt

A small white hand appeared to one side of the tent flap and pulled it aside. The masked woman stood, still and silent, with the red silk of the tent flap draped over her arm. She said nothing.

She did look like a demon now, with deep shadows carved into the ruches of her dress by the far off carnival lights, her mask rising over her head like devil’s horns. Buck hesitated under her stony gaze, and then, with a gulp, he stepped out of the light and into the black interior of the tent. 

A spicy, sweet smell filled his lungs the instant he stepped inside. He wondered why he hadn’t been able to smell it from the outside but continued in, shuffling carefully in the darkness. The woman walked behind him, the fabric of her dress making a soft sound as it moved over the ground.

“Who are you?” he asked. She didn’t answer. There was a light scraping noise and a match flared in the darkness, illuminating her face and throwing the edges of her mask into sharp relief. She lit a candle, shedding light on nothing more than a stretch of red silk and the corner of a table, then stepped forward and lit another candle, bringing a muddled shape of something standing on the table into view. She walked farther into the room, lighting another candle every few steps. Buck stood by the tent opening, heart throbbing as though he were still running. Bit by bit, the room came into view. 

A rug was spread out over most of the bare ground, grass peeking around the edges of it. A large wooden box sat on top of it, occupying the entire middle of the tent. A small wooden vanity, with a large round mirror attached, stood against the back wall, directly across from the box. A few trunks were neatly arranged in a corner. The table with the statue of the woman on it, incense burning in front of it like it was an Eastern idol, was near the tent entrance.  

The Red Lady stood across from Buck, eyes drilling into him just as they had at the pub. 

“Tell me your name.” Her voice was soft, deep, and steady. It was like a river speaking. 


She tilted her head, the corners of her mouth tipping upward in contrast to the dripping points of her mask. “Tell me your real name.”
“Alaric,” Buck admitted. He hadn’t used it since that last day at the factory. Alaric was a clerk and a doormat. Buck had some status, even if it was only among criminals. He had gone out of his way to make sure none of his fellow pirates ever found out he wasn’t called Buck. Not that pirates bothered about a man’s real name.  
The Red Lady’s expression returned to blank beneath the mask.    
“What’s your name?” Alaric asked. 
“I haven’t decided what you’ll call me yet.”
His heart beat picked up again, and a tremor started in his legs.
“Why did you follow me here, Alaric?”
He shrugged, not sure of the answer. “Well…this is The Row isn’t it?”
“It is.”
“And you’re a woman on the Row right?”
She didn’t reply. Alaric felt his face heating, a faint prickle starting in his cock despite it. This was worse than in China, when that beautiful girl pretended to react to his clumsy fumbling and then tried not to laugh when he paid her for an hour and only lasted a handful of minutes.
“Look, my ship’s just back from a long tour. I can pay you.”
“We’ll see,” the Lady said, a small smile quirking her lips up. “You’ve accompanied a prostitute before?”
“Of course.” He pointed at himself with a touch of bravado. “Pirate.”
The Red Lady let a silence land there, stretching out before him.
“Just once.”
“It didn’t go well.”
Now she was reading his mind. He should go, simply turn around, leave, and never see a prostitute again. Maybe she really was a demon. Maybe the mask was hiding the demon parts of her face.

His mind was trying to move his limbs, turn his feet, push him out the door, but his body was entranced. The tremor in his legs climbed up to his groin, making him very aware of the way the dim candle light moved across her rounded body. 
“Why didn’t it go well, Alaric?”
His mouth was starting to go dry. His hands were beginning to shake. 
“She laughed at me,” he told her, dropping his eyes to the floor.
“Because I…I couldn’t,I didn’t…,” He stopped, gulped, wondered again what magic he had run across.
“Look at me when you speak, Alaric.”
He lifted his gaze up from the pattern of pomegranates running along the border of the red rug and met her shadowed eyes. 
“I couldn’t.... I barely got inside her before….”
The Red Lady didn’t reply. Alaric suffered a terrible moment of fear she would throw him right back out of her tent and let him find a lower class prostitute who would welcome a quick trick like him between the carnival crowd. 
“Fortunately, that won’t be a problem here,” the Red Lady told him, a smile spreading over her red lips. “Undo your trousers, Alaric."


Thanks so much for stopping by my blog, Lilith.  I loved the teaser excerpt.  Tell us a little bit more about the book.  What inspired you to write this story?

The Promise of Silk is a Steampunk BDSM femdom story. Part of the inspiration was that I had read a very interesting BDSM story a couple weeks before Evernight’s Master of Mine anthology came out. I wanted to submit, but I was 15 thousand words in and still running strong about a week before the deadline, so I decided to bring it out to novella length. Another thing that inspired me was how hard it is to find decent femdom. I don’t enjoy reading about dominant men, I’m not a fan of alpha males in most fiction (I tend to fall for the Xander Harrises and Simon Tams of fandoms) and I have very little patience for alpha males in real life. I wanted to contribute something to the very small Alpha female selection.

Can you share with the readers how you got your start writing erotic novels?

Absolutely! I was unemployed, as I often am, and with nothing but time and caffeine on my hands in my silent and freezing apartment, I was looking for something free and fun to do for Samhain that year. A couple of google searches brought me to Samhain Publishing, where I learned about e-books and small press erotica publishing. After a year or so I started writing my own and then one day decided that I desperately wanted cover art.

If you weren’t a writer, what career field would you most likely find yourself?

My degree is in theater and English. So I probably would fall back into costuming,which is what I was doing in college.

Can you describe the process you go through when starting to write a new story?

I usually start at the climax. The first idea I always get for a story is the biggest fight or the biggest sex scene or the impassioned speech one character gives to another. From that initial idea I sit down and do really detailed character sketches and then an outline of various degrees of detailed. Sometimes I’ll have a really detailed beginning middle and end, and no way to connect them, or I’ll know exactly how it ends, but no idea how it starts. Once I start writing I write whatever the words are flowing for and then go back and cut and paste as needed. So if I just know how the fight at the end goes one day, I sit down and write it, even if I’m still on page four. I wrote a story a few months ago that was about 30 pages of sex scenes and fights, which I’m still quietly edging plot into as I go.

Do you have any advice for new/aspiring romance writers?

 Learn the formula, the tropes, and the stock characters. Read through TV Get the building blocks down inside and out so that when you sit down to write something you’re able to compose your own picture instead of color insides omeone else’s lines.

Tell us what you have on your own personal To Be Read list?

Oh it grows. Snuff by Terry Pratchett. House of Leaves. The Story of a Marriage.

 Do you have a favorite dirty word or line of text that you seem to gravitate toward in your books?

Oh no. If I point them out everyone will see them! Umm… “ran his hands down his/her back, feeling the muscles cording underneath” I do a lot of variations on that. “tugged his cock”.  “that electric spot within him/her”

What can your fans expect to see from you in the near future?

I’m hoping to submit a very… odd late bloomer story after work tomorrow night, sothey can look out to see what happens with that. I’m finishing up an m/m historical romance about cowboys turned bank robbers in the old west. I’m working on an extremely bloody fairy-tale/horror story. I’ve also got what I’m calling a “gender queer” contemporary and a super-hero short story in the wings. So I’m keeping busy.

I want to wish you all the best with your new book and with your writing career.  Please stop back by my blog anytime.

Read more about Lilith here:

1 comment:

  1. Ooh, another theatre person! I like to find things in common with my fellow writers. Great interview!