Part of the review read:
When I got this book, I had no idea there was BDSM in it, but the premise sounded so good, I took a chance. I’m happy to say that it’s light BDSM, and the heroine was the one being introduced to it. I actually liked how the author presented it, explored it between her characters and made it about emotions, trust and other positives that helped Barclay and Molly’s relationship grow. Because the lifestyle is a tad unconventional, the author used it as part of the internal plot conflict. It worked.
For the Love of a Fireman is truly delightful. It’s sexy, funny and warmhearted with just the right amount of external conflict to keep a reader engaged and fascinated. I had an awesome time reading this novel and have no problem recommending it to other romance readers. The story is that good."
Most of you realize I'm known for writing with the bedroom door wide open, if the characters even make it to the bedroom. To me, this is real life. I'd wanted to try a bit of Domination and submission, or D/s in my story. So I did. I didn't go into it heavily. I approached it more philosophically and with strong doses of humor. Most readers liked it. A few reviewers said they didn't. Such is life.
This was also a book that was never edited. I emailed it to my editor at HarperImpulse and she sent it on through the pipeline. Two weeks before release, I was frantic waiting for my edits to arrive, so I emailed her. "Where are my edits?"
"Your books are always so lovely, I didn't feel the need to edit, I just sent it on through." GASP! Lovely? Nothing I write is lovely or grammatically correct or plot hole free. Dear Lord, help me, I'm going to have an unedited book floating around out there. The final book of the series was never edited either! *bangs head on desk*
All that aside, I got an email from LASR on June 30th. For the Love of a Fireman is up for Erotic Book of the Month. Erotic! But I don't write erotic! All I did was sprinkle in some references to Domination and submission. Okay, so they may have been some hot sprinkles, but we don't need to go there.
Won't I be pleased as punch to promote the upcoming vote? The winner of Erotic Book of the Month will be announced tomorrow. Honestly, I don't know how I get myself into these messes. I'm not fit to be left alone.
Take the past couple of weeks, for example. My editor at Random House and I have been going round and round about a single title she wants me to write based on Calvin's and my experience traveling home from our granddaughter's wedding. Our flight was delayed, then changed to another gate in a difference concourse, and finally cancelled. My mind got to working...two strangers in an airport, eager to get home...their flight gets cancelled...they start talking...and then. By the time Calvin and I got to our hotel room provided by the airline, I'd had chapter one roughed out in my mind. Chapter two was formed by the time I'd showered and collapsed between the sheets. The story was flowing out. A great sign, right?
I sent my editor the first three chapters. She "said" she loved it and passed it onto her boss who said she had some concerns. My over-the-top descriptions, for one. My humor, secondly. My use of polysyllabic words. Couldn't I "dummy it down"?
My humor and over-the-top descriptions are part of my voice. As for using polysyllabic words, how many times have we all looked up a word in the dictionary? Our vocabulary levels are enriched by the experience. But I know not all readers have a dictionary, much less one nearby or on their eReaders.
So I toned down my descriptions. I removed most of my humor. I used simple sentences, avoiding compound and complex ones. I used words I felt everyone should know. I sent the dummied version back.
It was returned.
They didn't like my title. No problem. I've had nearly every title I've chosen changed. It's not my strong suit. I accept that. They didn't like my characters' names down to the dentist the heroine worked for and told me what to use. I could feel my undies bunch and twist. Choosing names does not come easily for an author. My description of the heroine's hair frizzing like Marge Simpson's had to go. I loved the visual. I still had too much humor. Then they changed my plot. Grrrr! They wanted the abusive ex-boyfriend to approach the heroine, give his smarmy apologies and promises, and for her to vacillate between the hero, who's treated her well and the jerk. I couldn't see writing about a smart, sassy woman for three-fourths of the book only to have her turn into an easily conflicted, indecisive woman. Surely the reader wouldn't buy it.
I was livid.
I wrote an email stating what I would change and what I wouldn't. I told them what my characters' names would be AND my plotline. I left it percolate for two days, taking a little of the venom out each day. Meanwhile, the publisher had evidently put the book on their release calendar. I sent a calmer version of my original email. My editor replied that all was good, giving me the date I'd need to have the manuscript to her and it's release date. "Oh," she wrote, "Make sure it's erotic."
Erotic Dead Faint
For the Love of a Fireman is on sale for .99 -- https://amzn.com/B00PV4YCXG