Since becoming a published author of sexy Romance novels, I’ve gained great amusement out of it. This is one of those times.
When I published my debut M/F novel, Cassandra by Starlight, I asked my local newspaper, The Essex Chronicle, whether they would be interested in doing an article on my new book. They were quite happy to do so and a young man called James called me up and asked me pertinent questions about my novel. Most of his questions, as you might imagine, dealt with the issue of the sex in my books.
Was I like E L James ? How steamy was the sex ? Was there any personal experiences attached to said sex scenes? Yes, he actually did ask this. After replying ‘No, definitely not that kind of sex’ ‘Spicy’ and ‘Mind your own business’, the conversation turned to talk of Benedict Cumberbatch as the inspiration for my new novel. I explained to the young reporter that he had inspired me, through his striking looks and talent as an actor, to model the character of Bennett Saville on him. (Bennet is far more handsome, admittedly) Later on in the conversation, said young reporter asked idly, “So, this crush you had on Benedict Cumberbatch, how did that come about?”
I hastily refuted such a notion and told him in no uncertain terms that if he made look a sad middle aged groupie I would never forgive him. He giggled manly and said he wouldn’t do such a thing.
Imagine my surprise when the article came out proclaiming me to be the ‘next E L James’, mentioned the specific fact that I had a crush on young Mr. Cumberbatch (well, perhaps I do but does the whole world have to bloody know?) and made me out to be ‘just like my heroine’, something else I’d refuted. In character definitely –physically-not a chance. I do not look like Michelle Pfeiffer.
The local headlines were ‘EROTIC NOVELIST TO RIVAL FIFTY SHADES SUCCESS’. I saw this headline in a huge one metrer flyer posted outside my local supermarket on the Sunday morning when I went shopping.
After the initial shock, I came to realise that perhaps they’d done me a favour, as surely these sorts of headlines would attract readers? In a moment of mischief I sent the article and the flyer to E L James herself in a tweet and imagine my surprise when she actually tweeted me back wishing me luck. What a great gesture. I can only aspire to earn as much money as she has..