Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Guest Blogger - Cindy Spencer Pape

Please give a warm welcome to a multi-talented author and an all around great person - Cindy Spencer Pape

When was your first sale? June of 2006. So almost 5 years now!

What does your family think of your writing career? My boys are in college now—they mostly think it’s funny and kind of cool. They have no interest in reading my girly books but some of their friends, or friend’s mothers do. Mostly they like it when I get checks. My father is proud as punch, and when my laptop died between my first and second sales, it was my dad who rushed to buy me a new one. My husband is ENORMOUSLY supportive, and has put up with a lot of frugal years while I’ve pursued this career. But no, he doesn’t read my books unless I need help with a fight scene, military protocol, or something like that. He does a great job with out of the blue ideas though.

Who are your books published with?
So far: Carina Press, Ellora’s Cave, The Wild Rose Press, Total-E-Bound, and Resplendence Publishing. My agent and I are working on revisions with one other new publisher and she has another full manuscript out on submission.

Do you have critique partners or beta readers? I do. I have one critique partner who reads nearly everything I write. We send snippets back and forth almost every day. I also have a local group, a mixed bag of Science Fiction, fantasy, horror, YA, and romance authors, who meet every other week. They’re wonderful for keeping me on my toes and not letting me fall into lazy ruts.

Where do you dream of traveling to and why? Everywhere. Seriously, one of my strongest beliefs is that the one who goes the most places, meets the most people, and tries the most things, wins. Unfortunately in my life, careers and finances have never cooperated, so most of my travels have been through books, my own and others.

Does travel play in the writing of your books? Often. I like setting books close to home, like my Urban Arcana series, set in Detroit, and my Geek Love series, set in a fictional small town in southern Michigan, but I also like to play with other places and settings. Thank heavens for tourism bureaus and other local information being available on the web.

What do you think makes a good story? In romance, particularly, you need a heroine you can relate to, a hero you can fall a little bit in love with, and a set of circumstances that keeps you on the edge of your seat. Also, the sex needs to be tempered with emotion. Love, not just passion, is at the heart of any romance story, erotic or otherwise.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? It varied from day to day. Even as an adult, I tried several other careers, from wildlife biology to politics before I settled on “author.”

What are your favorite TV shows? Right now? Castle, Big Bang Theory (what can I say, I’m a huge geek), Primeval, and Torchwood. And Jeopardy is a daily fix.

What songs are most played on your Ipod? Actually my MP3 player is a Sony, and my e-reader is a Nook. (wink) Probably Whiskey in the Jar and Fields of Athenry, just because those are songs I have on several different albums by several different bands. I listen to a lot of Irish pub music and Celtic punk rock.

What would we find under your bed? Dust rhinos. Lost socks. Random ponytail holders and pens—two things I leave everywhere. A box full of purses I rarely use, my husband’s mandolin, and a suitcase full of paintings done by his grandmother. Far more than we could ever find places for in the house, but we CAN’T throw them out!

Tell us about your current release. With pleasure! Photographs & Phantoms is a novella connected to my Gaslight Chronicles series at Carina Press. It’s available as a FREE download to celebrate this week being steampunk week at Carina. You can find it here http://bit.ly/f4Y09s. I had loads of fun writing it, and hope you enjoy the snippet below. Also, if you’re interested in my steampunk/fantasy world, the full length-novel Steam & Sorcery is also available from Carina Press. http://bit.ly/e8E6Lt

Where can we find you on the web?
Website: http://www.cindyspencerpape.com/
Blog: http://cindyspencerpape.blogspot.com/
Newsletter group: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/cspapenewsgroup/
Twitter: http://twitter.com/CindySPape
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Cindy-Spencer-Pape-Books/102207923194253
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/cindyspencerpape

Anything else you’d like to say? Amber, thanks so much for having me here. It was great to meet you at Romanticon last fall, and I’m delighted to call you a friend!
Amber: Awww, I'm thrilled to call you friend too.

Photographs & Phantoms
A Gaslight Chronicles Novella
Available as a Free Download from Carina Press
April 25, 2011
Click here to pre-order.
Blurb: Brighton, 1855

As a member of the Order of the Round Table, Kendall Lake is overqualified to be investigating strange phenomena at a seaside photography studio. But since the photographer is related to the Order’s most powerful sorcerer, Kendall reluctantly boards a dirigible to Brighton.

Amy Deland is haunted by a shadow that appears in some of her recent portraits. In each case, the subject died within days of the sitting. Does she have her grandmother’s gift of foresight, or has she somehow caused the deaths?

As Kendall and Amy search for answers, their investigation draws them together in a most improper way. But it seems the evil presence in the studio is determined to keep them apart…

Excerpt: PG

A young woman in a simple but attractive navy day dress stood in the doorway, waving away the customers. She was hatless, with shining, honey-brown hair in a simply braided coronet. She looked up at Kendall and quirked one neat brow above a pair of remarkable eyes, so deep a blue they were almost violet, and lifted one corner of her full mouth into a half smile. “Good afternoon, sir. Why don’t I believe you’re here for me to take your portrait?” The accent was almost American, but softer and with a faint French overtone that matched the name Deland.

“Because your neighborhood tends to discourage clients with full wallets?” He found himself returning her dry tone and wry smile. A neatly lettered sign on the door said simply A. Deland, Photographer. “Or perhaps just because I’m a trifle older than the bulk of your clientele?” He’d glanced past her into the small foyer of her studio—most of the portraits hanging on the wall were of children, or families at the very least.

“True, though I do wedding and funeral portraits also, and landscapes. Perhaps you’re about to be married?” She crossed her arms under her rather impressive bust and leaned against the doorframe. The sailor-style blouse and slim hoops of her skirts allowed her more freedom of movement than the tight bodices and wide crinolines currently in vogue among Kendall’s social circle. Even in such understated clothing, he found her enchantingly feminine—except for the lines of strain that bracketed her soft lips and creased the corners of her eyes.

“Not that I’m aware of, Miss Deland.”

“And you are…?” Amusement twitched briefly at the corners of her lips.

“Sorry.” Good God, he’d been staring like a gobsmacked lad. He held out his hand. “Kendall, Lord Lake, at your service. I believe Lord Drood told you I was coming?”


  1. I love Cindy's new Gaslight Chronicles series and couldn't wait for this one. The Steampunk world she's created is so much fun and I'm looking forward to revisiting it!

  2. "Also, the sex needs to be tempered with emotion. Love, not just passion, is at the heart of any romance story, erotic or otherwise."

    Couldn't agree more, Cindy - that's what makes it all worthwhile. :)

  3. Hey, Cindy. Great interview. I STILL need to read a steampunk story. Yours sounds good. Loved the excerpt.

  4. This seems like the cutest story! Wonderful, Cindy. I can't believe your boys are in college!

  5. Love the cover! The premise. Hoping you have loads of downloads.

  6. My pleasure to meet you and your books. You are new to me but I like what I have heard or in this case..read. I will be looking for your books now when I go out. susan Leech garysue@dejazzd.com

  7. Linda, if you want to try Steampunk, this has the advantage of being free. ;-) Susan, I'm so happy to meet you too, and Kelli. Julia, I know, I have trouble believing it myself. Paris and Tina, thanks SO much for stopping by!

  8. Cindy, this was a wonderful interview.
    This excerpt and all your latest work is really exciting!
    XXOO Kat

  9. thank you for sharing. you're a new author to me and i'm looking forward to reading the free download *yay* THANKS!!!!!!!

    i've a feeling i'm about to get hooked on another books series. great for my imagination, bad for my wallet *heh*

  10. Thanks, Kat! Deb, thanks so much for stopping by! Hope you enjoy the book!

  11. Great interview!
    Cindy, I'm looking so forward to reading this, I love your books!

  12. OOOH, Loved this.
    quite intriguing....Jean

  13. Great interview. I can't wait to download my first Steampunk story!