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Introducing Lori Foster
Lori had been writing for 5 years and had written 10 manuscripts before she finally sold her first novel, composed on a typewriter, titled 'Impetuous', which was published in 1997 under Harlequin. It was while attending a local writers' conference that Lori realised she had a real talent for writing. Since then, she has written well over 40 novels for a variety of publishers including Silhouette, Samhain, Kensington and St. Martin's. According to her website she currently writes for Berkley/Jove.
If you're a fan of paranormal/urban fantasy then check out her Servant series, written under the name L. L. Foster, featuring the very hot (but awfully alpha) Detective Luther Cross and the demon hunter Gabrielle Cody. I'm a diehard fan of Lori's SBC series and, just when I think I've found a favourite character, she publishes yet another book with yet another great hero/heroine. I'm spoilt for choice. I truly, truly am.
Lori combines a very successful writing career with helping first-time writers, organising donations for various charities, an annual 'Reader & Author' event in Ohio, a family (a husband and three sons). Where she finds the time I have no idea, and I feel tired just reading about it LOL
Questions and answers
1. Why romance writing in particular?
I like the happy ending, the guaranteed “Good” feeling at the end. My favorite forms of entertainment have always been action and horror films, but lately there’s been this shift to unhappy endings. “Saw” comes to mind. Everyone dies. You go into that horror flick knowing that no one will escape, and it ruins it for me. I want at least ONE person to triumph over evil.
With romance novels, we’re guaranteed that no matter what the characters go through, they will triumph in the end, and that makes them oh-so-wonderful to me. It’s a positive message of hope, of perseverance, of motivation.
2. Do you prefer a ‘happy ever after’ ending or a ‘happy for now’ ending?
If I’m reading this right, I don’t have to have a marriage at the end of the book. I’m happy knowing that my characters are together and committed to each other.
3. Do you think a happy ending should be compulsory?
(See reply to #2) LOL
4. Do you get recognized while out and about in public?
Lately, yes! It can be very embarrassing because I am NOT a glamorous person even under the best circumstances. I’m a person who believes jeans are appropriate for all situations, that comfortable shoes (aka sneakers for me usually) are preferable, along with sweatshirts or T-shirts. Recently I got recognized while eating in a family steak house, while shopping at Krogers, and later at the movies. And the worst was being at the dermatologist’s to get a spot checked, lying on a table in a paper gown, and a nurse poked her head in to say, “My sister and I love your books!” Thank God she didn’t have a cell phone with a camera in it! LOL
5. How often do you get fan mail?
Readers are the most giving folks in the whole world. They write me daily. Each day brings 5 or more personal emails (I get on whole about 250 emails a day), and I’d say on average I get anywhere from 4 to 10 letters per week in my P. O. mailbox. I try to answer every one personally, but for the mailed letters, it’s so much easier if readers include a SASE.
6. Do people send you manuscripts and ask you to read them or pass them on to your publisher?
They sometimes as if they can, and I always say no. I’m not an editor. Like all readers, I have my preferences and I don’t really see beyond those. Editors are trained to pick up good writing and good storytelling whether or not the story is to their liking. Me, I can’t see beyond what *I* want in a story. LOL.
7. What other genres do you read?
I only read romance. But within romance, I like historicals the most. They take me away and they can showcase men as real men, women as real women. In society today, we’ve sort of homogenized the sexes. That’s a good thing for equality, but it’s not all that entertaining.
Currently I’m on a HUGE kick reading anything and everything by Kresley Cole. She’s simply amazing. I had enjoyed some paranormal romances before her, but she’s really grabbed me with the Immortals After Dark. The guys are mega Alpha, but then so are most of the women, and talk about sexy and funny... they make me laugh out loud. She’s a brilliant talent.
8. Which other authors do you enjoy?
Jayne Ann Krentz will always be a favorite. I love her family-oriented stories and actually learned a lot from reader her stories. Linda Howard, Catherine Coulter, Julie Garwood, Susan Andersen, Johanna Lindsey... lately though, I’ve read very little because I’ve been so insanely busy writing.
9. What authors (romance or otherwise) have you met?
Oh geez, too many to name! Some of them are very close friends. Dianne Castell is one of my best buds. Erin McCarthy is wonderful. Rosemary Laurey, Kay Stockham, Lisa Wilder, Toni Blake, LuAnn McLane, Janice Maynard, Patricia Sargeant... you know, it’d be easier to just go to my site and see all the photos of me with author friends. www.lorifoster.com
10. What can you tell us about your next book?
The next single title romance will be out in Feb 2010, and it’s titled, “Back in Black.” It ties in with the preceding books featuring SBC fighters (mma style fighting, ala the UFC). This book will have Drew Black as the hero. The cover is fantastic and sexy, and I’m very, very hopeful that readers will enjoy the story!
11. What freedom does your writing career bring?
I’m extremely fortunate that these days, I have all the freedom I need. Writers have to earn that, and they have to prove to publishers that they’re connected to their readers. I think I have. I know what I like to write, and luckily for me, readers seem to enjoy my choices. I try to bring variety, but as with most authors, there are certain things readers can count on in my books. The heroes will be Alpha without being jerks. The heroines will be feminine without being wimps. The lead protagonists will love and care for children and animals, they’ll be intelligent, and there will be a sense of family whether typical or A-typical. Oh, and usually there’s plenty of humor.
12. How long have you been writing?
I wrote for 5 years and finished 10 complete novels before I finally sold my first book, which was published in 1997. That was “Impetuous” and it was recently reissued as part of Harlequin’s “Famous First” program.
13. How long from the time of finishing your very first novel until it was accepted and published? What did that feel like?
That’s a true horror story. I’d written so many stories trying to figure out what publishers wanted. Then I decided to just write whatever the heck I wanted to write. Lots of people told me, “You can’t do that” in referring to things in my book. But I figured if I couldn’t sell, I could at least write the book that I wanted to write.
An editor had just turned down a different book, and she said that she loved my voice and my style but the book wasn’t right for them. She asked if I had anything else, so I told her about this book that was, at the time, a rule breaker.
She wanted to see it. Months and months later, she wrote me back to say that she liked it, but that there was too much male pov. She wanted me to take out about 60% of the male pov. (Point of View.)
The book was written on a typewriter, and I suck at math, so it was quite the undertaking to retype the whole thing and remove a lot of the perspective from the hero.
Then that editor got reassigned and my revised story sat in limbo for months and months.
Finally they hired a new editor, she read the manuscript, liked it, but wanted... (are you ready?) more male pov.
So I retyped the whole thing again, waited months and months again, and finally, after a nail-biting odyssey, it was bought.
14. What would you name as your top read for 2009?
“Dark Desires After Dark,” which is the remarkable Cadeon’s story. He’s a demon, he’s devilish, and I ADORED every word in this book. LOL Super fun and sexy and the characterization is just amazing.
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