Hi Eden, welcome back to UTC!
-Thanks so much for having me!
Your books, THE DARK GARDEN and FORBIDDEN FRUIT recently got a cover overhaul. What are your thoughts on the new covers?
-I adore them! THE DARK GARDEN (originally released in 2007) has new covers for both the US and UK re-releases-they’re very similar, both sleek, simple black and white covers, both gorgeous! It’s just the UK for the upcoming re-release of FORBIDDEN FRUIT, and I think I may love that cover even more. Almost every novel I’ve ever written as both Eden Bradley and Eve Berlin is being released in the coming year in the UK by Black Lace Books-very exciting!
In THE DARK GARDEN you tell a very emotional story that talks about BDSM without necessarily involving actual sex for part of the book. How did this story come to be?
-I wanted to tell a story that reflected my real life experiences in the BDSM arena, something I’m very open about. I wrote it with the intention of giving readers a window into some of the psychology behind BDSM practice. I wanted people to know what really goes on in the minds of people who are into this extreme sensual practice, how it often works, and mostly, that a Dom is far more than a bossy guy with a whip in his hand.
I also wanted people to know that in many cases what is negotiated between participants is that the ‘play’ happens without sexual contact. Of course, Rowan and Christian couldn’t keep their hands off each other forever—but part of the fun was watching Rowan break down Christian’s staunchly-held sense of responsibility in carrying out what she signed up for in agreeing to submit to him.
It's always interesting to find out more about the emotion behind a book and I'm assuming there was quite a bit of that with THE DARK GARDEN. Was there a particular scene or topic that was hard for you to write?
-I always fall into my characters, so those moments near the end where they love each other so madly but they both think all is lost is always wrenching for me. Although I sort of love when my own book makes me cry while I’m writing it. *G*
What about research? What kind of research went into this book?
-Well, as I mentioned, this came from a place of real life experience, and the club in THE DARK GARDEN is a blend of the various clubs I’ve visited. So…I suppose the ‘research’ came long before the book was written…? And I didn’t exactly think of it as research at the time. : )
Of course the hero is to die for as usual. What do you think it is about Christian that draws women in like flies?
-I think we’re all drawn to a man who is utterly confident, who has an air of command-and for me (obviously, since I wrote my dream Dom!) I love that he can balance that with a gentle side. And Christian is particularly charming in my mind…even though I’m the one who put him down on paper, I’m not sure it’s something I can pinpoint. All I know is he’s perfect. In every way. *girlish sigh*
We were very excited to see this book at Target (in the US) recently and have heard that Black Lace will be publishing not only THE DARK GARDEN (available Sept 13 in the UK) but the rest of your backlist as well. First of all congratulations! It's always great to see that a talented author is getting in the hands of more readers, but also BDSM is now more mainstream reading than it was even a couple of years ago. How do you see this change?
-Thank you so much! I think this is a wonderful shift, reflecting a more sex-positive view for women. It’s time we came out and admitted that we are sexual beings with needs and desires and fantasies—and that some of those fantasies might have a dark side. It’s time the word got out!
Do you have a favorite BDSM book or Dom? (Not necessarily from your characters alone)
-Oh, you can’t make me choose between my Doms! I love them all: Christian, Decker, Gabriel, Cam, Marcus, Damien, Desmond—not to mention all my kinky vampires from my Midnight Playground series… impossible! But one of my favorite BDSM books of all time is Anne Rice’s Exit to Eden. It’s not romance, per se, and it’s fem Dom, but it’s so gorgeously written, and even though the setting is a bit fantastical the psychology and emotion behind the characters is spot on.
When you are not writing, what do you do for fun?
-I work a lot, but on those rare days off I love to just spend time with friends, going out to eat, seeing movies, and I love to shop, especially for shoes. Or put me in a Sephora store and I’m lost in lip gloss for hours! I’m also a huge art geek, so I love to go to museums.
Say you are attending a convention and you have to put together your own panel. Who would you pick to speak with you and what topic will you talk about?
-The panel would be: Marquis de Sade, Anne Rice, the brilliant Molly Weatherfield (who wrote the book Carrie’s Story-the modern day Story of O, in my opinion) and me—the topic would be kinky sex, of course!
What's next for Eden Bradley?
-Oh my gosh, so much I hardly know where to start!
As we both mentioned, my entire backlist of Bantam and Berkley Heat books are being re-issued in the UK by Black Lace. Harlequin recently released a number of erotic stories from the Spice line as an anthology—12 Shades of Surrender—and my story NIGHT MOVES was one of them. It was enormously popular, apparently, so now they are talking about releasing some of the Spice novels there, too-more news coming soon, I hope!
All three of my Eve Berlin books, PLEASURE’S EDGE, DESIRES EDGE, and TEMPTATION’S EDGE, are being translated into Czech and Slavic. The publisher is very excited about it—apparently I’m their first erotic novels—and they’re flying me to Prague in the spring, and I’m thrilled!
I’m also doing some self-publishing, starting with two previously published books I’ve re-edited and added tons of new content to: SANCTUARY is already available and BREAKING SKYE will be out in the next couple of weeks. After that I’ll be working on two more BDSM-themed novellas, both spin-offs of those two books.
I’ll be blogging and doing interviews all over the place—readers can find out where I’ll be by checking my websites: EdenBradley.com, EveBerlin.com, or my group blog Smutketeers.com.
What else? Life is happening so fast right now, I’m sure I’ve left something out. Oh-I’m about to move across the country to live with my best friend, fab author and my fellow Smutketeer R.G. Alexander. I wonder how much trouble two erotica authors can get into in the same house…? Should be fun to find out!
Ohhhhh that would be the perfect set up for a reality TV show ;) Thank you so much for taking the time to share with us today. We love having you here at UTC and hope to see you back soon!
Surrender has its own rewards…
This scintillating erotic debut tells the deliciously potent tale of one woman’s quest for self discovery-in the intriguing underground world of Los Angeles’s club scene…Rowan Cassidy likes to be in charge—especially in her personal life. As a Mistress at Club Privé, the most exclusive bondage/S&M club on the West Coast, Rowan can live out her dominant fantasies safely, and with complete control—until Christian Thorne walks in. Self-confidant and sophisticated, he’s a natural dominant if Rowan’s ever seen one. Yet she can’t stop thinking about him and imagining his touch.Christian has returned home from Europe, hoping to break free from his dissatisfaction and malaise—and discovers the cure in Rowan. He’s dying to get his skilled hands on her and watch her surrender, to unlock the mystery of her that captivates him. Determined to be her Master, he makes Rowan a daring proposition: give herself over to him for thirty days.Rowan finds Christian’s offer terrifying—and impossible to resist. But abandoning herself to Christian’s power might be more than she can handle…Or it might be the realization of her true nature and the dark garden within her. There will be only one way to find out. And once the game has begun, there’s no turning back.