Hi Olivia and welcome back to UTC! Let’s start with something fun and personal...If you could write a warning label for yourself as a person or an author, what would it say?
Caution: Characters in Head May Be Naughtier Than They Appear
You write some steamy sex scenes! Do you ever find yourself looking over your shoulder as you write one out because you know it's "too sexy"? Have you ever had to cut down or remove certain parts of a love scene?
I have to be alone when I write sex scenes, so there’s no one to look over my shoulder at. I can write other parts of my books when people are present, but not the sex scenes. I feel too subconscious. I cut an entire character out of an m/m scene in Double Time. I decided an m/m/m scene was too much. Plus readers would likely have a hard enough time with Trey getting it on with one guy in that particular scene. I figured him getting it on with two guys was taking it too far. But it was hella HOT while it lasted.
Do you ever write in the buff?
I sometimes wear beige, but I don’t think anything I own is buff. No, I don’t write naked, but I often plot naked. I get a lot of ideas in the shower.
In DOUBLE TIME, Brian showed a certain attitude towards Trey that I just didn't understand (hope you know what I'm talking about towards the end of the book). I'm curious if this was how you wanted the moment to play out or maybe there's something we are missing from their history because of the book release order that would explain his behavior?
That was Brian’s way of making his “feelings” stick in Trey’s mind. So that Trey could lose all hope. Brian actually did that for Trey’s sake. He should have done it years ago. If you’re in love with someone for as long as Trey’s been in love with Brian, there’s always that feeling of hope that maybe in the future it will work out. So if Brian had given him a bit of hope, even by being nice and understanding, there would still be a part of Trey that was NOT over him. A part of Trey that hoped and hung on. Don’t you think it gutted Brian to do that? He knows Trey. Knows what he needed to move on once and for all.
Readers are super impatient sometimes, but that's only because your books are addicting! What was the reason for such a long wait between books and how do you feel readers will be affected by the fact that this is actually written as the fifth book in the series but being released as the third?
There was an editorial decision made that Trey should be the third hero in the series though in my story arc, he’s the fifth hero. His story requires five books, which I think is obvious, but those in charge decided readers would prefer to read Trey at the expense of the other two books, because he’s such a prominent character in Rock Hard. If you read the first chapter of Double Time, you will know why there needs to be quite a length of time between Rock Hard and Double Time. Plenty of time for Jace and Eric to find their happily-ever-afters. Anyway, the long delay has to do with the fact that when the decision was made to switch the order, I had already written Jace as the third hero (his book was done, though needed revisions) and was nearly finished writing Eric as the fourth hero. I had not even started writing Trey’s book. Not one word had been written. So it was decided (not by me) that instead of releasing the two books already written to delay the entire series until I started writing and finished writing a book that was not due until the following year. From the beginning, I had plans to make Trey’s the book that finalized Sinners series and, by the time I’d written Rock Hard, I also wanted to use it to segue into the Exodus End spin-off series. Trey and Dare are brothers. Reagan is in Dare’s band. It’s not like I was hiding this idea. So instead of changing my entire plot and story arc, I wrote Trey’s book as planned, hoping someone would see the light and release the series in the proper order once they saw how it all came together. So much for hope.
As for readers, I’m sure it will piss off a lot of them. I’d be pissed off as a reader. I’d feel as if the reader-author contract had been broken. I’d think the author dropped the ball and took away from my enjoyment of discovering events as they transpire rather than in retrospect. As an author watching it happen? Perhaps you can imagine how it makes me feel.
We see a lot more of Exodus End in DOUBLE TIME. Do you think you finally have plans to write their stories? Rumor has it they are wilder boys and I would love to get my paws on Dare!
When I wrote Backstage Pass and mentioned that Trey’s brother was in Exodus End, I thought maybe that could be a spin off series. It seemed very premature at the time. But when I “met” Dare in Rock Hard, I knew I had to get to know the guys of Exodus End better. So yes, I do plan to write Exodus End once all of the Sinners books have been released. I’ve started writing about Logan (the bassist) already.
Your new band series ONE NIGHT WITH SOLE REGRET is also a success! When can we expect the next book and who will it be about?
Take Me, about the band’s lead singer, Shade, was just released. The next one, Touch Me, is about the bassist, Owen, and his way of “helping” a lovely lady get over her recent divorce. I plan to release a new Sole Regret book every six to seven weeks. It’s a serial series. It’s a bit different from what most people are used to, because the same characters will be revisited multiple times. I wanted to try something a little experimental with this series. Once it’s seen to completion, you can pick a favorite character and follow him through the series, or if you’re going book by book as I release them, you see what’s going on with a different band member one night at a time. That’s why the series is called One Night with Sole Regret.
A lot of your characters have tats and piercings. Do you have any yourself that you care to tell us about or share with us?
I wish I could say I did because I think that look is hot (especially on a guy), but I don’t. I have my ears pierced, but don’t even wear earrings. I have plans to get a tattoo. I just can’t decide on anything I like well enough to have to look at for the rest of my life. I have the kind of day job where I have to look proper. It’s a good thing they can’t read my mind. Not much proper going on in there. They’d be shocked. Shocked, I say!
Was there a particular book you've written so far that was the hardest one and that made you cry?
Jace’s book, Hot Ticket, ripped my guts out and spread them out on the floor. Jace has had a rough life. The revisions were brutal too. I had to remove an entire subplot and try to mend the flow of the story around the changes. It turned out well, I think. It comes out in February.
What was your favorite scene to write in DOUBLE TIME?
I think I liked writing the dungeon scene best, because we get to revisit Jace and Aggie (Well, I got to revisit them. It will be new for you.) and because it puts Ethan in a position he otherwise would have denied. I love taking those alpha males down a peg or to even if they have to be chained to a beam to gain their cooperation.
If you could describe each of the guys in SINNERS in one or two words, what would they be?
Olivia Cunning delivers the perfect blend of steamy sex, heartwarming romance, and a wicked sense of humor in this menage story featuring the hottest guy in the Sinners band.
Trey Mills, the notoriously sexy Sinners rhythm guitarist, gives up his bisexual lifestyle and is swept into a hot, heady romance with Reagan Elliot, a female rock star sensation. But when Trey encounters Reagan's sexy bisexual roommate, Ethan Conner, he can no longer deny who he is or what he wants. Reagan heartily agrees to a solution that opens up a hot new world of sexual experience--and love--with the two men she wants the most.