Thursday, 1 January 2015

Meet Kelly Clemmons!

In reality, Kelly Clemmons is the writing team of Lorraine and Crys. Lorraine lives about eight miles from me - Crys is a bit farther away in the USA. Here, to tickle your fancies, are TWO excerpts. One from their first book, No Good Deed, the other from their current WiP. So let the Q&A begin...

No Good Deed - available across Amazon's sites
Amazon UK Buy Link HERE
All Romance eBooks HERE

To get us started can you tell me a little about what you are working on or have coming out?
We are currently editing Beautiful Deception

Beautiful Deception is a vampyre tale set in Victorian England. The story features Christian DeLaCroix, an enigmatic actor with a dark secret, and Jacob Doone, owner of the Salisbury bookstore, Literati. Jacob travels to London in search of his missing twin, Joshua. Jacob's only lead is a mysterious note written on a theatre bill for Dr Faustous, where Christian portrays Mephistopheles.

Here is an unedited excerpt from Beautiful Deception
Chapter Four

Appointment with the Devil

Jacob regretted missing the first half of the show the previous evening. What a waste. He stood along with the rest of the theatre to applaud the fantastic production, in particular, the acting abilities of the man he was to meet in just a few minutes.

When the curtains dropped for the final time, Jacob took his seat. He sipped a glass of champagne while the theatre emptied. Is this where Joshua had sat to watch the show, while sipping expensive wine and eating canap├ęs?

 “Mr Doone, please follow me.” Jacob jumped too preoccupied with his musings to hear Walter approach.  Walter continued politely. “Mr DeLaCroix is waiting.”

Jacob picked up his coat from the back of the chair. “I have never seen so compelling a performance” Jacob offered as they descended the stairs.

“It’s Mr Christian, pardon, Mr DeLaCroix,” Walter corrected himself. “Everyone comes to see him.” He weaved his way through the last of the cast and crew.

 “I whole heartedly agree.” Jacob moved against the wall to allow two half-dressed actors to pass. Jacob blushed, unused to nudity. Flustered, he continued “How… how long has he played the role?”

“He says since Mr Marlowe wrote the play in 1592, but he likes to tease.” 

“Unless…” Jacob paused for dramatic effect. “He has a time travel machine hidden in his basement.”

 “A time machine?” Walter removed his cap and scratched his head, then continued down the corridor. He stopped in front of a door with a caricature of the devil.  “This is it.” Walter knocked.

A deep masculine voice called out, “Enter.”

Walter opened the door and stepped aside. “Sir, Mr Doone.”

“Thank you, Walter.”

“Yes sir.” Walter stepped to one side allowing Jacob to enter, then closed the door behind himself.

Mesmerized by the man before him, Jacob found it impossible to be objective in his assessment. Stray locks of glossy brown hair fell forward over his forehead and azure blue eyes that seemed to see into the very depths of Jacob’s soul. A cleft chin, dimples and a generous full pink mouth rounded out the handsome face. Jacob’s gaze stalled at the unbuttoned black shirt, the exposed v of creamy skin over a well-defined chest. Jacob swallowed and hastily looked up.

Christian DeLaCroix stood and extended his hand, the man was over six feet tall. “Behold, is it Adonis or Narcissus who stands before me? You are a most handsome man, Mr Doone. Your card said you had a matter of a private nature. What would you ask of the devil?”

What is coming up from you in the next year? Anything you want to tease us with?
Well… We have quite a few stories on our hard drives that need editing. Shape shifters, vampires, time travelers. Beautiful Deception will be offered first, followed by a fantastic timetravel/historical story, set in England and the USA.

What does your family think about your writing? How, if they do, do they support you in your writing endeavors.
 Lorraine- It’s funny, but I was nervous about telling my mom. I shouldn’t have been, mom was so excited, and she said she wanted to read our book. So then I had to confess the focus of the story was two men. Mom brushed it off saying “I want to read it and I want you both to sign my copy when it’s in print.” When the cover was revealed mom had dad, who’s a photographer, print off several A2 copies, one we sent to Crys, and the other two were framed. One hangs in mom’s house and the other is over my desk. So yes, moms proud of Crys and me.

What's the thing you wish you could hire someone else to do or wish you didn't have to do as a writer?
Editing! It’s a necessary evil and yes, when the process is finally over we both agree the story is better.

Which of your own characters would you like to meet in real life, and what would you do?
Naturally, Connor, imagine travelling to the twilight realm, visiting the crystal cave, or perhaps sitting down to a Fae banquet. And Scott who goes through so many changes to find true happiness. Who could fail to love the Giant black Schnauzer, Luger, who now has a touch of the Fae about him?

And from Beautiful Deception, Christian DeLaCroix, actor extraordinaire and Jacob Doone, owner of the market place book shop, Literati.

Then there’s Ash and his little thief Ethan, but that’s another story.

What's your writing process? Pantser or plotter, or a mix?
Our writing is a total mix. Once an idea takes shape we attempt to outline our key points. Once we start writing everything goes out the window. With two distinct voices and visions, everything is a collaboration, give and take. We are constantly taking detours, adding and changing. The majority of our writing is done when we meet up daily on messenger and skype. Lorraine's one rule, our story must have a happy ending, everything before is fair game.

Where do you get your inspiration for a book? How do you get your ideas?
Crys - Most of our inspiration comes out of the blue. I am passionate about history, fantasy, anything mystical, or supernatural. Lorraine is a bit more grounded with her feet flat on the floor. Using elements from those genres give us a leeway when writing. Honestly, the sky is the limit. 

Do you prefer to think of yourself as a hero/heroine or villain/villainess and why?
Crys - Definitely think of myself as a villainess. I possess too many faults and flaws to see myself any other way. It's my Scorpio nature. I'm quick to hold a grudge when wronged, am unforgiving, and never forget. I've even been known to make a voodoo doll or two.

An excerpt from No Good Deed.
“What would you pay for one perfect night with me, your every desire fulfilled?” Connor braced himself for Scott's response, his stomach churning. Now that the words were out of his mouth, he couldn’t take them back.

Scott’s face transformed into a cold, hard mask. “Tell me, Connor. Are you curious, or is this a business proposition? Some side-line you have going to supplement your wages? You had me fooled. Is this all a game to you?” Scott’s grasp tightened painfully around Connor’s forearms as Scott shoved him back, holding him at arm’s length. The verbal assault continued. ”I heard the rumours about you, but I was prepared to overlook them, to give you a chance. And what do you do first opportunity you get? You proposition me. You’re nothing more than a fucking tease. You'd fit right in at the Midnight Agency.” 

Connor gasped. “I have never…“ Connor's anger boiled over and he wrenched himself free. “You dare judge me? You're no fucking saint. You’re the expert on whores. And as for rumours, I’ve heard more than my share about you, from your father, no less. He delighted in telling me of your exploits and conquests. Your father takes what he wants. You pay for what you want. I can neither take nor pay. I am left to bargain with what I have.” 

Shocked at the outburst, Scott crossed his arms and leant against the black granite worktop. He stared at Connor, a puzzled expression on his face, as if he was trying to work out where the outburst came from. Scott’s tone softened, and he cocked his head to one side. “What do you really want, Connor? I feel like I’m always one step behind with you, as if I’m missing some vital piece of information. There are moments when I think I’ve seen the real you, and in those rare instances, I like what I see. Then this other version rears its ugly head and takes me by surprise.” 

“I want what is mine!” Connor snarled and thumped his chest. “The land we visited today belongs to my people. It’s their birth right. I know for a fact your father has already drawn up plans, everything has been approved. All he has to do is say the word, and what is left of my world will be destroyed.” All the fight drained out of him at the enormity of what he revealed sank in. Connor cast a glance at Scott's confused face before he continued. “The land. It means nothing to you. And yes, I will do anything you want, sacrifice everything," Connor confessed in anguish. "I do not take this lightly. My word binds me tighter than any legal contract.” 

“Marry me.” 

“Wha…?” Connor stared in open-mouthed shock. Whatever he expected sure as hell wasn’t a proposal. To give his body for a night was one thing, but marriage? Connor reached back, grasping the counter to steady himself. He took a deep breath. He'd been ensnared in his own trap. A million thoughts raced through his mind, but at the foremost was the land. 

“You asked my price, that’s it. I told you in the car, I want a normal life and someone special to share it with. I think you do, too. Wouldn’t you like a real place to call your own, Connor? You can’t enjoy coming home to an empty apartment any more than I do. You can deny it all you want, but you know there’s something between us.” Scott closed the distance between them. “If I’m honest, I’ve been drawn to you from the moment I laid eyes on you in my office. At first I thought it was infatuation,” Scott shrugged, “or good old-fashioned lust, but it’s more than that. Whatever it is, it feels right, and I want a chance to explore it. I want a partner for life, not a one night stand.” Scott caught Connor’s hand and rubbed his thumb over the knuckles. “The ball’s in your court, Connor.”

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