1. Have you always wanted to be a writer? How did you get started writing romance? Until recently I’ve been answering this question with the simple explanation: fan fiction. For me, it was the first time that I took a story from conception through fruition, to completion. However, when chatting with my husband the other day, I mentioned I often get this question and he laughed, saying, “It started back in school for you ━ when you were editor of the school magazine.” I suppose I can compromise with him, for, while I may not have written full stories back then, I did dabble with poetry, and I read voraciously. If nothing else, it had to be where my roots took hold.2. Tell us about your writing process. Do you outline, or are you more of a seat of your pants type of a writer? Definitely a ‘by the seat of my pants’ type of a writer. Outlines are horrid! Its such a slap to your pysche if you don’t stick to them and end up veering off track. Declaring up front that the characters are in charge and that I’m just along to dot the i’s and cross the t’s, is much more rewarding ━ and accurate. The most planning I do for a story is choosing my setting and creating my characters (usually with the help of Pinterest . . . I love storyboards), but after that, I’m just the vessel to carry the words to the paper.
3. Are there any romance novel cliché that make you cringe when you read them? Oh, good question! Is it going too far to say that they always have ‘the perfect body?’ Give me a heroine with a fixation for Nutella or Pixie Sticks, or a hero that doesn’t run ten miles every morning. You can take care of yourself without being an Adonis or Aphrodite, most of us aren’t.4. What is the hardest scene you’ve had to write, and what made it so difficult? Without a doubt, the hardest scene I’ve ever written is in my newest release, A Divine Life. Originally this story was To Serve is Divine in the fanfic world (before I pulled to overhaul and expand into a three book series), and it was hard to write it the first time, but even harder to revisit it for the rewrite because at this point, these characters have been part of my life since 2010 and are a part of me. Catherine, my female lead in The Divine Trilogy, has a tragic past with an abusive Dominate who hid behind the title of Dom. While I hint, through journal entries and general story progression in book one, at how horrific her past with Spencer was, I don’t go into much detail until this book. There is a very graphic flash back that takes place, and required several breaks to get through its creation. Some might wonder at the necessity of the passage to the advancement of the story, or if I added it simply for the ‘shock value.’ For me, its like hitting rock bottom; sometimes that’s what is needed before you can go up again. The passage is relevant to the story for it shows just how much Catherine has overcome and grown; its proof of what a strong, independent woman she really is, despite her need to be a submissive.
5. Which of your heroines would you say is most like you, and why? This would be a toss up between Raine Morrissey (from Haunted Raine) and Catherine O’Chancey from the Divine Trilogy. Raine is older, likes to quilt, and holds family dear. Catherine is true to her heritage, but with a feisty, kinky side that can be quite surprising.6. What are you working on now? Loaded question! Obviously, first and foremost on my open project list is Surreal, book three of The Divine Trilogy which is slated for a March 2014 release. If I don’t get it written, there will be no release . . . lol. In addition, I have a handful of original fiction stories started which range from male/male romance, to erotic thriller, to a vampire mystery, along with a couple of fanfictions that I’m still trying to wrap up for my faithful readers.
R.E. Hargrave lives on the outskirts of Dallas, TX where she prides herself on being a domestic engineer. Married to her high school sweetheart, together they are raising three children from elementary age to college age. She is an avid reader, a sometimes quilter and now, a writer for Renaissance Romance Publishing.
Over the past year of being Jayden Masterson’s collared submissive, Catherine O’Chancey has worked through the mental terrors left behind by her old Dom — she thinks. To celebrate their collar-ing anniversary, Jayden organizes a special day, during which her final limits and fantasies will be realized. Will it prove to be more than she can handle? Can she endure the erotic onslaught her mind and body will experience and survive unscathed?
While Catherine faces dark shadows and pleasurable highs, Jayden finds his own inner strength being tested. He has come to realize that, somewhere along the way, Catherine has taken possession of his heart, mind, and body. Now he faces his biggest challenge ever; he must let go of all his submissives but one: his jewel, Catherine. Can he leave his philandering ways behind? Has he made the ultimate mistake by putting his jewel into the hands of others?
“So, how does that work? I mean, how does one draw the line between Master and husband?” Was such a complicated relationship possible? Could Jayden see her that way? Just thinking his name caused a funny feeling in Catherine’s chest. Her thoughts continued, now on overdrive . . .
No. Master didn’t do personal relationships. He’d said as much when they’d first signed their con-tract together. They’d both agreed to the understanding that this was nothing more than a sexual relationship. Hell, he was fucking two other people besides her that she knew of. If there were a chance that he wanted something more with her, he wouldn’t have handed her over to complete strangers today. Would he? Oh, God. Sir Jonathan’s offer to take Catherine on repeated itself in her memory, along with the knowledge that she had more sessions today with an unknown number of Doms. Was that what today was? Had the ‘inspection’ Sir Jonathan performed not been part of the scene? Was Sir Jonathan looking her over as a potential acquisition? What about Miss K offering to take her on back in February? Catherine’s stomach soured again.
“No. No, please, no. I — I can’t,” Catherine mumbled and began to shake.
Her world began crumbling around her, and panic took root. Catherine gasped for air, wrapping her arms around her mid-section.
“Erin! What’s wrong?”
Paige’s shriek snapped Catherine to attention, and she raised her watery eyes to meet her new friend’s.
“Paige,” Catherine started to cry. “He figured it out. I tried to be so good, so careful. He knows, and he’s going to get rid of me!” She thought she’d done so well at hiding her secret over the months, protecting her heart.
Paige had wrapped her arm around Catherine and was rubbing slow circles on her back. With a wince, Catherine became quite aware of every lash mark from Sir Jonathan’s whip. They now burned to her core when Paige’s soft hands brushed over them. Catherine flinched away from her.
“Shh, Erin,” she said in a calming voice. “Who knows what, sweetie? What are you talking about?”
Turning wide eyes on her, Catherine choked out, “Jay . . . Master. He knows I’ve fallen in — in love with him. I wasn’t supposed to. He found out, and now he’s interviewing me with strange Doms to get rid of me. I broke the rules and he —” she swallowed a sob, “he doesn’t want me anymore!”