My intention for the books were to be stand-alone, although there is a similar “theme” to all of them which is basically “sexy men of the world”. Each heroine meets a man from another part of the world. The first book - Kiwi Kiss - takes place in New Zealand. I had intended the second book to then move elsewhere. But a friend, who’d only read the first half of Kiwi Kiss, strongly suggested that one of her favorite characters in Kiwi Kiss get his own story.

So the second book will also take place in New Zealand and it will be the only story that has cross-over of some of the characters. But it will and still can be considered as a stand-alone story, as will the subsequent stories to follow from South Africa, Scotland, Ireland, Spain and France.

There’s a reason why one of the most popular sub-genres in romance are historical romances that take place in countries such as Scotland: hot men with sexy accents. Personally, I have always loved the various accents of the world; that hasn’t changed as I’ve gotten older. In fact, now that I have met, and am friends with many people (in particular men) with accents, I’m even more fascinated with them - their speech patterns, how they pronounce words differently from myself etc. They don’t call some languages “romance” languages for nothing. The lilt of some accents can be like a lover’s caress.

It seems only logical then to have the heroes in my books be from those far-off lands, with big strong bodies, and equally strong personalities, complete with those seductive accents.

Believe it or not, the hardest part is actually writing the “blurb” - the short summary on the back of a book that is its “hook”. It can’t be too long, or give away too many spoilers to the story, and it still has to entice the reader to want to read your book.

It’s really up to several things, including personal preferences/tastes, what the author wants to be out of their writings, and in the end, what works best for the author. I chose to go with self-publishing after reading a lot of blogs and articles written by other authors on their experiences with both self-publishing and traditional publishing. While there were good cases for both paths, the key for me ended up being about control. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not some crazed control-freak that doesn’t believe in or allow the input of others. On the contrary, some of the changes I made in Kiwi Kiss stem from feedback from others on what worked best for the story. I appreciate that help and am open to suggestions.

But by choosing to go the self-publishing route, I’m allowing myself greater creative input in everything about my book - from the photos on the covers, the fonts, the size of the for-print books, etc. It also allows me to take the story in the way that I’m most comfortable. Some traditionally published authors told me that there have been times when the book that was actually published was so far from what was in their heads, they didn’t really recognize the story as their own. And I don’t wish that. I want my stories to be told as I intended them to; to have them modified so much that the “flow” is gone almost seems a sacrilege.

A big difference with going the self-publishing route is that the onus also falls to me to do all the advertising for my books - a lot of hard work, time and most often money - just to bring you - the reader - the best books my mind can produce in hopes that you’ll enjoy them and want more.